Tag Archives: Whitewater Bridge

Walking The Robin Hood Way: Elkesley to Duncanwood Lodge

7 Nov

This stage goes through fields and woods before returning to Clumber Park for a long straight walk under trees. There is a spur of the Way that takes a short detour to Robin Hood’s Cave and Whitewater Bridge then returns to the main route.

Start: Elkesley (continues from the Stage Clumber Park to Elkesley)

Finish: Duncanwood Lodge (continues to the Stage from Duncanwood Lodge to Edwinstowe)

Distance: 15km (9 miles) if not doing the Whitewater Bridge spur. 18km (11 miles) if you are.

Map of the Route

If you have used the bus to reach Elkesley you should go south along Headland Avenue from the bus stop for 250m to meet the Robin Hood Way again at the edge of the village on Brough Lane. If you have been walking along the Way from the previous stage in Clumber Park then as you reach the village you should carry on along the road with houses on your left, bearing slightly right rather than turn left into the village.

After the last house continue along the track for 200m until the road starts to bend left. Turn right here onto a path going downhill by a field. Go over a bridge into Elkesley Wood. This is surprisingly hard to find your way through as there is little footpath signage and several paths. On entering the wood bear right along a clear path next to a stream. After a short way at the first junction of paths bear left away from the stream slightly uphill. Follow this path until you come to another junction of paths. When I did this walk there was a wooden log with Robin Hood Way waymarks at this junction but unfortunately this was lying on the ground and it was hard to tell which was the right way to go. In fact you should turn left here along another path for 80m until you reach another path junction near the edge of the wood. Turn right along a path which after 150m emerges from the wood on a wider track near a brick building.

Walk along a grassy path which climbs quite steeply up a small hill towards buildings. At the top of the climb cross the wide track of West Drayton Lane, which you walked along in the previous stage. Go through a gate opposite. Follow a track past buildings of this reindeer farm looking out for Rudolph. The track bends to the right and as you reach the front of the farm buildings you turn left along a wide gravel track going downhill towards a road (the B6387). At the farm gateway go carefully straight across this road and continue along the track on the other side. This continues downhill with a wood on your left at first. You cross the River Meden and then go under a railway bridge, past a farmyard and cross a bridge over the River Maun.

The track climbs slightly and then turns left. Very soon you reach a right turn which you should take. If you carry straight on after 400m you come to the ruins of a small chapel (St.John’s Chapel) which you may wish to visit. If you do then return to this junction. Turn downhill to cross this very large field aiming for an area of woodland and continue straight on after that to the bottom of the hill. Turn left and very soon after that right to go down into a small area of trees next to Bevercotes Beck on the left.

Carry on into another field and follow the left hand edge for 400m until you reach a hedge coming across. Turn right and stay along the edge of the field with this hedge on your left. After 150m the hedge ends but you should keep going in the same direction. Where a new hedge starts you should go through a wide gap ahead so that this hedge is on your right. Follow a wide grassy track for 250m until you reach a large field. Turn left and follow a track with a hedge now on your left. After 300m near power lines is a junction of paths. Going straight on takes you to the village of Walesby with a pub and other facilities. Our route however turns right here, going under the power lines. Aim towards houses along a wide track with a field on your right and hedge on your left. After 500m you reach a road but don’t go out to it yet. Instead turn right and stay inside the field with a hedge on your left. After 100m turn left out of the field and cross the road (the B6387 again). Directly opposite is a path which you join and follow straight on.

At first the path is quite narrow next to a hedge but after 800m it becomes wider. It goes over a mineral railway line and then joins a wide farm track with large pens of chickens to your left. Go straight on under sets of power lines until you reach woodland. Keep walking straight ahead for 200m until you come to a T junction of paths.

