Little Baddow and Paper Mill Lock walk
- Credit: Archant
Few things beat messing about by the river on a bright, spring day and this delightful walk follows the River Chelmer through the parish of Little Baddow
1. From the tea room, take the footpath going east along the river bank of the River Chelmer, past the lock and the weir. Go through the gate and up to the next gate by the road. Cross the road and take the footpath opposite. Follow the banks of the river. Continue all the way for over a mile enjoying the wildlife, such as birds, fish, and dragonflies, that adorn the scene. You finally will reach a little white footbridge where you cross the river.
2. Take the path which is a bridleway away from the river. You will emerge at a little lane. Continue straight on uphill towards the house which is Cardfields Farm. Pass the farm and at the next road junction bear left and proceed along the long straight lane. Pass a footpath on the right. Soon after the houses, take the footpath on the left over a little footbridge.
3. Follow the field boundary then continue between the crop fields. Cross another planked footbridge and bear right going diagonally across the crop field. At the end of this field, cross a footbridge into the next field. At Botters Farm go to the right of the black gate and follow a narrow, grassy path leading to a stile by a wide track.
4. Turn left down the track. Soon after, at a track junction, go right following the yellow arrows around a breeze block building and swinging left across the middle of a crop field. At the end, bear right along the field boundary. At the end you will come to a hard surface by a pretty cottage. Go straight on. When you reach the junction at the road, turn left along the road to the bridge, crossing the river. Once on the other side, take the footpath on the right where you started and re-trace your steps back along the river bank to the tea room and car park.
Distance: 3 miles.
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Starting point: Paper Mill Lock car park, Little Baddow.
How to get there: From the A414 at Danbury, take the road called The Ridge. This leads into Northill and just before you reach the River Chelmer there is a car park on the left of the Tea Room at Paper Mill Lock.
Map: OS Explorer 183 Chelmsford & The Rodings
Refreshments: The popular Tea Room at Paper Mill Lock is at the start of the walk and there are two pubs along the road to the lock – The General’s Arms in The Ridge and The Rodney in Northill.
Tourist Information Centre: Maldon Tourist Information Centre, Wenlock Way, Maldon CM9 5AD. Call 01621 856503
Places of interest nearby: To the east is the historic town of Maldon, overlooking the River Blackwater estuary. Promenade Park is by the river, from where boat trips are available up and down the Blackwater on the magnificent old Thames barges which are moored there. There is also the Moot Hall in the High Street, a very early brick building, and nearby is the Thomas Plume 18th century library. Beeleigh Abbey Gardens are now open to the public on selected days too.
Ordnance Survey maps are available from all good booksellers and outdoor stores or visit the online shop www.ordnancesurvey.co.uk/al