Living on the Greensand Ridge Walk I’m ashamed to say that I had no idea until I looked it up last week where it began and where it ended, but I’m so glad we finally did.
On Sunday, a beautiful spring day, as a taster we chose the route between Woburn and Eversholt, parked our car in the free carpark at Woburn and walked along to George Street turning left at the cross roads. The Woburn Hotel stands at the junction and features in my murder mystery.
Soon Woburn Abbey is in view across Woburn Park, the boundary marked by a red brick wall stretching as far as the eye could see, a sign of the successful brickworks near Bedford in the last century. Taking the clearly marked footpath at Ivy Lodge at the kissing gates, although I defy any human to kiss over them – they are far too high – we were delighted to be walking right across the park, passing grazing deer, towards the abbey – not a religious establishment in fact, but the name of the stately home owned by The Duke of Bedford.
You could pause here for a comfort break and coffee. We didn’t in the instance, pushing on over the brow of the ridge and then down through pine woodland which marks the boundary of the park. From there we crossed a field and we were soon on the lane to Eversholt – our destination, The Green Man pub was a couple of hundred yards on, passing the unspoilt houses and church and thankfully it was open. I’m sure that the Sunday roast would have been delicious but instead we opted for a lighter
soup and filled baguette combination of salmon and cream cheese. Perfect, without making us too full to enjoy the walk back.
Our only detour, having passed Woburn Abbey on our return, was to take a right hand path and walk across towards park buildings, a path which detours around the left hand side of a small lake. Watch out for this. If you keep close to the stables you will see a collection of Bedford red brick houses in front of you and a path next to a cattle grid. After this the path is clear, taking you to the main cattle grid at the entrance to the park.
Woburn has cafes, pubs and restaurants for refreshments and after you can browse in antiques and china shops. The other famous place to visit in the area is Woburn Safari Park which you can access by turning right at the end of the street and it in about half a mile on your right hand side, also featured in ‘Murder, Now and Then’.
Our walk was about six miles, perfect for a Sunday stroll rather than a serious ramble. The website suggests a variety of forms of public transport if you would prefer not to return the same way. We were so pleased to view a familiar place with new eyes, so close to home. It is a treasure in the heart of Bedfordshire.