Two scenic circular walks starting at the village pubs in Braunston.
Braunston Walk 1 (red) – Distance: 6 miles
Brainston Walk 2 (blue) – Distance: 3.8 miles (there is an optional shortcut)
Braunston Walk Number 1. Start from the Old Plough.
1. Standing with your back to the Old Plough take theroad on your left to the church. Enter the churchyard and take the path past the main door to a gate at the rear of the church. Continue straight on to a kissing gate. Pass through the gate and over a ditch then continue straight ahead to a footbridge. Traverse the bridge and then walk across the next field before crossing a second footbridge.
2. Continue straight on to a kissing gate and ditch crossing. Bear left when you enter the next field and you will soon see a footbridge.
3. Pass through a hedgerow, then over a stile and on your right is a pond. Make your way to the field gate ahead. Carry on with the hedge on your left, passing the farmhouse. At the end of the field a waymark directs you to turn left over a footbridge.
4. Cross the footbridge and turn right. Continue along the hedgerow and cross a ditch into the next field. Now aim diagonally left and head for a double trunked ash tree beneath which is a stile. Continue diagonally left to the top of the field where a gateway leads you on to a broad bridleway. Turn right and pass through a gate across the track. Now turn right again and follow a grassy track all the way to a road.
5. At the road there are two paths on your left. To avoid walking the busy road take the right hand path across a field to cross a stile and continue to a field gate on the roadside. Turn right and, at the T junction, cross over on to the bridleway opposite. With the hedge on your left continue to a gate. Pass through the gate and cross the corner of the next field to another gate.
6. Here, stay on the bridleway with the hedge on your right and pass through another field gate before reaching a junction of bridleways. Go through the gate and with a fence on the left and hedge on the right walk to a further gate. Here, strike diagonally left across the field to a gate. Through this gate make your way diagonally left towards the hedgerow avoiding a ditch at the bottom of the field. Follow the hedge to a bridle gate, pass through to the far end of the field and another gate leading down to a footbridge over a stream.
7. Keep on the track to until you reach the road. Cross over and enter the field opposite. Follow the path diagonally right through the field, past a bridle gate and on to a further gate leading in to an enclosed track. Follow this through two further gates until you find a gate on the right leading to a bridleway across a grassy pasture.
8. Cross the grassy pasture, pass through one gate and head diagonally towards the right hand fence where a yellow waymark post can be seen. A further gate takes you into a green lane which takes you down to a metal gate across the track. Pass through the gate, turn left, and follow the track to the road. Here to your left you will see The Old Plough on the corner.
Braunston Walk Number 2. Start from The Blue Ball.
1. Starting with your back to the Blue Ball enter thechurch yard opposite by the main gate and follow the path past the left side of the church. Use the hand gate you can see to your left and then head towards the field gate and stile that are straight ahead. Bear left once you enter the next field and you will soon see a foot bridge.
2. Cross the bridge and continue ahead to a second bridge and a stile. Walk along the right side of the next field and about two thirds of the way along you will find a stile leading on to yet another bridge. Cross the bridge and turn left on to a grass track around the edge of the field. Continue up the hill and turn right when you meet a stone track. Follow this track for a short distance until you encounter a foot bridge (and a yellow topped waymark post) on your left.
3. Cross the corner of the next field to a gap in the hedge which leads you into a small copse / spinney. Follow the track to a waymark post on the far side. Pass through a gap in the hedge and then head for the corner of the next field, where you will find a hand gate.
4. Turn left on to the track and after a short distance you will find a gate on your left. Follow a path around the right side of the field and you will soon see a stone surfaced track ahead of you. Follow the track until it meets a road.
5. If you would like to cut your walk short at this point – turn left and follow the road down the hill and back into Braunston – otherwise, turn right. As the road reaches the bottom of a hill you will see a bridleway on your left indicated by a wooden gate and a Leighfield Way sign.
6. Follow the bridleway with the stream on your right. After you pass through a wooden gate you will see footpaths on either side.
7. Take the footpath to the left and head for a stile in the hedge. Turn right on to a grass track around the field edge. At the end of the track cross the stile and head for the field gate at the opposite end of the field. Continue straight ahead to a stile and a bridge and then head for a stile in the corner of the next field. Crossing this stile will take you on to a track between stone walls that will eventually lead you to a stone bridge over the river Gwash. Ahead on your left you should now see All Saints Church and the Blue Ball.