Tag Archives: Haywood Oaks

Walks in Central Nottinghamshire Walk 63: Haywood Oaks and Blidworth Woods

10 Sep

 

This walk follows some of the route of Walk 12.  It starts at the car park in Haywood Oaks just east of Blidworth and largely follows the tracks through the woods and around the edge of the adjoining woods.  It is generally well draining and can be done in any weather as the tracks are good although after particularly wet weather the odd patch may be slightly muddy.  One other thing to bear in mind is that there have been cases where dogs have been taken ill after walking  in Haywood Oaks.  This seems to have occurred in late summer or early autumn. No conclusive reason has been found for this as yet but it may be something that grows at that time of year.

Start: Haywood Oaks Car Park just to the south-east of Blidworth on Baulker Lane, the road to the A614 from Blidworth (if the car park is inaccessible park just off the road by the wide track.  If coming by public transport start from Dale Lane near the end of Blidworth village about half a mile from the car park.

Distance: 4.5 miles (7.2km)

Map of the Route

From the car park go back to reach the main track which continues from the car park entrance. This is a good, wide, firm track which is fine to walk on in all conditions. Follow the track downhill away from Baulker Lane. After 500 yards straight it bends to the right and then to the left over the next 300 yards. When the track starts to straighten again and you can see a long straight section ahead we turn right off the main track to go onto a narrower path. The path you want is the one with a field immediately to the right of it. This field often contains pigs. The path goes quite sharply uphill alongside the field before levelling out after 300 yards. Keep going straight on along the path until you come to a house after another 300 yards.

 

Just before you reach the house bear left along the track taking you to a road. Cross the road and turn left to walk along the verge. The road has more traffic than you would expect for a country road so take care. After  200 yards you reach another area of woodland on your right. Take the first path on the right that you come to, going through a small hedge. The  path is narrow and not very obvious through the hedge but soon becomes much wider. Go downhill on a wide track at the edge of the public part of the wood keeping next to a wire fence on your right. The path drops quite steeply downhill along a sandy track. After 400 yards you reach the bottom of the dip and start to climb again along another sandy path bearing slightly to the right to keep to the edge of the wood.

After 600 yards the edge of the wood turns almost at ninety degrees to the right.  The path ahead becomes a wide track but on this walk we stay at the edge of the wood and turn right.  The path narrows but is decent and pleasant among more deciduous trees.  It rises steadily with an open field on your right.  Follow this for 500 yards as far as you can go before reaching the corner of the wood where you turn sharp left.  Stay along the edge of the wood, still with open land to your right.  Follow the obvious path for 400 yards until it goes down a little into the trees and meets a wide track.  This track is the Robin Hood Way which goes up to Blidworth if you turn right (see Walk 12).

 

On this walk we instead turn left along this track for 150 yards going slightly downhill before very soon  going up a small rise.  Where the wider track continues straight on we turn left to go back into the wood.  Follow the edge of the wood on a fairly narrow path which has a few small undulations.  After 250 yards it kinks slightly to the right and soon after turns at ninety degrees to the left.  After 200 yards you meet the main wide track through the wood but don’t follow it.  Instead turn sharp right to stay at the edge of the wood on a narrow but obvious path.  After 250 yards turn left in the wood along the edge path near a neat garden by a house.  250 yards later you reach a corner of the wood and for the first time emerge from full tree cover.  Turn left along the edge of the wood which has a few patches where you are slightly clear of trees.

 

After 150 yards turn right and follow the edge of the wood.  The path slightly leaves the very edge of the wood but you are still close to it.  After nearly half a mile you meet the main wide track in the wood.  Join this main track and follow it uphill for 400 yards until you reach the road at the edge of the wood which you crossed earlier.  Go straight across the road to join a narrow path next to the road.  Turn right along the path but after 150 yards bear left on another path going further into the wood.  Stay on this path crossing a wider path after 300 yards. 

After 500 yards you reach the main wide track in Haywood Oaks which when I did the walk had a large pile of logs by the side of it.  Turn left along this main track which soon reaches the point earlier in the walk where we left it.  It bends right and starts to rise towards two very tall sets of posts with yellow on them that tower over the track.  These are about 100 yards apart but half way between them look for a narrow path going off to the right into the wood.  You can carry on up the main track to return to the start of the walk but for a more interesting and only slightly longer finish turn right along the narrower path. 

