Essex’s best walks: Four-mile circular at Hatfield Heath
- Credit: Archant
Discover the delightful countryside to the west of the county with this enjoyable walk around the village of Hatfield Heath | Words and photos: Laurie Page Public Rights of Way Team at Essex County Council
1) From the car park entrance, go right, past the parade of shops, the White Horse pub and the tea shop. Continue along the pavement past Holy Trinity Parish Church and at the fork go right towards Bishop's Stortford.
Pass The Thatchers pub and opposite the Mill turn right along Mill Lane. This bends right as a bridleway, then left along a concrete track.
At the next left bend, turn right along by the green railings and out along the edge of a large field. Then continue straight on between crop fields on a wide grass path. At the end of the field, cross a footbridge.
2) Go straight ahead across a crop field. At the oak tree continue alongside a ditch, going gently downhill. At the bottom, follow the way-marker past a pond. Turn left then immediately right following the footpath way-markers, along by a wooden fence. Turn right into the next field.
This bends left under the telegraph wires and continues up along a wide grass track along the field edge. At the footbridge in the corner of the field turn right.
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3) Proceed along the field edge and pass a distressed oak. At the end of the field bear slightly left to follow the route through the trees. As you emerge into the field, go left with a ditch to your left.
Soon after, at the footpath junction where the Three Forests Way meets the Harcamlow Way, turn right along a wide track between the crop fields. At the end of the field, proceed straight on between the trees. Where the path meets the concrete track by the black barn, turn right.
4) Follow the concrete access lane. Continue on for some distance between hedges. At Rowland Lodge the path bends right. Pass a pretty thatched Dutch cottage and go around the wooden gate. Keep to the concrete path which bends left.
At the road, cross over and turn right along the pavement. Follow this road, the B183, all the way to just before the junction with the main road, the Chelmsford Road A1060. Turn right into the service road and the car park is almost immediately on the right.
Distance: 3.7 miles or 6 km
Starting point: There is a free car park at Hatfield Heath Green (Sat Nav CM22 7EB).
How to get there: Hatfield Heath lies east of Bishop's Stortford on the A1060, at the junction with the B183. Opposite the heath is a service road to the shops and at the east end is a small car park.
Map: OS Explorer 183 Chelmsford and the Rodings.
Grid reference: 552446,215040
Refreshment: There are two pubs at the beginning of the walk in Hatfield Heath, The White Horse and The Thatchers. There is also a good tea room.
Places of interest nearby: At the Sawbridgeworth Maltings on the Hertfordshire/Essex border, the buildings now house an antiques centre which are always interesting to browse. There is also a tea shop. About 4 miles to the north west is the historic market town of Bishop's Stortford which has shopping, a good local museum and Waytemore Castle mound.