Upton Snodsbury

Circular Walk 38  (7.5 Miles)

Walk Overview

The walk is a little over 7½ miles, mostly flat, across open countryside, through farmland but with several stiles. During the early part of the walk, between Upton Snodsbury and Flyford Flavell you will enjoy a delightful section of the Millennium Way your route being clearly marked by the distinctive green waymarkers. Nestling between low hills and farmland, the pretty parish of Upton Snodsbury lies 7 miles east of Worcester along the A422. The church is dedicated to St. Kenelm and includes some fine stained glass windows, including several from the 1960s and 1970s by Francis Keat.

Walk Details

  • Start: The Oak, Upton Snodsbury WR7 4NW
  • Start Grid Ref: SO 939 544
  • Parking: The Oak car park if visiting, otherwise roadside
  • Refreshments:
    • The Boot Inn, Flyford Flavell (01386 462658)
    • The Oak pub and Twisted Spoon Tearoom (01905 381631)
  • Maps: OS Explorer 204 or OS Landranger 150
  • Distance: 7½ miles
  • Time: 3 to 4 hours
  • Stiles: 11 (not all dog friendly)
  • Download: Walk GPS (GPS Exchange Format, GPX)
  • GPS and GPX explained
  • Find a mobile app on the Apple App Store or Google Play

Updated October 2023

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Walk Instructions

Section A

We start our walk from the car park of The Oak Pub, Take stile in the far corner of car park, then go left up field to take metal kissing gate and go diagonally left across next field heading towards the right of church. Take the kissing gate ahead where you will have joined the Millennium Way and will see our green waymarkers. Continue past houses left, through wooden gate and pass school on your right and Upton Snodsbury Church on your left. Cross road and take the alleyway between houses to field and go with hedge left for 200 yds, then cross field and ditch to take mid hedge kissing gate ahead. Go diagonally half right across field heading towards lone tree. When you reach hedge bear left, keeping hedge right, through two fields to corner stile and road.

Section B

Cross road to take gap in hedge going through scrub to join track and keeping to left of farm buildings. Continue with hidden river left on cinder track to take bridge. Go through double metal gate then diagonally half right to mid hedge gap by single tree. Go through another double metal gated gap and bear slightly left keeping hedge right. Follow hedge as it turns right at corner to take gap ahead between tall hedges. Enter left field and go left just a few paces then turn right across centre of field ( wherever farmer has cleared footpath ) to pass about 20 paces to the the left of the mid field double power poles heading towards a waymarked gap in hedge ahead. Take gap and go ahead through plantation to gate onto road. Cross road, go over metal stile and continue forwards along grassy tree lined path to the end, to meet hedge. Turn right and after 15 paces go left to cross wooden footbridge and through kissing gate. Continue ahead through copse between two barbed wire fences and exit by metal kissing gate to cross field ahead to take mid hedge kissing gate to road.

Section C

Go left on road to go over crossroads at North Piddle and continue up road passing Moat House and Bankside on your right. After some 250 paces take signed footpath in gated fence gap right. Go up slope with hedge right to take double fence stile then ahead with hedge right to exit field by corner gate. Go ahead with hedge right to take kissing gate, then go immediately right to take further kissing gate. Go left with hedge left to take far corner gate then ahead across next field keeping hedge left to take metal kissing gate (ignore stile right). Go diagonally half left up next field towards lone dwelling and exit field by corner stile ( ignore gate left ) then go left around paddock towards the church over a wooden stile and  passing between two dew ponds. Take wooden gate and go left around perimeter of the tennis court to take driveway onto Radford Road,  Flyford Flavell.

Section D

Go right on road to pass Nom Coffee Shop.  Just past The Boot Inn take the slightly hidden signed footpath left (here we leave the Millennium Way and join the Wychavon Way). Go over the stile then half left under power lines and take wooden gate at top of field. Continue diagonally across lawn to take corner metal gate to rough field. Go ahead with hedge left to take metal gate, then downhill following power lines to second telegraph pole in open field and around field edge to take metal gate behind car dealership/Murco petrol station to main A422. Cross busy main road and take metal gate opposite, into field. Go slightly left diagonally across field to take a double gated footbridge across stream. Go 1/2 left for 25 paces and then through metal gate . Go right up field in between wire fence and hedge on right. After passing a metal gate proceed a short distance to the surfaced track, turning immediately left up drive over cattle grid to then turn right in front of house then over grassed area by kennels to take stile. Go left with hedge left towards Grafton Wood ahead. Continue along edge of wood for 300 yards as it swings gently right to take metal kissing gate left into wood. (Here we leave the Wychavon Way to enter the wood which is a butterfly conservation area known for the Brown Hairstreak).

Section E

Maintain your line ahead through wood, along well defined path, to exit by large kissing gate at the end of the track. Go half right diagonally across field to reach a gap.Take gap following waymark and after a few paces on rough track, go through a metal gate / gap over ditch on your left and then go right along field edge track with hedge right. Exit field at wide corner gap and continue ahead on track with trees and ditch right. Soon we can see Grafton Flyford Church ahead left. Continue along edge of field towards farm buildings to exit via double gated bridge in corner, to the right of large metal gate. Head up field towards Church Farm buildings, take gate / gap and go through farmyard with buildings left, through large wooden gate and down drive towards the church. After passing the church ignore footpath left and continue right down track passing The Old Rectory to reach the road.