  

After 200 yards you reach the edge of the wood with decent views over fields to the east.  Turn left and follow a narrow path along the edge of the wood.  A little further along the path it bears left to go slightly further into the wood and soon reaches the car park where we started.

Walks in Central Nottinghamshire: Walk 43 – Tracks around Boundary Wood near Blidworth and Rainworth

28 Feb

In Winter when the days are shorter and the paths muddier I try to find walks that are shorter and stick to firm tracks if possible.  This walk it stays on good tracks for nearly all of the way and is a pleasant enough way of spending an hour or two.

Start: You could start this walk in the villages of Blidworth or Rainworth and reach the circuit after around 15 minutes but if coming by car I suggest parking in the car park at Haywood Oaks to the east of Blidworth on the road that goes from the village to the A614.  This is only a short walk and you can do a bit more walking on the tracks around Haywood Oaks if you want or even combine this walk with one of the others of mine in the area – walks 12,13 and 15.

Route of the Walk

Distance: 3.3 miles

From the Haywood Oaks car park cross the road from Blidworth and join the track on the other side.  Turn left along this for fifty yards until you reach the wide main track going downhill away from the road.  After 300 yards this turns left at the bottom of the hill.   Keep to the main track for another 100 yards until you see a post with a yellow top on the right of the track.  Turn right to this post crossing a path with a Robin Hood Way marker on it,  At the yellow-topped post you reach a track by some woods.  Turn left along this quite wide track.  After 100 yards you see a narrower path to the right going into the woods.  You can take this path which cuts the corner of the wider tracks for.  If you stay on the straight path then you soon come to another wide path where you turn right and go up a slight rise for 100 yards.

At the top you reach a solid-looking green metal barrier.  Either go over the low part of this or through the gap on the left and carry on ahead.  You leave the wood behind and enter a more open area of grass with fields to your right.  Go straight on along the clear track which gradually descends for 400 yards.  Ahead you will see a hill with trees which is the Boundary Wood area we will be visiting later.  As you come to the bottom the track turns quite sharply to the left and you should stay on it.  The track now starts to rise again with trees closer again on the left and the hill of Boundary Wood on your right.  Stay on the track for the next half mile as it turns a few times.  On your left through the trees you will see a few small paths going through to the playing fields near Blidworth village and the houses on the edge of the village.

As you reach the last of the trees on the left you come to a more open area where our track meets the wider track of National Cycle Route 6.  At this point you will see to the left of the path an information board about the wood and tracks in the area.  The track now overlooks a pond to the left which is covered in rushes.  Stay on the main track until you are about level with the end of the pond.  Ahead on the main track you will see a barrier just before the route becomes tarmac on its way to Rainworth.  Don’t go as far as the barrier.  Instead look to the right where you will see a less distinct but still clear path going up the hill into Boundary Wood.

Go up this path which soon starts to run between trees.  It is mainly grassy but can be a little churned up by equine and human activity.  This is the only part of the walk where you will encounter much mud but it is easy enough to go around it.  After 300 yards you reach a wider path going to the right.  Turn right to keep going uphill this path which can again be a little muddy although the mud can be avoided without difficulty.

After 150 yards you reach a better, firmer path and soon a junction of tracks.  Turn left to go up a little more along a firm track.  Although the views are limited by the conifer trees there is a good margin from the path so things don’t feel claustrophobic as they sometimes can in woods of this type.  After 300 yards the path turns sharply to the right.  You can get a slightly better view of the surrounding countryside now as the trees have thinned out ahead and you are at the top of the hill.  Follow the track as it turns to the right and keep going in this direction for 400 yards passing a bench on the right of the track, until you reach a corner where the track turns ninety degrees to the right.  At the corner instead of staying on the main track look for a narrow path on the left going into the trees.  This is not an official track but it has been so well-used that the path is very clear.  It goes steeply down the bank through the trees before emerging near a bench in open ground.

At this lower level you can see the nearby fields on the left more clearly.  At the bottom of the slope you have come down turn right to follow a decent track with the bank of trees on your right.  After 200 yards you turn left along the clear track and keep following that until it turns to the right again after another 300 yards.  You can carry on along this main track until you reach the main junction which you walked past early in the walk.  However, you can cut this corner by descending left along a narrow, but clear, track through the bushes.  This goes down into a dip which can be wet at the very bottom but that is only a narrow channel which you should be able to step or jump over.  If you take this short cut come out of the dip to meet the track you followed downhill near the start of the walk from the green barrier.   If you have ignored the short cut, at the junction turn left and after 100 yards meet the path out of the dip.

