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The Saffron Trail: Chelmsford to Great Waltham

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  1. Description
  2. Directions
  3. Photos

Description & Map

Title: Saffron Trail: Chelmsford to Great Waltham
OS map extract 
[Click image to enlarge] Distance: 7 miles
Time taken: 3 hours
Start Point: Bell Meadow Park, Chelmsford
OS Explorer Map: 183
Grid Ref.: TL 709 066
Transport:
Rail: Liverpool St. line to Chelmsford Station
or Bus: First, 42 & 42A from Great Waltham to Chelmsford
Refreshment: The Walnut Tree, Broads Green 01245 360222
                      The Beehive, Great Waltham 01245 361724.

pdf   Download Chelmsford Map PDF
Link to full screen os map Chelmsford to Gt.Waltham Map (Ordnance Survey)
Link to full screen Google map Chelmsford to Gt.Waltham Map (Google)
Bing map Chelmsford to Gt.Waltham Map (Bing OS 1:25k)
gpx GPX track
Elevation View Elevation Profile
Display local weather (toggle) Chelmsford Weather

Route near Chignall St James

Walk Description

This walk starts off beautifully with a stroll of over a mile through the civic parks of Chelmsford, passing under the magnificent railway viaduct and through the water meadows alongside the River Can, before heading north through the Essex countryside to the pretty village of Great Waltham. Just as you leave Chelmsford there is a strange bit of routing through a housing estate: we have suggested a more attractive route continuing along the river and through the recreation grounds. The route throughout is fairly flat which makes for easy walking, but the views across the countryside aren't great - much of the visual pleasure comes from those magnificent Essex skies. There are very few features to the walk: no pretty cottages, ancient churches, village ponds or other rustic paraphernalia to add interest until you arrive in Great Waltham, which is quite charming.