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Meet the locals

Section F

Turn left at road then immediately right through kissing gate to field keeping ahead with hedge right. Take corner gap then go directly ahead across centre of two fields to reach footbridge. Go over footbridge then go left with hedge left until you come to gap. Go right here, staying in the same field and head up field towards double power lines keeping hedge left. Go under power lines towards barns. Turn right on reaching farm track to reach public footpath sign ahead. Go left here passing barn right, go through large metal gate and continue ahead with hedge left, ignoring stile left. Stay ahead to eventually find stile adjacent to lone oak tree. Cross this stile and go ahead towards the distant Bow Wood, keeping hedge right, crossing double stile in top corner of field then going half right in next field towards corner of wood. Go over ditch and awkward stile by another large tree and go diagonally right towards corner of field to take wooden gate into copse.

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Time to relax and enjoy

Section G

Go ahead 50 paces then through gap into large field and go with wood left. Keep ahead with edge of wood on your left until you see buildings ahead. Proceed around edge of field in front of buildings and exit to drive. Continue  down driveway past Froxmere Court and, on reaching the right hand bend about 100 paces before a stream, go sharp left through large metal gate (easy to miss so keep a look out) and then go up field heading towards edge of wood. Go through two metal gates into next field then stay directly ahead, across the middle of this very large uneven field, with stream over to your right and narrow woodland over to your left. Head towards farm buildings which will eventually appear in far distance to find and take metal gate(s) in fence. Go straight down the farm track to the main road. Turn left to arrive back at The Oak.

Points of Interest - What to know and what to see...

by Andy Botherway
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St.Kenelm
Upton Snodsbury

Upton Snodsbury

The Oak Pub and Twisted Spoon Tearooms, which are in the same building, are the starting point for this circular walk and good for all types of refreshments. You can park in the carpark if using them afterwards.

Upton Snodsbury was founded by the Saxons in the 7th Century and is mentioned in the Domesday Book as Snodesbyrie. The church, dedicated to St Kenelm, dates from the 13th Century and has interesting windows dating from 1960-70 by Francis Skeat. Much of the land surrounding the village was owned by Westminster Abbey and caused much legal wrangling with the Abbot of Pershore. In the past the fruit orchards were a most important local industry and celebrated with an Apple Day celebration today there is a bi-ennial Snodfest of local musicians and groups. The Civil War ravaged much of the local area and following the two battles for Worcester (1646 and 1651) as both cavaliers and roundheads scavenged destroying many properties.

North Piddle

Moorend Barn is situated above Piddle Brook which flows into the River Severn. The Domesday Book mentions two estates in North Piddle, both of which were held for the Abbey of Westminster by Urse d’Abetot. St Michael's, the parish church of North Piddle, was originally built in 1289 but almost nothing survives of the old building. It was rebuilt in 1876. In the census of 1821 there were 133 inhabitants compared with about 80 nowadays. Through the ages North Piddle Manor was connected to many colourful figures, including the Dukes of Norfolk. Thomas de Mowbray, 1st Duke of Norfolk, was banished from England and died of the bubonic plague Venice in 1399. His son Thomas de Mowbray was executed in 1405 and the manor was taken into family ownership and granted to Edward Beauchamp. A few years later the manor was once again owned by the Dukes of Norfolk, but the direct line was broken when Anne de Mowbray, 8th Countess of Norfolk, who was married when she was 5 years old to Richard of Shrewsbury, died three years after her marriage. Her husband was murdered in the Tower of London soon after.

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St Peter's
Flyford Flavell

Flyford Flavell

Here there is the Boot Inn and Nom Coffee Shop, both ideal for a mid walk break.

Flyford Flavell is not separately entered in the Domesday Survey, being then included in the estate of 5 hides held at North Piddle under the Abbey of Westminster by Urse and having evidently been given with Pershore by Edward the Confessor to the abbey of Westminster. The land was given by King Edgar in 972 to the abbey of Pershore. The overlordship of the abbey was recognized until the 16th century. Urse's interest passed with his other estates to the Beauchamps, their overlordship being last mentioned in 1420–1. St Peter's parish church, with the exception of the 15th-century tower, was rebuilt in 1883. There are two bells one dating from 1480 and the other 1715. The Boot Inn has bits that date back to the 13th Century.

Grafton Wood is owned and managed by The Royal Society of Wildlife Trusts and is an ancient woodland great for bluebells and butterflies, especially the rare Brown Hairstreak.

Bow Wood is a remnant of the great Feckenham Forest and covers much of Castle Hill, an Iron Age fort. The whole area is designated a Site of Special Scientific Interest (SSSI)

Court Farm,near the end of our circular, has evidence of a mill stream and was valued in Domesday at £7.10 shillings.

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Butterfly Conservation Area

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