Whichever way you have taken, now you should go back up the path you descended earlier, coming to the green barrier.  From there retrace your steps to the start of the walk.

Walks in Central Notts – Walk 13: Farnsfield to Blidworth

27 Feb

A walk across the fields from Farnsfield to Blidworth Woods and into the village.

This walk is to the village of Blidworth nearly four miles to the west of Farnsfield.  There are buses between Farnsfield and Blidworth every hour (number 28) so you can return to your starting point easily. The walk can be done in either direction. For this walk I recommend doing it in this direction because when you cross the A614 you can see the traffic more easily.  The walk itself isn’t the most inspiring one but the fields are pleasant enough and it provides a decent link between the two villages.  The walk can also be used to link with the Haywood Oaks Walk that I have described earlier.

Distance: 3.7 miles

Start: Farnsfield Co-op.

From the Co-op at the end of Tippings Lane turn left along the Main Street across Tippings Lane and walk along this side of the Main Street for 200 yards as far as the church. Walk a little further past a slight leftward bend to The Green. This is no longer much of a village green but a small island with a tree on it . On the other side of the Main Street here is The Lion pub (formerly The Red Lion). On the near side of the street by the Green is the main village bus stop from where buses go to Mansfield, Nottingham and Worksop.  From here you can go left directly up the Blidworth Road going away from The Lion. However, there is no pavement up the hill and there is a fair amount of traffic.

I prefer an alternative route.  From the bus stop cross to the island and go straight across from there to the houses beyond. At this point you should still be on the other side of the Main Street from The Lion but now directly opposite.  Carry on along the pavement by the Main Street on the opposite side  from the Lion for 15o yards until you reach another bus stop opposite the end of Chapel Lane which meets the main road on the right. On the other side of the road here you can see a small red-brick building. This was the village jail. It is so small that it seems Farnsfield must have been quite a law-abiding place.

Just past the bus-stop go through a wooden gate into a field. This field often has horses in it and occasionally sheep, although they may be kept off the path by a temporary fence.  Cross this field going initially downhill slightly but then uphill for 200 yards until you reach another wooden gate at the far end, the corner of Blidworth Road.

Go through the gate at the top of the field and turn immediately to your right away from the main road. Walk straight along this track (Vicarage Lane) for 200 yards. The track initially passes some houses on the left with a hedge to your right. It changes from a lane to a track and then grass until you reach a small grassy area with a bench. Go through the gate in the left hand corner ahead of you still going in the same direction as before. Follow the path straight on with a hedge now immediately to your left.  Go through another gate and emerge into  a very large field. Initially you have  a hedge on each side but after fifty yards these disappear and you are in an open expanse of arable field.

Keep going straight on following the well-defined path across the field for 300 yards aiming for a tree almost straight ahead.   Go just to the left of the tree passing under the branches. You now find yourself in a smaller field. Walk straight on along the field edge, which can be a little narrow after ploughing, with a hedge next to you on your left. After 100 yards go down steps into another field. The route now proceeds roughly straight on, bearing slightly to the right, through a series of fields which are each between 100 and 200 yards across.   The path is usually well defined, though occasionally ploughing may make the route less obvious. Look for posts with waymarks or yellow tops ahead of you. The crops in these fields vary from year to year.  If maize has been planted it can become rather tall.

Looking back towards Farnsfield from fields going towards the A614.

Looking back towards Farnsfield from fields going towards the A614.

After crossing three fields you come to the final field before the A614. The A614 ahead is obvious because of the almost constant flow of traffic. The path on this final field is not as clear as in the others but as you enter the field you should be close to the right hand side of it. If there is no path across just walk ten yards to the right and follow the hedge straight on towards the A614.  The proper way out of the field is over a stile but there is now a gap in the hedge right in the corner which you may be able to go through.  This takes you to the verge of the A614.  The road is very busy and extreme care should be taken in crossing.  Going in this direction at least you have a clear view of the road but if walking from Blidworth to Farnsfield you can’t see clearly because of the bend.  If you are coming from Blidworth then the best thing to do is to go down to the roundabout at the White Post and use the crossing.  

