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Harleston South Circular

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Attachment(s) Date walked: 23/07/2022
Distance: 9.8km
Ascent: 57m
Views: 17

Bungay South Circular - castles, corn and cattle

Date walked: 07/07/2022

Time taken: 4 hours

Distance: 14km

Ascent: 100m

This walk is based on a mixture of Angles way and Bigod way which arcs around the southern side of Bungay and can be combined with one or two shorter circular walks which run around the prominent loop in the river Waveney to the North of the town. The castle built by Roger Bigod on the neck of the river loop is fairly well know, but there is a lesser known castle at Mettingham, 2 miles ESE of the town center.

Thursday was another stunning day in East Anglia, warn and breezy with broken cloud, clearing as the day went on. The barley was a beautiful golden colour, the greens of the countryside so rich and the water in the rivers clear and sparkly. started at 11;00 and finished about 4, with plenty of stops.


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The best place to start the walk is at the car park (at TM332901) adjacent to the golf club just off the junction of the A143 and A144 opposite the Clays printing works; this sits in Outney common. From the car park head NE back along the access road, with the fishing pond on the left. Either through, or bypass the barred gate on the left and proceed down the stony track. Turn off right after 100m at the Outney Common information board and then through the gate onto open pastureland. There are regularly cattle in these fields, be wary if they have young and watch your step. Head through gates and slightly to your right to pick up the bridge over the river at TM3349078; you can veer left to access the circular walk on the inside of the river loop, which would bring you back to the golf club. There are two narrow footbridges, after about 50m the footpath diverges; left would take your around the outside of the river loop, commonly called the Bath Hills route. We are going right, around a large fenced of pond and onto an access road, which is signed Angles Way.
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Entrance to golf club car park off A143 and start of walk at gate

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Outney Common information board and start of path

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Outney common looking towards footbridge and bath Hills

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Footbridge built in 1922

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Path around fishing lake

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Ditchingham Dam road looking from A143 roundabout


This leads to a roundabout (the A143/B1332 junction); head straight across (South) and onto a road called Ditchingham Dam, just after the sports ground on the left go through the gate and head along the faint path alongside the sports pitches. Again the meadows often have cattle, I was followed by a small heard until the closed gate, the path then veers towards the right and a right turn at a bank of trees, go along the hedgerow and turn left into another field then through an open gate across a small field and the gate lets you onto Wainford road. This busy is fairly busy but part of the way along in the river bridge and the malthouses, including the monstrosity of the white concrete silo which can be seen for miles around. At Wainford sluice (2 miles from start) there is a nice picnic arear amongst the various water channels and a colony of swans.
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The start of footpath which runs alongside the sports field

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Exit field pursued by friendly cattle

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Swans at Wainford Sluice

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Looking back to Wainford mills, the white building can be seen for miles, even over at Earsham



Carrying on down Wainford road brings you out at the junction with the B1062 towards Mettingham; take a left up the hill and leave the road at TM 360894 through a hedge and along Angles Way. This goes uphill into open country, crosses over a byway at a dogleg and continues SE. You are now in open country, given over mainly to cereals. Over to the East is the round tower of Mettingham church. The path dips down to another byway at TM 360894; do not go straight on but go right and pick up the bridleway along the beautiful mature hedgerow. This curves slightly to the South and brings you out on a byway that leads you West (right) to Mettingham castle (TM 360 888 - 3.4 miles) that sits in a block of large trees. The ‘castle’ was a large fortified manor house which was bequeathed to a religious college in the Middle Ages. There is no access to the castle, but it is close to the road which you can follow around to its West side by bearing left and left again along Annis Hill. Turn right at the first house.
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Junction of B 1062, the Angles way path turns of the road somewhere between the two cars in the picture

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Looking back to Wainford from start of the prarie

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Looking East along Welland valley

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Tricky junction at TM 360894, do not go straight on (as I did) but go right and then left to pick up bridle way.

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Mettingham church over barley fields, churches with round towers are an East Anglian specialty, nearly 90% of England's round towers are in Norfolk and Suffolk.

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Beautiful wooded bridleway

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The byway towards Mettingham castle

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Mettingham Castle gatehouse, built in the 1340's

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The start of the Scotchman's Lane path down the side of Castle cottages, easy to miss.


The route takes you down Scotchman’s Lane, starting down the side of the first cottage on the right, and into a sunken lane covered by trees which loses height and brings you out at a path running along the ‘valley’ bottom. Turn left and either go along the bridleway in the trees or along the path on the West side. The path follows the tree line bearing to the right and comes out at the A144 (4.6 miles from start), the Roman Stone Street linking Bungay to Dunwich. Go across the road, into the field, along the short ditch and then bear right following the hedge row for about a kilometer, ignore a footpath sign pointing left and turn right further on, over a wooden bridge at TM347871. The path goes straight up the hill and onto the end of another wooded trackway, with a pond on the right, the path follows the hedgerow and go over a stile, on the left, into a field which has a pond at it’s far end; the gate leads onto the access road for Manor farm. Turn left and at the end of the road go straight across St Margaret’s road (5.8 miles from start) onto the access road leading to Uplandhall farm; pass through the farmstead ( typical of the East Anglian ‘cereal barrons’ in the apparent lack of working equipment and workers) and as the road bears left, go through the hedgerow where it’s signed Angles way.