This is where you choose whether to make the diversion left on a spur of the Robin Hood Way to have a look at a couple of sights. To continue the full Robin Hood Way you will have to return to this point the same way you went . I would certainly recommend making the shortish walk to Robin Hood’s Cave. If you then want to continue to Whitewater Bridge one possibility is to carry on to Ollerton another 2.5km further on (see my Walk 57 for directions). Ollerton is on a bus route to Elkesley.

Robin Hood’s Cave and River Maun

For the extra spur you should turn left at the path T junction and follow a good path with trees close by on your right. After you reach a clear area of sandstone on the right of the path. This is the site of Robin Hood’s Cave, a small hole in the sandstone overlooking the River Maun about twenty metres below. You can go onto the stone where you can also see the handiwork of locals who have carved their names into the rock. To continue on the spur route go back to the main path and carry on south into the woods going gradually downhill. After 700m you leave the wood at a bend in a quiet road. Turn right along the road for a short way then cross to the other side of the road to join a path running alongside the road. This soon comes to Whitewater Bridge which crosses the River Maun and is quite a pleasant spot. From here you can either retrace your steps to the T junction of paths on the main Robin Hood Way or follow the path on the other side of the bridge which goes left and follows the Maun to Ollerton.

Whitewater Bridge

Back at the T junction to continue the Robin Hood Way if you have come from the Whitewater Bridge spur you carry straight on. If you haven’t done the extra spur you turn right at the T junction.

The path is in woods and obvious with a field clearing on the right. Go straight on for then go down a short quite steep section of path as the path becomes narrower with trees now all around in this copse (Conjure Alders). At the bottom take a slight turn to the right and cross a footbridge on the left. Go over a second bridge and out of the copse into a field.

Turn left and follow the edge of the field, which had cows in it on my visit. Turn uphill at the corner and keep following the hedge until you reach a gap at the top of the field as you reach a minor road. Cross this and continue in the same direction in the field on the other side staying on the field edge with a hedge on your left. On reaching a plantation to your left stay at the field edge alongside the plantation. At the end of the third field after the road you find yourself getting closer to the A614. A little way into the next field the path enters scrub on the left. Continue along the path with the A614 very close by on your left.

After 900m you reach the minor road signed to Bothamsall. Cross this and then the A614 at the crossing. On the other side follow the path away from the A614 going to the right of the gate to a signpodted bridleway. Enter the woodland of Clumber Park and join a wide track. This track is called Freeboard Lane. Follow it almost straight under the trees going south-west. There are a few very small bends but it is very straightforward as you ignore all side turnings. After 2.5 km you reach a lodge (South Lodge).

Cross the wide track going to the right and continue straight on keeping to the left of the fence bordering the Lodge garden. After another 650m a clearing appears on the left with various tracks going off to the side. Ignore all the side tracks and keep going straight ahead until you meet a wide track or green “ride”. Follow this track for 2km until you reach a small car park by the road (B6005) near Duncanwood Lodge. This is where this stage finishes. There are bus shelters here for the Sherwood Arrow bus service between Worksop and Ollerton, which also continues to Nottingham, every two hours.

Crossing the road takes you onto the stage I described a few months ago going from Duncanwood Lodge to Edwinstowe

Walks in Central Nottinghamshire – Walk 57: Ollerton, Boughton Brake and the River Maun

18 Feb

This walk takes you from the large village of Ollerton, through the woodland of Boughton Brake and then returning to Ollerton alongside a relatively new track by the River Maun. There is a short diversion if you wish to Old Ollerton.  The walk is along roads in Ollerton and then good tracks which should be fine in all underfoot conditions.

Start: I am starting my route from the centre of Ollerton which has pretty good public transport links to most parts of the county. There are plenty of side roads for parking too. You can also start in old Ollerton village or at Boughton Brake where there is space for parking.

