Monthly Archives: February 2016

Must Farm

Thursday 25 February 2016. By way of a change from walking, Josephine invited me to join the Fenland Archeology group members on a visit to the ongoing dig at Must Farm near Whittlesey. A couple of dozen of us met at the layby near the dig, just off the A605, from where we were escorted onto the site by our guide from the Cambridge Archeological Unit. I’m sorry to say that I don’t remember her name which is a shame as she is a most knowledgeable and enthusiastic young lady. The dig isn’t open to the general members of the public so I felt privileged that Josephine had asked me to come along.

The dig is receiving a great deal of publicity and has been dubbed as “England’s Pompeii” The finds in the two roundhouses are incredible given that they are about 3,000 years old. The ceramics, textiles and metal objects have been preserved by being buried in the Fenland peat. As my knowledge of archelogy is extremely limited I won’t try to expand on the information which can be found on the links to the relevant websites.

It was a cold but enjoyable day and I’ll now follow progress until the dig is completed later this year.

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Ferry Meadows – car parking charges

Fenland Ramblers members will be aware that for the last 5 or 6 years we have held our AGM at Ferry Meadows near Peterborough. This has been an ideal venue as it has a variety of local walks, public toilets, room hire at affordable cost and, perhaps most important, free car parking. This is about to change on 7 March with the introduction of all day, every day car parking charges. These will start at a minimum of £1.50 for the first hour, rising by 50p for every subsequent half-hour up to a maximum of £5 for stays in excess of 4 hours.
I use Ferry Meadows quite frequently and, being a true Yorkshireman, I don’t really want to pay up to £5 every time that I want to go for a walk. Thankfully, there is a “no cost” option by using the nearby “free” Thorpe Wood Golf Centre car park (PE3 6SE) which is open to all. As you can see from the following map, it is just one mile between the Thorpe Wood and Ferry Meadows car parks and most of this can be incorporated into walks around the park.

Ferry Meadows – alternative free car park

We have yet to make a decision of where to hold the 2016 Group AGM but, given that there are both pay and free car parking options, we are more than likely to stick with using Ferry Meadows. Confirmation will be provided later in the year.

Weybourne

Sunday 14 February 2016. Today’s 7.6-mile walk started from the car park at Weybourne Hope and took us on a circular route along the cliff tops towards Sheringham before turning inland towards the edge of Sheringham Park and then on to Weybourne station. From here we walked parallel to the railway track past Kelling Halt before crossing the line to walk through Kelling Heath. The last leg was from Kelling Hard (well named!) as we slogged along the shingle beach back to the cars.

8 of us set out along the cliffs with a strong (20mph) cold wind blowing off the sea. The turn inland came as something of a relief and we were joined soon after by Hilary who has set out in the opposite direction from Weybourne station. We stopped at the foot of the Gazebo for coffee after making the climb to the top. I haven’t been able to find any reference to the actual height of the platform but it stands on top of a hill at 220ft above sea level and provides 360 degree views across the tree tops.

Resuming the walk, we made our way to Weybourne Station to make use of the facilities before going on to the small lake near Kelling Halt for our lunch break. A steam train passed by whilst we tucked in to our sandwiches etc. The last leg of the walk took us through Kelling Heath where the gorse was in bloom before crossing over the A149 and on to Kelling Hard. The last mile or so was something of a slog with several sections of shingle beach making it hard going. I hadn’t done the bit across the heath before and, all in all, this was a most enjoyable walk with a great variety of scenery. One that I’ll certainly do again but probably in the opposite direction to get the shingle beach part out of the way right at the start.

Weybourne – walk route

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Castor

Sunday 7 February 2016. This 7.75 mile walk from Castor was advertised as “may be muddy” and we weren’t disappointed. Only 6 of us turned out on a windy and chilly morning to experience the worst that Castor Hanglands could throw at us in the depths of what had been a very wet winter. We walked up past St Kyneburgha’s church and out of the village on muddy bridleways which had been churned up by horses and 4×4’s. The crossing of the A47 dual carriageway proved uneventful and we stopped after about 45 minutes for coffee beside a small woodland plantation.

A walk alongside Brakes Wood and Bushy Wood brought us to the road leading to the northern end of Castor Hanglands. This is where the word “mud” took on a whole new meaning. It was largely unavoidable but thankfully not too deep. We found a dry area on Ailsworth Heath for lunch before tackling the rest of the Hanglands mud.

The rest of the walk was relatively easy as we re-crossed the A47, this time on a fly-over, before making our way back through Ailsworth and Castor back to the cars.

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