St Ives (Cambridgeshire)Chatteris

Sticha one
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By a Slow Ways Volunteer on 07 Apr 2021







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This is a Slow Ways route connecting St Ives (Cambridgeshire) and Chatteris.

Know of a better route? Share it here.

This is a Slow Ways route connecting St Ives (Cambridgeshire) and Chatteris.

Know of a better route? Share it here.


This route has been reviewed by 1 person.

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Not verified

Route status - Live

Reviews - 1

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Is this route good enough? -  Yes (1)

There are currently no problems reported with this route.

Downloads - 5


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Geography information system (GIS) data

Total length

Maximum elevation

Minimum elevation

Start and end points

St Ives (Cambridgeshire)
Grid Ref TL3151871158
Lat / Lon 52.32279° / -0.07168°
Easting / Northing 531,519E / 271,159N
What3Words incisions.handbook.nappy
Grid Ref TL3923386313
Lat / Lon 52.45704° / 0.04772°
Easting / Northing 539,233E / 286,313N
What3Words deaf.divorcing.valley

Sticha One's land is

Arable 59.9%
Pasture 11.0%
Urban 28.0%
Water 1.1%

Data: Corine Land Cover (CLC) 2018



24 Jul 2022 Summer

Overall I really enjoyed walking this route. It is generally on well established paths, some of which appeared to be on an ancient route and the second half is on an old railway line, and passes through interesting landscapes and settlements.

I walked from St Ives to Chatteris and used a combination of a paper OS Explorer map and the downloaded route GPX file with the OS Maps app to plan and navigate the route. In general, the route was accurate with just a few very minor deviations required, and it took me 5.5 hours from start to finish.

The walk starts at a raised flower bed celebrating 900 years of a settlement at St Ives (photo 1), first passing along the main high street before turning off to the right. I made a minor deviation from the route here to take the more direct alley known as Crown Place which takes you directly to a pelican crossing and straight down Crown Walk. The route then follows a path alongside a park and a few residential streets before crossing a main road at another pelican crossing. This section is not necessarily well marked, but following the route on the map was straightforward and in effect there are numerous options to get to this point from the start anyway.

The next part of the route is on a straight and wide combined foot and cycle path (photo 2), then a left turn takes you on to a short road section which does not have a pavement but the verge is mostly wide and easy to traverse (photo 3). A well marked path takes you off the road and along a series of well walked footpaths beside fields (photo 4) and amongst trees, gradually climbing and culminating in what appeared to be an old route to Woodhurst and the village pond (photo 5).

The next section was not totally pleasant as it first travels along a road with no verge, then follows some more paths alongside fields (photo 6) to reach the village of Pidley and the Mad Cat pub (photo 7). In general, these paths are not so well used or marked, but the landscape is pretty and there was an interesting sign in one field which made it clear they were growing hemp not marijuana!

The route from Pidley to the next village of Somersham is about 1.5 miles totally alongside a road, but for most of this section there is a pavement or a kindly farmer or local council has very helpfully mown a walkable section of the verge (photo 8) so this was not a problem. There is also a farm shop and another pub beside the road for refreshment, though I forged on to the centre of Somersham where there is a lovely coffee shop across the road from the bandstand (photo 9).

A final section of pavement beside the road through Somerhsam brings you to the old station and the start of the railway line path (photo 10). This is a mostly straight and flat path through the fenland landscape with some trees for shelter (photo 12), apart from one deviation around a lake now on the line (photo 11). There were no signs and it wasn't entirely clear whether to go left or right around the lake, so the GPX file and OS Maps app came into its own here to show that left was the way, and going right would have ended up with retracing steps as there was no way through to the path other than across fields marked as private land.

Getting close to Chatteris there is a junction in the path (photo 13) where going right it is possible to link up with an ancient drove route into town, and indeed there are a number of other route options from here on. The railway line ends at a sign (photo 14) and a small car park, then it is pavement walking again along the roads to the clock tower (photo 15).

I would certainly walk this route again and recommend to others, it is essentially safe and the route is accurate. However, there are numerous paths in fields and on road verges that would not be accessible to using the route in a wheelchair. Other than that, in terms of the Slow Ways methodology the route is fairly direct, easy to navigate, and the landscape is gently rolling hills and flat fenland through arable farming areas. There are numerous refreshment options, and both St Ives and Chatteris have accommodation options but I am not aware of anywhere else on the route. The two towns are well served by buses although there is no direct bus between the two, and some of the villages along the way are also served by infrequent services. There are no trains thanks to the Dr Beeching cuts in the 1960s.

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