Our fabulous fenlands
The highlight of this walk is Market Weston Fen. This nationally-important nature reserve is one of the finest valley fens in East Anglia and a European special area of conservation. The fen also has many ponds. It’s walkable in winter as it covers roads, tracks and well- maintained paths, although there is roughly a quarter of a mile of one track that is prone to water-logging.
Enter the church gate by a footpath sign, following a gravel path and keeping the church to the right. When the gravel path ends, carry on along a grass path, go between two wooden posts and immediately turn right, aiming for a kissing gate in front of you. Go through the gate and continue along a green path with a wooden fence to your right. Pick up a semi-hard track in front of you and follow it until you come to a road. Turn left here, passing Swiss Cottage to your left.
You will come to a white railing bridge, which you should cross and turn immediately right. At two footpath signs, take the one that goes straight ahead - do not turn right. You are then walking on a green path with open fields both sides. At the corner of a wood, turn left by a footpath sign. Follow the path as it swings right by a footpath sign, keeping that same wood to your right.
You will soon come to a hedge in front of you. Go through the gap in the hedge by a footpath sign and immediately turn left on a green path with blackberry bushes both sides. The path will swing to the right and you will have a fence to your left. The path will take you out on to a green track. Carry on in the same direction, with a fence to your left and trees to your right and you will come out onto a road. Cross the road and turn right, walking on a pavement.
Soon after passing Weston Coney Hall to your left you will come to a crossroads. Turn left, signposted Knettishall, but before you do so stop for a few minutes to have a look at a United States Army Air Force Memorial Stone.
When you come to a footpath sign turn right, walking on a concrete drive. When the concrete drive ends, continue in the same direction, on a semi-hard track. When you come to the field boundary turn right by a footpath sign, on a green track with trees to your left. Follow the track as it becomes a green path, with the same trees to your left. This path will eventually take you out onto a road, where you should turn left.
Roughly 60 yards after passing a 30-mile limit sign turn right by a footpath sign into Market Weston Fen Nature Reserve via a kissing gate. Continue in the same direction across a meadow, through another kissing gate and across a wooden footbridge. Carry straight on, along a slightly elevated green path with the fen both sides.
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Go through another kissing gate. Carry straight on, passing another footpath sign. You will then come to two footpath signs, one after the other; turn right at the second one, with a farm to your left. Stick to this path as it crosses the fen and you will come to a kissing gate, through which you should exit the fen.
Once through the gate follow the path through some trees and you will soon have a pond to your left. Once you emerge from the trees you will be following a farm track with fences both sides. Cross the stile to the left of a metal gate and then cross the road, walking down a narrow lane. When you come to a road running parallel in front of you cross this, walking in the same direction with a sign to your left saying “Stanton Rides”. You should now be on a farm track.
This track will eventually take you out onto a road. Turn right and you will come to a crossroads. Carry on down Church Road and you will soon have Mill Road to your right. Ignore this and continue in the same direction, with the Royal George public house to your right. You will very quickly come to St Andrews Close to your right, from where you started.