Essex’s best walks: 5.5-mile circular at Little Bromley
PUBLISHED: 16:09 12 May 2020 | UPDATED: 16:09 12 May 2020
This walk from Little Bromley uses footpaths and quiet country lanes which carry little traffic and are easy to walk | Words and photos: Laurie Page Public Rights of Way Team at Essex County Council
1) From the car park turn right along the pavement past the houses in the village. Where the pavement runs out, continue along the road and as you pass under telegraph wires you will see a broken footpath post.
Take this footpath on the right that goes across the field. On the other side cross the ditch via the footbridge and proceed straight on towards the church across another large field.
At the end bear left to the church. Cross the track and enter the churchyard through the little wooden gate opposite. St Mary’s Church is usually open to the public if you wish to visit.
2) Go around the church and leave the churchyard by the metal gate on the east side. Go right along the lane and where the road bends sharp left soon after, go straight ahead onto a footpath which goes around the old barn then along a part-surfaced track.
This runs for some distance between crop fields. At the end of this field bear slightly left going diagonally across the next field and under the pylons to a footbridge across a brook.
3) Bear right on the other side of the bridge onto a wide grass strip following the line of the brook. At the end of the field go straight on between fencing and the hedge to the right. Cross a culvert then swing left onto the lane passing Lilleys farmhouse.
Keep to the lane which bends right then left. At the road T-junction, turn right and once again follow the lane, passing Briar Road, and continue to the Cross Inn at the crossroads.
4) Turn right along Ardleigh Lane, passing houses. Where the pavement runs out, proceed along the verge to Mill Lane where you turn right along this lane.
At the end turn right along Briars Road then left soon after, the other side of Briars Cottage, onto a bridleway. At the end of this shady path bear right along Waterhouse Lane.
There is very little traffic and there is also a good verge on the right. At the next road T-junction turn right.
5) Proceed along the road for some distance. Go under the pylons and pass Grange Road on the left. Continue on past Normans Farm.
Continue to follow the lane as it bends sharp left (St Mary’s Church can be seen to the right). Pass Jennings Farm.
Where the lane bends left, turn right onto a footpath going across the field. At the end it runs along the hedge then between hedges and cottages to the road by the village sign. Turn left and the car park is a little further along on the left.
Distance: 5.4 miles (8.7km)
Starting point: A small car park in Shop Road, Little Bromley (Sat Nav CO11 2PZ)
How to get there: Turn off the A120 between Hare Green and Wix onto Bentley Road which takes you to the village.
Map: OS Explorer 184 Colchester
Refreshment: The Cross Inn is on route (Sat Nav CO11 2NX). The Haywain pub is about half a mile south of the car park in Bentley Road (Sat Nav CO11 2PL).
Places of interest nearby: A few miles west is the ancient town of Colchester where there is much to see. The Roman walls can still be seen in places as well as the Roman Circus Centre. There is the Norman Castle and Castle Park, and next to this is the interesting Hollytrees Museum. Colchester Zoo is just to the south of the town. The ruins of St Botolph’s Priory are close to the centre of town and All Saints Church houses the Natural History Museum. There is also lots of popular high street shops.