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Kinver to Stourton via Gibbet Wood

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Kinver to Stourton via Gibbet Wood
Author: Sammy, Published: 15 May 2014 Walk Rating:star1 Kinver to Stourton via Gibbet Wood Walking Guide star1 Kinver to Stourton via Gibbet Wood Walking Guide star1 Kinver to Stourton via Gibbet Wood Walking Guide star0 Kinver to Stourton via Gibbet Wood Walking Guide star0 Kinver to Stourton via Gibbet Wood Walking Guide
Staffordshire, Kinver
Walk Type: Footpaths and byways
Kinver to Stourton via Gibbet Wood
Length: 5 miles,  Difficulty: boot Kinver to Stourton via Gibbet Wood Walking Guide boot Kinver to Stourton via Gibbet Wood Walking Guide boot Kinver to Stourton via Gibbet Wood Walking Guide
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0002_sunny_intervals Kinver to Stourton via Gibbet Wood Walking Guide Today's weather
15 °C, Partly cloudy, Wind: 2 mph S
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This is a 4.5 mile circular walk that starts in the picturesque village of Kinver, leads to the supposedly haunted Gibbet Woods in Wollaston, then to the site of the Stewponey, then past the entrance to Stourton Castle, before heading into Chance Woods and returning to Kinver. The walk encompasses a busy village, fields, woodland and several points of interest. It will take about 4 hours at a very steady pace, 2.5 hours if you take a more athletic approach.

This walk has about a dozen stiles to navigate and some steep inclines and steps. Not suitable for the less mobile. There are some footpaths but also lots of field crossings, some of which will contain animals. Please keep dogs on a lead at all times. There are also busy roads to navigate. Disabled toilets are available at the suggested start point, however these are not free. There is a pub on the walk, very close to the beginning.

There is a regular bus service from Stourbridge, the 227/228 service, run by Hansons bus company (not Sundays). The nearest train station is Stourbridge Junction.

Kinver is accessible by car via the nearby A458 or A449. There are several free car parks in Kinver village. Approximate postcode for the suggested car park: DY7 6HE

Walk Sections

Start to Dunsley Drive
Start to Dunsley Drive

Start point: 52.4488 lat, -2.2292 long
End point: 52.4504 lat, -2.2196 long

Leave the car park and head onto Kinver High Street. Head ESE through the village. A useful landmark is the church on the hill to the rear of the village - keep this on your right. As you leave the village, follow the road round to the left. On clearing the bend, you will see the Pumping Station for the river Stour. Continue past this and go on past the canal lock and Vine pub. 130m on, look for the turning on the right named Gibraltar. This is a single track road, just to the left of the post box set in the wall. Take this path.

Legend has it that the name Gibraltar comes from the sandstone rock that this particular area is built on. Several caves have been hollowed out of the sandstone, some of which were used as dwellings during the 1850's. They were all abandoned by the 1880's.

After 140m, follow the footpath up into the trees, to the left. This path rises reasonably steeply. At you come to the top, turn left between the huge Pine tree and the houses on the left and head onto Dunsley Drive.

Dunsley Drive to Gibbets Wood
Dunsley Drive to Gibbets Wood

Start point: 52.4504 lat, -2.2196 long
End point: 52.4519 lat, -2.1976 long

Walk up slightly onto Dunsley Drive, then take the path on the right about 80m along. Follow this track with the field to the left, and head for the stile in the corner by the tree line. Climb over the stile and head out across the fields. In total there are five fields, most of which have stiles, some of which have animals. The path is perpendicular to the field boundaries that you cross. Head straight across to the woods which are visible in the distance.

After the fifth field, you will find yourself on the A449. There is a grass verge. Turn left and walk 120m alongside the road. The route continues on the other side, where the stile is clearly visible. Take great care crossing this road, as it is busy and fast. Follow the path across the fields towards the wood. Skirt the wood to the right hand side and follow it up to the "corner". There is a small pond here that may be visible. Turn left and follow the path into the wood, via the stile.

Gibbets Wood to Stewponey
Gibbets Wood to Stewponey

Start point: 52.4519 lat, -2.1976 long
End point: 52.4612 lat, -2.2048 long

Gibbet Wood gets its name from the rather macabre tale of a man named William Howe, whose body was hung from a gibbet until it "fell to pieces" whereupon it was buried on the spot. Howe was a thief and murderer, and his body hung there as a warning to others who were considering a life of crime. His ghost is said to haunt Gibbet Lane, the track of which you will now follow.

Turn left after you cross the stile, and head up the hill into the wood. Certain sections of this wood, mainly after the peak, have been managed and there are many coppiced trees on the left hand side. To your right you may hear the sound of motorbikes - there is a disused quarry over the hill that is now used as a scrambling track.

Follow the track down the hill and out between the fields. Eventually you will find a metal gate that allows access to the track. Go through/around this, and you will find yourself back on the A449. Turn right and follow the road for 650m, until you reach the pedestrian crossing. The Stewponey Inn was located here until it was demolished in 2001 to make way for the housing complex that stands on the site now.

Cross the road at the pedestrian crossing.

Stewponey to Chance Wood
Stewponey to Chance Wood

Start point: 52.4612 lat, -2.2048 long
End point: 52.4601 lat, -2.2137 long

After crossing the pedestrian crossing, keep ahead onto the A458 Bridgenorth Road and cross the bridge over the Staffordshire and Worcestershire Canal. On your right you will see Stewponey Locks. Cross to the left-hand side of the road at the earliest opportunity as the footpath on the right soon gives out.

Follow the tarmac path alongside the road going up the hill. You will cross over the river Stour, notice the measuring station. Continue up the hill for roughly 150m, where you will find a gate on the left, opposite the entrance to Stourton castle. Stourton castle is believed to have been built in the 11thC. The entrance was built in the late 19thC.

Go through the gate and head across the field towards the tree line that marks the boundary of Chance Wood.

Chance Wood to Kinver
Chance Wood to Kinver

Start point: 52.4601 lat, -2.2137 long
End point: 52.4489 lat, -2.2291 long

Go down the steps into Chance Wood. These are somewhat steep but only for a short distance. After this, the path levels out into managed woodland on the left and open spaces with woodland on the right. Follow the path along and to the left.

Chance Wood is owned by Worcestershire Wildlife Trust and was planted in the 19thC as an ornamental wood. It spans 2.8 hectares in size and is a mixture of broadleaved trees, mainly oaks and beeches. There is a pet cemetery at the top of the hill (not seen on this walk).

Follow the path along to the junction with Hyde Lane and the metal kissing gate. There is a nature board here, detailing the history of The Hyde. After the gate, turn left, then immediate right, following the course of the river and the green sign marked Kinver. Do not cross the bridge. The path follows a wall and is quite thin. Go through the following gate and you will emerge on a path between two paddocks. Look at the horizon and you will see St Peter's Church. Follow this path along, noticing the several nature boards.

The path ends at a car park. Cross this diagonally, and leave via the green gate. Walk along the road until it meets the main road. Keep left along the main road for 250m, keeping straight ahead at the roundabout, then you will be back at the car park.

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

1 Comments for: "Kinver to Stourton via Gibbet Wood"

Unfortunately the five fields were planted and hard going, then the footpath to the haunted loop overgrown and the road back down blocked off. Because of this, next time I would join the canal towpath at Diunslwy Rd bridge and follow it to Stourton to rejoin the walk.

By katenorthpho on 29 May 2017

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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