SwadlincoteMelbourne (South Derbyshire)

Swamel three
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By David Sanderson on 26 Aug 2023







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Route via Hartshorne and Ticknall. Mostly rural track with some pavements in towns and villages. Stops at 4km from either end. Stiles throughout

Route via Hartshorne and Ticknall. Mostly rural track with some pavements in towns and villages. Stops at 4km from either end. Stiles throughout


This route has been reviewed by 2 people.

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Not verified

Route status - Live

Reviews - 2

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Is this route good enough? -  Yes (2)

There are currently no problems reported with this route.

Downloads - 3


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Geography information system (GIS) data

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Start and end points

Grid Ref SK2981419741
Lat / Lon 52.77446° / -1.55949°
Easting / Northing 429,814E / 319,741N
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Melbourne (South Derbyshire)
Grid Ref SK3862125185
Lat / Lon 52.82284° / -1.42831°
Easting / Northing 438,621E / 325,185N
What3Words backpack.bitter.coaster

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Hugh Hudson

10 Jan 2024 (edited 11 Jan 2024) Winter

Walked from Swadlincote to Melbourne. This is probably a good route in drier conditions - it is fairly easy to navigate, but there were a lot of muddy and wet sections today, including some very unpleasant clayfields. The path from Broadstone Lane to the Staunton Harold car park was very muddy and slippery, and in these conditions I would far rather have used the longer but better surfaced path nearer the reservoir.

From Swadlincote bus station we go east a short distance and cross Civic Way on a pelican crossing, then take the shortcut path down to Lower Midland Road, which is below a high wall. Where this ends and we join Midland Road, we cross and go past the war memorial into the park, then follow the main path up the hill. A mixture of pavements and alleyways takes us to the edge of the town and onto the first of many wet clayfields. After crossing a horse pasture we cross another large field on a path that is more direct than the right of way lines suggest. There are several stiles on this path. The one point where it is easy to go wrong is the left turn just before the edge of Hartshorne, which is unsignposted. The path takes us past a pub, where we turn right and continue up to Church Street (there is another pub visible just off route ahead here).

The route past Manor Farm now goes through fields below the farm road, and is fairly well marked. We rejoin the old lane below the farm and follow it over a bridge, that was shallowly flooded when I walked it, and just before we reach the road we branch right and follow field boundaries (more stiles) before being forced left past a farm where the footpath has been diverted. They have at least provided a fenced path alongside Ticknall Road, which emerges on Coal Lane. We follow the lane uphill to a wood, where another stile leads us onto quite a good path. This eventually turns right, and another stile takes us into the fields. The first field here is pasture, but beyond the brow of the hill we are back in the wet clay, with little sign of a path. The right of way line turns right to emerge on Derby Road.

We leave Derby Road almost immediately through a garden (there is a signpost, but the exact line through the garden is not well marked). At the bottom we are back in the fields apart from one little wood. The path here is not very well marked, and at one point a bridge over a drainage ditch is lower than the right of way line suggests. Eventually we leave the clay past another house, and follow the road into Ticknall, which has two pubs and a third awaiting redevelopment. Beyond the junction the south pavement stops, so we have to cross to the north side, passing under the old tramway bridge and continuing past more houses to a footpath sign which directs us onto a lane to the right, which passes between small pools into fields. We follow an obvious path through more mud to cross the stream and climb to Broadstone Lane, then go straight on onto the unremittingly muddy but well signposted path that heads directly to the tower above the Staunton Harold reservoir car park.

From the tower we descend a zigzagging surfaced path, then use the access road to reach Ashby Road - stay on the west side here if you want a continuous pavement, which leads easily to the Melbourne meeting point in the Market Place.

David Sanderson

26 Aug 2023 (edited 28 Aug 2023) Summer

A remarkably direct and easy to follow route. Mainly follows footpaths across agricultural land but follows pavements through the villages of Ticknall and Hartshorne which both offer refreshment stops. The paths sometimes don't follow the marked rights of way. I've altered the route to follow marked tracks but not where the track isn't marked, as it might change. Crossing many open fields on gently undulating land, there is a great feeling of space about this walk. There are stiles aplenty and a bridge or two. The stiles are of variable quality. There was a bit of a strange moment of doubt where the right of way actually goes through someone's garden and leaves via their front gate near Top Farm. I was reassured to see the finger post (somewhat overgrown) to confirm that I'd been on course! In many ways a model Slow Way but could maybe be do with some more care by the landowners.

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