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Bestwood Country Park Circular

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Bestwood Country Park Circular
Author: Claire, Published: 18 Jan 2015 Walk Rating:star1 Bestwood Country Park Circular Walking Guide star1 Bestwood Country Park Circular Walking Guide star1 Bestwood Country Park Circular Walking Guide star1 Bestwood Country Park Circular Walking Guide star1 Bestwood Country Park Circular Walking Guide
Nottinghamshire, Nottingham
Walk Type: Garden or park
Bestwood Country Park Circular
Length: 3 miles,  Difficulty: boot Bestwood Country Park Circular Walking Guide boot Bestwood Country Park Circular Walking Guide boot Bestwood Country Park Circular Walking Guide
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A 3 mile circular walk around Bestwood Country Park in Nottinghamshire. The walk explores the many habitats within the park including heath, woodland, grassland, wetland and gardens and also takes in the park’s iconic landmark, the surviving headstock and winding house which has been retained to commemorate the time when the site was home to Bestwood Colliery. Popular with families and dog walkers, the park offers plenty of interest with industrial heritage, plenty of wildlife and spectacular views.

Bestwood Country Park is open daily from 10am to 4pm or 5pm. The walk has several long and fairly steep climbs and descents throughout. The majority of the paths are surfaced with stone, but some unmade stretches over the grassland and woodland can be quite muddy after rain and in winter. There are no stiles to negotiate, just a squeeze gap and some kissing gates and single gates. Dogs are welcome in the park and bins are provided for dog waste. There are public toilets near Alexandra Lodge, about halfway round. If you wish to tour the former colliery buildings, check opening times before setting out as they are very limited. Approximate time 1 to 1.5 hours.

Bestwood village is located just north of Nottingham. The walk starts and finishes from the free country park car park accessed from Park Road and marked with a brown sign. There is a height restriction barrier at the car park entrance. Approximate post code NG6 8TQ.

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Walk Sections

Start to Sleeper Bridge
Start to Sleeper Bridge

Start point: 53.0225 lat, -1.1726 long
End point: 53.0174 lat, -1.1785 long

From the car park, pass through the black metal kissing gate to enter the country park. Keep right at the first fork and this path swings right to lead you past the impressive Winding Engine House on the left. It is worth pausing a moment here to appreciate the scale of the buildings and to understand the history of the site.

Today Bestwood Country Park is a peaceful rural retreat, but from the 1870s to the late 1960s this was a sprawling industrial site. Bestwood Colliery was one of the most productive coal mines in Britain which, in its heyday, employed more than 2,000 miners. You may have noticed the rows of miners’ cottages along Park Road as you approached. The steam winding engine lowered miners and equipment down into the pit and winched coal up to the surface. The 1876 vertical twin-cylindered winding engine is the only one of its kind left in England and still in its original location. The colliery closed in 1967 and the only remaining parts can be seen here – the Winding Engine House, the Headstocks and the Dynamo House (a former electrical substation). The buildings now house a cafe and visitor centre and have open mornings for the public on Saturdays and Bank Holidays from Easter to October (although you can enjoy the building exteriors at any time!).

Beyond the engine house, continue on the obvious surfaced path which leads you into open parkland. At the fork (just before the path begins to swing hard right), keep left onto the narrow stone path which swings left and leads you uphill, through a narrow gateway and to a T-junction with a wider stone track. Turn right along this. Soon, the views across Bestwood village open up to the right, including the striking brick former town hall with its clock tower.

You will come to a fork in the path. Keep right, signed for Mill Lakes. Stay on this main path (ignoring the smaller path signed to Mill Lakes off to the right) and follow it as it swings left, left, right then right again. A few paces later, look out for a small sleeper bridge across the ditch to the left. Turn left to cross this.

Sleeper Bridge to Woodland T junction
Sleeper Bridge to Woodland T junction

Start point: 53.0174 lat, -1.1785 long
End point: 53.0158 lat, -1.1639 long

Follow this path steadily uphill between fences. At the T-junction turn right and then follow the path through two gates and continuing uphill. At the top of the slope, stay on the main path as it swings right and then, further along, swings left at Vincent’s View (with a handy bench to pause and enjoy this view point).

The bench here was installed in 2008 to commemorate the retirement of civil engineer David Vincent, who was responsible for much of the restoration of Bestwood Colliery to form the park. The sweeping panoramic view at this point is considered to be one of the best in Nottingham, taking in the Rolls Royce Aerodrome, a glimpse of Wollaton Hall and stretching as far as the cooling towers of Ratcliffe-on-Soar power station (11 miles to the south) and well beyond.

