Western Swing

Bishop's Castle → The Wintles → Bankshead → Kerry Lane → Wood House → Cwmmawr Dingle → Bishop's Castle

4.3 miles. Circular. All off-road. Lots of stiles.

To The Start of the Walk

As ever, we start in The Six Bells with a pint of home-brewed ale. Leave ‘The Bells’ via the front door, turn right then immediately right again into Kerry Lane. In about 100m turn up a steep path into the town playing fields. Walk along the path on the right-hand edge of the field then leave under the arch onto Union Street. Turn left up Union Street. Wave as you pass my house. After the police station turn left into Billingsley Close.

At the end of the close go down the steps into Oak Meadow then right to the end of the cul-de-sac. At the larger road turn right and carry on uphill to the far end of the street. Pass through the alley onto Welsh Street. Turn left, then go right into the street with no name which skirts the Wintles ‘eco’ estate. In about 50m you will see a dirt track to the left – take it.

Up Hill To Bank Top

A little way up the track pass through a gate. Shortly after this turn left up a narrower, up-hill path. Follow this upwards, passing through a gate/stile. You are then onto one of the prettier sections of the walk – and ancient pathway with trees either side. Carry on to the top to another gate and stile. Immediately over this stile turn to the left where you will see another stile which takes you in to the adjacent field.

Walk along the right-hand edge of this field until you reach a stile in the far right-hand corner. Cross this and then walk across the next field. At the far right-hand side of this field is a tiny pond with another stile behind. Cross this stile and into another field. There are excellent views of the hills from here.

The exit from this field is a gateway straight across but out of sight over the hill. If the field is grassed, walk straight across. If it is cropped follow the left edge then the far edge until you reach the gate. Pass through the gate and head up hill and to the right in this next field. The way out is out of sight around the corner by the big tree.

Around the corner pass over the next gate/stile and carry on up the left-hand edge of the field. Ignore a gate to the left and carry on along this field and pass through another gate into a smaller field. 50m or so straight across this is a gate with a stile which takes you out of the fields and onto a tarmac track. Follow it upwards and to the left until your reach Welsh Street.

Across

On Welsh Street turn left then in around 75m turn right into wide farm track. Follow this track through the farm, out the other side, and on till you reach Kerry Lane.

Down Hill

Almost opposite you on Kerry Lane you will see some steps up to a kissing gate. Go through the gate then head across the field. You are heading for a kissing gate adjacent to a farm gate, in the far hedge, roughly a third of the way along from the left. Pass through this gate then walk to the far diagonal corner of the next field where you will find another kissing gate in between some small trees.

Now walk to the far left corner of this large field. At this point your exit is out of site as it is down in the bottom of the valley out of view. Lovely views over to Middle Woodbatch here.

At the bottom of the slope you will find another kissing gate in the left hedge. Pass through it into a small field, then in 100m or so cross another stile onto the tarmac lane then over a further stile on the opposite side of the lane. We will now follow the path of the stream for a while.

Follow the path alongside the stream. After a while you will pass a large fallen tree and come to another stile close to the water. Cross this into a field with a ford used by the farmer and a small plank bridge for when it is muddy. This is where we leave the stream and head upwards again to BC.

Cwmmawr Dingle and Back to BC

Walk diagonally up hill on this field towards the narrow wooded valley – the Dingle. Pass through the gate into the Dingle then cross the footbridge. Follow the path up to the top and out of the dingle over a stile. Over this stile turn left down the hill and up the steps opposite to yet another stile.

Over this stile, turn right to another style in the hedge opposite. Passing over this stile takes us into a large field with great views of Bishop’s Castle. You need to go straight across this field and along the fence that edges the triangle of another field that juts in. This will take us to another stile. Cross it and keep going straight following the hedge row. After several more stiles you will come to a house on a large track – this is the Shropshire Way. Turn left, pass through the large gate, and continue down Field Lane back to the town. At the end go right then left, past the fire station and the church.

The Six Bells will then be directly in front of you. As ever, should I happen to be in, feel free to buy me a pint.

Click here for a sketch map of the route.

If you have Google Earth installed use it to open this file to see the walk.

www.the-roberts-family.net