Goodrich Castle and Welsh Bicknor

A long walk full of interest with lengthy riverside sections.

Technical sheet
No. 18606052
A Whitchurch walk posted on 19/01/22 by Walks from the Door. Update : 19/01/22
Calculated time Calculated time: 5h50[?]
Distance Distance : 17.68km
Vertical gain Vertical gain : 270m
Vertical drop Vertical drop : 264m
Highest point Highest point : 144m
Lowest point Lowest point : 22m
Difficult Difficulty : Difficult
Back to starting point Back to starting point : Yes
Walking Walking
Location Location : Whitchurch
Starting point Starting point : N 51.840274° / W 2.638476°
Download : -

Description

(D/A) From the front door of The Saracens Head pub, facing the river, turn right. Turn off the road and walk through the car park and campsite on your left to the far corner, where a gate gives access to a riverside meadow.

Follow the riverbank as far as the ferry to the Old Ferrie Inn, then turn right, away from the river, to a gate into the road (Peregrine Path).

(1) Take a few steps to the left, then take a path on the right. This path leads obliquely up the hill below a line of low cliffs to meet another road.
Turn left (downhill) to a passing place on your right, where you take a signposted path through the woods.

(2) This level path nears and eventually meets a broad track, which you follow around the end of Huntsham Hill, with rocks above and to your right. Before the track bends right, take a signposted footpath on the left that descends, winding between boulders and ruined buildings, to the riverside.

(3) Turn left, along a slightly overgrown path which twists between boulders along the riverbank. Emerge into fields and continue along the riverside to Huntsham Bridge. Cross the river and walk past the first driveway on your right.

(4) Follow a path through a wooden gate on the right, following a line of poplars. On emerging into a field, turn left and walk up to a metal gate. Follow the driveway opposite to the left of the castellated Rocklands House, then go through a gate on the left before the entrance to the farm.

Beyond another gate, follow the drive between horse paddocks out to the road (B4229). Turn right for a short distance, then cross over to a wooden hand-gate into a field.

(5) Bear half-right up the hill to a stile, and then head for the top right-hand corner of the second field. Beyond a gate, follow a short walled track out to the road (Church Pitch). Turn left then right into a driveway opposite the timber-framed Old Court (late 1500s).

(6) When the driveway bends left, go through a hand-gate on the right and cross a field into the churchyard. Walk to the right of the church, passing a stone bench to an exit from the churchyard beyond. Pass a well on the left, then walk along the bottom edge of a field to a metal gate into Moors Meadow, a local open space.

Cross a footbridge and pass an interpretation board, before bearing right past the primary school and out to the main street in the village.

(7) Turn left to a junction, then turn right. If omitting the visit to Goodrich Castle (1 mile in total), go straight on and skip to the waypoint (9) .

(8) If visiting the castle, turn left as signposted and follow the drive for 400 yards. Turn right and pass to the left of the Visitor Centre. Continue up a track alongside a wood for a further 400 yards to the castle. Return to Goodrich village the same way and turn left on regaining the road.

(9) Pass a no-through road sign and the delimit signs and cross the Dry Arch, then turn immediately left (signposted to Kerne Bridge) down steps. Follow the road (B4229) beyond, passing Flanesford Priory on the left, to Kerne Bridge.

  • If Lydbrook Railway Bridge is unavailable, cross Kerne Bridge and see map for alternative route to Lower Lydbrook, rejoining at waypoint (10) . This route uses Lydbrook Railway Bridge to cross the Wye below Welsh Bicknor. At the time of writing (autumn 2020) this crossing is via a temporary walkway, pending funding for a more permanent solution. Please enquire before setting off as to the availability of this crossing. If the bridge is closed, to avoid a long diversion you are advised to cross Kerne Bridge and use riverside paths and roads on the eastern side of the river to Lower Lydbrook and resume the walk as described from waypoint (10) .
  • If you know that the Railway Bridge is available, turn right before Kerne Bridge and walk downstream with the river on your left. Enter woodland and climb steps before continuing along the riverside.

Pass below a half-timbered house and proceed along the wooded riverbank. Emerge into fields and continue along the right-curving river to Welsh Bicknor, ignoring a track off up the hill on the right. Pass below the church and youth hostel at Welsh Bicknor, following the riverbank (wooded once again) to Lydbrook Railway Bridge. Cross the railway bridge then, once over the river, drop down to your left.

(10) Pass under the bridge, with the river on your right. Pass a green-painted hut on the left and then go through a gate into open fields. At the end of this long field, turn left through a kissing gate and up some steps to the disused railway; turn right.

Cross a further field, passing below a wood on your left. Pass below a barn conversion and then a conifer plantation to a radar gate into woodland. Continue along the obvious track below the cliffs of Coldwell Rocks (keeping an eye open for Peregrines overhead).

(11) Shortly before a tunnel entrance, take a signposted footpath on the left which leads obliquely uphill through the trees. A path joins from the right at a wooden fingerpost; keep straight on, signposted “Yat Rock 1⁄4”.

After a hairpin bend left, you pass a cottage, before bending right to the end of a drive.

(12) Walk out to the road. Turn left and walk up the road, until you pass under a footbridge near the top of the hill. Shortly afterwards, turn left and double-back on yourself along a boardwalk to the Yat Rock viewpoint.

(13) Having admired the view, return as far as the footbridge and cross it into a picnic area.

(14) A path opposite leads down rocky steps and past a small cave to a crossing with a wide track. Go straight over and follow a steeply descending path through the woods. Keep left at a path junction, and again at a second, until you emerge at the end of the car park in Symonds Yat East. Turn right to return to the Saracens Head. (D/A)

Waypoints :
D/A : km 0 - alt. 30m - The Saracens Head pub
1 : km 0.7 - alt. 38m - Low cliffs
2 : km 1.24 - alt. 64m - Boulders and ruined buildings
3 : km 2.02 - alt. 42m - Huntsham Bridge
4 : km 3.64 - alt. 24m - Farm
5 : km 4.33 - alt. 43m - Stile
6 : km 4.83 - alt. 73m - Churchyard
7 : km 5.26 - alt. 60m - Village - Visit to Goodrich Castle
8 : km 5.33 - alt. 62m - Visitor centre
9 : km 6.68 - alt. 61m - Flanesford Priory - Two options
10 : km 12.93 - alt. 30m - Disused railway
11 : km 16.37 - alt. 84m - Tunnel entrance - Hairpin
12 : km 16.55 - alt. 115m - Footbridge
13 : km 16.83 - alt. 125m - Yat Rock viewpoint
14 : km 17.02 - alt. 133m - Small cave - Wood
D/A : km 17.68 - alt. 31m - The Saracens Head pub

Useful Information

Allow extra time to visit Goodrich Castle (open summer only, though the moat and exterior are freely visible year round). Muddy paths after rain; riverside paths may be impassable at times of flood. One steep climb to and descent from Yat Rock at the end.

Link to the Pdf : http://walksfromthedoor.co.uk/i/walks/He...

Visorando and this author cannot be held responsible in the case of accidents or problems occuring on this walk.

During the walk or to do/see around

The Saracens Head Inn
Symonds Yat East,
Ross-on-Wye, Herefordshire HR9 6JL
Tel 01600 890435
Website http://saracensheadinn.co.uk
Email contact@saracensheadinn.co.uk

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The GPS track and description are the property of the author.