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|The Crown and Cushion and Hawley Common|
|Author: clairesharpuk, Published: 31 May 2014||Walk rating : Rating:|
|A 5.5 mile (can be shortened to 3 miles) circular pub walk from the Crown and Cushion in Minley near Blackwater, Surrey. The Crown and Cushion is an historic gem, steeped in history and even includes a medieval-style banqueting hall. The walking route explores the adjacent Hawley Common, taking in miles of the pretty woodland tracks with a chance to see the wildlife within the forest and the wildfowl on Hawley Lake. |
The shorter version of the walk is almost entirely flat, the longer loop having a few long but very gentle gradients. There are no stiles or gates on either route, just a few gaps alongside vehicle barriers to negotiate. The paths are a mixture of tarmac/stone firm tracks and softer woodland paths, the latter of which are uneven and can get very muddy after rain and in winter. One section of the route follows the tarmac access lane for Hawley Lake so take care of any traffic for this stretch. Hawley Common is part of the Minley MOD Training Area. This walk follows the public rights of way which are always open to the public, but make sure you pay attention to any safety notices, don’t allow children or dogs to stray too far and be prepared for sudden noises! Approximate time 2 to 2.5 hours (or 1.5 hours for the shorter version).
The walk starts and finishes at the Crown and Cushion pub in Minley near Blackwater in Surrey. The pub is just 2 minutes from Junction 4a of the M3. From the M3 head north along the A327 (Minley Road) and you’ll come to the Crown and Cushion on the left. Approximate post code GU17 9UA.
|Start to Hawley Hard|
Start point: 51.3073 lat, -0.8043 long
Leave the pub car park via the vehicle entrance and turn right along the paved area in front of the pub. After just a few paces, cross over the main road (with extreme care) and pass alongside the small barrier to reach a T-junction with a tarmac path. In front of you, you will see MOD Training Area warning signs.
|Hawley Hard to Woodside|
Start point: 51.3127 lat, -0.7994 long
Keep straight ahead following the fence on the right. Across to the right you’ll have your first views of Hawley Lake and you will pass the entrance to the sailing centre. Beyond the sailing centre, keep ahead past the vehicle barrier to join the narrower road between trees. At the first minor crossroads keep straight ahead, following the lane as it bends right. Immediately after this bend you’ll come to the next crossroads of tracks. Here you have two choices:
|Woodside to Fir Drive|
Start point: 51.3217 lat, -0.7952 long
Stay on this main tarmac lane which passes under power lines and leads you out of the woodland alongside a vehicle barrier. Keep ahead on the quiet lane, passing a number of cottages and houses on the right. Beyond the houses, follow the quiet woodland lane for some distance further. You will emerge around a right-hand bend to reach a small roundabout.
|Fir Drive to Crossroads Junction|
Start point: 51.3275 lat, -0.7828 long
Turn right and, where the road swings right, you will see the entrance drive for Hawley Hill House directly ahead. Take two paces onto this stone driveway and then turn left onto the woodland footpath (passing more MOD Training Area warning signs). This path winds down through the woodland to reach a junction of tracks.
|Crossroads Junction to Lake Beach|
Start point: 51.3156 lat, -0.7942 long
Follow this tarmac lane. Keep straight ahead at the first crossroads and at the second crossroads turn right, staying on the main tarmac lane. Through the trees to the right you’ll have more glimpses of Hawley Lake. The path will lead you past a pretty small sandy beach-like slope into the lake on the right. Take a moment here to enjoy the views across the lake.
|Lake Beach to End|
Start point: 51.3102 lat, -0.7905 long
Follow the lane as it swings right, crossing over the water outlet for the lake. Immediately afterwards, where the main lane swings left, fork right onto the stone track signed with a blue arrow. Follow this bridleway which winds along with the lake still visible on the right. You will pass through a long golden sandy section, with several fishing spots on the lake edge down to the right.
Text and images for this walk are Copyright © 2014 by the author clairesharpuk and may not be reproduced without permission.
Did this walk this morning with my daughter. We found it a nice, easy walk.
|By reescj on 2014-09-14 14:57:24|
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.
Fantastic walk and amazing views. Great directions though I followed the GPS map mainly
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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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Did this walk this morning with our three little girls and we all love it. Great day outdoor!