Walk 8

Walks Around Harbury & Ladbroke

Walk 8 The Itchen Walk

OS Explorer 206.     GPX File

Walk Eight commences in Bishops Itchington (P). Alternatively, combining walks 7 and 8 can make a longer walk of 8ΒΌ miles.

Start from the Butchers Arms and walk down Fisher Road past the Memorial Hall, which has an old water pump at its side. Pass the old school and turn left into Chapel Street,

walk past the independent chapel (now a house) and through a wooden kissing gate into the Recreation Ground. Before you is the River Itchen valley.

Cross the stile in the far left corner and after 75 yards cross a wooden bridge on the left into the adjacent field. Walk slightly right to a gap taking you into the next field with the River Itchen on your right. At the far side of this field, cross the stile on to Hambridge Road and cross the Itchen via the bridge. In about 40 yards, go through an unmarked gap in the hedge on the left to a path that follows the riverbank. In winter, ducks frequent the river and bird life is abundant along its banks. As the river bears left, our route bears right uphill towards the railway line. At the fence, turn right and in 75 yards cross the stile on the left and go over the railway tracks to the stile on the far side. BEWARE OF TRAINS - this is a main line and they travel at high speed.

Cross the corner of the field to a stile in the hedge. Cross over this stile, across a ditch and over the next stile, straight across the field to a marker post and straight on through a bridle gate with a spinney on your right. At the end of the spinney, turn right across a stile and ditch and follow the hedge on your left. 

Cross one stile into the next field and go through the gap in the corner of the next field. At this point, the spire of Ladbroke Church comes into view. Cross the field with Old Barn Farm away on your left to a stile midway along the next hedge. Pass through the next field towards the left hand corner to a gap. These fields have evidence of ancient cultivation. Hares can be seen here on occasions.

Cross over the stile and go left to the stile by the road near the cottage. Why do buttercups seem only to grow on the ridges and not in the furrows?

If you wish to visit Ladbroke with its church and Bell Inn, take the road to the right. The village is very quiet since the bypass was opened in 1985.

To continue this walk, turn left from the stile and follow the road to Deppers Bridge where a left turn over the River Itchen will reveal a stile on the left. Cross the stile and go over the field at the bottom of which the river meanders on its course to its destination with the River Leam at Marton. A stile leads from the field to a green lane at the end of which is the railway line.

Follow the track under the railway and on your right is what used to be the Greaves Cement Works and quarry, the production of cement ceased here in 1970. Keep on the track into Bishops Itchington where, if refreshments are needed, there is a pub - the Butchers Arms.

If returning on foot to Harbury, pass through the village up Fisher Road, left past the Church and up Plough Lane to join walk 7 where it crosses the Harbury road.