Stage 3: Sywell to Cogenhoe

The ‘Needs to Know’

Distance: 2.5 miles (4.02km)

Time to walk: Just under 1 hour

Difficulty: Mostly off road so it can get muddy

Parking: Plenty of parking at Sywell Country Park

Public toilets: Sywell Country Park; pubs in Ecton & at Cogenhoe Holiday Park

Map of the route: @ Ten Foot Club

map

1. We’re starting from Sywell Country Park where we finished Stage 2 of ‘The Round’…

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Turn right out of the park & head up the steep hill – this was the third stage of the ‘Round’ that we’d done that day & were ‘feeling it’ up here…

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4. At the top of the hill’s East Lodge Farm which contains several small businesses…

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There’s WH Thomas Butchers & The Riding & Pony Club

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5. Just past the farm’s a fingerpost showing the path heading left into a field & it’s the first time we’ve seen one for The Northamptonshire Round…

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Head diagonally left past the horses & very friendly chickens…

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…& climb the stile into the next one…

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6. Now turn right & walk to the far left corner of this field to the gate under the large trees…

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7. Pass through that & continue in the same direction past the trees above & through the gate. There were several cows in this field, but luckily they weren’t interested. Two chases in one day would have been too much!

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8. Follow the hedge on the left & we’re out through the gate onto the old A45…

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…where it’s a ‘right turn Clyde’ to arrive in Ecton…

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9. Ecton’s a lovely Northamptonshire village, probably known by many for it’s pub/restaurant The World’s End. We’re not going that far today as we turn left down Wellingborough Road

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It was one of the first villages in Northamptonshire to be given conservation status. The name comes from the Old English ‘Ecca’ & ‘tun’, meaning “Ecca’s farm/settlement.”

The village’s a place of pilgrimage for many Americans. Benjamin Franklin‘s ancestors lived here for over 300 years, many generations of them being the village blacksmiths which is where The Three Horseshoes Inn now stands. There’s still headstones for members of the Franklin family in the village churchyard & inside the church is a bronze plaque, provided by a group of American visitors in 1910, which has a quotation from one of Benjamin Franklin’s speeches

10. Continue down to the junction with the impressive war memorial…

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…& carry straight on down the very pretty High Street…

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11. There’s a view across to the Church of St Mary Magdalene on the left…

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The road now narrows & becomes even more pretty, passing the The Three Horsehoes…

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12. Look for a turning down an alley leading to West Street on the right…

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13. At the bottom, double back left through the gate & into a field of many sheep!

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14. Once again the route isn’t well marked, but we know it heads south & has to cross the busy A45 dual carriageway so head straight down across two fields…

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15. Look for a gate on the left leading into a lane. We couldn’t find it so just climbed the locked gates below…

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16. Turn right along the lane & cross over the A45…

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…looking for a left turn immediately once across – this looks like a decidedly dodgy area & we’ll soon confirm it…

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17. At the bottom turn right & this area now confirms it’s famous for fly-tipping…

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Follow the path to the next junction where it’s really disgraceful…

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18. Turn right onto the next path which will lead us all the way to Cogenhoe…

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…across the Anglian Water plains…

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19. The track arrives at another junction where, on the left’s Ecton Complex Fishery

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It’s extremely private so best head straight on down the narrow path…

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20. After a few more yards we arrive at the end of Stage 3, or in our case, Stages 1-3 & we’re very happy to be at Cogenhoe Mill. Firstly though pass over the lovely packhorse bridge…

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After crossing head diagonally right towards the lock gate…

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21. Pass over the lock & carry on straight ahead through the park until reaching the Mill…

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So that’s the end of Stage 3 which was considerably easier to follow than 1 & 2. We did the first 2 stages all at once & it is quite a slog especially across the pastures around Holcot

Next up…Cogenhoe to Yardley Hastings!

Go Walk

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