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Walk 2: Camfield Place Loop

Woodland, footbridges, and the Cartland estate 

3 miles (5 km)


Photograph of The footpath between points 9 and 10 below  Image by Hertfordshire Walker released under Creative Commons BY-NC-SA 4.0
The footpath between points 9 and 10 below
Image by Hertfordshire Walker released under Creative Commons BY-NC-SA 4.0

This short walk circles Camfield Place, the country estate of the late Barbara Cartland. It takes you through five woods, down tree-lined footpaths, across a footbridge and down quiet country lanes. The journey ends with the possibility of a drink at The Woodman at Wildhill. Check the opening times, especially on a Sunday, to ensure you are not disappointed.


Directions

Map for Walk 2: Camfield Place Loop  Created on Map Hub by Hertfordshire Walker With elements © Thunderforest © OpenStreetMap contributors For KML and GPX details, see the interactive map below the directions
Map for Walk 2: Camfield Place Loop 
Created on Map Hub by Hertfordshire Walker
With elements © Thunderforest © OpenStreetMap contributors
For KML and GPX details, see the interactive map below the directions

If you are going to end up drinking at The Woodman, you can park in the pub car park. Park your car towards the top of the car park. On your left you will notice a gate just beyond the beer garden at the point where the car park widens. This is Hatfield footpath 85.

Photograph of The footpath leading south-east out of The Woodman car park Image by Hertfordshire Walker released under Creative Commons BY-NC-SA 4.0
The footpath leading SE out of The Woodman car park
Image by Hertfordshire Walker released under Creative Commons BY-NC-SA 4.0

1: Enter the field and walk uphill and diagonally SE across the field for 140m heading slightly to the right. This can be muddy after rain. This field often has horses grazing and they can be frisky. You will notice a gate in the hedgerow ahead. Go through it and enter a field, often sown with various crops.

Photograph of The gate at the top of the first field from The Woodman car park Image by Hertfordshire Walker released under Creative Commons BY-NC-SA 4.0
The gate at the top of the first field from The Woodman car park
Image by Hertfordshire Walker released under Creative Commons BY-NC-SA 4.0

2: Head straight across this field for 150m to the edge of woodland. Here you go through another gate and, keeping the wood on your left, walk along the edge of the field still heading SE.

Photograph of Head along the path through the crops still heading south-east Image by Hertfordshire Walker released under Creative Commons BY-NC-SA 4.0
Head along the path through the crops still heading SE
Image by Hertfordshire Walker released under Creative Commons BY-NC-SA 4.0

3: The path is usually cut diagonally across through the crops and continues for 250m to a gap in the hedgerow leading to Kentish Lane.

Photograph of Continue along the path through the crops until you reach Kentish Lane where you turn left Image by Hertfordshire Walker released under Creative Commons BY-NC-SA 4.0
Continue along the path through the crops until you reach Kentish Lane
Image by Hertfordshire Walker released under Creative Commons BY-NC-SA 4.0

4: You need to cross the road here and turn left, walking NE along the right-hand side (east side) of Kentish Lane (the B158) for 300m.

5: When you reach the bend where Wild Hill goes off to your left you have a choice. You can cross the B158 just before you reach Wild Hill and continue heading NE along the left-hand side of the B158 for 190m until you reach point 7 where you turn left and rejoin the walk, or you can avoid crossing what can be a busy road and take a detour described below.

[Detour to avoid crossing road on bend] Instead of crossing the B158, turn right on Essendon footpath 19 and follow this footpath for 140m as it continues down the private drive before branching off to the left to reach a small wooden footbridge with a wooden gate on your left.

Photograph of footpath. Turn right on the footpath leading south-east off Kentish Lane Image by Hertfordshire Walker released under Creative Commons BY-NC-SA 4.0
Turn right on the footpath leading SE off Kentish Lane
Image by Hertfordshire Walker released under Creative Commons BY-NC-SA 4.0

Turn left at the wooden gate. This is Essendon footpath 20.

