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Walk 41: The Northaw Loop

Footpaths, fields, woodland and a ridge

13.4 miles (21.5 km)

Flowers along a footpath on Walk 41: The Northaw Loop

This circular walk starts and ends in Brookmans Park, first heading south to Little Heath, then east to Northaw, north through Cuffley, on to Newgate Street, and west to Wildhill before heading south-west back to Brookmans Park.

It's a pretty walk with plenty of shady paths, woodland, and ups and downs. But a warning. The walk includes some stretches along busy roads. Most have pavements for pedestrians, but, in one section, the climb up Carbone Hill from Cuffley to Newgate Street, there isn't a pavement. This means that for about 10-15 minutes you have to walk against the traffic and keep on the verge. In a few places that verge is thin, and you will be facing traffic, but you can lean into the bushes when vehicles approach. Walk with care.


Map for Walk 41: The Northaw Loop Created on Map Hub by Hertfordshire Walker Elements © Thunderforest © OpenStreetMap contributors Note: There is a larger, more-detailed map embedded at the end of these directions
Map for Walk 41: The Northaw Loop
Created on Map Hub by Hertfordshire Walker
Elements © Thunderforest © OpenStreetMap contributors
There is an interactive map embedded at the end of these directions
Those with GPS devices can download GPX or KML files for this walk

1: From Brookmans Park’s Bradmore Green head SE along Bluebridge Road for 400m taking the second road on your left, Bluebridge Avenue. Head 180m NE to the end and enter Moffats Open Space via a gate.

2: Turn right and continue heading SE towards a gap in the hedge, go through the gap and turn left heading NE across with the hedgerow on your left and the field on your right for 310m.

3: At the end of the field go through a gap in the hedgerow and turn right into Gobions Wood. Head SSW for 430m until you reach a wooden bridge, cross the bridge and climb to the path slightly to your right heading SW for 75m until you reach a footpath.

4: Turn left on North Mymms footpath 11 and head SE along the southern edge of Gobions Wood for 170m. Cross a wooden bridge, go through a gate, and then head SE for 480m and then SSE for 190m towards Folly Arch in the distance. Continue until you reach Hawkshead Road.

5: Turn left and head ESE for 110m to Swanley Bar Lane where you turn left and head ENE for 700m to the A1000 Great North Road.

6: Turn right and follow the road SSE for 300m, heading up the hill until you reach a right-hand bend. Although busy at times, this road is okay to walk along because there is a good path alongside.

7: On the bend you will see a footpath sign on the E side of the road. Cross with care (this can be difficult) and take North Mymms footpath 49 SE for 700m. This is a narrow path with fields on your left and a hedge on your right. Continue along this path until you reach a patch of woodland. Here you will see a path go off to your left. Ignore it. Your way is straight ahead through the woodland with a small brook on your right.

8: At the end of the woodland you will come to a footpath T-junction. Turn left on North Mymms footpath 4, and head E for 430m keeping the garden fences on your right, until you emerge on the B156 Coopers Lane at the junction of Well Road and Judge’s Hill.

9: Cross the road with care, and then head ENE along Judge’s Hill, the B156 for 720m. This road has a good pavement for pedestrians. Follow this road until you get to Northaw.

10: When you reach Vineyards Road turn left and head NE for 660m downhill until the road swings left by some woodland with a lay-by on your right. Here you will see a footpath sign on your right.

11: Take that path, Northaw footpath 1, and head NE and the SE for 1km. This is a pleasant tree-lined path with fields on both sides. Continue along as it turns sharp right at Hempshill Brook. Follow it round as it heads SE to a junction.

12: You turn left and continue on Northaw footpath 1 and follow the path up a steep, tree-lined hill heading NE until you reach the B157, The Ridgeway, in Cuffley.

13: Turn left and cross the road continuing NW for 200m until you reach Hanyards Lane on your right. Turn right here and head NE for 690m along Hanyards Lane dropping down to Hill Rise. Turn left on Hill Rise and continue until it reaches Tolmers Road.

14: Turn left on Tolmers Road and follow it to the end where you will enter Home Wood. There is a bench here if you want to stop for a snack. Continue through Home Wood on North Mymms footpath 2 for 640m until you reach Caborne Hill where it crosses Cuffley Brook.