Distance: 4.7 miles

Map of the Route

Ollerton is a busy village with good amenities many of which lie on or just off the main road through the village (the A6075).  I am choosing to start the walk in the centre of the village on this main road at the junction with Briar Road which goes to the main church in Ollerton a little to the north of the A6075. From the junction walk towards St.Paulinus church which is in the centre of an island surrounded by a road acting as a hub with others coming off it. These mostly aren’t busy and have bus stops at different points for the various places served.  You should be aiming to leave the area directly straight on so follow the pavement round the circle with the church in the middle and leave the circle on the far side along Lime Tree Road.  This goes down quite steeply for a short distance and at the bottom of the hill follow Walesby Lane right for 500m.  At the first main junction you come to cross the road ahead (Whinney Lane) and turn left but soon bear right along the pavement to cut the corner instead of walking on the grass next to Whinney Lane.   Cross a side road (Hallam Lane) and continue along the surfaced path near the road.  There is a wood ahead on your left and houses to the right at first but you soon reach the edge of the village.

Follow the lane as it leaves the village and approaches the woods.  You go past a large brick building with a tall chimney, Boughton pumping station, on the left.   A little after this the road you have been following turns sharply to the right.  At this point you should go left into the woodland area.  This is Boughton Brake.  Go almost straight on along a well-defined path but bearing slightly left, ignoring the wide track going directly left, and aim for a large wooden post a little way ahead.  This part of the Brake is a more open area with fewer trees but as you carry on past the wooden signpost in the same direction on the left hand track the tree cover is greater.  You head towards the centre of the wood climbing gently for just over 300m.

Boughton Brake

At the top of the hill the path bends slightly to the left and you start to descend on a wider track.  This is a very pleasant path with trees on either side of the path and all around you although slightly further from the path itself so it doesn’t feel oppressive.  Continue along this path downhill for 600m until you reach the far corner of the wood which is also a road junction of quiet lanes.  Go very slightly on from the corner of the wood and the road turns sharply left.  You should turn left here along the road, staying on the right hand side as there is no pavement.  After 100m you see a footpath sign on the left of the road and you should leave the road to follow this firm path.  It stays almost alongside the road for another 200m when you reach a substantial footbridge where you cross the river Maun.  This, and the road bridge just to the north, is known as Whitewater Bridge.

Whitewater Bridge

…and footbridge

On the other side of the footbridge turn left and go back towards the river along a good track then by the river turn right .  Follow this track for the next mile and a half.  The river is always just a little to your left and at times you wouldn’t know it was there as it is out of sight, especially in the first half mile.  The track is a relatively new one which doesn’t appear on older Ordnance Survey maps.  To your right are fields of pigs for much of the way.  The path is almost straight and flat the whole way with a few small areas of trees and you can’t go wrong.  The river when you meet it again is slow-flowing and gentle.  You can go down to it at one point in a pleasant clump of trees.

River Maun

The Maun looking towards Boughton Pumping Station

Eventually you see the houses of Ollerton appearing on the left and the track turns to cross the Maun again over a small but solid wooden plank bridge.  The track then bends to the right near houses on your left with a fishing lake appearing on your right.  The track gets wider to become a rough road which you follow straight ahead past the entrance to the lakes.

Carry on to the end of the rough road and straight on up a short path which meets the busy A6075 where you turn left.  To return to the starting point of the walk you can go along for a short distance and take the first road to the left which takes you up to the main road into New Ollerton.  At this point, however, you are close to the old part of Ollerton and you may wish to take a short detour into Old Ollerton where from March to November you can visit the watermill on the Maun, the only active watermill in the county, and award winning tea room next door. To do this go across the A6075 using the crossing and take the first turning off to the right along the Main Street into Old Ollerton.  You soon pass an Italian restaurant and see the river Maun to the right near the car park.  You can get down to the Maun here opposite a small island with the village war memorial.  Ahead at the end of the street is the watermill and tea room just past an information board telling you about the village.

To complete the walk retrace your steps out of Old Ollerton, cross the A6075 at the crossing, then turn right along the pavement.  Take the first turning left and follow this road all the way into New Ollerton for half a mile until you reach the centre and your starting point.