Photograph of footpath. Turn left here and take the footpath as it heads north-east to Hornbeam Lane Image by Hertfordshire Walker released under Creative Commons BY-NC-SA 4.0
Turn left here and take the footpath as it heads NE to Hornbeam Lane
Image by Hertfordshire Walker released under Creative Commons BY-NC-SA 4.0

Continue heading NE with the field on your left and the woods on your right. After 120m you will reach the end of the woodland where you drop down slightly to the right to go through a wooden gate by an outbuilding (see image below). Go through the gate and continue heading NE, now with the house and gardens on your right and the hedge on your left for 70m until you cross a footbridge and reach Hornbeam Lane.

The gate mentioned above - continue for 70m to Hornbeam Lane
Image by Hertfordshire Walker released via Creative Commons BY-NC-SA 4.0

Turn left on Hornbeam Lane and walk NW for 160m until you reach the B158 again. Immediately opposite you will see another path to the left of a house. [End of detour]

Photograph of footpath. Turn right at the footpath sign and walk north-east through Duncan's Wood Image by Hertfordshire Walker released under Creative Commons BY-NC-SA 4.0
Turn right at the footpath sign and walk NE through Duncan's Wood
Image by Hertfordshire Walker released under Creative Commons BY-NC-SA 4.0

7: Take this path (Essendon footpath 15) and continue heading NW for 140m until you reach a footpath sign.Turn right and head NE for 480m first through Duncan's Wood until the path opens out into a field. 

Photograph of footpath. Continue heading north-east following the path down to Essendon Brook where you turn left Image by Hertfordshire Walker released under Creative Commons BY-NC-SA 4.0
Continue heading NE following the path down to Essendon Brook where you turn left
Image by Hertfordshire Walker released under Creative Commons BY-NC-SA 4.0

Here there is a wonderful panoramic view of a small valley enclosed in woodland and formed by two brooks, the Essendon Brook and Wildhill Brook.

Your way continues forward along a sheltered track between the fields downhill until you come to a gate just before a footpath crossing. Ahead is a small track down to a bridge over Essendon Brook, but your way is left along the edge of the woodland keeping the brook on your right. This is Essendon footpath 16.

Photograph of footpath. Turn left at the footpath crossing and continue north-west alongside Essendon Brook Image by Hertfordshire Walker released under Creative Commons BY-NC-SA 4.0
Turn left at the footpath crossing and continue NW alongside Essendon Brook
Image by Hertfordshire Walker released under Creative Commons BY-NC-SA 4.0

8: Head NW along this path for 400m. Look out for a rope swing on the right. If you have small children they will love this, and their guardians might enjoy it too. :-)

The rope swing alongside Essendon Brook  Image by Hertfordshire Walker released under Creative Commons BY-NC-SA 4.0
The rope swing alongside Essendon Brook
Image by Hertfordshire Walker released under Creative Commons BY-NC-SA 4.0

Continue until you come to a small footbridge crossing Wildhill Brook where it meets Essendon Brook.

The wooden footbridge over Wildhill Brook at the junction with Essendon Brook Image by Hertfordshire Walker released under Creative Commons BY-NC-SA 4.0
The wooden footbridge over Wildhill Brook at the junction with Essendon Brook
Image by Hertfordshire Walker released under Creative Commons BY-NC-SA 4.0

9: Cross the bridge and keep walking straight, climbing out of the valley with fields on your left and the hedgerow on your right.

Photograph of footpath. Turn left on the byway and follow it round as it heads south-west to West End Lane Image by Hertfordshire Walker released under Creative Commons BY-NC-SA 4.0
Turn left on the byway and follow it round as it heads SW to West End Lane
Image by Hertfordshire Walker released under Creative Commons BY-NC-SA 4.0

10: After 330m your path merges with a byway open to all traffic (BOAT) at the top of the hill where you turn sharp left (This is Essendon BOAT 14) and follow this path round heading SW for 590m until you reach West End Lane.

As you walk this byway keep looking to your left, across the fields and the valley, and you will see the late Barbara Cartland's home, Camfield Place, perched high on the distant hill.

11: When you reach West End Lane, turn left and walk along the road for 830m as it winds its way down the hill into the village of Wildhill.

12: Turn left at the end of West End Lane and you will see The Woodman on your right.



A more detailed interactive map