Stay on the main surfaced path which winds ahead and eventually leads you down a slope to a junction of paths just before an exit gate into a residential road. Do NOT go through the gate, instead turn sharp left onto the first left-hand path, a surfaced track signed as a permissive bridleway. The track climbs steadily with a hedgerow on the right.

Ignore the first path off to the right (which is immediately after the hedgerow ends), instead take the second path on the right (being careful not to take the third!), a sometimes muddy grass track which runs along the top of the hill, parallel with the hedge across to the right. Enjoy the views across the valley to the left and stay on the grass track which eventually leads you down to a T-junction within a section of woodland.

Woodland T junction to Alexandra Lodge
Woodland T junction to Alexandra Lodge

Start point: 53.0158 lat, -1.1639 long
End point: 53.0214 lat, -1.1584 long

Turn left at this T-junction and follow the obvious path ahead, with houses running parallel through the trees on the right. At the crossroads, keep straight ahead passing a waymarker for Alexandra Lodge (our next destination). At the first two forks you can take either branch – the paths soon merge once again.

After passing the fencing for school playing fields on the right you will come to the third fork. Keep right here and then keep right again a few yards later. You will come to a crossroads with a waymarker post, keep straight ahead signed for Alexandra Lodge. Follow this stone track which heads fairly steeply downhill.

At the bottom of the slope you will come to a crossroads with a major vehicle track. Turn left along this level track and it will soon lead you directly through the arch of Alexandra Lodge. This pair of lodges has a date plaque of 1877 and was built for the 10th Duke of St. Albans in the gothic revival style. Today, the lodge houses the rangers’ office for the country park.

Alexandra Lodge to End
Alexandra Lodge to End

Start point: 53.0214 lat, -1.1584 long
End point: 53.0226 lat, -1.1726 long

Keep ahead along the main drive passing the field studies and classroom building on the left. Immediately afterwards, turn left onto Woodman’s Path which leads you uphill past the public toilets on the left.

Take a moment to glance to the right here and you will see an ornate carved wooden arch marking the entrance for Khalsa Wood. This woodland was founded by the local Sikh community as a way to express the values of reverence for nature and the tradition of sewa, a duty of altruism and volunteering. Take time to explore this woodland should you wish.

Continue up the hill and at the top of the slope follow the main path as it swings left with fenced open horse paddocks now on the right. You may be able to see the top of the winding engine peering out from the valley below. Continue past the adventure playground on the left and then follow the main path as it swings left away from the paddocks.

Take the next main path on the right, signed for Winding House. This track winds fairly steeply downhill. At the bottom, keep right to merge with another track coming in from the left. Keep straight ahead on this sandy track which leads you back towards the winding engine house. At the fork, keep right and follow the path under the power lines and ahead into the car park where the walk began.

Remember...the best way of following our walking guides is to use the iFootpath App (iOS and Android) where you will have all the information in the palm of your hand and see your exact location on the live map as you travel. You can also add comments, photos, ratings and track your own routes.

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network Bestwood Country Park Circular Walking Guide Original GPX source file

Text and images for this walk are Copyright © 2015 by the author clairesharpuk and may not be reproduced without permission.


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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Map Ref (optional)

This allows the OS Map reference for the start and end of the section to be entered. These should be in the format:

AB 123 456

Further details of this system can be seen on the Ordnance Survey website.

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3 gallery images for "Bestwood Country Park Circular"

3957_0Richard1421594115 Bestwood Country Park Circular Walking Guide Image by: Richard
Uploaded: 18 Jan 2015
Don't know what year this was taken. Looks like the mine is not in use so after 1967.
3957_1Richard1421594116 Bestwood Country Park Circular Walking Guide Image by: Richard
Uploaded: 18 Jan 2015
Taken in Jan 2015 on a lovely winter's day.
3957_2Richard1421594116 Bestwood Country Park Circular Walking Guide Image by: Richard
Uploaded: 18 Jan 2015
Such an iconic piece of industrial archeology. So different today from when the mine employed 2,000 people and there was a railway taking the coal away.

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Introduction to iFootpath

iFootpath provides a mechanism to capture and share details of walks, but it is worth explaining the essential structure of a walk as they are stored in the iFootpath database. The basic concept is that a walk consists of any number of sections that are joined end to end. For each section we might want to describe views or other points of interest about that part of the walk.

The database that underpins iFootpath provides the mechanisms to store the structure and details of each walk, descriptions, photographs and mapping data for the overall walk and each section of it. It is not mandatory to enter information into every single field in the forms we provide, although some basic details are essential to ensure the walk database stays manageable and searcheable.