Go straight across the A614 and then find a small metal step stile on the right of the gateway to the house.  Cross the stile and turn immediately left to walk alongside the fence guarding the house.  The last time I went this way I was slightly startled to just about hear above the traffic a recorded announcement warning me that  CCTV was guarding the property.  Don’t worry about this, the footpath doesn’t enter the property. After fifty yards you reach the driveway coming up the hill. At this point turn left for ten yards and then go right over or round a stile.  This takes you onto a decent track which goes straight for 200 yards down a small hill.   The track then rises for fifty yards and then turns at ninety degrees to the left.  Follow the track round for another fifty yards until the thin hedge on the right disappears.  At this point turn to the right where you will find yourself at the top of a field with a long hedge going straight ahead down the hill. Walk down the hill keeping the hedge to your right.  The grass can be a little rough and long but it isn’t too bad. After 300 yards you reach the end of the field and come to a wide farm track.

Go straight over the track but just slightly to the right so that you are by the field edge of the next field beyond the track.  Walk past a small concrete hut-type construction on your right.  Keep walking in the same direction along the field edge.  If there are no crops in the field you may prefer to walk just off the grass which can be slightly overgrown at times.  On your right there is a hedge which initially separates you from some rather unappealing looking waste ground but that then gives way to a caravan park with a nicer grassy area at about the point that you enter a  new field.   Carry on along the field edge until you have come about 500 yards from the farm track and “hut”.  As you reach the end of the field look for a fairly narrow gap by a signpost in the hedge at the end which drops down  a few feet into a new field (see photo).

Field on the way to Blidworth

Field on the way to Blidworth

This next field is around 300 yards wide. The path goes roughly straight across although it bears slightly to the left.  The path is often well-defined but if it isn’t your first target is the telegraph pole almost straight ahead in the middle of the field.  Pass just to the right of that and keep going straight on until you reach the end of the field.  You should come to a signposted gate and stile.  Go up and over the stile onto another farm track running straight across.  Go right along the track for a few yards and then turn left to walk alongside the hedge in the next field, keeping the hedge immediately to your left.  The path is next to and about two feet above the main area of the field.  If the path is in good condition you should follow it. If it is too overgrown, which it can occasionally be, drop down to walk at the very edge of the field itself.  After 100 yards you cross a little ditch on a plank, or if you are in the field you will notice a small accumulation of stones which seem to have washed down from the slope which has started to develop to your left.  After another 200 yards you reach the end of the field.  Look for a sturdy wooden plank on the left which takes you over the ditch and to the corner of the woods.

Path near Blidworth Woods

Path near Blidworth Woods

By the woods follow the wide and rather nice grassy path ahead.  On the left is thick woodland and on the right a substantial hedge with trees which make this path rather secluded and a nice contrast to the open fields you have crossed.  Once walking along here I came across a fox  crossing the path.  Keep along this path for 300 yards until you reach the junction with the wide woodland track which is part of my Haywood Oaks walk. (Here you are around 400 yards from the start and finish of that walk).  You can either turn left  along the track almost going back on yourself to follow that walk or carry on ahead aiming  for Blidworth.

Here if you carry straight on you reach the main road after another two hundred yards and turn right to go into Blidworth.   However, my preferred route instead turns right going slightly uphill between two areas of woodland.  After fifty yards turn left along the track at the edge of the wood which has a wide grassy area alongside it.   The Jolly Friar pub has now been demolished, which until fairly recently occupied this site .  You can either go all the way along this track until it comes to the main road, or take the path that appears on the right after 200 yards near the pub which winds through the trees and reaches the road a little further down.  I prefer the latter route amongst the pine trees.  If taking this route the path is fairly clear.  After initially going to the right slightly uphill bear to the left towards the road which you should be able to see or hear.

Whichever way you go you will have arrived at the main road at the end of Blidworth village. Turn right and walk into the village following the main road (Dale Lane).  You can carry straight on for half a mile to reach the centre of Blidworth with plenty of shops.  On the way you will notice several bus stops from where you can catch buses going either back to Farnsfield or, on the other side of the road, going to Rainworth and Mansfield.  This walk finishes in the centre of Blidworth but as I mentioned earlier you can link this walk to the Haywood Oaks one.

Walk 12:Haywood Oaks and Blidworth

19 Jan

This is a walk which is quite good when the weather has been wet. Much of it is either on proper firm tracks in woodland or on pavements. Other parts are in sandy woodland which tend to drain quite well although after particularly wet weather the odd patch may be slightly muddy.  One other thing to bear in mind is that there have been cases where dogs have been taken ill after walking  in Haywood Oaks.  This seems to have occurred in late summer or early autumn. No conclusive reason has been found for this as yet but it may be something that grows at that time of year.

