Explore the beautiful Worcestershire countryside, meander along peaceful waterways, sample the delights of locally grown food and drink and potter around quintessential English villages on this superb 40 mile waymarked trail.
Starting in the Spar town of Droitwich with its historical canals and finishing in the wonderful Cotswold village of Broadway, the Wychavon Way will carefully guide you through meadows, woodlands, orchards and riverside pastures and take you from hidden hollows to towering hilltops with stunning views over the famous Vale of Evesham and beyond.
We recommend a four day itinerary to allow plenty of time to explore places along the way and to ensure a relaxing pace.
Day 1 Droitwich Spa to Flyford Flavell 9.75 miles
Day 2 Flyford Flavell to Pershore 13 miles
Day 3 Pershore to Ashton under Hill 9.75 miles
Day 4 Ashton under Hill to Broadway 7.5 miles
If you are used to walking longer distances and have less time available a three day itinerary is perfectly feasible.
Day 1 Droitwich Spa to Rouse Lench 12.25 miles
Day 2 Rouse Lench to Great Comberton 15.25 miles
Day 3 Great Comberton to Broadway 13.5 miles
The route is waymarked with a ‘hill and vale’ logo and is shown on Ordnance Survey maps, although older maps will not show the changes introduced at the 2012 re-launch. The main locations of the route are: Shernal Green; Puckhill Wood; Earl's Common; Flyford Flavel; Rous Lench; Church lench; Hill Furze; Pershore; Pensham; Great Comberton; Bredon Hill; Ashton under Hill; Sedgeberrow; Childswickham; Broadway.
Droitwich Spa, the starting point of the Wychavon Way, is an old salt town with salt extraction going back to Roman times. It was in the 19th century however that industrial scale extraction began, developed by John Corbett who was so successful he was able to build a grand mansion in the French style called Chateau Impney just outside the town. Droitwich Spa is served by a canal system rich in wildlife and you may see kingfishers hunting the margins during a cold snap in the winter or spot a wily fox searching for a tasty morsel on a misty morning.
As the Wychavon Way heads south and east it enters more traditional farmland and you will see hawthorn rich hedges dotted with its prickly relative the blackthorn or sloe. Further south still, the route passes inviting coppices and small woodlands. In places the Way passes close to or even through some of the best traditionally managed orchards in the country. These are a stronghold for birds such as spotted flycatchers. These mouse-like creatures flit silently between the fruit boughs catching insects deftly on the wing as they go.
At some point as you travel south you will notice a change in the landscape. Gone are the quaint smaller fields of the north to be replaced by commercial fruit orchards and lush riverside meadows. Look closely along roadsides to spot gems such as the gorgeous bee orchid or stands of stately common broomrape. Many of the woods have an abundance of wild flowers such as greater butterfly orchid and the elegant white helleborine. In April and May there are also swathes of bluebells. As you approach Broadway and the end of your walk you will notice that many fields are bounded by honey coloured dry stone walls, a sure sign that you are now entering the Cotswolds.
The picturesque village of Broadway lies at the foot of the Cotswold escarpment and is often referred to as the jewel of the Cotswolds due to its idyllic honey coloured stone cottages with their thatched roofs. The buildings are typical of the Cotswolds and many date back to the 16th century. The town is now very much on the tourist itinerary and has many shops, tea rooms and galleries. It is well worth walking to Broadway Tower and Country Park for the excellent views over Worcestershire and Gloucestershire.
The Wychavon Way was originally devised by John Wren in celebration of the Queen’s Silver Jubilee in 1977 and it was established and publicised by Wychavon District Council. Following improvements carried out by a partnership between Wychavon District Council and Worcestershire County Council, the Wychavon Way was re-launched in 2012 to coincide with the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee.
information can also be obtained from Tourist Information Centres. Contact details can be found on our TIC Page
This text has been adapted from the Wychavon Way official guide book.
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