Great Missenden Circular
Distance: 10 miles
Start and finish: Great Missenden station
Map: Explorer 181
Walked surveyed and described by Sue Aldridge based on Ken’s summary as follows: Chiltern round from Great Missenden, ten miles. Undulating with two or three steep climbs, a fair number of stiles and some muddy stretches. Lunch at The Blue Ball, Asheridge.
Description checked and minor amendments made by Anna Harris and Sue Williams
(1) Turn left out of station on to forecourt. Turn right along Station Approach. Turn right and walk along High Street through village. Turn left into Church Street and walk to end of line of red-brick terraced houses. Turn right (signposted South Bucks Way) and ascend tarmac drive bending left over main road (A413) to reach Parish Church of St Peter & St Paul. (In February, there is a mass of snowdrops in the graveyard beyond the church.) Fork right across grass to right of church; go through kissing gate.
(2) Fork left along left slope with grassy valley to the right, gently rising uphill towards wide gap in trees to cross stile in hedge. Cross road and stile opposite to field.. Walk ahead, slightly right across wide field to cross stile (left of metal gate). Continue along left edge of large field (passes under electricity lines) to go over stile at far end. Continue ahead for approximately 100 yards, over stile and through trees, then go over stile on right on to enclosed path through narrow belt of trees, on right, to road. Turn left along road for a quarter of a mile to reach main Chesham Road. Cross over road and stile opposite at Hyde End.
(3) Keep ahead, crossing field slightly to left, and go over stile to next field. Keep ahead to cross stile on opposite side of field (at left end of line of trees). Continue ahead; follow right edge of field to corner stile. Cross stile, continue ahead on enclosed track to South Heath, reaching narrow crossing lane, tarmac between houses. Turn right for about 100 yards. Turn left at small metal gate (next to large wooden gate) on to enclosed footpath. Turn right at next footpath, following southern edge of wood, close to raised earthwork, reaching kissing gate by metal gate (caution here, keep close to right edge of wood, following line of earthwork). Go through kissing gate, walk across field and alongside left hedge of Redding's Farm, through a kissing gate, continuing ahead, following hedge to left to reach kissing gate on to a lane.
(4) Turn left along lane passing drive to Redding's Farm, on left. Turn right, through squeeze stile, to
follow narrow path, descending steeply through a wood to pass through another squeeze
stile. Cross a track to squeeze stile opposite, then ascend steeply up a field to another squeeze stile.
Fork right through small woodland to enclosed fenced path. Proceed ahead to cross narrow lane (notice Pednor House and grounds on right – well worth a look). Through gate, cross stile on right and walk diagonally across field to cross stile by metal gate. Descend field (following tree boundary on left) to cross stile, continuing descent on left side of field, to cross stile to narrow lane in Pednor Bottom. Ascend footpath ahead between hedges to rise steeply up steps to cross a stile. Keep ahead upwards with hedge on left to cross stile at top, turning left along wide grassy track. Turn right at wooden fence, curving round to cross stile. Turn left in field, follow hedge on left, then fork right across field to kissing gate in right corner which leads out on to road by the The Bell in Chartridge.
(5) Turn left along road for about 150 yards. Turn right (next to Chartridge Mission Church) on sign-posted wide track, descending enclosed path and rising slightly to bend right (good views of valley, half-right).
Continue ahead, descending right edge of field, through wide gap across middle of next wide field, climbing steep slope of field to the right hand corner of the hedge on the left. Continue with hedge on left as path levels out to pass through kissing gate to pub The Blue Ball at Asheridge (tel: 01494 758 305).
(6) Turn right outside pub, continue along road for about a quarter of a mile, ignoring first footpath on left; go past Braidwood Cottage and take next path sign-posted footpath/bridleway on left. As bridleway starts to descend, turn right on path passing between wooden buildings in Braid Wood, following yellow arrows on trees as path forks slightly left through wood. Continue ahead, keeping an eagle eye open for rather scarce yellow arrows and waymarks, to meet footpath junction at end of wood. Turn left on to bridleway descending left side of long field to valley below. Then ascend keeping ahead (known as Ashotts Lane on map) with hedge on left, passing a house. Continue on wide track to reach road.
(7) Turn left along road. In about 100 yards, opposite Chartridge Lodge, take first sign-posted bridleway
on right, known as Capps Lane. Keep ahead along bridleway, ignoring all side tracks. The path narrows and can be muddy; descend turn slightly right. At cross paths at bottom, cross stile ahead and ascend up along right edge of field. Climb stile, continue ahead in next field with fence on left. Go over stile by metal gate to next field, continuing ahead, crossing another stile by brick wall. Continue ahead to climb stile and cross road to walk along Cherry Tree Lane ahead.
(8) Continue ahead on wide track to end of Garden Cottage. Turn left on footpath, and on through another kissing gate and descend diagonally to far kissing gate to woodland track. (Ignore first kissing gate on left at bottom). Go through kissing gate, turn left immediately on footpath that follows round left edge of wood.
Ignore first footpath on left and turn left at next main junction of tracks to walk up past cottage and Field End Grange, until you reach a seat, facing to the right. Go through gate on right to cross field ahead. Cross stile, keeping ahead diagonally across field to climb two stiles. Continue in same direction to corner of high hedge with houses beyond. Go over stile by metal gate (left of white house called Hedge Sparrow Cottage).
(9) Turn left along road. Turn right on footpath (opposite Chiltern Cottage).Walk along drive passing houses on right to continue on enclosed path, left of iron gates to Mulberry Park Hill. Go through kissing gate, descend field on left side. Continue ahead over stile into next field with good views over wide valley and Great Missenden. Into last field, go ahead to cross stile to main A413 road. Cross with great care - fast traffic! Go over stile opposite. Turn left, walk through fields and 3 kissing gates to road and turn right (notice public toilets by car park). At T junction turn right into High Street. Turn left to Station Approach and walk up to station.