Start: Haywood Oaks Car Park just to the south-east of Blidworth on Baulker Lane, the road to the A614 from Blidworth.  If coming by public transport start from Dale Lane near the end of Blidworth village about half a mile from the car park.

Distance: 4 miles

From the car park go back to reach the main track which continues from the car park entrance. This is a good, wide, firm track which is fine to walk on in all conditions. Follow the track downhill away from Baulker Lane. After 500 yards straight it bends to the right and then to the left over the next 300 yards. When the track starts to straighten again and you can see a long straight section ahead we turn right off the main track to go onto a narrower path. The path you want is the one with a field immediately to the right of it. This field often contains pigs. The path goes quite sharply uphill alongside the field before levelling out after 300 yards. Keep going straight on along the path until you come to a house after another 300 yards.

Just before you reach the house bear left along the track taking you to a road. Cross the road and turn left to walk along the verge. The road has more traffic than you would expect for a country road so take care. After  200 yards you reach another area of woodland on your right. Take the first path on the right that you come to, going through a small hedge. The path is narrow and not very obvious through the hedge but soon becomes much wider. Go downhill on a wide track at the edge of the public part of the wood keeping next to a wire fence on your right. The path drops quite steeply downhill along a sandy track. After 400 yards you reach the bottom of the dip and start to climb again along another sandy path bearing slightly to the right to keep to the edge of the wood.

After 600 yards the edge of the wood turns almost at ninety degrees to the right. Where it does so we carry straight on going further into the the wood. After 200 yards we reach the other side of the wood. Now the open farmland is to our left with a lane a few hundred yards away. Continue along a narrower path going almost straight on along the edge of the wood with the views of the farmland to the left. After 400 yards the path turns to the right then soon to the left. Keep following it along the edge of the wood until you come to two rows of short wooden stumps marking the end of the wood. Go between these posts onto a wide track.

This is part of the Robin Hood Way. Turn right and go along the wide track which soon starts to climb fairly steeply.  The track surface is good in all but the worst weather. After 200 yards you leave the wood behind and the track starts curving slightly to the left. After 600 yards you reach the edge of Blidworth. As you near the top of the hill turn round and look behind you.  The view is slightly obscured by the hedge but is still a good one. You can see to the south towards Blidworth Bottoms which is now well below you.  Houses start to appear on either side of you as you crest the top of the hill. The track ends and becomes a road. Follow the road straight on going downhill for 200 yards until you reach a small war memorial on the right of the road. go down the steps to the side of the memorial to reach the pavement next to the main road through Blidworth. Turn right along the pavement going down the hill. At the bottom of the hill you reach the main junction in Blidworth where our road meets the other major roads in the village.

Cross the forecourt of the garage on the right of the junction and take the main road ahead of you bearing slightly to the right.  Follow this road, Dale Lane,  for 800 yards. At a convenient point along Dale Lane cross the main road so that you are walking along the pavement on the left hand side. While walking along Dale Lane you will cross several side roads and will notice bus stops at regular intervals. There are regular buses from Mansfield and hourly buses that go on to Farnsfield and Newark. You can start and finish this walk from here if you are using public transport to reach Blidworth.

Path through the trees near Blidworth

Path through the trees near Blidworth

As you reach the end of the village immediately after the last house on the left side of the road take a footpath going into the wood. The path through the trees is a pleasant one. Follow the most obvious path through the wood which bears slightly to the left and winds it way through the pine trees. The path is a good one but keep your eyes open for the odd tree root which reaches the path. The path turns a little to the right after two hundred yards and after another hundred yards takes you back out to the edge of the wood near the site of the now demolished Jolly Friar pub.  At this point turn left. You can either follow the narrow path along the edge of the wood or move ten yards further out to follow a broad grassy ride which runs parallel to the edge of the wood. After two hundred yards you reach a track coming across you. Turn right along this track downhill for fifty yards and then turn left keeping to the wide track.

After 200 yards the track turns uphill to the right with the trees now closer to you on either side. Follow the track which goes quite sharply uphill and is sandy in small patches. After 400 yards you come to the road at the top of the hill.   Not far to the left on the opposite side of the road is the entrance to the car park from which the walk began. Return to the car park to complete your walk taking care as you cross the road as cars can come along quite quickly.