Kelvedon Circular walk

Gentle Essex walk through the quiet Blackwater Valley to historic Coggeshall, with 300 listed buildings, for lunch.

Grange Barn, Coggeshall SWC Walk 216 Kelvedon Circular

Grange Barn, Coggeshall

SWC Walk 216 Kelvedon Circular

12-Apr-14 • thomasgrabow on Flickr

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Abbey Mill SWC Walk 216 Kelvedon Circular

Abbey Mill

SWC Walk 216 Kelvedon Circular

12-Apr-14 • thomasgrabow on Flickr

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Elizabethan house incorporating remnants of the original Cistercian Abbey buildings SWC Walk 216 Kelvedon Circular

Elizabethan house incorporating remnants of the original Cistercian Abbey buildings

SWC Walk 216 Kelvedon Circular

12-Apr-14 • thomasgrabow on Flickr

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Paycocke's, Coggeshall SWC Walk 216 Kelvedon Circular

Paycocke's, Coggeshall

SWC Walk 216 Kelvedon Circular

12-Apr-14 • thomasgrabow on Flickr

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Terracotta Bas-relief at All Saints Church, Feering SWC Walk 216 Kelvedon Circular

Terracotta Bas-relief at All Saints Church, Feering

SWC Walk 216 Kelvedon Circular

12-Apr-14 • thomasgrabow on Flickr

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River Blackwater Kelvedon circular via Coggeshall

River Blackwater

Kelvedon circular via Coggeshall

08-Feb-08 • moontiger on Flickr

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Coggeshall Abbey Mill Kelvedon circular via Coggeshall

Coggeshall Abbey Mill

Kelvedon circular via Coggeshall

08-Feb-08 • moontiger on Flickr

swcwalks freewalks 2252809789

Length 23.2 km (14.4 mi), with 239m ascent/descent. For a shorter or longer walk see below Walk Options.
Toughness 4 out of 10, with 5 hours walking time. For the whole outing, including trains, sights and meals, allow at least 7 Âľ hours.
Walk Notes

This walk is centred on the gentle landscape of the Blackwater Valley, close to Constable Country, and includes some very tranquil and scenic stretches along the river itself, interspersed with long stretches along country lanes, green lanes or field boundaries with wide and extensive views across the rolling Essex countryside of fields and woods.
A pre-lunch north westerly loop explores the valley cut by Robin’s Brook, leading to Marks Hall Gardens and Arboretum, with its atmospheric early lunch stop in a converted barn.
There are a several other recommended lunch stops in Coggeshall itself.
Coggeshall is one of Britain’s most historic market towns. It has 300 listed buildings, amongst the ones passed on the walk are Britain’s oldest barn and one its finest medieval buildings, built on the remnants of a 12th century abbey, an impressive carved timber-framed Wool Merchant’s house as well as a couple of photogenic watermills and an outsized church.

A much shorter walk of 16.3 km length enables extended visits to the NT properties en route.

Walk Options

A frequent bus service running through the lunch location of Coggeshall gets you to Chelmsford station (closer to London than Kelvedon and on the same line).
Two shortcuts - cutting out all or parts of an outer loop just before lunch - reduce the length of the walk by 6.9 km and 84m ascent/descent or by 3.9 km and 49m ascent/descent respectively.They are rated 2/10 and 3/10 respectively.
A scenic extension in Coggeshall leads west from Grange Barn along the Essex Way, across the Blackwater over the listed Nunn’s Bridge and back along the wooded valley, closely following the river. This adds 2.5 km/1.6 mi.

Maps OS Landranger: 168 (Colchester)
OS Explorer: 183 (Chelmsford & The Rodings) and 195 (Braintree & Saffron Walden).
Travel

Kelvedon station, map reference TL 862 192, is 19 km north east of Chelmsford, 26m above sea level and in Essex. It is on the London Liverpool Street to Norwich Main Line. Journey times are 49 minutes Mondays to Saturdays (two trains per hour), and 51 minutes on Sundays (hourly service).

Saturday Walkers’ Club: Take the train closest to 9.30 hours for the full walk, or 10.00 hours for a short walk option.

Lunch

West Street Vineyard West Street, Coggeshall, Essex, CO6 1NB (01376 563 303). West Street Vineyard is 7.0 km (4.3 mi) into the walk and a 30-year-old vineyard, bought by the current owners in 2009 and also offers wine walking tours and tastings.
Orchard Kitchen Café Bouchier's Barn, Marks Hall, Coggeshall, Essex, CO6 1TG (01376 563 796). The Orchard Kitchen Café is located 11.1 km (6.9 mi) into the walk in a beautifully restored 15th Century barn, which was moved to its current spot timber by timber from a site close by. It offers morning coffee, light lunches and teas, with homemade cakes available all day. Open Tue-Sun apart from a few weeks around year end. Cooked food 12.00-14.30.
Ranfield’s Brasserie 4-6 Stoneham Street, Coggeshall, Essex, CO6 1TT (01376 561 453). Ranfield’s is located 14.4 km (8.9 mi) into the main walk, and 7.5 km into the short walk. The 16th Century half-timbered building was originally converted into a restaurant in 1986 by Peter Langan, of Langan's Brasserie in Mayfair. Open Wed-Sat 12.00-15.00 and 18.00-22.00 and Sun 12.00-17.00.
Bakes and Blooms 10-12 Market Hill, Coggeshall, Essex, CO6 1TS (01376 563 060). Bakes is located 14.4 km (8.9 mi) into the main walk, and 7.5 km into the short walk.
The Chapel Inn 4 Market Hill, Coggeshall, Essex, CO6 1TS (01376 561 655). The Chapel Inn is located 14.4 km (8.9 mi) into the main walk, and 7.5 km into the short walk. It was built on the site of an earlier chapel on the old Roman Military Road from Colchester to St Albans via Bishops Stortford. Remains of the Roman road with its drainage aqueducts can still be seen in the beer cellar.
The White Hart Hotel Market End, Coggeshall, Essex, CO6 1NH (01376 561 654). The White Hart is located 14.5 km (9.0 mi) into the main walk, and 7.6 km into the short walk, and it is set in a building that dates back to the 15th Century and still has a wealth of original features, notably its attractive timbered room.
The Woolpack Inn 91 Church Street, Coggeshall, Essex, CO6 1UB (01376 561 235). The Woolpack Inn is located 14.9 km (9.2 mi) into the main walk, and 8.0 km into the short walk. The Woolpack was built in the 15th Century and became an Inn in 1708. It is now Grade I-listed.

Tea

The Bell Inn The Street, Feering, Essex, CO5 9QQ (01376 570 375). The Bell Inn is located 2.0 km from the end of the walk and is a 16th Century inn. Under new management from 12/10/2021.
The Sun Inn 3 Feering Hill, Feering, Essex, CO5 9NH (01376 570 442). The Sun Inn is located 0.5 km from the end of the walk.
The Tavern on the River 182 High Street, Kelvedon, Essex, CO5 9JD (01376 570 293). The Tavern is located 0.4 km from the end of the walk on the banks of the Blackwater River. It includes a restaurant, a snug area, a bar area and al fresco riverside seating.
Kelvedon King 201 High Street, Kelvedon, Essex, CO5 9JD (01376 570 565).

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Oct-21 Thomas G

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