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|Codsall, Gunstone and Bilbrook Butterfly|
|Author: djhampton, Published: 23 Sep 2012||Walk rating : Rating:|
|I've called this walk the Codsall, Gunstone and Bilbrook 'Butterfly' as it is a figure of eight route the outline of which looks very much like a butterfly. |
The circular nature of the walk means that it can be joined at any point and if followed completely will bring you back to the point at which you started. It is also suitable for those holidaying on the Shropshire Union Canal as it touches the canal. Additionally, it is easily cut short or completed in sections.
The route uses paths and bridleways along which there are many stiles and kissing gates. Some of the horse paddocks have electric fencing which you will need to unhook (via the insulated handles) to pass through. There are also some short stretches along country lanes, but these are either very quiet or have broad verges along which to walk. There are a lot of animals on the route including horses, sheep and a few cows. There are several signs asking walkers to keep dogs on a leash. Most paths are well trodden and signposted, but can be boggy in parts and overgrown in other places.
As a circular route the 'Butterfly' can be joined at any point, but I've started and finished the walk at St Nicholas Church, the parish church of Codsall. There is not much parking at St Nicholas, so I usually park on the free car park in the village centre near to the station and outside the Co-operative supermarket. The walk however, starts and finishes at St Nicholas. If you park at the Co-op, walk out of the car park and turn left. Walk past the shops and the Bull pub on your right and then the Crown on your left. Walk through the pedestrian lane with the Nationwide and Lloyds chemist on your right. As you reach the main road you should be able to see St Nicholas church at the top of Church Lane in front of you.
|Start to M54|
Start point: 52.6337 lat, -2.1986 long
For convenience I have started this walk at the entrance to St Nicholas church at the top of the hill in Codsall. Approach the porch of the church and then walk round to the right until you come to another path in the church yard leading off right and out of the church yard. Having left the church yard turn left and after a few metres turn right and walk down Mill Lane past some very fine properties.
|M54 to Crossroads|
Start point: 52.6434 lat, -2.1899 long
This country lane is no longer accessible to anything other than farm vehicles and is in fact part of the Staffordshire Way and so is perfectly safe to walk along. The country lane runs left across the M54, but we want to walk right, passing Gunstone Farm and eventually emerging onto Whitehouse Lane at Gunstone Hall and the hamlet of Gunstone.
|Crossroads to Shropshire Canal|
Start point: 52.6376 lat, -2.1831 long
Standing at the crossroads turn left along Port Lane towards Brewood. Although this is a very fast road there is a good broad verge on the right hand side which it is advisable to walk along. After about one hundred metres there is a muddy pull in place beneath an oak on the right hand side of the road and a gap in the hedge takes you to the path.
|Shropshire Canal to Moat Brook, Bilbrook|
Start point: 52.6412 lat, -2.1627 long
This next section of the walk is short and straight forward with well-marked and well-trodden paths.
|Moat Brook, Bilbrook to Staffordshire Way|
Start point: 52.6315 lat, -2.1781 long
Cross the footbridge over Moat Brook and turn right. The local council and local parish council have recently upgraded this area of Bilbrook and turned it from a muddy track into a pleasant stream side walk with excellent underfoot conditions.
|Staffordshire Way to End|
Start point: 52.6372 lat, -2.1902 long
We are now on the Staffordshire Way and on the last leg of our journey. Follow the path across a stile and over a small footbridge at the field's corner.
Text and images for this walk are Copyright © 2012 by the author djhampton and may not be reproduced without permission.
Walked this today, further to the above comment, the second field to the farm track has been made into a number of paddocks with electric fences with no clear path across, I got across with a little difficulty to the farm track, was convinced I had got lost, knew roughly were I was as I walked the canal a number of times so left the walk here, on getting home and checking I was on the right path just some obstacles put in the way. I will re-walk next week and keep you posted.
|By dlindop on 2015-09-18 14:57:22|
I have recently walked this route and feel some amendments would be helpful. On the first section to the M54 the field described as being 'boggy' is an understatement. I found that rather than trying the diagonal route across the field, if you keep to the right hand side there is a less treacherous route to the bridge.
|By Ecoone on 2015-03-20 10:43:23|
Re-walked today, no issues early on, got the paddock field after the canal, got across much easier this week, if you go to corners of the electric fences, there are insulated handles you unhook and re-hook for pedestrian access across, didn't notice them last week so much easier crossing. Over the style into the track, were I met the land owner, we had a pleasant chat, the field was always used for crops, but he gets a better return on the horse paddocks, you can't argue with that, he advised the next section you need mountaineering equipment to get over the rubble, so I went down the farm track to the lane, turned right in the lane, walked to the Green Barn on the right and rejoined the route as signposted on the left. This leads to Moat Brook, across the foot bridge, turn right, there's about 250 metre's which is pretty overgrown but there a narrow path through till you reach the red cinder path. Get the end of the cinder path, turn right onto the roadway, be careful this busy road, about 50 to 60 metre's down on the left hand side over the stile into the horse field, diagonally across to the right to a stile and metal gate, unfortunately this field has be made into horse paddocks with electric fences, horse must be more profitable that crop. To cut a long story short, I returned to stile with the metal gate, over the stile into Whitehouse Lane walked about 200 metre's to a stile on left just before some Oak tree's, followed the fence line, over another stile, again following the fence line on the right down into the corner of the field, small fishing lake on the right, into the corner, over a stile, over the foot bridge, and over the fields, lots of new kissing gates here, so just look out for them, they mark to route to farm track, follow the track till you hit the lane, got right and a couple of hundred later you are back at the start.
|By dlindop on 2015-09-25 16:17:15|
The information in this guide has been provided in good faith and is intended only as a guide, not a statement of fact. You are advised to check the accuracy of the information provided and should not use this guide for navigational directions nor should you rely on the accuracy of the weather forecast. You are advised to take appropriate clothing, footwear, equipment and navigational materials with you according to the current and possible weather and nature of the terrain. Always follow the country code and follow any additional warnings or instructions that may be available. Some walks may be very strenuous and you are advised to seek medical advice if you have any doubts as to your capability to complete the walk.
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Very enjoyable and well described route. Views over the river from the warren were stunning.
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Even on a cold windy day with it trying to snow this was still an excellent walk. We managed it with our 2 children of 5 yrs and one in a all terain pram (a defo no no with a normal pram). Will be doing this one again in the summer.
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