Next section: Great Waltham to Great Dunmow

Directions

pdf Download Description & Directions PDF here

A. This section of the Saffron Trail starts at Bell Meadow, about a third of a mile from Chelmsford bus or rail station. To get there from the stations, walk east along Duke Street to Tindal Square then take the road ahead of you to the right of HSBC Bank. Walk along this road to the river: Bell Meadow is on your right.
B. Wander along the riverside path through Bell Meadow, heading west (1) for about 220 yards, then turn left at the T-junction to walk under the overpass and continue along the riverside path.
C. Carry on along the northern bank or the river until you come to a footpath 'roundabout'. Bear left to keep on the northern bank of the river, and walk under the railway viaduct (2). Continue north west alongside the river until you pass under another major road and then 280 yards later, over a footbridge.
D. The river is now on your right; keep walking until you come to another footpath junction by a signpost. Walk over the bridge in the direction of Melbourne, then immediately turn left (3). Continue through some trees with the river on your left, then go straight across the open meadow.
E. As you approach an ugly concrete bridge on your left (4), the Saffron Trail inexplicably turns right into a housing estate then left along a grubby enclosed path adjacent to Number 30, Beach's Drive. Then it crosses Roxwell Avenue to another nasty enclosed path leading to a stile, continues west through the field beyond, and exits via another stile to Lawford Lane.
F. For a much more pleasant route, turn left over the ugly bridge then right along the cycle path beside the river. Follow this round to the right, past the stile and turn left into the recreation grounds. At the far end, exit into Lawford Lane.
G. Turn right up Lawford Lane (5) heading north to the Roxwell Road. Turn left past the petrol station and walk along the roadside for 220 yards, then turn right to cross the road and walk along a footpath immediately to the right of a closed petrol station, beside a fence (6).
H. Head north for almost half a mile, walking next to the fence, then across the field and finally to the left of a hedge. Turn right over an easy-to-miss small plank bridge across a ditch immediately to your right, by a waymarker (7).
I. Walk ahead along the field edge, turning left to follow the hedgeline until you come to a wide grassy bridge on the right (8). Cross the bridge. Although the official footpath goes east across the field here, then hairpins back, most people walk up the left side of the field.
J. As you climb the field heading north go past another grassy bridge on your left, then you will see the end of a north/south hedge ahead of you and to the right. Bear right across the field in front of this hedge, towards Brickbarns Farm (9).
K. Walk up to the farm and make your way through the yard area on the left of the buildings, to the road. Turn right to walk east along Mashbury Road for 60 yards.
L. Cross the road just past the black barn and a few yards later, turn left to walk diagonally across a field cutting off the south east corner. Aim towards a waymarker in the hedge to the right. Walk north with this hedge on your left; after 200 yards cross through the hedge and continue north along the field edge.
M. At the north east corner of the field, bear slightly right along a cross field path towards the inverted corner of the hedge opposite. Turn right to walk along the field edge heading east, with the hedge to your left (10). Continue east over a couple of stiles to Chignal Road.
N. Turn right along the road for 30 yards then left along a wide farm track just past an oak tree, still following the Centenary Circle (11). Follow the farm track north east, then walk along the field edge with a ditch on your left.
O. At a white post waymarker, follow the field edge round to the right (12) then continue along to the facing hedge. Go through the hedge on a narrow plank bridge. Walk south east across the next field to a woody corner and waymarker (13) and bear left to walk north east with a hedge on your left.
P. Follow the field edge round to the left then cross a ditch (14) and turn right, walking south east alongside the ditch towards Stacey's Farm. At the easterly edge of the property turn left leaving the Centenary Circle, and walk north across the field towards the facing hedge (15).
Q. Cross through the hedge and turn right then left along another cross field path going northwards. For the last 150 yards of this path you will have a hedge on your right. At the facing hedge turn left to walk north west.
R. Go past the first footpath on the right, and instead turn right over a footbridge and into a copse (16). As you emerge from the trees turn right walking north along a track with a hedge on your right. Stay on the track for a third of a mile until you reach Woodhouse Lane (17), then continue north along the lane to Partridge Green Farm.
S. Turn left in the farmyard to walk past the farm buildings, past a metal six barred gate and follow the track sweeping behind the barn to the north (18).
T. Continue along this track for a third of a mile to Broad's Green (19). Walk between the houses to the roadside and cross the road to the triangular village green. The Walnut Tree is on your right, beside the green.
U. Walk north east along Hoe Lane, on the left side of the village green. Continue along the lane as it curves to the left. 160 yards later it turns sharp right. At this point, take the footpath up a bank on the right hand side (20) walking initially parallel with the lane then continuing north east with a hedge on your left.
V. After 450 yards you will come to a group of fir trees. Turn left in front of these (21) over a wooden bridge. Walk north up the field with the hedge on your left towards the houses.
W. Go through a gate onto a gravel drive and walk ahead to the road. Continue north along South Street to the junction with Chelmsford Road and turn left. Follow the road round to the right and downhill to the Beehive Pub, where this section of the Saffron Trail ends.
X. To get a bus back to Chelmsford, walk east along the footpath opposite the pub north of St Mary & St Lawrence Church, then continue past a fine Tudor mansion to the war memorial. The bus stop is a few yards further east.

pdf Download Description & Directions PDF here

 

Photos

Download PDF photo-set here pdf
1 Saffron Trail: Chelmsford to Great Waltham 2 Saffron Trail: Chelmsford to Great Waltham 3 Saffron Trail: Chelmsford to Great Waltham
4 Saffron Trail: Chelmsford to Great Waltham 5 Saffron Trail: Chelmsford to Great Waltham 6 Saffron Trail: Chelmsford to Great Waltham
7 Saffron Trail: Chelmsford to Great Waltham 8 Saffron Trail: Chelmsford to Great Waltham 9 Saffron Trail: Chelmsford to Great Waltham
10Saffron Trail: Chelmsford to Great Waltham 11Saffron Trail: Chelmsford to Great Waltham 12Saffron Trail: Chelmsford to Great Waltham
13Saffron Trail: Chelmsford to Great Waltham 14Saffron Trail: Chelmsford to Great Waltham 15Saffron Trail: Chelmsford to Great Waltham
16Saffron Trail: Chelmsford to Great Waltham 17Saffron Trail: Chelmsford to Great Waltham 18Saffron Trail: Chelmsford to Great Waltham
19Saffron Trail: Chelmsford to Great Waltham 20Saffron Trail: Chelmsford to Great Waltham 21Saffron Trail: Chelmsford to Great Waltham
Download PDF photo-set here pdf