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Walk 67: Kentish Lane Loop

Secluded paths, deep woodland, wild roses in June

10.0 miles (16.1 km)


Bridleway 10 just after point 4 in our directions below, often a blaze of wild rose in June
Image by Hertfordshire Walker released under Creative Commons BY-NC-SA 4.0
A circular walk enjoying the secluded paths and woodlands of the undulating countryside surrounding the B158 between Essendon and Wildhill. The walk passes by four local pubs, so there are several options for refreshments. It can be muddy in places after rain.

Directions

Walk 67: Kentish Lane 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

The walk can be started at any point along the way, although our directions start and finish at The Woodman, Wildhill where you can park if you are intending to visit the pub at the end of the walk. Above is an image of the map of the route. A larger version of the map - which can be expanded to see more detail - is embedded at the end of the walk.

A field of buttercups along the route Image by Hertfordshire Walker released under Creative Commons BY-NC-SA 4.0
A field of buttercups along the route
Image by Hertfordshire Walker released under Creative Commons BY-NC-SA 4.0
1: Leave The Woodman car park and turn left on Wildhill Road and head W for 110m until you meet West End Lane where you turn right and head along this quiet country lane for 740m first NNW as it dips down and then climbs to a right-hand bend. Continue round to your right and head NE following the lane as it then turns left and continues to head N. Look out for a footpath sign on your right heading into the woods. This is a Essendon BOAT 14, (byway open to all traffic) and is route 14 to Essendon.

2: Take this path and continue through Home Wood and Harefield Wood for 1.1km. At first you will be heading E and then NE. After half a mile you will see footpath 16 going off to your right. Ignore it and continue along the BOAT as it heads N, dipping and climbing up to a footpath on your left just opposite a white-topped footpath marker post. This is Essendon footpath 13.

3: Turn left here and follow the footpath WNW for 420m along the edge of the field until it emerges at The Candlestick on West End Lane.

4: At The Candlestick turn right on West End Lane for 90m as it heads N and then NE. Just before the houses on your left you will see a bridleway sign. This is Essendon bridleway 10. Take this path and head NNW and then N. A great time to do this walk is in late May and June when the hedgerow along this route is rich in wild rose. Continue down this path 890m until you reach a footpath through the hedgerow on your right. This is Essendon footpath 8.


Bridleway 10 as it dips down just before meeting footpath 8, referred to in point 4 above Image by Hertfordshire Walker released under Creative Commons BY-NC-SA 4.0
Bridleway 10 as it dips down just before meeting footpath 8, referred to in point 4 above
Image by Hertfordshire Walker released under Creative Commons BY-NC-SA 4.0

5: Take this path and follow it for 710m as heads SE across fields, past Larkinshill Grove. At the end of Larkinshill Grove head straight following the path cut through the crop SSE before emerging on West End Lane.

6: Here you turn left and follow West End Lane uphill heading E for 630m towards Essendon. When you reach the outskirts of the village, look out for a footpath on your left before the first house on the left. This is Essendon footpath 5.

7: Take this path and head NE for 360m over the fields to Essendon Hill.

8: Cross the road (Essendon Hill) and take the footpath immediately opposite - still Essendon footpath 5 - heading NE and E across Essendon golf course for 400m until you reach a footpath, Essendon footpath 2, heading E for 390m across the golf course and emerging via a footbridge leading to Bedwell Avenue.


Footpath 2 across Essendon golf course, see point 8 above Image by Hertfordshire Walker released under Creative Commons BY-NC-SA 4.0
Footpath 2 across Essendon golf course, see point 8 above
Image by Hertfordshire Walker released under Creative Commons BY-NC-SA 4.0

9: Here you turn left for 100m walking NNE until you reach a footpath on your right. This is footpath Little Berkhamsted footpath 1. Take this path as it continues E heading uphill for 160m to a lane. Turn left and follow the lane for 190m as it turns to the right. Look out for a footpath on your right soon after a house on your right where the road bends to the left. This is Little Berkhamsted footpath 4.


The route to footpath 4 signposted to Ashfield Farm Image by Hertfordshire Walker released under Creative Commons BY-NC-SA 4.0
The route to footpath 4 signposted to Ashfield Farm
Image by Hertfordshire Walker released under Creative Commons BY-NC-SA 4.0
10: Take this path as it heads SSE for 1.1km. At first you see a large house on your right and fields on your left before you cross open fields. You emerge at the end of a quiet lane. Here you continue heading straight SSE down Little Berkhamsted bridleway 19 with Ashfield Farm on your right. Continue until you reach a footbridge.


