Pattiswick: A walk through the woods
PUBLISHED: 15:01 23 February 2014
Lotte Sherman chooses a brisk morning’s outing that makes the most of the available bright daylight. But be warned: It can be rather wet underfoot
map195, grid ref. 820 247, length; 5.5km/3.4m
How to get there: from the A120 between Coggeshall and Bradwell, look for Doghouse Road. signed to Pattiswick, The Compasses.
Parking: with permission by The Compasses or by the side on Compasses Road.
Walked early January
Cross-field walking is reduced to the first short stretch of this journey. After that the route takes in six different woods and passes by Cock Pheasant Spinney, before arriving back on the road running through this small hamlet, consisting of the church and Old Rectory, The Hall, a couple of farms, the Old Schoolhouse, The Compasses and a few cottages.
Start from the first footpath leading off to the east from Compasses Road, which aims for Potash Farm. You will see a fingerpost on the left side, directing walkers over a plank bridge and along a hedge; ignore the next path veering off to the right, but keep going in the same direction onto the cross-field path. Shortly this exits at a minor road.
Cross over to the fingerpost indicating a path on the right of a hedge towards the woods ahead. At the end you have to surmount a stile, cross a small footbridge and walk through a patch of scrubland to the road. Take note of the old green hand-pump by the lonely abode to your left.
From here, continue on the footpath running along the right side of Little Monks Wood; a fingerpost indicates the public right of way. Not far along, a way-mark points left to a trail cutting through the wood. Proceed along this trail to the track on the other side of the wood, turn right, and soon you will have Grange Wood on your left.
About 500 meters along, the track bends to the left and passes four differently-named woods. You might notice a couple of camouflaged structures on the right edge; it would seem they were used by the MOD, who had members stationed on the nearby Markshall Estate.
The track ends at a corner of Nunty’s Wood and continues as a minor road ahead. For this journey turn left and proceed along Nunty’s Lane for approximately 1km; you will pass the abandoned Gt Nunty’s Farm complex, which is scheduled for residential development. You might also notice the silhouette of some dead oak trees by the side of the Lane.
When arriving by Gt Monks Wood, look out for the footpath leading off to the left into the wood; it is a pleasant walk through it to the far southern corner and ends on a border track. Walking to the right on this track will bring you to a road junction with Compasses Road. A signpost points in the direction of Pattiswick Church and village; follow this and in a mere couple of hundred metres you are back by your transport.