Swaffham Prior Round
All distances and directions are approximate and are for a rough guidance only
From the Anchor, cross the Anchor Lane bridge and turn left along the riverside for 550m to the Hythe Lane Bridge. Continue ahead along The Weirs road for 1.6km to the junction with Reach Road. To the left of the junction is a plaque marking the site of the old sheep dip in the road side stream. The plaque is one of several dotted around the village, marking various historic sites. Turn left along the road for 300m to a signed path on the right. Now follow the path along the green track and then along a field’s edge for 1km to the Devils Dyke. On reaching the Dyke take the steps up to the banks top and turn left along the Dyke for 100m to the old railway cutting. The path now descends through the bushes to the old railway line. Follow the old railway bed to the right for 250m to a path going up the left side of the railway cutting. The path is now along the left of a hedge towards the bushes along the side of the old railway bridge. Follow the path to the left through the trees to join Reach Road (Swaffham Prior). Turn left along the road and follow the road into Swaffham Prior for 1.1km to Station Road. (The Red Lion public house is about 100m past the Station Road turning). Turn right along Station Road and follow the road out into the fen for 1.9km to Black Droveway on the right (TL55256520). Take the green track along the drove for 1.1km to the Swan Lake grain stores on the outskirts of Reach.
At this point you have three options for your return to Burwell.
Option 1. Cross the drain on your right and follow the path along Barston Drove to the right to return to the old railway bridge on the outskirts of Swaffham Prior. The drove joins the Reach road about 100m from the bridge. From the bridge retrace your steps along the old railway to the Devils Dyke and then along the green track to return to Reach Road, Burwell. Turn left along the road for 300m to the Weirs road. Follow the Weirs road for 1.6km to Hythe Lane and then continue ahead for 550m to return to Anchor Lane and the starting point.
Option 2. Follow the road ahead for 700m to enter Reach. From the village centre (Dykes End public house on left) take the road along the left of the village green. Follow Burwell Road for 1.3km to the junction with The Weirs road. Now follow the Weirs road as described in option 1 for your return.
Option 3. Cross the road and join the track along the left of the river. Follow the track for 800m to a FOOTBRIDGE over the river. Once across the bridge, you can follow the road to the right to link up with the option 2 route by the village green to return to Burwell. Or, cross the small green ahead to a path along the side of a brick wall on the right of the green. At the far corner of the wall turn left along a path to an iron kissing gate. From the gate continue ahead along the side of the Reach Lode for 550m to the ruins of Hurdle Hall farm, now just a pile of rubble. Turn right along the concrete drove (Hurdle Hall Drove) for 750m to Hightown Drove. Turning right again follow the drove for 1.25km to The Weirs road. Now turn left along the road for 1.25km to Hythe Lane. Continue ahead along the riverside for 550m to the Anchor Lane bridge and return to the starting point at the Anchor.