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Walk 72: Essendon to North Mymms Linear

An undulating walk through woodland and farmland 

7.8 miles (12.5 km)


Photograph of The path heading south from Green Street leading to Wildhill Road Image by Hertfordshire Walker released under Creative Commons BY-NC-SA 4.0
The path heading south from Green Street leading to Wildhill Road
Image by Hertfordshire Walker released under Creative Commons BY-NC-SA 4.0
This walk starts in the village of Essendon, drops down to the Lea Valley, follows the Lea Valley Walk west for about a mile before heading south through the rolling countryside between Essendon, West End, Wildhill, and Bell Bar. The route crosses several fields where the path has been cut through the crops. This can result in walkers getting wet after rain or in the early morning, especially when walking through rape fields. So waterproof boots and trousers are recommended.

Directions


Map for Walk 72: Essendon to North Mymms Linear Created on Map Hub by Hertfordshire Walker Elements © Thunderforest © OpenStreetMap contributors See the interactive map below the directions for KML and GPX details
Map for Walk 72: Essendon to North Mymms Linear
Created on Map Hub by Hertfordshire Walker
Elements © Thunderforest © OpenStreetMap contributors
See the interactive map below the directions for KML and GPX details
This walk has two possible end points, one in Brookmans Park, the other in Welham Green. The walk makes use of the Centrebus shoppers service 201 that operates between North Mymms and Welwyn Garden City via Wildhill and Essendon on Tuesdays and Fridays (with the exception of public holidays). The current timetable is embedded below these walk directions.

At the time of writing, the bus leaves Welham Green station at 09:23 and reaches Bradmore Green in Brookmans Park at 09:28. Please check departure times at the Centrebus site because they might have changed. Ask the driver to give you a shout when you reach Essendon village centre. Alight just past the cricket ground and close to the church.

Photograph of The Lea Valley Walk footpath mentioned in point 3 below Image by Hertfordshire Walker released under Creative Commons BY-NC-SA 4.0
The Lea Valley Walk bridleway mentioned in point 3 below
Image by Hertfordshire Walker released under Creative Commons BY-NC-SA 4.0
1: Walk NW along Essendon High Road, past the church, and turn left on West End Lane heading W until you reach the last house on your right. Take the footpath on your right immediately after the house, Essendon footpath 5, and follow it NE across a field for 350m to Essendon Hill.

2: Cross Essendon Hill and turn left following the footpath alongside the right-hand side of the road as it drops down hill and heads north for 650.


The bridleway off Essendon Hill  Image by Hertfordshire Walker released under Creative Commons BY-NC-SA 4.0
The bridleway off Essendon Hill
Image by Hertfordshire Walker released under Creative Commons BY-NC-SA 4.0

3: At the right-hand bend at the bottom of the hill, cross the road and go down the bridleway on your left. This is the Lea Valley Way, also Essendon bridleway 6. Follow it W for 1.4km until you reach a bridleway on your left.


The path heading south from Essendon bridleway 6  Image by Hertfordshire Walker released under Creative Commons BY-NC-SA 4.0
The path heading south from Essendon bridleway 6
Image by Hertfordshire Walker released under Creative Commons BY-NC-SA 4.0
4: Take this bridleway, Essendon bridleway 10, as it climbs up from the Lea Valley heading S and SSE for 1.5km until it reaches West End Lane.


Photograph of The Candlestick at West End. Take the footpath running down the north side of the building Image by Hertfordshire Walker released under Creative Commons BY-NC-SA 4.0
The Candlestick at West End. Take the footpath running down the north side of the building
Image by Hertfordshire Walker released under Creative Commons BY-NC-SA 4.0
5: Turn right on West End Lane and follow the road round until you reach The Candlestick. Here you take the footpath immediately before the pub, Essendon footpath 13, and follow it heading ESE for 430m along the side of the building, through a wooded area and into an open field. Continue along this path with the hedgerow on your left and the field on your right until you reach a byway.


Photograph of The footpath heading east and downhill from the Candlestick at West End Image by Hertfordshire Walker released under Creative Commons BY-NC-SA 4.0
The footpath heading south-east and downhill from the Candlestick at West End
Image by Hertfordshire Walker released under Creative Commons BY-NC-SA 4.0

6: Turn right on the byway, Essendon BOAT 14 (byway open to all traffic) and follow it first S then SW for 1.1km until you reach West End Lane.

7: Turn left on West End lane and follow S, WSW and then SSE for 750m down to Wildhill where you turn left and walk E for 120m to The Woodman.

8: Take the footpath just beyond The Woodman, Hatfield footpath 84, and walk through the pub’s car park leaving via the gate at the S end. Head SSW for 240m, cross the field, go over a footbridge, through another gate, across another field, another footbridge and turn left emerge into a large field via a third gate. Turn right and head SW and then SSW for 200m keeping the field on your left and the hedgerow on your right until you reach a gap in the hedge.

9: Go through the gap and head diagonally to your right heading first W then SW for 220m keeping the field to your left and the hedge to your right as you climb the hill. The path now turns SSW for 130m cutting diagonally through the crop. At the top of the hill follow the path SSW for 270m with the woodland on your right until the path reaches Grubbs Lane.

Photograph of The footpath heading south from Grubbs Lane to Bell Bar Image by Hertfordshire Walker released under Creative Commons BY-NC-SA 4.0
The footpath heading south from Grubbs Lane to Bell Bar
Image by Hertfordshire Walker released under Creative Commons BY-NC-SA 4.0
10: Turn left and and head SE for 75m looking out for a footpath on the right. Take this footpath, Hatfield footpath 83, as it heads SW for 750m as it cuts through the crop, goes over a footbridge, cuts diagonally across the next field, to a small copse where it becomes North Mymms footpath 66). As you go through the woodland look out for the remains of a WWII Tet turret on your right. Continue across a third field and emerges on Woodside Lane by the garage on the A1000.

11: Cross The Great North Road with care and take the lane opposite, Bell Lane. If you want, you can stop for refreshments at The Cock Of The North to your left or The Dutch Nursery. Continue down Bell Lane SSW for 460m until the lane bends to the left.

12: Here you take the footpath on the right, North Mymms footpath 33, and head NW and then W with the woods on the left and the fields on the right for 1.1km until you reach Bulls Lane. Turn left along the footpath running along the south side of Bulls Lane and head W for 420m until you pass under the railway bridge.

13: At this point you have the options of going to Brookmans Park station or Welham Green station.
  • For Brookmans Park take the footpath on your left, North Mymms footpath 34. Follow this path for 450m, first SSE, then SW through woodland, down some steps, over a brook and on to reach Station Road. Turn left on Station Road and follow it SE for 980m to Brookmans Park station. There are many options for refreshments in the village including the local pub, Brookmans.
  • For Welham Green continue W for 300m along Bulls Lane to Holloways Lane. At this point you could continue heading W along Bulls Lane and turn right on Station Road to visit the Sibthorpe Arms, but if you don't need refreshments head NE on Holloways Lane for 450m, then turn right on Dixon Hill Road for 120m to Welham Green Station.

Interactive map






201 service timetable (as of July 2020)