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On Saturday morning 25th April 9 members and friends of the 39 Cirencester Ramblers walking in the Gower set off from Rhossili on a 2 mile easy walk. The group started off through the farmland called "The Vile" a unique remnant of a medieval field system. When they reached the cliff top they stopped in a sheltered dip from the wind to enjoy a warm drink and views of the cliffs. The walk continued on to the Coastguard Lookout Station with views of Worms Head before continuing on the Wales Coast Path back to Rhossili and lunch.
After lunch, the short walk group continued north along the Wales Coast Path until they reached the Old Rectory where those on the long walk had stopped for lunch. After this the whole group of 39 walkers continued together along the WCP below Rhossili Down until they reached Hillend. Here 19 of the group took the easier route back by walking down through the dunes and onto the beach. Some took the opportunity for a paddle in the sea as they made their way back along Rhossili Beach; stopping to look at the remains of the Helvetia, which ran aground in 1887. The group then had asteep climb back up to Rhossili to complete a 4½ mile walk.
On Sunday April 19th, 25 members had an enjoyable 5 mile walk on a dry day with good countryside views at the start point, Barrow Wake Viewpoint, Birdlip, and thereafter on the walk. The unusual feature of the walk was that it was always in the countryside, and did not enter any villages en route.
The route started on the quiet road which goes under the A417 and then northwards past the Radio Mast. Then the walk headed eastwards on a footpath past Cuckoopen Farm, and doubled back on The Gloucestershire Way before heading south across Coldwell Bottom. After the sharp uphill ascent out of the valley a coffee stop was taken in the next field. We then saw the first of many cute young spring lambs as the walk continued on footpaths to the edge of Cowley and then close to Stockwell.
On Sunday 12th April, a party of 32 Ramblers and 3 guests enjoyed a 7½ mile walk in the south Cotswolds in sunny but windy weather. Starting at the at the Hunters Hall Inn at Kingscote which dates from 1604, the walk began along a series of undulating country lanes before crossing fields and descending steeply along a sometimes muddy path towards the pretty village of Ozleworth. En route, the Ramblers spotted a group of horses galloping freely through the woods. Just before Ozleworth, one walker reunited a new-born lamb with its mother, which had become separated from her by a fence.
A coffee break was taken at Ozleworth church which is of Norman origin, and is most unusual for having a central hexagonal tower and having the only round churchyard in Gloucestershire. The walk continued a descent through parkland to Ozleworth Bottom which was followed for a couple of miles. The route then featured a steep climb towards Newington Bagpath, affording fine views across a valley to Lasborough Manor. A brief rest stop was taken at Newington Bagpath beside a Motte, and the walk then continued past the derelict church at Newington Bagpath before passing through fields and woods to the starting point at Hunters Hall.
On Bank Holiday Monday 6th April 38 members set off from Wyck Rissington to enjoy a circular walk in warm and sunny conditions. The group began by walking through the village and shortly after passing the village pond they joined the Diamond Way and set course for Wyck Hill, passing the edge of Kennel Coppice Woods en route. After crossing the busy Stow to Burford road, the walkers followed a series of field tracks to the pretty village of Icomb, where a coffee stop was made in the churchyard of St Mary the Virgin. This churchyard contains the tomb of Sir John Blaket, a knight who fought with Henry V at the Battle of Agincourt in France in 1415.
After the coffee stop 17 members continued on a short 5.5 mile walk. They took the Diamond Way past Icomb Place and a reservoir until they joined the Oxfordshire Way near Gawcombe. They then followed the Oxfordshire Way uphill crossing the A424 until they reached Wyck Beacon and then descended to the start at Wyck Rissington church.
The remaining 21 members followed footpaths across fields to Mickland's Farm. A short stretch of road walking then took the group into the picturesque village of Bledington. Lunch was taken in glorious sunshine on the village green, next to the King's Head Inn, a 16th century pub where some members had a welcome drink. The ramblers then walked up Church Street and proceeded through the graveyard to join the Oxfordshire Way. This long distance path provided a route all the way back to Wyck Rissington, passing through Gawcombe Woods and past Wyck Beacon Farm. On the descent to the village, having walked 9.5miles, there were stunning views across the central Cotswolds towards Withington and Andoversford.
On Sunday 29th March 19 members of our group set out in rain and high winds for an enjoyable 9 mile walk from Sherston. In the morning we walked along hedge line tracks to Willesley, where we found some shelter from the weather and had a break. After this we turned back across the windy fields to Sherston. This was enlivened by Bernard having his hat blown off, over the hedge and into the next field, ably chased and retrieved by Martin.
After lunch 11 still damp, but cheerful members walked out of Sherston to the Fosse Way, where the rain finally stopped. To dry off we continued our walk in high winds via the Ladyswood estate and a chat with some very friendly horses. The sun put in a brief appearance as we got back into Sherston to finish off another good day's walk.
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