Life after Geoff

Sunday, 12 January 2014- Nailsworth and Avening

Me, Paddy Garcia, Kate-Force-One, Burge and Magic Dave

WallExperimental walk from Burge’s Christmas book, Walks in the Cotswolds by Harry Drury. No map, no compass, fog. And a guidebook written in 1981. What could possibly go wrong?

The six-mile(ish) route took us from the main carpark in Nailsworth, through the village (more than once until we found the right road) to Avening. Circular route took us back to Nailsworth down a long bridleway and into the village along the marvellously-named Tabrams Pitch.

Brief stop for food supplies and a browse of overpriced garden furniture in Nailsworth before we hit the road. No pub stops (pasties, Nik Naks, leftover pizza, chocolate mini-eggs, apples, sausages and coffee by a gate for us), but both the Weighbridge Inn halfway (“2 in 1 pies”?*) and the Cross Inn in Avening looked promising. Enjoyed the Norman church at Avening, reputedly built in a fit of remorse by Matilda, wife of William the Conqueror after consigning a man who rejected her to Worcester Prison (and presumably his death). Happy times.

WalkThe going muddy and wet but not difficult, plenty of up and downs and good views, even on a misty day. Mr Drury, as interpreted by Paddy Garcia, was a reliable guide, except for a mistake after the Lone Tree which led to some barbed-wire hopping.

Much beautiful water one way and another. Clear streams, mill races, astonishing green lake at Longford Mill by the Weighbridge Inn.

Overall, a good walk, fears of getting lost largely unfounded, although possibly better in reverse, as it seemed a bit short on the way back (or perhaps a pub stop would solve that). Attending ‘Pig Face Day’ in Avening or the Oyster Bar in Nailsworth both good resolutions for the future.

*Local knowledge says this is the best pub in the world, and 2-in-1 pies are half pie, half cauliflower cheese. Definitely one to return to.

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