Categories
South West Wiltshire

The Punchbowl and Fovant Down

Description:
A 13.5 mile (21.7km) circular walk starting in Broad Chalke and ascending to reach the Old Shaftesbury Drove to visit the Punchbowl and then descend to Compton Chamberlayne.  The walk then ascends Fovant Down and follows tracks back to Broad Chalke.  There are fine views of the Fovant Regimental Badges on this walk.

Walk Grade:
Moderate

Distance:
13.5 miles / 21.7 km

Time:
5 hours 15 mins / 6 hours

Parking:
This walk starts from the car park of All Saints Church, Broad Chalke (Grid Ref: SU040253).  Please park considerately and check to ensure that no church service is planned.

Walk Route:
Leaving the car park by the entrance gateway turn left and walk along The Causeway soon crossing the River Ebble.  At the road junction close to the Queens Head pub turn right to pass the United Reform Chapel that now also houses the village community shop and café.  Just after the chapel take a footpath on the left, (Grid Ref:SU040256) this leads to a lane. Turn right and continue along a footpath where the lane ends, now heading north easterly uphill.  

At a junction with a broad track turn left (Grid Ref:SU050262) and continue uphill towards Stoke Down. After passing a farm continue on the track, this is a long steady haul up the hill, at a way marker (Grid Ref: SU058279) leave the track to fork right and head across arable fields on a clearly defined path. The route then enters woodland and soon reaches a driveway, turn left following it to a crossing with the Old Shaftesbury Drove Grid Ref: SU063288).  

Turn right along the drove for 1km to reach a footpath on the left (Grid Ref: SU073288).  Take the footpath leaving the drove and follow this path along the edge of a field for 600 metres to a track. Turn left to follow it in a northwesterly direction towards Cross Dykes. Entering access land with the fine contours of the punchbowl below (Grid Ref: SU068296).

The route continues along the top of the access land with a fence to the left.  On reaching a track turn left through a gate and follow this route south to return to the Old Shaftesbury Drove and turn right to head west.  After 3.1km, at a crossing of footpaths besides a reservoir, go right through a gate, leaving the drove, to head across an arable field (Grid Ref: SU034280).

After 150 metres cross a stile to enter access land on Compton Down.  The route is down the steep escarpment with an avenue of trees in front of as a bearing.  At the foot of the hill cross a stile and then join the tarmac track between the trees heading towards Manor Farm.  After passing the farm buildings and houses continue on to reach the A30, (Grid Ref: SU028293). Turn right and then soon cross to take the road leading into Compton Chamberlayne.  Entering the village pass a cemetery on the left, this is the location of a number of Commonwealth War Graves, and continue along the road until just after the entrance to the church where there is a footpath on the left (Grid Ref SU029300).  

Follow the footpath as it heads steadily uphill and becomes a fine sunken track.  As the path levels out it continues besides woodland to reach Home Farm (Grid Ref SU023298).  Here keep heading west along a farm track, passing barns and then continuing between fields. The path then leads along the edge of woodland with a steep slope to the right.  On reaching a track, Green Drove, turn left (Grid Ref: SU006297).

Follow the drove steadily downhill for 1.1km to the A30.  After crossing the main road continue along a track passing East Farm and then continue to go through a gate below the Regimental Badges (Grid Ref: SU014283).  From the gate go right across the open access land of Fovant Down for 1km to join a track going uphill (Grid Ref: SU009275).  Turn left and head up, soon passing through shrub to reach the Old Shaftesbury Drove (Grid Ref: SU011274).  

Cross the drove and join a track between arable fields and follow this as it descends steadily, after 1.8km at a fork in the track keep left (Grid Ref: SU027264).  The track continues and soon becomes hedge lined as it nears Chalk Pyt Farm.  In the farmyard turn right and follow the farm track to reach a minor road and follow this into Broad Chalke.  At a junction with North Road continue into the village and then turn left into the High Street. Opposite the Queens Head turn right to join the Causeway and cross the River Ebble and return to the starting point in the Church car park. 

Toilets:
There are no public toilets.
Toilets are available in the pub on this route during opening hours.

Refreshments:
Broad Chalke: Chalke Valley Stores Coffee Shop & Queens Head pub.

To download GPX and print map click “Learn More” below:

Additional Information:
A narrative of this walk with pictures, historical information and points of interest can be viewed on my associated Two Dogs and an Awning website.

To follow my walk you will need Ordnance Survey Explorer Maps OL130 Salisbury & Stonehenge

© Walking Moonraker (2020)

All information on this site is provided free of charge and in good faith and no liability is accepted in respect of damage, loss or injury which might result from it.  To the best of my knowledge the routes are entirely on public rights of way or within areas that are open for public access. 
Walking can be hazardous and is done entirely at your own risk.  It is your responsibility to check your route and navigate using a map and compass.

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