Each walk entered can be shared with all other iFootpath users, but before a walk (and its sections) are shared there are three stages it must go through. The first stage is as a "Draft". When a walk is in draft it is only visible and editable by you, the author of that walk. Whilst it is in draft form you can add sections, photographs, further description and refine it as you see fit. You can do as little or as much as you like. However, it is worth remembering that if someone (you) wants to print it off and take it as a walking guide, then it is worth taking the time to detail each section reasonably concisely. Long descriptions are generally distracting when walking and a short, concise version is usually much easier to use.

When you are happy with the walk description and its sections you can set the status to "Ready". This does not yet make it visible to everyone. It does, however, lock the editing (although you can change it back to draft and continue editing) and alerts the systems administrators that it requires reviewing prior to being "Published". When set to "Ready" the walk will be reviewed to check it contains the basic data needed and to ensure the content is clean. We do not allow content to include obscenities, swearing or other offensive language or pictures. This review does not check the walk for accuracy; whilst we would love to test each and every walk through walking we simply do not have the time. If we do find something wrong with the walk we will contact you and ask that it is fixed prior to marking it as "Published".

Once the walk is published it is now visible to any user of iFootpath and is therefore in the public domain given that anyone can register and access iFootpath. You are therefore responsible that any photographs used in your walk description are not infringing copyright. See our terms and conditions for further information on what we do and do not allow.

Published walks are available to all users of iFootpath and are listed in the walk browser to read or print and will be listed in the iPhone/iPod Touch application for download.

Walks in iFootpath

A walk in iFootpath is an introduction to the overall walk, identification of where it is and starts, some overview notes and general commentary.

Title (required)

A walk title should provide a brief indication of where or what the walk is. Walk titles do not have to be unique.

Description (required)

This provides a text area where you can describe the walk. Explain what you love about the walk, what makes it different and what people will see. In addition try to answer all the questions you might ask before going on a route. What sort of paths does the walk use? Any steep accents/descents? Are there any stiles? Are people likely to come across horse/cows/sheep?

County (required)

The county in which the walk starts is essential to help finding the walk in the database. Some walks may straddle more than one county - we suggest you select the county in which the walk starts or is mostly within.

Area (optional)

This field can be used, if you wish, to further identify where the walk is. This is particularly useful for large counties.

Walk Type (required)

To help quickly finding the right type of walk this provides a basic walk classification or type. Some walks may span two of these types - please use the type that fits the majority of the walk.

Length (required)

The length (in miles) of a walk is an approximation of the overall distance walked, not a measure of the distance "as the crow flies". iFootpath automatically completes this field based on the GPX file that has been uploaded.

Grade (required)

The grade of a walk is an indicator of how difficult it is to walk. This does not take into account the walk length but does suggest how challenging the walk will be. An easy walk, graded as 1 (and shown as 1 walking boot) indicates a walk that is essentially flat, has no sharp hills to climb, has no stiles or other obstacles, is easy to navigate (probably along a well worn path) and is suitable for most levels of fitness. Do be aware that the level of stamina required will vary and you should only walk within your limits - the indication of walk length will help with this. A difficult walk, graded as 5 (and represented by 5 boots) indicates a walk that is strenuous and involves steep ascents and/or descents. It may be technically challenging involving difficult terrain or obstacles.

Please note that the grading for walks is subjective and open to interpretation and should only be used as a guide when selecting a walk.

Map Ref / Start Point (optional)

The walk start point is an Ordnance Survey map reference to pinpoint the start point of the walk. This should be in the format:

AB 123 456

Further details of this system can be seen on the Ordnance Survey website.

Map Link (optional)

This optional field allows you to include a link to a web page containing a map showing the walk start. This is not the place to include any other links and the system will reject links to anything but Streetmap or Google Maps.

Start Point Co-ordinates (optional)

This pair of fields allows you to enter the longitude and latitude for the start point. iFootpath automatically completes this field based on the uploaded GPX file.

Key Image (required)

This is the main photograph used to illustrate the walk and can, if you wish, be the only photograph used of the walk. We recommend that you use a picture that characterises the walk, if possible, to show potential walkers what they might find or see. The picture must be in any of the main image formats (JPEG, GIF, BMP, PNG) and image files up to 2Mb in size are permitted. Once an image is uploaded it will be resized automatically and a smaller version saved that is optimised for viewing on both this website and iFootpath Mobile.

