Sawbridgeworth, gently rolling countryside, fields, woods and waterways, the Stort Navigation, and Bishop's Storford
23.7 km (14.7 mi), of which 5.1 km (3.2 mi) on tarmac or pavements. Cumulative ascent/descent: 209m/196m. For a shorter walk, see below Walk options.
Time: 5 hours 5 minutes walking time. For the whole outing, including trains, sights and meals, allow at least 8 hours
|Toughness||4 out of 10|
|OS Maps||OS Landranger Map: 167 (Chelmsford) OS Explorer Map: 194 (Hertford & Bishop’s Stortford). Sawbridgeworth Station, map reference TL 490 150, is 6 km south of Bishop’s Stortford, and 48m above sea level. Bishop’s Stortford Station, map reference TL 491 208, is 43 km northeast of Charing X and 61m above sea level. Both are in East Hertfordshire|
After passing through the centre of Sawbridgeworth, much of which is a conservation area, this East Hertfordshire walk leads mainly through open countryside, either along tracks, green lanes or quiet country roads, providing extensive views across the gently rolling countryside of fields, woods and waterways. The most attractive parts are then a scenic stretch of the Ash Valley around lunch in Much Hadham, one of Britain’s longest villages, and the long peaceful ending along the Stort Navigation past a couple of Nature Reserves. The pretty town centre of Bishop’s Stortford with its many tea options can be explored on an optional extension.
The Henry Moore Foundation in Perry Green is passed in the morning. The walk features a substantially shorter version to enable an extended visit of the Henry Moore Sculpture Park, Studios and House. This version cuts out some of the most attractive parts of the walk, though.
Note: The Henry Moore Foundation is closed from end October to early April.
|Transport||Trains to Sawbridgeworth leave from Liverpool Street down the West Anglia Main Line to Cambridge (journey time from 40 minutes, up to three trains per hour). Trains usually stop at Tottenham Hale (connect from the Victoria Line). Bishop’s Stortford is further down the line (journey time from 38 mins, up to six trains per hour).|
You can cut the walk short by taking a bus (runs Mon-Sat about every two hours) from the recommended lunch pub to either Bishop’s Stortford or St. Margaret’s (Hertford East line to Liverpool Street, run by the same train operating company).
Shortcuts: It is possible to shorten the walk in four ways:
Taking all shortcuts reduces the length of the walk to 16.1 km (10.0 mi).
The Hoops Inn Perry Green, Herts, SG10 6EF (01279 843 568).
Winter: Open: Wed-Sat 12.00-21.30, Sun 12.00-18.00 & Bank Holidays 12.00-16.00. Food served Wed-Fri 12.00-15.00 and 17.30-21.00, Sat 12.00-21.00. Sun 12.00-18.00 & Bank Holidays 12.00-16.00. Summer: Open: Wed-Sun & Bank Holidays 11.30-23.00. Food served to 21.00 Wed-Sat and 18.00 Sun and Bank Holidays. The Hoops Inn is located 7.5 km (4.7 mi) into the full walk and 6.8 km (4.3 mi) into it if taking Shortcut I.
Too numerous to list here. Please see the walk directions for details of the recommended cafes and pubs.
After the walk, we would love to get your feedback
Out (not a train station)
Back (not a train station)
National Rail: 03457 48 49 50 • Travelline SE (bus times): 0871 200 2233 (12p/min) • TFL (London) : 0343 222 1234
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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 wwww.walkingclub.org.uk