Your browser version is outdated. We recommend that you update your browser to the latest version.
 
 
  Rufford Country Park, Nottinghamshire. Sunday,3rd March,2024.

'A' Walk - Leader-Martin Vincent. Dist-11 miles. Asc-600'. Mod. Anticlockwise.

 The start of our walk, is Rufford Abbey Country Park which is the estate and grounds of a former 12 century Cistercian Monastery and country house.

We walk east through the small village of Rufford and then head  southeast  towards Eakring which was a top secret place in WW2 when 42 American oil- drilling roughnecks started drilling for oil. Some 106 wells were drilled, producing  3,000 barrels per day, making a massive contribution to the war effort. Total wartime production was 1.2 million barrels and the field continued production up to 1965, helping the country’s post-war recovery.

We now turn north eastwards  through the village of Ompton, where about half a mile to the west, is an unusual water pumping station, built between 1965–68,  as a tiled pyramid on a glazed plinth. Very unusual!

We then enter Wellow Park, a forest of Wych Elm, a timber which is easier to work for carpentry than common elm, and then on to Wellow for our much deserved lunch stop. Wellow has a village green and a maypole which is still in use, 2 pubs and the 12th century parish church of St Swithin. 

On our final return leg we pass Rufford Mill and the ford, which recently became somewhat of a tourist attraction, until the council closed the road .

'Spoil Sports' !

 

 

'B'  Walk - Leaders-Elaine & Jean. Dist-8.4 miles. Asc-400'. Mod. Clockwise

 Not too far to travel today for yet another varied, pleasant walk, this time to the West of Rufford Park in parts of Sherwood Forrest.                                                   

 

After leaving the coach in the Abbey car park we walk briefly through the grounds via May Lodge Drive and Manor Farm where we will cross the busy A614 and head westwards into open countryside. We follow a good bridleway which skirts the edge of Cremorne Wood and the adjacent holiday Park for about  1.5 miles, before taking a sharp right turn, northwest, into Sherwood Forrest.Continuing through Culloden Plantation we soon meet the B6030 which we briefly follow into the village of Kings Clipstone where we may pause for drinks at the 'Dog & Duck' depending on our arrival time.

 The village was once a railway junction and although the railway is no longer used, we have to pass under or over the old track on three occasions as we make our way northwards over the River Maun into New Lodge Plantation and on to meet the A6075. Having crossed the road we enter yet another part of Sherwood Forrest to follow a short track into the woodland to the West of Edwinstowe. Unfortunately, we have to re-cross the same road a little later as we take a right turn near to Villa Real Farm, down to the footbridge over the River Maun.

  We now follow one of the many paths referred to as 'Robin Hoods Way', passing Holly Farm en route to our next landmark which is the area of woodland at Broadoak Brake. This  leads directly to the earlier part of our route near to Manor Farm from where we retrace our steps back into Rufford Park. Refreshments await at the Abbey Café.

 A lovely easy walk with very little ascent and a modest 8.4 miles long. Plenty of woodland and open countryside to enjoy on this one, all along good footpaths and tracks.

'C' Walk - Leader- Jane Taylor. Dist-5.4 miles. Ascent- 260'. Mod. Anticlockwise. 

 This will be our second visit to Rufford Country Park within the space of a few weeks, having walked in the area prior to our Christmas lunch at Retford. There is no shortage of good walks around Rufford where the flat open countryside and ample areas of attractive woodland have much to offer.

After a leisurely start at the popular café close to the Abbey, we retrace our steps back to the A614 where we make a left turn and walk briefly along the road as far as May LodgeDrive. We turn left into this beautifully kept estate which will lead directly to Robin Hoods Way, which heads south eastwards through the Golf Course. Note the small dyke to the right which runs parallel to the track we follow.

As we approach the farm buildings at North Laithes we make a sharp turn north eastwards to walk along field edges and across fields to meet the disused railway line. We follow this track for about 1 kilometer before turning south west to forgo the attractions of nearby Wellow to the east. Perhaps on another occasion! 

 

We walk through Wellow Lodge Plantation and pass Rufford Hills Farm to our right ­- negotiating  a couple of stiles along the way - but we soon arrive at Rufford Mill and the regularly flooded ford! No problems for walkers, however, since the footway is well clear of the water.

The mill is probably a good location for our lunch break so long as we can avoid the company of too many gulls!

After lunch we follow the eastern path alongside the larger of the two lakes before crossing the footbridge into the

woodland referred to as 'The Wilderness'. This may sound a bit 'scary' but fear not, it isn't, and the paths are all good and lead back to the familiar, reassuring sights of the Abbey, and the Tea Room.

An easy walk at just 5.4 miles or so in length with very little ascent. Just a couple of stiles to cope with, otherwise hazard free on the day of the recce. Nevertheless, a walking pole is recommended.

A very pleasant walk.

 

                                               +++++++++++++++++++++++++++++