There are many image editing and manipulation applications available, so many that we cannot make particular recommendations although almost all are excellent. Our preferred way of saving images for iFootpath is to save or export them at a maximum size of 1024x1024 pixels as a JPEG file. This creates a file that is well under 2Mb in size, contains plenty of detail and displays well in almost any browser. Please be sure that you own the copyright to any images uploaded - you must have taken them yourself or have explicit permission. If you are concerned about image theft then we also suggest you include a small watermark in any corner of the image, but please remember that large watermarks that hide the image will not be popular with viewers!

Pdf file

Pdf file for walk

Icon (recommended)

The icon is a small image, 60 pixels square, used to provide a label for the walk when displayed in lists or in iFootpath Mobile. It is recommended that a small, square image for such use is created and uploaded. This should be in JPEG, GIF, BMP or PNG format and less than 100Kb in size. If you do not provide an icon the walk will be automatically given a generic system icon. If you do upload a photograph for the walk icon its size will be checked by the system and it will automatically be resized to 60 pixels square. However, please also note that if the image is not square in format it may be cropped and you will not get the result you might have expected. Just thought you should know!

Getting There (required)

This provides a text area to explain how to get to the start of the walk. It is good to include a post code.

Preview

This function allows you to see how your published walk would look, before you submit as 'Ready' for review.

Status

When a walk is created and saved in iFootpath its status is automatically set to 'Draft'. This implies that you are still working on it and may want to come back later to add walk sections, images or other information. When you are ready for the walk to be shared with other iFootpath registered users then the status should be changed to 'Ready'. This will automatically notify the system that you want to share the walk. The system will check to ensure you have completed the required information and alert a reviewer. The reviewer will read through to check the content is clean and consistent with our terms of use. This does not check the accuracy of the walk details or any other information. If there are issues with the contents you will be contacted by email. The walk status will also be reset to 'Draft' in this case. More likely, however, that everything is fine in which case its status will be set to 'Published' at which point it becomes available for viewing and downloading by any registered user of iFootpath. This includes download to iFootpath Mobile.

Filters

Filters allow you to narrow down your search for walks of interest. By County restricts the list of walks to those in the selected County. The Filters links at the top of the list page allow you to jump quickly to the filters or to clear them.

Keyword Search

The Keyword search facility will search through the walk descriptions and notes to find words or phrases you specify.

My GPX Files

This page gives you the list of GPX files that you have uploaded from iFootpath mobile (or from other sources). You are able to view, edit, delete or download these files. Once you are happy with your GPX file you can 'convert to walk' to create a draft walk based on this data. This walk will appear under 'Manage My Walks'.

Manage My Walks

The list of walks presented are those you have written and entered into iFootpath. From here you can filter the list if you have lots to narrow down your search, list all or just those with a particular status. If you select a 'Published' or 'Ready' walk you will see a read-only version of your walk, although if 'Ready' you can reset status to 'Draft' again for further editing.

Walk Sections in iFootpath

Each walk section represents a particular piece of a walking route. The start and end of each section are defined by waypoints. Each section joins onto the next to form the complete walk. There is no limit to the number of sections a walk can have, but on a long walk we recommend breaking the route down into manageable pieces that are delineated by particular landmarks, turnings or changes in obvious route. Each section has its own photograph and descriptive text which should hold a photograph that illustrates the section and any instructions or other notes you want to add that may be of use in helping navigation or pointing things out.

Section Title (required)

The section title is used to provide a short name for the section. It is useful in section titles to provide an indication of the start and end, so using names of landmarks, roads, etc is a useful aid. Sections will be named automatically as the name of the waypoint at the end of that section. It is recommended that you rename the sections as something more useful to walkers.

Section Description (required)

This field is used to provide as much information as you wish about the walk section. This should include notes on navigation, even if obvious, and any further information you care to share about views, historical notes, things to look for, etc.

Key Image (recommended)

A picture can save many words and will often be very useful in helping to navigate or spot things along the route. The picture must be in any of the main image formats (JPEG, GIF, BMP, PNG) and image files up to 2Mb in size are permitted. Once an image is uploaded it will be resized automatically and a smaller version saved that is optimised for viewing on both this website and iFootpath Mobile.

Our preferred way of saving images for iFootpath is to save or export them at a maximum size of 1024x1024 pixels as a JPEG file. Please be sure that you own the copyright to any images uploaded - you must have taken them yourself or have explicit permission.

Map Ref (optional)

This allows the OS Map reference for the start and end of the section to be entered. These should be in the format:

AB 123 456

Further details of this system can be seen on the Ordnance Survey website.

Start/End Point (optional)

This provides the facility to capture the co-ordinates for the start and end points of the walk section. iFootpath will automatically complete this field based on the GPX file used to create the walk.

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