British Walking Federation


CONTACT: Nick and Jacqui Wakelam, 4 Lamley gardens, Graham Street, Penrith, CA11 9LR.
Tel: 01768 840978    Email :

ENTRY FEE: £1.00 per walker (cheques made payable to Thames Valley Walking Club)
AWARD: Currently no award.
ENTRY SYSTEM: Postal only.
START VENUE: Free car park Guildenford (off the High Street), Burford
(OS Explorer 45 SP 253122, OX18 4SE)
DIRECTIONS TO START: Burford is situated 20 miles west of Oxford at the crossing of the A40 with the A361. The Guildenford car park is signposted and can be reached off Church Lane which is the last turning on the right before the bridge if coming from the south and the first turning to the left if coming from the north.
CAR PARKING: At start venue or there is some free roadside parking on the High Street some of which have a two hour time restriction.
PUBLIC TRANSPORT: Buses from Gloucester and Cheltenham (853 Swanbrook) run regularly. The nearest railway station is at Charlbury (8 miles) from Burford.
TERRAIN: Footpaths, tracks and a few minor roads. Can be muddy after wet weather along some sections. Includes some gentle hills. The walk is not suitable for pushchairs or wheelchairs as there are a number of stiles and kissing gates
REFRESHMENTS: Cafes, pubs and toilets available at start/finish at Burford during normal opening hours. There is also a pub at Swinbrook (The Swan), which can be expensive, requiring a small diversion from the route. There is also a general stores, post office, and pharmacy in Burford.
ROUTE SUMMARY: A mainly rural walk along footpaths, bridleways green roads and riverbank paths from the Cotswold town of Burford, passing through a number of picturesque Cotswold villages and hamlets nearby. Plenty of cafes, pubs, shops and toilets in Burford.

ROUTE DESCRIPTION (Route updated 29 December 2013 )

BL – Bear Left     BR – Bear Right      FP – Footpath      KG – Kissing Gate      LHS – Left Hand Side
RHS – Right Hand Side      SO – Straight On      TJ – T junction      TL – Turn Left      TR – Turn Right

Exit the car park over the bridge and BR onto Church Lane. Follow round to the right and BL at grass triangle and continue SO, passing the Grammar School (BGS) on RHS. At TJ, TR and continue over bridge to mini-roundabout. WITH GREAT CARE cross road and follow FP up stone steps to cross stone stile. SO on grassy path, uphill to cross stone & wooden stiles, then wooden stile and a stone stile both on RHS of barn, TR onto lane.

Q1 : What is the name of the converted barn on the right?

Continue to end of lane. At TJ, TL along grass verge, cross Garnes Lane then TL into Church Lane and continue through church gate (please keep dogs on lead throughout the church grounds) and BL on grass path to LHS of church. Continue on path bear half right through graveyard to cross stone stile in wall and BR across field on path. Cross a wooden stile and continue on FP, keeping lone tree on right, over stone stile to road (Upper End). TR on road, BL at fork to main road. Cross road WITH CARE, TL along road and after approx 50m TR onto FP, down steps through wooden KG, cross plank bridge and up steps. BR following path for approx 250m to a yellow FP marker on a wooden post, BL across field following FP to reach far corner of field. Follow yellow FP sign through hedgerow to cross next smaller field, and through another hedge to cross third field, under cables towards woods.

Enter woodland and TR onto wide gravel track. Exit woodland and SO ignoring all turnings to pass row of cottages and then Paynes Farm buildings on right,

Q2 : Who are the makers of the barn to the right behind the stone barn, as displayed on the corrugated iron?

and then left. As road bends to left, TR on wide track SP WidfoRoad up slope to reach green metal gates. Go through smaller gate on LHS and BL, keeping wall/barbed wire fence, then hedgerow, on LHS to barbed wire fence at woods. TL following path keeping barbed wire fence on RHS, crossing wooden stile and follow yellow footpath arrow down slope (sometimes boggy) across plank bridge over small stream to reach stile and road. TR and follow road to Swinbrook passing Wychwood Lodge on LHS. Just after double bend road sign on left,

A diversion may be taken at this point to the Swan Inn for toilets and drinks (sadly on the pricey side) by continuing on this road where it can be found on the RHS.

TR and go through wooden gate into churchyard and follow path passing the War Memorial on your RHS . At path junction, TR to follow path, with the church on RHS. Just beyond the church are the graves of four of the Mitford sisters.

Q3 : Behind Nancy Mitford's grave lies Sarah Balfour. When did her husband die?

SO and BL through white gate. TR at bend following enclosed path SO through gate. Follow faint path in same direction across field and over double stile by wooden gate and continue SO in next field. Continue in same direction through gap in the wall, following path with house on left to join gravel track over stone stile by cattle grid, passing St Oswald’s church on your right and then a lake on your left and over cattle grid. TL on road, passing old Widford Mill on LHS. At TJ TR and after approx 200m BR, SP footpath on path and continue SO, keeping river on right, cross wooden stile and plank bridge. At fork in grassy paths, BL on wider path slightly away from river crossing two wooden stiles and a wooden plank bridge to reach stile and road. TR along road, past speed restriction signs. At the junction with Guildenford and Pytt’s Lane TL into Pytt’s Lane and continue uphill as road becomes Barns Lane. TR on enclosed path at railings opposite number 4 Barns Lane and continue to end.

Q4: What are the numbers, above and below, the letters AV on the hydrant part of the way along this path on the right ?

TR on High Street and continue downhill crossing White Horse Mews, Swan Lane, Witney Street and TR into Church Lane and retrace steps to car park.

When you have completed this trail please use the Permanent Trail Entry Form

The organisers are not liable for accidents, thefts and/or damage to property. Every effort will be made by the organisers to make this a safe, enjoyable and memorable event.

This trail is registered until 31 December 2019