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Leasowes Park and Coombeswood Trail

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Leasowes Park and Coombeswood Trail
Author: sammy_benbow, Published: 26 Jun 2014 Walk rating : Rating:star1 iFootpath - walking guides and directions for the UKstar1 iFootpath - walking guides and directions for the UKstar1 iFootpath - walking guides and directions for the UKstar1 iFootpath - walking guides and directions for the UKstar0 iFootpath - walking guides and directions for the UK
West Midlands, Halesowen
Walk Type: River or lakeside
Leasowes Park and Coombeswood Trail
Length: 3 miles,  Difficulty: boot iFootpath - walking guides and directions for the UK boot iFootpath - walking guides and directions for the UK
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This is a 3 mile walk around the Coombes Wood area, following the canal, which then heads through Leasowes Wood and around the springs and pools there. The trail commences at the car park in Leasowes Park, heads across Mucklow Hill and along a track that parallels the canal, before heading up the hill to offer some views of the local area. It then descends gently back across Mucklow Hill, before entering Leasowes Wood and following a trail that explores the springs and ponds that have been created there. Allow an hour to an hour and a half for the walk.

The Dudley canal was opened in 1779, connecting the Stourbridge and Birmingham canals. Hawne Basin, which can be seen on the other side of the canal was originally an interchange with the Great Western Railway. It is now a marina. Leasowes Park is Grade I listed and covers 58 hectares. A natural spring, passed during the later stages of the walk, runs through iron rich rocks and leaves a striking bright orange deposit behind. William Shenstone took over the site from his father in 1742 and engaged in extensive landscaping, creating the pools that are seen here today.

The walk takes place on a variety of surfaces - some of it tarmac, some of it through grassland. Small sections of it are likely to be muddy in wet weather, and some sections are pretty overgrown. There are a few gates and stiles, however these are not always in a good state of repair. A very short section of the walk takes place across the fairway of a golf course, so please take care here. There are information displays, disabled toilets and baby changing facilities at the rangers office. The car park is locked at night.

By car: Leasowes Park is located off the A458, Mucklow Hill. Take J3 off the M5, then right at the roundabout, right at the next roundabout, then go round the following roundabout by B&Q and come back down the hill.

By bus: several buses stop in nearby Halesowen.

Approximate postcode: B62 8DH

Grid ref: SO983841

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Walk Sections

Start to Coombes Bridge
Start to Coombes Bridge

Start point: 52.4541 lat, -2.0375 long
End point: 52.4606 lat, -2.0399 long

Before leaving the car park, check out the nature board to the left of the rangers office. This is the large green building. Turn right along Leasowes Lane, then left up the grassy path by the two houses. Go through the wooden gates and pass the memorial garden on your left. This has been planted with several old varieties of apple and pear trees. Continue through the gap onto Sylvan Grove.

Cross Mucklow Hill by the pedestrian crossing, then take the road on the left. Cross to the high cream coloured wall, then head downhill, keeping between the two black bollards. Follow the path round and at the sign, take the left path marked Gorsty Hill. The path is well maintained and follows the route of the canal. Hawne Basin is visible on the other side of the road. Continue to Coombes Bridge.

Coombes Bridge to Leasowes Wood
Coombes Bridge to Leasowes Wood

Start point: 52.4606 lat, -2.0399 long
End point: 52.4592 lat, -2.0338 long

Pass Coombes Bridge and continue to follow the path. After this point, it is likely to be overgrown. Go up the flight of wooden steps and continue to ascend the hill. Head up towards the green fencing visible at the top, where you will meet a gravel path. Turn right along this, then after a short distance, take the path on the right through the trees.

Head straight and you will emerge onto a field with views of the local area. There is also a great diversity of wildlife here. Look carefully and you may see the black-with-red-spots Cinnabar Moth. Follow the mown path down through the field, then take the stile on the left. Follow this path through the woods, crossing another 3 stiles before joining the A458. Cross the road, head left, then take the stile on the right just past the houses.

Leasowes Wood to End
Leasowes Wood to End

Start point: 52.4592 lat, -2.0338 long
End point: 52.4541 lat, -2.0375 long

After crossing the stile, notice the blue sign on the right warning you about golf balls. The path continues straight across the fairway and enters Leasowes Wood on the other side. Bear right, then take the path on the right. It will slowly descend through the trees, and eventually lead you to the springs. Several bridges and benches dot the area. The paths all eventually lead past the pond, so feel free to explore a little.

Follow the path past the large pond on your right, then past the stepped waterfall. After a short distance, a gap in the trees leads you to the orange spring. Return to the main track, following the springs as they get larger. Take the very wide path over the large pond at the bottom, and head slightly uphill back onto Leasowes Lane. Go past the two houses, straight on and return to the car park.

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