Royal Leamington SpaRugby

Royrug two
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By Ken on 16 Oct 2022







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It's quite a step between Leamington Spa and Rugby so this route tries to offer the shortest off road walk with maximum potential for breaks. Not all pubs will be open and the villages may not have shops but hopefully there are wayside seats and if lucky taps in churchyards. As always never set out on a walk without being prepared

It's quite a step between Leamington Spa and Rugby so this route tries to offer the shortest off road walk with maximum potential for breaks. Not all pubs will be open and the villages may not have shops but hopefully there are wayside seats and if lucky taps in churchyards. As always never set out on a walk without being prepared


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Reviews - 3

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Is this route good enough? -  Yes (3)

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Geography information system (GIS) data

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Royal Leamington Spa
Grid Ref SP3175065230
Lat / Lon 52.28431° / -1.53598°
Easting / Northing 431,750E / 265,230N
Grid Ref SP5032675249
Lat / Lon 52.37300° / -1.26219°
Easting / Northing 450,326E / 275,249N
What3Words myself.calls.stocks

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David Sanderson

17 Oct 2022 Autumn

Considering the distance of this walk, it really seemed rather easy. Starting in Rugby and leaving along the pedestrianised market street we passed multiple places to end the walk if we'd done it in the other direction. Faced with four lanes of traffic, you pass the Webb Ellis Museum and micropub and use an underpass to access a series of footpaths. It doesn't take long to feel like you're out of town and the combination of footpaths, parks and pavements is a balanced a direct way to the Warwickshire countryside. And that's the key to it. The route is a combination of mainly well marked paths across open countryside between pretty villages with historic buildings and pubs. There are some great views across the county, and even though you don't walk directly past Draycote Water, you frequently see it from your lofty vantage. Marton, at half way is on a bus route if you need to get to Coventry or back to Rugby. We stopped for a drink (food is an option) at the Red Lion in Hunningham before pressing on past the signs that warned we were about to encounter HS2. As it is, a corridor is preserved for walkers. Not long after that we were following the River Leam into the town which bears its name. The route through the park is a really pleasant way to bring the walk to a close. We stopped for a drink at the Boiler Room bar before making our way to the end of the walk, the art deco station of Leamington Spa. Safety wise, the walk scored highly. The lane walking was minimal and they were quiet and open. We encountered cattle but it was docile. Roads had crossings. The route is direct, well served and enjoyable to walk. A good example of a longer Slow Way.


17 Oct 2022 Autumn

On 15 October 2022, I used this walking route to walk from Rugby to Leamington Spa.

This exhilarating walk was a perfect way to spend my day. I enjoyed walking through a blend of scenic countryside, villages and a bit of stunning woodland. The route sets out from Rugby and mostly continues on a maintained footpath.

Along the route, the Red Lion Pub located in Hunningham is an ideal and scenic spot for a break before continuing the walk. There is a sign near this pub that reads construction for HS2 started in May 2021 and will be completed three years on from this month and year. Upon reaching the point of construction, there was a maintained wide path, allowing the walk to continue at ease.

Initially, I was a little nervous of walking 17 miles, and therefore had resigned to the option of catching a direct bus to Rugby or Coventry, from a village called Marton. However, the walking route was relatively flat and not difficult so I continued to walk. And I am glad I did!

For anyone deciding to catch the bus from Marton to Rugby, there are a couple of things to note - The bus arrives into Marton approximately every two hours with the last bus arriving late afternoon. There is not much to see or do in Marton and I did not see a cafe or a pub there to spend time in until the bus arrives.

Overall, I would recommend this excellent walk.


16 Oct 2022 Autumn

I walked Rugby to Leamington. A very pleasant tranche of countryside and good final approach into Leamington. Services on the route in the way of pubs but few if any shops. Both ends the field path boundary crossing were gates but one section had stiles which were quite high. Cattle in pasture some cropped fields with paths not defined.

A good start from Rugby down a shopping street so a chance to stock up on essentials as there isn't much along the way. A chance to see the origin of the game / sport of Rugby from where it originates. A twist and turn route through housing needs care to navigate, (thanks Mike) then onto a real footpath with no opportunity for error as it's fenced in.

There is an option to leave the main road but the pavement is good so this Slow Way takes the direct route. A parallel road increases the distance from traffic before the recommended Cock Robin plantation, a minor detour. The road crossing to the Dunchurch footpath needs care look to the reservation at the Sainsbury island if traffic is busy.

Heading to Dunchurch the path is well defined alongside a golf course then Bilton Grange School. There is a gate into bushes along the way but this was overgrown so I took a minor detour into the sports field. Dunchurch is perhaps the only location to offer all services so forgotten requisites should be sought here.

I didn't find any services at Thurlaston but the tower of the old windmill is a good landmark as is the unusual tower at the church. The route across Whitefields Golf Course is well signed up to the exit point but the plot helps here. Next it's across fields which may not be compliant with section 134 of the Highway Act so you may be tempted to follow a track and the road if conditions are bad.

At Bourton on Dunsmore the village hall looks impressive but there was no coffee morning to drop in as I passed. I forgot to mention that the road here has a pavement so no traffic issues. Frankton offers the named 'Friendly Inn' but the front door is not in use so not so friendly to walkers only those who enter from the car park at the rear, which I didn't.

Halfway or thereabout, all good so far and from here it just got better. Fields of grass, yes cattle but no issues and stiles so those with short legs may complain. I also forgot to mention lots of excellent gates on the first half. I really enjoyed the walk across this pasture to Marton although I need to report a missing stile, I used a low broken fence. I hope it's sorted when you follow my footsteps.

Again nothing much in Marton so a short cut across to the church where there are seats, this is halfway so perhaps time for the packed lunch. From here it's an easy walk passing Eathorpe Hall, a crossing with care over the fast old Fosse Way then quiet lanes through the village. Another inn but again closed as I passed. From here I met the River Leam and the path was a bit twiddly but waymark posts assist the plot.

Once on the unclassified county road (UCR) it's plain sailing to Hunningham where it's well worth the plotted short detour along the village road to the busy riverside pub with lots of outside seating in the attractive position by the ancient bridge.

The Slow Way leaves Hunningham opposite the inn following the meandering course of the River Leam, although we do cut out some of the tedious twists and turns of the infant river. A notice at the start had been inspected but found difficult to interpret about path closed to allow construction of High Speed Two (HS2). I was assisted by a review of Royrug which indicated I would get through but there is always a niggling doubt.

To the west of Fields Farm the scar on the landscape became apparent, would I need to detour along the bridleway to the road? No, a wide fenced pedestrian walkway has been provided along the line of the path with no issues across the fields to Offchurch.

The Stag Inn looks prosperous and busy as I passed by. A mix of pasture and some cropped fields come next then entry to Newbold Comyn Park and people on the outskirts of Leamington. Here the Slow Way meets a path recorded as both Shakespeare's Avon Way and Centenary Way along a road. This is not perfect so you may need to be flexible, having explored the footpath to the south of the leisure centre, that may be traffic free but is no better.

Beyond the leisure centre things improve and a light controlled crossing offers a safe crossing of Willes Road and a short hop to enter Jephson Gardens a stunning and rightly popular place for residents to promenade. The exit is opposite the Spa, no not shop but the grand watering place that made the town famous.

The Slow Way should perhaps end here. The extension to the station has limited interest but is functional. Overall a great walk.

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