From the (77) Bus Stop Walks – Walk 3 Coxley
Pleasant villages and a watermill in rural Somerset
Country lanes and field paths with many stiles to cross
Distance 10.6 Km/ 6.6 miles
Total ascent/descent 94m
1 From the bus-stop (GR529436), walk towards Wells and take first road on L (SP Burcott). Cross the bridge over the river and disused railway line (1) and where the road bears R, go L along The Drang. After 70m(75yds) take path on R opposite lamp post (SP Public Footpath) and at road, cross and go through gate. Pass close to far wooden pole, continue to large hedge gap and go ahead keeping hedge on L. Just before the end of the field, cross stile on L and aim to R of the farm enclosure ahead then bear R keeping fence on L. Cross stile on L at top of field then cross track and stile ahead.
2 (GR523444) Go R with fence on R. After 100m(110yds) cross stile on R and bear L along fence. At start of hedge bear R to contour round hill to locate stile on L. Cross and bear R along top of field. Cross two stiles and bear slightly L to gate to follow track and where it bears L cross stile ahead to reach metal gate and road. Go L for 350m(400yds) to junction.
3 (GR545542) Go L 250m(275yds) then R (SP Byway) 500m(550yds) to a junction at entrance to Wookey. Cross road, go L for 50m (55yds), descend steps on R and follow path with R Axe (2) on L. Follow round bend crossing two stiles and then aim for metal gate and road. Go L to view Burcott Inn and Mill (3) then retrace your steps round L bend and take the second L by graveyard to pass church (4). Go L at junction through village and after 200m(220yds) go ahead to Knowle Lane. After 200m(220yds), fork L into Monksford and after 180m(200yds) beyond “Ford” sign, go L over stile.
4 (GR513458) Aim for middle of opposite hedge passing two poles to double stile. Go ahead to next stile and then continue to metal gate and road. Cross ford over River Axe and go ahead 700m(770yds) then L to reach main road. Cross over (Unsuitable for HGV) and follow for 700m(770yds) ascending gently at first then more steeply to reach Tor View Cottage.
5 (GR502448) Follow 300m(330yds) to Brookwood Cottage and go R. Descend for 600m(⅓mile) go sharp L, then at sharp R go ahead through metal gate. Keep hedge on L and where it ends go straight ahead, cross stile and at cattle trough bear slightly R to stile to the L of the smaller (L) of the two white houses ahead. At road go R for 20m(22yds) to junction.
6 (GR508440) Go L (SP Polsham) – after 100m(110yds) Fenny Castle (5) can be seen on R – and follow for 500m (550yds) to cross bridge. After further 400m(¼mile) go L along drive to Melsbury Farm. After 350m (385yds) cross bridge, go over stile on R then 100m(110yds) to cross footbridge ahead. Immediately over bridge go L and follow with River Sheppey on L for 1.2Km(¾ mile) to reach steps on R. Ascend steps to road and go R for 200m(220yds) to reach the A39. The bus stop for Wells is to the R and that for Glastonbury and Yeovil is across the road 100m(110yds) ahead by the Memorial Hall.
FOR A SHORTER WALK
Distance 5.9 Km/ 3.6 miles
Follow to the end of point 1 and cross track to second stile. Go straight across field past cattle trough to bushes 50m to R of metal gate to reach sleeper bridge. Cross and go R keeping stream on R crossing three stiles to reach road at junction. Go straight ahead for 600m (⅓ mile) to junction by Pine Tree Farm. Go L for 600m (⅓ mile) to junction at point 6. Follow route to end.
1 The railway line was a branch of the Somerset & Dorset railway from Wells to Glastonbury, which opened in 1859 and closed in 1951.
2 River Axe rises at Wookey Hole and flows to the Bristol Channel near Weston-super-Mare.
3 Burcott Mill is the last remaining of eleven watermills powered by the River Axe and now run as a B&B
4 St Matthew’s church dates from the twelfth century and is Grade I listed. It was assigned to the sub dean of Wells cathedral in 1209.
5 Fenny Castle is an earthwork “motte and bailey” castle, probably from the 11th to 13th centuries most likely private rather than military.
For car travellers, park in front of Coxley Memorial Hall on the A39.
Ring o’ Bells, Wookey
Burcott Inn, Wookey