View from Chilton House

SWC Walk 191a Haddenham Circular (w/o Brill)

30-Jan-16 • thomasgrabow on Flickr

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Close-Up of Tree in Valley NE of Long Crendon, on way to Wombwell's Farm

SWC Walk 191 Haddenham Circular (via Brill)

30-Jan-16 • thomasgrabow on Flickr

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Towards the Pollicotts and Ashendon

SWC Walk 191a Haddenham Circular (w/o Brill)

30-Jan-16 • thomasgrabow on Flickr

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Aylesbury Astrological Society's Observatory and Chilterns beyond, from Upper Pollicott

SWC Walk 191a Haddenham Circular (w/o Brill)

30-Jan-16 • thomasgrabow on Flickr

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Weather Vane, Haddenham

SWC Walk 191 Haddenham Circular (via Brill)

30-Jan-16 • thomasgrabow on Flickr

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Monbiot's nemesis

30-Jan-16 • anon_e on Flickr

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photo from walk

30-Jan-16 • anon_e on Flickr

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Haddenham Circular via Brill walk

Strenuous walk linking several hill top villages in the rolling landscape of the north westerly Aylesbury Vale, with splendid views throughout.


27.6 km (17.2 mi), of which 4.2 km (2.6 mi) on tarmac or concrete. Cumulative ascent/descent: 458m. For a shorter walk, see below Walk options.

Time: 6 hours 15 minutes walking time. For the whole outing allow at least 8 hours 45 minutes.


OS Landranger Map: 165 (Aylesbury & Leighton Buzzard) OS Explorer Map: 180 (Oxford) & 181 (Chiltern Hills North). HTP station, map reference SP 731 085, is 10 km south west of Aylesbury, 22 km east of Oxford, and 81m above sea level. Haddenham is in Buckinghamshire.


8 out of 10

Walk Notes

This is a long and strenuous – but very rewarding – walk through the pleasant rolling countryside of the north westerly parts of Aylesbury Vale, just north of The Chilterns, with some far views on clear days. The walk first crosses the Thame Valley north of Haddenham and then passes through the area of the ancient Bernwood Royal Hunting Forest on a wide circular route to return south on a different route back through the Thame Valley to Haddenham.
The lunch stop is in any one of two charming pubs in the ancient hilltop village of Brill. A short loop around the village, providing far views into five counties, passes its well-preserved windmill in a prominent position on Brill Common, before a long descent from this steep-sided village follows.
There are a few ascents throughout the walk at regular intervals, with the third one – up to lunch in Brill – the longest, as the walk links a total of four hilltop villages and crosses one other hill chain. It also contains several arable field crossings.

A shortcut reducing the effort to 5 out of 10 is described.

Walk options

The walk offers a shortcut half-way through the morning, which cuts out the recommended lunchtime destination, the charming hilltop village of Brill, though (cuts out 7.6 km (4.7 mi) and 156m descent/re-ascent). The recommended lunch stop for the short walk is in Ashendon, and it is rated 5/10. For details see the end of the main walk directions.
There is also a minor shortcut in Brill itself, described in the main text.
You can also order a taxi for a pickup after lunch, from Brill to Haddenham station this would cost £14 (2015 price): 01844 299 444.


Haddenham & Thame Parkway (HTP) station is on the London Marylebone to Bicester main line.
Journey times are between 38 and 51 minutes.

Saturday Walkers’ Club: Take the train closest to 9.30 hours.


The Pointer 27 Church Street, Brill, Buckinghamshire, HP18 9RT (01844 238 339). Open Tue-Thu 12.00-23.00, Fri-Sat 12.00-24.00 and Sun 12.00-22.00. Food served Tue-Thu 12.00-14.30 and 18.30-21.00, Fri-Sat 12.00-14.30 and 18.30-22.00 and Sun 12.30-17.00. The Pointer is located 12.1 km (7.5 mi) into the walk. It is on a site which has had a pub on it since at least the 1700’s, and has a large outside area at the back. Until 2011 known as The Red Lion, it has been lovingly restored by the new owners, now serving as pub, restaurant and butchers, and also offering rooms in a building opposite.
The Pheasant 39 Windmill Street, Brill, Buckinghamshire, HP18 9TG (01844 239 370). Open 12.00-23.00 (12.00-24.00 Fri-Sat). Food served Mon-Fri 12.00-14.30 and 18.00-21.00, 12.00-15.00 and 18.00-21.00 Sat and 12.00-17.00 Sun. The Pheasant is located 12.9 km (8.0 mi) into the walk and also offers accommodation. It has a large outside seating area, with the balcony and garden offering views of Brill’s windmill and the open countryside beyond it.
The Hundred of Ashendon Inn Lower End, Ashendon, Buckinghamshire, HP18 0HE (01296 651 296). Open Tue-Fri 12.00-15.00 and 18.00-23.00, Sat 11.30-23.00 and 12.00-18.00 Sun. Food served Tue-Fri 12.00-14.00 and 18.45-21.00, 12.00-14.45 and 18.45-21.00 Sat and 12.30-15.00 Sun. The Hundred of Ashenden is located 18.6 km (11.6 mi) into the full walk and 11.5 km (7.2 mi) into the short walk. Formerly The Gatehanger’s Inn and The Red Lion, but under new Management and fully refurbished, it is also offering accommodation. Awarded the Michelin Bib Gourmand 2016,2017 and 2018. They also serve sandwiches and more traditional dishes from a Bar Snack Menu.


House of Spice 19 Fort End, Haddenham, Buckinghamshire HP17 8EJ (01844 292 934). Open 12.00-14.30 and 18.00-23.30. An old pub converted into an award winning restaurant. Part of a group of restaurants across Bucks and Oxon. 1 km from the station.
Little Italy Espresso Bar, Haddenham Village, 7a Fort End, Haddenham, Buckinghamshire HP17 8EJ (01844 290 426). Open Mon-Fri 8.00-16.30, Sat 9.00-16.30 and Sun 09.00-14.00. 1.1 km from the station.
Smarts Fish & Chips 5 Banks Parade, Haddenham, Buckinghamshire HP17 8ED (01844 291 791). Open Mon-Sat 11.30-14.00 and 16.30-23.00. 1.2 km from the station.
The Rising Sun 9 Thame Road, Haddenham, Buckinghamshire HP17 8EN (01844 291 744). Open 12.00-14.30 and 17.00-23.00 Mon-Thu, 12.00-24.00 Fri-Sat and 12.00-22.30 Sun. 900m from the station.
Little Italy Espresso Bar, Haddenham and Thame Parkway Station, Thame Road, Haddenham, Buckinghamshire HP17 8EW (01844 290 426). Open Mon-Fri 5.30-17.00, Sat 07.30-13.00 and 08.30-14.00 Sun.

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Start HP17 8EQ Map Directions


National Rail: 03457 48 49 50 • Travelline (bus times): 0871 200 22 33 (12p/min) • TFL (London) : 0343 222 1234


Sep-18 Thomas G

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Walk Directions  

Full directions for this walk are in a PDF file (link above) which you can print, or download on to a Kindle, tablet, or smartphone.

This is just the introduction. This walk's detailed directions are in a PDF available from