Walk among the sarsens

In my experience, most Ramblers’ Areas have their walk before their AGM, though a few have it after (Gloucestershire, for instance).  Wiltshire and Swindon Area bucks the trend with a walk afterwards.

I went to their AGM on 10 February at Kennet Valley village hall at Lockeridge, near Marlborough in the North Wessex Downs Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty.  It was well attended and lively, in particular there was much concern about Wiltshire Council’s lack of resources for rights of way.  The Area is doing excellent work on paths and runs a programme of shorter walks to enable less-able people to join them.  The chair, Grahame Lee, leads the Area effectively and ensures they have good contact with councillors.

The walk after the AGM took us past Fyfield church

1 Fyfield church

Fyfield church

and on to Fyfield Down part of which has been mapped as open country where we have the right to walk.  Our leader, David Trease, is extremely knowledgeable about the area and helped to claim access land under the Countryside and Rights of Way Act 2000.

2 open country

Fyfield Down open country

There was a misleading sign on the gate leading onto the down, which is also a public bridleway.  We need to report it.

3 bull sign

Misleading sign on public bridleway, there was no bull

There are sarsens (sandstone blocks) scattered over the down.  They are peculiar to this part of England and are an impressive sight.

4 sarsens

Sarsen stones on Fyfield Down

Wiltshire is one of those areas, in southern England in particular, where the access mapping of downland makes little sense on the ground.  The land beyond the fence in the middle distance is not access land, but it looks identical to that in the foreground.

5 open country boundary (along fence)
The fence in the middle of the photo marks the boundary of the access land, yet the vegetation looks the same

We returned via West Overton, having seen a pleasant chunk of Wiltshire countryside.

About campaignerkate

I am the general secretary of the Open Spaces Society and I campaign for public access, paths and open spaces in town and country.
This entry was posted in Access, AGMs, AONB, campaigns, Obstructed path, Open country, Public paths, Ramblers, walking and tagged , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

1 Response to Walk among the sarsens

  1. John Bainbridge says:

    Time to revise the definitions under CRoW?

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