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Ham Wall Nature Reserve

LOCALITY: Glastonbury, Somerset
DISTANCE: 5 miles (8.05 km)
FACILITIES: Circular route, There & back, Parking, Suitable for wheelchairs, C

GRADIENT: Mostly flat
OS MAP: Cheddar Gorge & Mendip Hills West

Walk description:

From Glastonbury drive along the B3151. When you get to Meare, take the turning on the left, signposted for Ashcot. This is Ashcott Road. Keep driving until you see the Railway pub on your left. Parking is just past here on your right.

Once parked, walk out of the carpark and cross the road. The start of the walk is here.

Walk toward the large gate. There is an open assess to the right of this. This assess is not wide enough for a double buggy. The gate can be opened with a radar key.

Continue along the path. Go over the bridge and contiue walking along a small gravel compact path. This walk takes you along side the Glastonbury Canal.

You will come to a viewing area on your left. There is a container here that has information leaflets about the trails available. Opposite this viewing area you will see a large wooden gate, with a kissing gate to the left of it.

Go through here, and turn left and go along the Walton Heath trail which is 1.8km long. The path is made up of a solid plank trail, which is slightly uneven in places. Follow the path untill you come to a fork in the trail. Turn right here and walk across a bridge.

When you get to the end of this path you have two choices. You can either turn left and walk back to the large wooden gate or you can turn right and continue along a grass pathway.

If you turn right you will walk along an slightly uneven grass pathway. Continue along the path until you come to a fork in the path. Turn right and on your right you will come to a viewing area.

From here you go across the bridge which is opposite the viewing area and then turn right at the end. Alternatively you can continue along the path you are on, and this will join the other path. Turn right and continue your walk around the Nature reserve until you get back to the large wooden gate.

Opposite the wooden gate you can turn right and walk 200m along the Broadwalk. Along this part of the walk you will come to three open assess hides. When you get to the end of the path, turn around and walk back to the gate.

Go back through the gate and rejoin the original path. Turn right and continue along the path until you come to a small wooden gate on your right. This is the start of the loxtons Marsh Trail. To enter here you either need a radar key or you will have to lift your buggy over a small stile. The Loxtons Marsh Trail is a circular walk that is 1.3km long. The trail is difficult for wheelchairs and buggies due to the grass pathway being uneven.

Once out of the Loxtons Marsh Trail continue walking along the original path. Walk past the next entrance to the Loxtons Marsh Trail. Keeping walking until you come to a turning on your left. This is an entrance to the other half of the Ham Wall Trail known as The Ham Wall Loop. Go past this entrance and continue walking until you come to a large metal gate with an open access to the left of it.

This is the end of the walk. If you wish to go to Sharpham Tearooms go through this opening and walk to the end of the path. At the end turn right and walk 150m to the tearoom.

From here turn aroud and retrace your steps back to the entrance to the Ham Wall loop. You can either decide to turn right and walk back the other side of the canal, or continue along the original back to the carpark.

If you take the Ham Wall Loop it consists of a grass pathway that is uneven and muddy at times. Also at the end you key a key for the gate or you have to go over a stile.

Additional notes:

You can make this walk as short or as long as you wish. The main pathway is flat, wheelchair and buggy friendly with an easy terrain.

Sharpham Tearoom is only opened Wednesday to Sunday from 11.00hrs to 17.00hrs.

20/08/2008 | Walk posted by cathy nettley

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