Walk 195: Cransley & Loddington Circular

The ‘Needs to Know’

Distance: 5.2 miles (8.4 km)

Time to walk: Roughly 2 hours 15 minutes at a steady pace

Difficulty: A few steep hills

Parking: Outside the Three Cranes pub in Great Cransley (now closed)

Public toilets: The Hare in Loddington, roughly halfway round

Map of the route:

We already have one walk that starts from Great Cransley, (Walk 40: the Cransley Reservoir Circular), but I thought it good to have another that goes in the other direction & takes in the lovely village of Loddington, somewhere we haven’t yet been on one of Northamptonshire Walks. 003.5 was therefore dispatched with the route in hand!

The name ‘Cransley’ means ‘Woodland or clearing frequented by cranes or herons.’ 

Let’s Walk!

1. This walk starts outside the, sadly closed, Three Crane pub…

Facing the pub, turn right & then turn left up the steps beside No.15…

2. At the end pass through the gate in the picture below & follow the line of the fence to the right, in the direction of the marker post…

On reaching the top corner of the field, go through the next gate & now follow the field edge, keeping the trees on your right

3. Eventually you’ll come to another gate. Walk through this & head towards yet another gate opposite…

At the moment it’s all about the gates, but the good news is they’re not stiles! So go through the next one & the next one directly opposite…

…& now head down towards Mill Farm

4. The footpath keeps to the right of the building in the above picture. Just after the black containers, follow the track through the woodland area…

…crossing the bridge & passing through the gate

5. It’s time now to remind ourselves that Northamptonshire isn’t flat, so walk straight up the hill to the next gate that can clearly be seen at the top…

Once through it, head straight towards the church in the distance, which comes more into view with every step you take…there you go…I bet you can’t get The Police tune out of your head!

6. At the next gate the view towards Loddington is rather lovely…

Go through it & walk down the hill, still aiming in the direction of the church

7. In the dip at the bottom, you’ll find the gate & bridge in the picture below. Cross both of these & head diagonally right to the top of the next hill…

Here you’ll find a marker post…

…with an arrow telling you to carry on up the hill towards the church. Wow…this has been a hilly, but enjoyable walk so far!

8. It’s now time to leave the fields & turn right along the path to exit through the gate below…

Welcome to Loddington, whose name is thought to probably means “an estate associated with a man called Luda”. Like much of Northamptonshire, excavation of iron ore took place in & around the village, something that carried on here until the 1960s

9. Continue on the path ahead past the houses…

…& turn left into Richardson Lane

10. Walk along the lane. You can definitely get a sense & feel of the history of the village along this part of the walk…

We can highly recommend stopping at The Hare, which has a beautiful cottage garden. Richard confesses he didn’t want to leave, but whether that’s because of the garden, or the 003.5 Vodka Martini’s…we will never know

11. Continue along the High Street, passing the Village Hall on the right…

…to arrive at the Church of St Leonard’s on the left

The oldest parts of the church date back to the 13th century, including the west tower, south aisle & chapel.  For some reason there’s a stuffed owl in the vestry!!

12. On reaching the crossroads head straight across & up Mawsley Lane…

Keep walking down the lane. There are a couple of houses along here so just bear in mind that traffic could come along at any point…

13. This really is a beautiful part of the County. Keep walking straight down the hill…

…& pass through the wooden gate on the left & then up the hill

14. Follow the track as it bends right…

…& passes through the next wooden gate

15. Keep going in the same direction, following the way marker sign…

There’s no excuse for getting lost on this walk as the path is so clear & easy to follow…

16. However…when the marked track turns left (at the picture below), it’s time to leave it & keep straight ahead on the grassy track, with the hedge on your left

Shortly the path arrives at the bridge in the picture below. Do not cross the bridge, instead go through the gate on the left & continue with the hedges on your right…

17. Pass the derelict farm building on your left & go through the next gate & then turn  immediately left through the next one…those gates just keep on coming!!

Now continue, this time with the fence line on your right…

18. At the end is another gate, which leads into Cransley Wood…

The path through the wood’s narrow, but easy to follow…

19. Pass through a gate & continue in the same direction…

Cransley Wood is rather lovely & also well maintained. Cross the bridge & just keep going…

20. As the track bends, follow it up to the woods…

…however, don’t be tempted to enter the woods. Instead keep on the track as it goes around the edge

21. Now we follow the track through the woods again. This is a stunning area…

Go through one final gate & turn left along the country lane towards Great Cransley again…

22. Walk straight ahead back into the village…

…passing Old Lodge Farm on the left

23. On the right, the entrance to St Andrew’s Church is simply stunning. At this point Richard’s comments tell me…”I think I’m in love”

Continue along this beautiful street…

24. At the end turn left to arrive back at the Three Cranes & the start of this walk…

Oh wow – what a walk. To finish in Cransley Wood & then to walk through the older part of the village was just spectacular…

You’ll love it so…

Go Walk!