The bridge on bridleway 19 shortly before the climb up to Breach Lane Image by Hertfordshire Walker released under Creative Commons BY-NC-SA 4.0
The bridge on bridleway 19 shortly before the climb up to Breach Lane
Image by Hertfordshire Walker released under Creative Commons BY-NC-SA 4.0

11: Immediately after the footbridge take the left-hand fork and climb the hill heading SSE for 330m on Little Berkhamstead bridleway 19 until you reach Breach Lane. Turn right on Breach Lane and walk S for 290m until you reach Little Berkhamstead. As you reach the road, immediately opposite is the entrance to the churchyard. Take this track and, keeping the church on your right, follow the path until it reaches Church Road.

12: Immediately after leaving the churchyard on Church Road, take the footpath on your left. This is Little Berkhamstead footpath 9. Continue along this path heading ENE for 310m with fields on your right and the hedgerow on your left and follow it as it swings to the right and heads SSE just before woodland. You are now on Little Berkhamstead footpath 10.

13: Continue along the path heading SSE for 320m as it dips and then climbs. At the point where the path swings to the right you take the left fork cross a brook and climb up to woodland. Continue until you come to the end of a small thicket on your left and where a path on your left heads downhill into Buck's Alley Woods. This is Little Berkhamstead footpath 11.

14: Enter the woods, turn right and follow Little Berkhamstead bridleway 23 as it heads SE, S, SE, and then SW, dipping and then climbing for 690m. After a footbridge continue S until the path veeres to the left at the point where another footpath heads to your right. This is Little Berkhamstead footpath 14.

15: Take this footpath and head SW for 450m crossing a a couple of fields before emerging on Epping Green.

16: Turn left on Epping Green and after 30m take the bridleway on your right. This is Little Berkhamstead bridleway 22. Take this bridleway for 250m SW along a tree-lined avenue. At the fork by a large brick wall, take the left-hand option and continue for 570m, first along the lane (it looks private but it's not) until it becomes a footpath heading S across fields to Tylers Causeway. This is Hatfield footpath 91.


The junction of bridleway 22 and footpath 9 Image by Hertfordshire Walker released under Creative Commons BY-NC-SA 4.0
The junction of bridleway 22 and footpath 9
Image by Hertfordshire Walker released under Creative Commons BY-NC-SA 4.0

17: Turn left on Tylers Causeway (take care here because there is no footpath alongside the road) and head E for 170m looking out for a footpath on your right. This is Hatfield footpath 90. Take this path and head S for 980m with the fields on your right and the hedgerow on your left. You will pass a small pond on your right before climbing up to a track at the top of the hill.


The small pond to the right of footpath 90 Image by Hertfordshire Walker released under Creative Commons BY-NC-SA 4.0
Bullrushes on the small pond to the right of footpath 90
Image by Hertfordshire Walker released under Creative Commons BY-NC-SA 4.0

18: Turn right on the byway, Hatfield restricted byway 88, and head NW for 950m, passing a field of horses on your right and New Park Farm on your left before the track opens up with fields on both sides and great views.

19: After the byway turns to the right and heads N you will see a path going off to your left. Ignore this and continue N for until you reach Tylers Causeway.

20: Here you turn left for 90m and, immediately after Birchwood Cottages on your right take Cucumber Lane heading NW for 440m.

21: When you reach woodland and Cucumber Lane veers right, take the footpath on your left. This is Hornbeam Lane, Essendon bridleway 18, and is a magnificent avenue of trees through Nine Acre Wood. Continue along this bridleway for 1.2km. You will pass a large house on the left and stables on the right. Continue along this lane until you reach the last house on your left where you will see a footpath on your left heading.


Footpath 18, Hornbeam Lane leading from Cucumber Lane to footpath 20 Image by Hertfordshire Walker released under Creative Commons BY-NC-SA 4.0
Footpath 18, Hornbeam Lane leading from Cucumber Lane to footpath 20
Image by Hertfordshire Walker released under Creative Commons BY-NC-SA 4.0
The path beyond the gate mentioned below in point 22 goes to the right of the bush  Image by Hertfordshire Walker released under Creative Commons BY-NC-SA 4.0
The path beyond the gate mentioned below in point 22 goes to the right of the bush
Image by Hertfordshire Walker released under Creative Commons BY-NC-SA 4.0
22: 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, (see image above) 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 here and continue down the left-hand side of the B158 and head SSW for 300m looking out for a footpath sign on your right.


The penultimate gate on footpath 85 leading to a field dropping down to The Woodman, Wildhill Image by Hertfordshire Walker released under Creative Commons BY-NC-SA 4.0
The penultimate gate on footpath 85 leading to a field dropping down to The Woodman, Wildhill
Image by Hertfordshire Walker released under Creative Commons BY-NC-SA 4.0
23: Take this path, Hatfield footpath 540 and head NW with woodland on your right until you reach a gate. Go through the gate, cross two fields, and drop down to the car park at The Woodman, Wildhill.

Larger version of the map on Map Hub