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Swallowfield walk

This from Sally Ballard

10.30am.   We will meet and park at All Saints Church Swallowfield (RG7 1TJ / SU731648) They will kindly give us tea/coffee and a short history of the church.

11am.        We will leave the church through the churchyard looking at the graves of Mary Russell Mitford (author of 'Our Village') and of Constance Lennox Russell.
                  Our morning walk will be 3.76 miles through fields, leafy lanes and historical roads; past the confluence of three of the four rivers in the parish, two fords and the county boundary. We will continue through what has always been a very rural farming community, approaching the village from the top of The Street. (Two stiles)

12.45-1pm Stop at The Crown public house for lunch. I will provide a link to the menu, as I hear from people, and if we can order in advance then they have said that there will not be so much of a wait.

2-2.15pm. Leave The Crown to continue down The Street looking at the only remaining lodge to Swallowfield Park before continuing to, what is now, the main entrance to the house. We will stop and look at Pitt Bridge (1722) and walk down to the house. There I will give a short talk about some of the more famous and colourful owners before we look around the grounds (The house is now converted into private apartments so we will not be able to go inside); we have permission to walk the grounds on whatever route we choose. We will then walk back up to Pitt Bridge and walk back to All Saints along the river bank.

The afternoon walk should be under two miles with one stile.

If anyone wishing to come could let me know by email: nickandsallyb@gmail.com
then I can liaise with The Church, The Crown and Swallowfield Park over numbers.

This will be a one off walk in terms of our afternoon visit. The administrators for The Park do not now open the grounds to the public and it is only the fact that I was brought up on the estate that they have agreed to us visiting.

Obviously the morning walk, with all it's history, can be walked at any time and the Church can be opened on request.