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Scotchman's Lane path, overgrown in places but passable

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The fields of barley seem to go on forever

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The exit from Scotchman's Lane

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Bridleway goes through woods on left but part skirts the right side up to the road A144 crossing

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wooden bridge at TM347871, the path heads straight uphill to the woods

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Manor Farmhouse and pond, not a bad gaff (as we don't say in the Norfolk dialect)!

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Exit drive from Manor farm and entrance to Uplandhall Farm other side of road


This leads onto a large open area which was clearly a WW2 airfield. Go past the scrap cars and follow the path as it zig zags along the hedge row, passing on the left a surprisingly deep gulley called The Dell. This brings you out at crest above the very large Lowlands farm, with distant views over Bungay and the Waveney Valley all the way to Wainford Mills and beyond.
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One careful owner - some fool has left the key in the ignition

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Drive beyond Uplandhall Farm, the footpath starts in the corner of the wood

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Distant view of Earsham church spire

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The footpath zig-zags along edge of field to come out at Lowland farm with views towards Earsham church, aim for the spire across the meadows and you will get to the footbridge

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looking West along Welland valley

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Young family



At this point you leave the rolling cereal fields of the East Anglian prairie behind and go back to the river meadows with multiple steams and herds of cattle. The path drops to the B1062, Flixton road (7.2 miles from start), and goes across down a lane and through a series of gates across the pastures aiming for the river bridge near the church spire. This brings you to the Earsham mill pond, follow the path alongside the run off channel and come out at Marston Moor. At this point you can go to Grumpys café (at TM327887) in the yard of the mill, by turning left and left again, it has outdoor seating along the side of the mill race and is open 8;00 till 4;00. If you follow the Angles Way path Northwest, through Earsham you can pick up the path around the outside of the river loop. To head back to Bungay, turn right over the small bridge (7.6 miles from start) and walk East along a wooded lane, past the scout hut, until you cross a wooden bridge made from a single large log. Turn left along the drainage channel, which is a pleasant walk through the meadows until you reach the Roaring Arch road bridge. Turning right takes you into Bungay, with its many cafes and pubs.

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The footbridge

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The footbridge, looking back towards Lowlands Farm, the footpath ascends the hill at the right hand side of the big shed

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The Mill at Earsham, the cafe is on right and can only be accessed from Marston Moor road

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The footpath and bridge over the mill race

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The bridge at Marston Moor looking away from Earsham

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The Welland at Earsham road, castle walls run down to the river

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Big Bad Barron Bigods castle at Bungay

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Bungay market cross


Once over the old bridge you can turn left into Outney road which leads you back to the golf club, past the alms houses, along the back of the print works and across a footbridge over the A143 and back to the car park. By keeping left you can follow the route around the inside of the river route.

The distance for the basic walk, car park to car park is 8.9 Miles (14.3Km)
The inner loop adds 2.7miles and the outer loop adds 3.7miles.

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Attachment(s) Date walked: 03/08/2021
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Ascent: 374m
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Verylatestarter


Location: East Anglia (South Norfolk)
Occupation: project manager (building) - retired
Interests: tennis, walking DIY, chess
Activity: Mountain Walker
Pub: The Griffin Hotel
Mountain: Beinn Alligin
Place: Torridon
Gear: Pork Pie
Member: LDWA
Ideal day out: Ridge walk with scrambling

Munros: 26
Tops: 17
Corbetts: 4
Grahams: 2
Islands: 4



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Statistics

2022

Trips: 2
Distance: 23.8 km
Ascent: 157m

2021

Trips: 14
Distance: 147.9 km
Ascent: 13066m
Munros: 9
Corbetts: 3
Hewitts: 1

2020

Trips: 6
Distance: 80.5 km
Ascent: 8168m
Munros: 12

2019

Trips: 4
Distance: 49 km
Ascent: 3836m
Munros: 6
Grahams: 1

2018

Trips: 3
Distance: 35.8 km
Ascent: 3268m
Munros: 3
Corbetts: 1
Grahams: 1

2016

Trips: 1
Distance: 20 km

2015

Trips: 2
Distance: 27 km

1995

Trips: 1
Distance: 11 km
Ascent: 874m
Corbetts: 1


Joined: Oct 14, 2020
Last visited: Aug 15, 2022
Total posts: 100 | Search posts