Walk 74: Easton on the Hill Circular: Got your passport ready?

The ‘Needs to Know’

Distance: 4 miles (6.44km)

Time to walk: A nice couple of hours stroll with an option to visit Stamford

Difficulty: A combination of road & field path walking which could get muddy in wet conditions

Parking: We parked in the lay-by on the A43 in Easton on the Hill

Public toilets: The Blue Bell pub in Easton

Map of the route: @Pub strolls in Northamptonshire. It’s a bit blurred but the instructions are easy to follow

Map

Want to visit 3 counties within about 15 minutes? Then this is one for you! Starting in Northamptonshire we pass briefly into our native Lincolnshire, then Rutland & back into Northamptonshire once more

Easton on the Hill is a beautiful hilltop village full of limestone houses with Collyweston slate roofs – you’ll probably pass through Collyweston on the A43 towards the start of this walk so don’t forget to stop at The Collyweston Slater pub

Over 40 of the buildings in Easton are listed, the oldest being the 15th century Priest’s House which we’ll see later

This walk takes us from the village all the way down the hill to the River Welland which gives you the opportunity to follow it into Stamford

So shall we go? Then…

Let’s Walk!

1. This walk is taken from a book which refers to a starting point outside the Oak Inn…unfortunately the Oak Inn is now no more & is a private dwelling. That’s a great pity as quite a few of the walks out of that book relate to pubs that no longer exist

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2. Head down Porter’s Lane…

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Where there’s some amazingly trimmed bushes!

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Easton’s a real mix of properties, but it’s good to see that the ‘new builds’ mainly blend into the older, traditional stone built properties

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3. At the crossroads turn right down towards the Blue Bell pub…

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The Blue Bell is a serious Italian Gastropub – take a look at the menu – any Italian restaurant that has calves liver on the menu knows about proper italian food..

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4. Just past the pub’s the War Memorial…

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…where we need to turn left along Church Street

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5. Take your time along the next 1/2 mile & look around as this is one of the most picturesque villages we’ve walking in recently. The road rises, dips & rises again up to the church…

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The view along here is so quintessential English & could be The Cotswolds…

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6. Continue up the hill to the church…

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This is the Church of All Saints….

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7. Just past the church on the right’s a signpost showing where our path goes along both the Jurassic & Macmillan Way

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8. Pass through the car park, even though it does seem slightly intrusive & cross the stile at the far side…

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…and head straight towards Stamford…

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9. Cross the next stile & another field…well marked paths around here…thanks farmer

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10. Head through the gap at the end &, apparently on the left is a rare Midland Thorn…unfortunately we couldn’t spot it…

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11. Follow the hedge line on the left down the hill through the copse…

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…until it emerges into open fields again…

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…where we’re heading towards the railway line…

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12. At the end of the field cross the bridge & climb up the steps to the railway…

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13. As the sign says…be careful crossing as this is an active track with frequent trains…

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Safely across? Then head diagonally right towards the road tunnel…

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14. Pass under the A1 &…Welcome to Lincolnshire!

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Follow the field track to the river & turn left…

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15. This is our old friend The Welland…

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After about 50 yards on the right’s quite an important site…Stamford Spa

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The Stamford Spa was brought into use in 1819 & was much sought after by persons afflicted by various ailments in the belief that the water had medicinal properties. It was renovated in 1994

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16. We’re now going to follow the river for about 1 mile & it’s a lovely stretch…

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Pass under the A1 for a second time…

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And…Welcome to Rutland!

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17. The Welland’s very meandering along here & the view is spoilt only by the monstrosity that’s Ketton Cement Works – this eyesore will be with us all the way back to Easton on the Hill

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18. Eventually the riverside path arrives at another track…

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On the right’s the old Mill, but it’s out of bounds to us as we need to turn left & start heading back to Easton on the Hill…

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Passing right along the track at the end of the hedge

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19. This area will be muddy in winter months, but in September there were so many sloes…

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And there’s that eyesore again!

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20. Eventually the track reaches the busy railway line again so cross with care…

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All clear…

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21. Ready for a bit of cardio? Just as well as the track now rises steeply all the way back to where we started – so head down!

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On the way you’ll pass the old Keeper’s Lodge…

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It’s acorn time!

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22. At the top of the hill we arrive back at Easton on the Hill…

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On the left’s the magnificent Glebe House…

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23. Now…being members of The National Trust we knew there’s one of their properties here… The Priest’s House

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24. Time to finish this walk by simply following the road we’re on all the way back to where we left the car…

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Maybe stop off for a cake?

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So at the end of the road turn left to where we started

This is a corking little walk &, if we’d have a full day we’d have turned right at the Welland to explore beautiful Stamford (but that’s a walk for another day)

We really can’t fault this one & it would be perfect if someone could eradicate Ketton Cement Works so…

Go Walk!