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The Ferry Inn and Bure Valley

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The Ferry Inn and Bure Valley
Author: adnams, Published: 14 Apr 2014 Walk rating : Rating:star1 The Ferry Inn and Bure Valley Pub Walking Guidestar1 The Ferry Inn and Bure Valley Pub Walking Guidestar1 The Ferry Inn and Bure Valley Pub Walking Guidestar1 The Ferry Inn and Bure Valley Pub Walking Guidestar0 The Ferry Inn and Bure Valley Pub Walking Guide
Norfolk, Stokesby
Walk Type: River or lakeside
The Ferry Inn and Bure Valley
Length: 5 miles,  Difficulty: boot The Ferry Inn and Bure Valley Pub Walking Guide
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0006_mist The Ferry Inn and Bure Valley Pub Walking GuideToday's weather
11 °C, Mist, Wind: 6 mph SSW
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0002_sunny_intervals The Ferry Inn and Bure Valley Pub Walking Guide 0003_white_cloud The Ferry Inn and Bure Valley Pub Walking Guide 0009_light_rain_showers The Ferry Inn and Bure Valley Pub Walking Guide 0002_sunny_intervals The Ferry Inn and Bure Valley Pub Walking Guide 0017_cloudy_with_light_rain The Ferry Inn and Bure Valley Pub Walking Guide

A 5 mile circular pub walk from the Ferry Inn in Stokesby, Norfolk. The Ferry Inn is a lovely country pub set alongside the River Bure, offering picturesque, tranquil and unspoilt surroundings. The walking route explores the traditional farming landscape of the Broads, taking in the marshes and dykes which are home to a wide variety of wildlife.

The walking route is almost entirely flat. You will need to negotiate one gate and two footbridges on route, but there are no stiles. The grass embankment paths are fairly narrow and uneven. They can be muddy in winter and a bit overgrown summer (so shorts are not recommended unless you are immune to nettles!) Approximate time 2 hours.

Stokesby is located between Acle and Great Yarmouth in Norfolk. The walk starts and finishes from the Ferry Inn, on Ferry Lane, which has its own car park. Approximate post code NR29 3EX.

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Walk Sections

Start to Drainage Mill
Start to Drainage Mill

Start point: 52.6379 lat, 1.5918 long
End point: 52.6377 lat, 1.579 long

Leave the pub car park via the vehicle entrance and turn left for a few paces passing the pub to reach the water ahead. Turn right, passing a row of pretty cottages to the right and with the water to the left. Continue past a playing area on the right and then follow the stone track as it swings right and leads you to a T-junction with the village road.

Turn left along the road, passing the Old Methodist Church on the right. Immediately after this, turn left down the fenced narrow path, signed as a public footpath. Follow this raised embankment path passing properties to the right and a boathouse to the left. A little further along, pass through the gate to continue on the riverside path heading out to the open countryside.

On the left you’ll see the reed beds alongside the River Bure and over to the right the drained marsh farmland. The River Bure, one of seven navigable rivers that comprise The Broads (sometimes called the Norfolk Broads), rises near Melton Constable and, from here, flows down through Great Yarmouth where it meets Breydon Water and flows into the sea at Gorleston. This section of the River Bure has been navigable since at least 1685, when it was used to carry cargoes of coal, corn and timber.

After a little distance the path will lead you past a drainage mill, Commission Drainage Mill. This is one of many old wind pumps which used to drain the marshes. Electric pumps are used today but the wind pumps are an important part of the history of the Broads and a classic part of the landscape. Cattle and sheep have grazed the drained marshes for centuries.

Drainage Mill to New Road
Drainage Mill to New Road

Start point: 52.6377 lat, 1.579 long
End point: 52.6485 lat, 1.5779 long

Continue on the embankment path, passing a pretty white thatched cottage to the right. The path swings right, passing Stokesby pumping station on the left. Immediately afterwards do NOT follow the path left across the bridge, instead follow the concrete farm track ahead with a crop field to the right and a drainage dyke to the left.

You’ll emerge out to a T-junction within the concrete track. Cross over and keep straight ahead to join the grass embankment path, with the drainage dyke running to the left. Eventually the grass path will lead you out to a junction with the road, New Road.

New Road to Woodland Fork
New Road to Woodland Fork

Start point: 52.6485 lat, 1.5779 long
End point: 52.6555 lat, 1.6029 long

Turn left across the bridge, then immediately right onto the signed footpath which follows the drainage dyke, Muck Fleet, down to the right. Follow this path for some distance.

Muck Fleet is the watercourse that connects the Trinity Broads (Ormesby, Rollesby and Filby Broads) to the main network. It is too shallow for even small un-motorised vessels to navigate and so is a haven for wildlife. Keep your eyes peeled on this peaceful stretch of the walk. The area is teaming with butterflies, damselflies and dragonflies in the summer and we were lucky enough to see a muntjac deer and several pheasant too. You may see muddy slides into the watercourse, marked with paw prints, signs that the elusive otter is also present here.

Continue until you reach a wooden footbridge across Muck Fleet, marked with a green arrow for the Broadland Walk. Cross this bridge and keep left along the embankment path on the opposite side. You will come to a fork in the path, with a section of woodland to the left.

Woodland Fork to Whitegate Farm Lane
Woodland Fork to Whitegate Farm Lane

Start point: 52.6555 lat, 1.6029 long
End point: 52.6468 lat, 1.5964 long

Fork right here and follow the path heading south with drainage dykes each side and crop fields beyond. At about 2 o’clock you’ll see the farm buildings on the horizon, this is Whitegate Farm which you will be passing later.

Cross a grass farm track and keep ahead over the footbridge to continue on the embankment path. You will emerge out to a T-junction with a farm track, turn left along this. Follow the track as it swings right between hedgerows and then continuing through a belt of woodland, Alder Carr. As you emerge from the woodland you’ll come to a T-junction with the access lane for Whitegate Farm.

Whitegate Farm Lane to End
Whitegate Farm Lane to End

Start point: 52.6468 lat, 1.5964 long
End point: 52.6385 lat, 1.5924 long

Cross over and keep ahead to follow the path straight across the centre of the crop field. Across to the right you’ll see the buildings of Whitegate Farm. At the far side of the field, turn left along the farm track, with power lines running parallel on the left.

As you draw level with the red brick house, Woodlands Farm, over to the left, follow the track as it swings right with a hedgerow on the left. At the end of the hedgerow you’ll come to a junction of paths where four fields meet. Turn left along the left-hand edge of the large crop field, with a line of old oak trees to the left.

A few paces after passing under powerlines, you’ll see a waymark post on the left. Fork right here (at about 2 o’clock) onto the path which crosses straight over the centre of the field, heading for the telegraph pole which is visible through the hedge gap on the opposite side.

At the far side, follow the grass track between hedges and you’ll emerge between houses to join a residential road. Keep straight ahead and follow the road as it swings left to reach a T-junction with the main road in Stokesby. Turn left for a few paces and then turn right down Ferry Lane where you’ll find the Ferry Inn on the left for some well-earned hospitality.

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Text and images for this walk are Copyright © 2014 by the author adnams and may not be reproduced without permission.


2 responses to "The Ferry Inn and Bure Valley"

Do this one in the summer, it's quite exposed and very slippery after rain. Really nice though.

By Tilford on 2016-01-09 21:25:15

Lovely Sunday afternoon walk. Overcast but very mild. Easy to follow route besides Muck Fleet and across fields. The footpaths across some of the fields will be ploughed over shortly.

By Arty65 on 2016-10-30 15:34:34

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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