5th February 2009.
The village from the Fosse Way
The waymarker pointing out the path alongside the M6
Johnson's Bridge on the canal
A magnificent alder on the bank of Smite Brook
A Village Stroll
This short walk will take you along a path which had been on the wrong line for many years. This has now been remedied and new gates and waymarkers have been put in. Further along, the path had become obstructed through lack of use. This is what can happen if paths are not walked. A good excuse to use it now that it is open again is to take a walk to Malt Kiln Farm Shop for refreshments or to pick some fruit in season!
Dogs need to be on the lead as there is livestock in most of the fields that you have to cross.
The Grimes Bridge Walk
This walk will take you along the newly cleared path next to the M6. Distance: about 4 miles. Map: OS Pathfinder Series, Lutterworth: Sheet SP 48/58, 1:25000.
This walk can be rough and very muddy in places; walking boots are recommended. It is worth taking a pair of binoculars so you can appreciate the views and wildlife, and some money in case you want to buy refreshments at Rose Narrowboats!
Starting from the village centre, go up New Road (next to the Rugby bus stop), passing Farriers Court on your left. There used to be farm outbuildings here, relics of when the Old Forge was the home of a working blacksmith with a small farm.
Cross the cattle grid and go through the new kissing gate; you will see a waymark post in the middle of the field. Cross the field towards it, passing with it on your left and cross the stile on the far side of the field (soon to be replaced by a kissing gate). The undulations in this field were caused by clay or gravel extraction in the 19th century.
Continue up the path at the field edge with the hedge on your right to the Fosse Way, which you cross and take the well-surfaced track downhill again with the hedge on your right. There are some very old ash trees along this path, and you may see little owls which have nested there for some years. At the bottom of the hill you cross a small brook and then make your way up hill towards the derelict barn on the skyline.
As you approach the barn you will see another waymark post which directs you diagonally across the field. Make your way downhill towards the next waymarker which you can see in the distance.
At this waymarker, cross the brook by the new bridge. The brook is the boundary for Stretton parish and you are now venturing into the parish of Coombe Fields. Continue uphill, alongside the M6. This path was properly cleared in January 2008 for the first time in many years. It is in fact a bridle path which accounts for its generous width.
With the motorway traffic continuously speeding by on your right, you can be especially appreciative of your environment, thankful that you are not part of this frantic rush. The countryside begins to spread out on your left, and you can see Coombe Fields Farm in the distance, which you will soon reach.
This bridle path ends at a metal gate. You have a choice here: if you have a map you can turn right, crossing the motorway, and do a much longer walk that takes in Mobbs Wood Farm and a longer stretch of the canal. However, for the Grimes Bridge Walk you turn left after closing the gate behind you and walk along the field edge path with the hedge on your left. You now have some excellent views as this is one of the highest points in our area. Across the fields to your left is the Fosse Way with Stretton in the distance to the north and Brinklow to the south. In the opposite direction, on a clear day especially, you have an excellent view of the tower blocks, churches and other buildings of north Coventry.
When you reach a metal 5-bar gate, go through it and turn right along the grassy track which borders the pastureland of Coombe Fields Farm. The cattle in these fields can be very inquisitive, coming right up to the barbed wire to investigate you and sometimes following you along. It is best to put dogs on the lead if there are cattle in this, or any of the next two fields.
Another metal, 5 bar gate brings you nearer to the farm; go through this and the next gate, taking great care here as there may be cattle grazing. Although inquisitive they are harmless and will ignore you if you quietly follow the path, with any dogs on a short lead.
Exit the field through the next gate at the bottom of the slope which brings you out on to a metalled lane, leading to the farm on the left. Keep straight and cross the railway bridge, descending towards the canal which you cross by Grimes Bridge. The lane ahead leads down to Smeaton Lane but you need to take the steps down to the canal towpath, going back under the bridge and following the towpath to Rose Narrowboats at Stretton Stop, going under Johnsons Bridge on the way.
At Rose Narrowboats you can buy drinks, ice creams etc. when the shop is open. Once refreshed, make your way up to the main road, turn left and enjoy an easy walk back to Stretton.
Minutes of the Village Hall Committee for 30th October and 10th December can be read here.
Minutes of the Parish Plan Steering Group, 7th January 2008, can be read here.
The Village Christmas Concert...did you miss it?
Click here to see pictures
Demonstration of Christmas Floral Decorations by Norman Clarke
Celebrate Burns Night at Ashton Lodge Hotel
Parish Plan Survey Report - click below to read full report
The Housing Needs Survey report has been published and can be read here
Not sure which recycling bin to put out this Wednesday? Get it right with the Stretton under Fosse recycling bin schedule tool.