15: Turn right and follow Caborne Hill NE for 880m until you reach Newgate Street. Note: This part of the walk needs care. There is no pavement for pedestrians. For much of the way there is a verge, so you are fine, but there is one section as you approach Newgate Street where the verge disappears. Proceed with caution. If traffic approaches push into the hedgerow (there is enough space), but traffic does race along this road and you will need to be alert.

16: When you reach Newgate Street Village turn left. Soon after turning left you will see New Park Road on your left. Follow this road as it heads NW for 1.7km. The road will eventually becomes a track, Hatfield restricted byway 88. Keep walking with the farm on your left and fields on your right. This is a lovely stretch with great views on both sides.

17: When this path turn sharp right continue on it, ignoring a path to your left, and head NNW until you reach Tylers Causeway.

18: Turn left, cross the road with care and, after passing a few houses on your right, turn right and head NW for 470m along Cucumber Lane until you reach a right-hand bend with a bridleway sign on the left.

19: Take this path, Essendon bridleway 10, and head NW for 1.3km through a Hornbeam wood and then along a paved road until you reach the last house on the left.

20: Take the path, Essendon footpath 20, along the side of a house. When you reach a gate make sure you follow the direction of the waymark sign and head to the right of the bush ahead, and not to the left and continue SW with the field on your right and the hedgerow on your left for 190m until you reach another gate leading in the SW corner of the field leading to footbridge. This part can be overgrown with nettles in the summer, so pick up a stick to brush them aside. Here you turn right on Essendon footpath 19 and head NW for 210m until you reach the B158 at the top of Wildhill Lane. Turn left and head SSW down the E side of the B158 for 310m until you reach a footpath sign on your right.

21: Take this path, Hatfield footpath 85 NW for 540m as it goes across three fields and down to the car park at The Woodman.

22: Once you are in The Woodman car park you will see a gate at the SW end. To find this gate walk from the pub to the end of the car park but take the right-hand branch which leads to the path. This is Hatfield footpath 84 follow it for 280m through a gate, across the first field (this first bit can be soggy), across a footbridge, through another gate, across another field, and over another footbridge. Immediately after the footbridge turn left and go through another gate and then emerge in a field.

23: Turn right, keeping the hedge on your right and the field on your left, and continue for 490m as the path curves round to the left and heads SW. Go through a gap in the hedgerow. Turn diagonally right and and then left and head SW with the hedge on your right and the field on your left climbing the hill with woodland straight ahead.

24: When you reach a path cut through the crop follow it for 400m climbing to the top of the hill where there are excellent views back towards Wildhill. Continue SW following the path until it emerges on Grubbs Lane.

25: Turn left on Grubbs Lane and head SE for 75m looking for path on your right into another field. Follow this path, Hatfield footpath 83 SW for 730m across two fields, through a small plantation, (at this point, look out for the remains of the WWII Tett turret on your right), across a third field, and emerge on Woodside Lane by a garage.

26: Turn left on Woodside Lane and cross the A1000 Great North Road at Bell Bar and head down Bell Lane. Continue along Bell Lane for 480m until you reach a left-hand bend at the top.

27: Take the footpath on your right, North Mymms footpath 33, for 1.1km following it with the woodland on your left and the field on the right as it heads NWW until it meets Bulls Lane.

28: Turn left and take the path running alongside the lane, still North Mymms footpath 33, for 440m to Skimpans Bridge.

29: Immediately after the railway bridge take the footpath on your left, North Mymms footpath 34, and head S for 430m first alongside the railway, then to the right of a football pitch before turning SW through woodland and emerging at the North Mymms Youth and Community Centre car park. Cross the car park road and continue along North Mymms footpath 34 until you reach Station Road in Welham Green.

30: Turn right on Station Road and head NW for 170m until you reach a footpath on the left. Cross the road and take this path, North Mymms footpath 8, as it heads SW across a field for 450m.

31: At a footpath junction continue on North Mymms footpath 8 heading S for 570m until you reach Bradmore Lane.

32: Turn left on Bradmore Lane and head E for 830m to Station Road.

33: Turn right on Station Road and head S and then E for 340m back to Brookmans Park where there is a pub, restaurants, a cafe and shops.

Interactive map