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CIRCULAR WALKS AROUND STRATTON
 
 
There are endless miles of footpaths, bridleways and permissive paths in and around Stratton, Grimstone, Wrackleford and Ash Hill; along with a few miles of quiet minor roads and the much busier main A37 Dorchester to Yeovil road. Wherever you may be walking, take great care. Especially when crossing the A37 - although the traffic may be subject to a 50mph speed restriction, vehicles reach you far more quickly than you might imagine - and the Dorchester to Yeovil railway line. Always 'Stop, Look, Listen' before crossing the railway track. Off road, never stray from the footpaths, bridleways or permissive paths. And always follow the country code.
 
 
  Walk 1   Walk 2   Walk 3   Walk 4  
 
Walk 4
 
JACKMANS CROSS - SYDLING VALLEY - FRAMPTON - SOUTHOVER - MUCKLEFORD
 
6¾ Miles Of Mainly Ups & Downs
 
This walk starts at Stratton Village Green and sets off to the west along Dorchester Road towards Yeovil. As soon as the A37 is reached look for the stile on the far (north) side of the main road. Take great care in crossing. Once over the stile take the path down to the railway line. Before crossing the railway 'Stop, Look, Listen' (photo 1). The thirty steps on the far side of the railway track take you up to another stile (photo 2). Beyond this, turn left and follow the unmade farm road to the farm buildings in the distance.
 
 
1 - Railway Crossing
 
2 - Stile at Top of Steps
 

At the farm buildings turn right and head uphill along the bridleway track leading to 'The Clumps'; two obvious circular tree plantations (photo 3). Just beyond them and alongside two covered reservoirs is a gate. Pass through the gate and bear half-right across an open field towards another gate which will come into view alongside the trees that are to the right. Look to the left to see the gorse bushes covering Grimstone Down (photo 4), an extensive Iron Age and Romano-British field system and settlement. At the far gate continue along the bridleway that now runs parallel with the tree line until reaching Jackman's Cross.
 
 
3 - 'The Clumps'
 
4 - Grimstone Down
 
 

5 - Jackman's Cross
 
Turn left at the Cross across open farmland (photo 6) with views of the Sydling Valley (photo 7), descending to reach a hedgerow. At the hedgerow bear right and shortly afterwards, still on the bridleway, left, descending to reach a small gate which leads into another open field (photo 8). Bear half-left along the bridleway, following the bottom of the valley to reach another gate at the far end of the field (photo 9). Beyond the gate follow the road past the buildings of Langford House to reach the public Grimstone to Sydling St Nicholas road.
 
 
6 - Open Farmland
 
7 - Sydling Valley
 
 
 
8 - Bridleway Gate
 
9 - Langford
 
 
Turn right along the metalled public road, over a bridge spanning Sydling Water, to a road junction. Turn left and pass Galhampton Farm to ascend to the A37, Long Ash Lane. Take great care in crossing the A37 and take the minor road (It is named Church Lane but unmarked at this point) leading downhill from Long Ash Lane Service Station and Shop into Frampton. Arriving at St Mary's Church, Frampton (photo 10), which is definitely worth a visit, turn right along the A356 Grimstone to Maiden Newton road. After about 200 yards with the Millennium Green (photo 11) now on the opposite side of the A356, take care in crossing to reach the minor road leading to the White Bridge over the River Frome (photo 12).
 
 
10 - St Mary's Church, Frampton
 
11 - Millennium Green
 
 

12 - White Bridge
 
Continue along the minor road towards Southover looking for the bridleway and National Cyclepath number 26 signs (photo 13) on the left leading through Frampton Park. Take this path which is part of the Frome Valley Cycle Trail. It is metalled at first, becoming unmade and then just before a cattle grid, of a concrete surface. Cross the cattle grid and follow the cycle path signs. They will take you to the right at the first junction and, after passing over a second cattle grid, to the left at Littlewood Farm (photo 14).
 
 
13 -
National Cycle Route 26
 
14 - Finger Post at Littlewood Farm
 
 
Continue along the farm road of Littlewood Farm until reaching the houses at Muckleford. Soon after passing River View House on the right, look for the signed public footpath on the left. Take this path and follow the route of the path over two stiles into the open water meadows. Crossing another stile, passing over a River Frome footbridge that is unguarded on the down-stream side (photo 16) and through a gate brings you to the A37 road at Grimstone.
 
 
15 - Footpath to Grimstone
 
16 - Footbridge at Grimstone
 

Turn right along the pavement for about 150 yards. Just before the one-time Toll House, take great care in crossing the A37 to a 'Public Bridleway' sign and a gate (photo 17). Go through the gate into the field and walk the short distance uphill to the brick built railway bridge (photo 18) over the line between Dorchester and Maiden Newton. Continue along what is now a track with fields either side until reaching farm buildings. You will recognise them; you were here earlier.
 
 
17 - North Side of A37
 
18 - Railway Bridge
 
 
At the farm buildings turn right along a short section of concreted farm road. Continue along the road, now unmade, for about a quarter of a mile. As the farm road bends to the left, cross the stile on the right. The steps on the far side of the stile lead down to the railway track. Before crossing the railway 'Stop, Look, Listen' (photo 1). Follow the path on the far side of the track, up to another stile and beyond that, the A37 road. Take great care in crossing the main road. Turn left and follow the A37 slip road into Stratton and return to the Village Green.
 
 
19 - Farm Road
 
20 - Steps Down To Railway Track
 


21 - Railway Crossing
 
If you've enjoyed this walk please let us know. If you took a few photos please share them with us. If you have a favourite local route that isn't shown on these pages please send us the details. Thank you. strattondorset@btinternet.com