This Wolds walk at Nafferton has interest on every corner

Great British Life: Riverhead Mill, Nafferton. Riverhead Mill, Nafferton. (Image: Paul Kirkwood)

1. Walk south along the road for 150m. Turn left down Chapel Lane heading towards a house and former mill built over a stream. At the entrance to the drive of the property bear left to walk right beside the stream and cross two footbridges. Proceed north beside Nafferton Beck. At a road turn right to cross the beck then immediately left to rejoin it. At the next road turn left then immediately right to cross a railway line. Pass through a metal gate in the corner of a field and head diagonally left towards houses.

2. Pass through a metal kissing gate and maintain the same direction up Priestgate. In front of the church turn left up Westgate which leads past a school and farm out of the village. Where the road bears right keep ahead, walking to the left side of a fenced builders yard. At a ditch bear left then right over a footbridge. The path becomes the wooded Meadow Lane. Ignore a fingerpost for Cul-de-Sac Close and keep ahead. Cross the railway and maintain the same direction down Meadow Road.

Great British Life: Whinhill Lock, Driffield. Whinhill Lock, Driffield. (Image: Paul Kirkwood)

3. At t-junction turn left onto B1249 then first left down Anderson St which becomes River Head. (For Driffield town centre continue then turn right at the t-junction beside the station). Cross the canal and turn left down Riverside, behind old mill buildings now apartments. After a lock the road becomes a footpath running along the south bank of the canal. At Whinhill Lock gates at a trout farm cross the canal via a bridge. Turn right onto the road for 20m then bear right to follow a signed permissive path (not marked on OS map) tightly between the road and canal back to Wansford.


Water wold

This triangular walk has interest on every corner and is characterised by crystal clear waters, the result of chalk geology. West Beck at the heart of the region, also known as the upper reaches of the River Hull, is the most northerly chalk stream in the UK.

Great British Life: Nafferton Mere with Coronation Island. Nafferton Mere with Coronation Island. (Image: Paul Kirkwood)

The waters are showcased at my favourite spot on the route, Nafferton Mere, with its sweet little Coronation Island. The mere was constructed as a mill pond to feed a corn mill at its southern end. The island, now used by ducks, festooned with lights and bearing two trees, was added in the early 20th century to commemorate the crowning of Edward VII. Nearly all the shoreline is occupied by gardens of desirable residences but you can get a fine elevated view over the mere from Priestgate and reach the waterside at a slipway opposite St Mary's Church overlooked by Jubilee Gardens.

Great British Life: Waterside crane at Driffield. Waterside crane at Driffield. (Image: Paul Kirkwood)

Driffield is known as the capital of the Yorkshire Wolds. It's a perfect spot for refreshment and also features Driffield Canal's Riverhead, the terminal for goods transported by canal. Repainted signs on the former mill and warehouses (some now apartments) as well as old cranes evoke the area's 18th and 19th century heyday as an inland port. The canal once accommodated large vessels known as keels which were capable of taking loads of up to 65 tons.

Great British Life: The marble screen at St Mary's Church, WansfordThe marble screen at St Mary's Church, Wansford (Image: Paul Kirkwood)

If you have spare time at the end of the walk visit the Snakeholme Pastures nature reserve where birds thrive in the glassy water of the wetlands. The entrance is on the left just over Wansford Bridge. Also worth a look is St Mary's Church in Wansford, one of several Victorian Gothic revival churches in the region built by Sir Tatton Sykes. The five-arched marble screen is a striking feature. Next door is the old vicarage and school, both also in Sykes vernacular.

Eat here

Great British Life: Kinship, Driffield. Kinship, Driffield. (Image: Paul Kirkwood)

Kinship, Middle St, Driffield. The town's first specialist coffee shop. Serves quality coffee from specialist roasters, tea from expert blenders plus sweet and savoury eats including vegan options. Chic and characterful.

Great British Life: Frankie's Cafe, DriffieldFrankie's Cafe, Driffield (Image: Paul Kirkwood)

Frankie's Cafe, Riverhead, Driffield. Small, traditional cafe, handily situated right on the route. Specialises in breakfasts. Jacket potatoes, hot and cold sandwiches and burgers also available. Open 7am to 1.3opm, Wed to Sun.

Driffield has a wide choice of other cafes, pubs and bakers plus a fish and chip shop.

Note: The Trout Inn in Wansford was due to re-open and serve food in March.


Start/finish: Wansford, YO25 8NU, grid ref TA 062 562

Time/distance: 3-4 hours. 11km.

Accessibility: Paths muddy after rain.

Maps: OS Explorer 295 Bridlington, Driffield & Hornsea. OS Landranger 107 Kingston upon Hull.

Parking: Space for several cars beside Wansford Lock. Alternatively, start at the free Eastgate car park in Driffield.

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