Brockhampton, Charlton Abbots, Spoonley Wood and Roel Gates

The first four miles of the walk use field and woodland paths with a moderately long and steepish climb towards the end. The last 2 miles use tarmac lanes which are usually quiet.

  • Start Point:
  • SP 0357 2226 . The Craven Arms, Brockhampton.

  • Length:
  • 6.73 miles
  • Ascent/Descent:
  • 809 feet
  • Description:
  • The walk heads north on well defined paths across fields to Charlton Abbots and the old mill at Waterhatch, then climbs up through Spoonley Wood passing the ruins of a Roman Villa to reach the lane north of Roel Gate. It returns to the Craven Arms on tarmac lanes through Roel Gate and Baker's Wood.
  • Date Walked:
  • 30th March 2012

The Craven Arms.

Start from the Craven Arms in Brockhampton, grid reference SP 0357 2226. PDF of the walk and/or Google Earth Track of the walk.

Map No Grid Reference Distance Instructions
1 SP 0357 2226 370 yards

Turn right out the pub car park, then right to head east up hill towards the telephone box. Turn left at the telephone box (see photograph) and go north to where the lane turns sharp right and a path continues north across fields at SP 0363 2253.

2 SP 0363 2253 1,350 yards

Take the footpath heading north across fields to a lane south of Charlton Abbots.

  • Go through through the metal gate and go north with a metal fence field boundary to the left.
  • At SP 0353 2271 pass through the remains of a gate and continue north through light woods, the field boundary falling away on the left.
  • At SP 0358 2298 bear slightly left at the field junction and continue north with a field boundary now on the right.
  • After a short distance a newly laid hedge boundary on the left is reached. Continue north along this hedge, then bear left to head north west and reach a lane south of Charlton Abbots at SP 0354 2372. The photograph looks back south along the path.
3 SP 0354 2372 1,050 yards

Turn right onto the lane, then turn left onto the access lane to Holt Farm. Take a footpath left off the access lane to descend west over the Beesmoor Brook and climb back up to the footpath by Charlton Abbots church.

  • Turn right onto the lane, then at SP 0365 2375 turn left onto the tarmac access lane to Holt Farm heading north then north east.
  • At SP 0378 2414 by the cottage, turn left off the access lane following the footpath sign to head west down steps (under construction when I walked here) towards the valley ahead.
  • Go down the steps and over a stile at SP 0376 2416, then descend west to cross the Beesmoor Brook by a large tree at SP 0358 2415. The photograph looks back to the tree from the west
  • Climb up the hill heading north west passing hydraulic rams about 100 yards to right hand side.
  • At SP 0347 2420 go through a metal gate or over the fence/stile then round the back of a small hydraulic ram pumping house over a stile and climb up a moderately steep climb through a rough wooded area up to the footpath leading down to Charlton Abbots church.
4 SP 0339 2423 1,620 yards

Head north east past the churchyard and descend to recross the Beesmoor Brook by a pond, then head north across fields and alongside woods gently descending for the most part to reach a track just west of Waterhatch.

  • Turn right onto the path and go over a stile descend north east downhill to go over a stile at SP 0344 2420.
  • Continue descending north east to go over stile at SP 0350 2440 and head east through light woods past a pond on Beesmoor Brook (see photograph) to go over another stile at SP 0356 2441.
  • Over the stile turn left and head north initially across a boggy patch of ground, then with woods on the left across roughly grassed fields.
  • Go over a stile at SP 0353 2457 and continue north then north east through a gap in the hedge at SP 0358 2487.
  • Continue north east then north across rough grassland with woods on the left, to go through a metal gate at SP 0361 2512.
  • At SP 0363 2524 join a broad farm track and continue north keeping woods on the left to join another broad farm track at SP 0361 2561.
5 SP 0361 2561 2,100 yards

Turn right and go east through Waterhatch, then head north east and east up through Spoonley Wood past the ruins of a Roman Villa. At the end of Spoonley Wood turn and go south west along a track to join the main track to Spoonley Farm.

  • Turn right and go east towards Waterhatch. In the woods on the right are the ruins of the old water mill and by the side of the track is a long disused diesel fuel pump.
  • The photograph shows on of the disuse farm buildings. Just after the Waterhatch buildings turn left of the track to head north east along a grassy track.
  • At SO 0391 2585 enter light woods and bear east starting to climb. A stream on the left goes under the track from the right.
  • At SP 0405 2586 join a broad track coming from the left and continue south east still gently climbing.
  • The track starts to climb a bit more steeply and enters denser woods then reaches the ruins of a Roman Villa at SP 0449 2568. When I did the walk we saw a wild boar disappearing into the woods here.
  • After the villa continue south east through the woods, the path now climbing quite steeply.
  • At the top of the climb at SP 0483 2549 turn left onto a wide hardcore track and head south west along undulating ground.
  • Continue south west and gently descend to join another wide track at SP 0452 2521.
6 SP 0452 2521 1,040 yards

Turn left and climb uphill through Spoonley Farm (the photograph is of the farmhouse), moving onto a tarmac drive to reach the lane north of Roel Gate.

7 SP 0537 2485 1,370 yards

Turn right onto the lane and head south through Roel Gate (see photograph) along broadly level lanes to where another lane forks right at SP 0542 2361.

8 SP 0542 2361 1,100 yards

Turn right and go south west downhill along the lane to where another lane goes off on the right (see photograph) at SP 0491 2274.

9 SP 0491 2274 1,860 yards

Turn right and head west along the lane (see photograph) through Baker's Wood, then bear south west and gently descend back to Brockhampton and back to the pub.