The North Wessex Downs Walking Festival 2023
2-11 June

And that’s a wrap!

This year’s walking festival has now finished and we would like to take this opportunity to express how grateful we are to all our partners who organise and lead walks, without whom this festival simply would not be possible.

Also thank you to all our walkers for talking part.  It was an absolute pleasure to meet you and share this beautiful landscape with you. We hope you enjoyed it as much as we did.  We will be sending out feedback forms as soon as possible.  Please do return them as it really does help us for future events.

Details of walks that took place remain below for interest.

Filter Walks:

Cocklebury Farm family walk

Friday 2nd Jun 2023  |  1.5 miles  |  11.00am  |  Free

This is a family focused, educational farm walk in a beautiful location west of Pewsey. It will be about 1.5 miles in total, taking around 2 hours at an ambling pace. Plenty of stops along the way to explain how the farm works and how they encourage and protect wildlife.

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Savernake Forest family walk

Friday 2nd Jun 2023  |  1.5 miles  |  2.00pm  |  Free

Join Community Ranger Greg for a short walk and fun facts about the trees in Savernake Forest. The walk itself will be 1.5 miles and the trail will be flat and pram-friendly, with plenty of stops for little legs to catch up, and some great nature-based activities.

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West of the Moon, East of the Sun

Friday 2nd Jun 2023  |  4.5 miles  |  6.45pm  |  £10 adult, £6 child (under 18)

Join us for a short eventide walk through woods and over open fields from Hampstead Norreys. Along the way, as the golden sun sets and the Strawberry Moon rises, we take time to tune into the sights and sounds of the evening – look (and listen) out for owls, deer and more!

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Marlborough nature trail

Saturday 3rd Jun 2023  |  2.7 miles  |  10.00am  |  £5 per adult, £3 per child (under 16)

A celebration of nature, this family friendly trail is the perfect opportunity to discover the sights, sounds and smells of the local environment in Marlborough’s many and varied open spaces.

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A Brails history walk

Saturday 3rd Jun 2023  |  3.25 miles  |  10.00am  |  Free

A gentle walk through the ancient woodlands of Bedwyn and Wilton Brails, which lie between Great Bedwyn and Wilton villages. Walkers will be accompanied by Richard Charles, custodian of the Brails, who will explain about the history of the area and its management today.

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Going underground: removing the pylons, revealing the secrets on Roundway Hill

Saturday 3rd Jun 2023  |  7.5 miles  |  2.00pm  |  Free

Join members of the National Grid project team working on the Visual Improvement Programme for a morning walk to explore Roundway Hill, the site of the Civil War Battle of Roundway Down, near Devizes.

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Geology and landscape around Ashdown House

Sunday 4th Jun 2023  |  3.2 miles  |  10.30am  |  Free

Ashdown House is set in the Lambourn Valley, a landscape we enjoy on this walk as we take in some of the interesting features of its geological history over the last 100 million years.

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The wildlife of Calstone Combes

Sunday 4th Jun 2023  |  3.75 miles  |  2.00pm  |  Free

A leisurely walk from the village of Calstone Wellington along the valley of the River Marden to its source in Ranscombe Bottom, taking in Cherhill Downs (famous for its white horse) and Calstone Combes. The combes are brimming with wildflowers, butterflies, moths and farmland birds, such as skylark and corn bunting.

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The history of Treacle Bolly and the margins of the River Kennet

Sunday 4th Jun 2023  |  1.75 miles  |  2.00pm  |  £5.50 per adult, £3 per child (under 16)

Discover some of the history and stories of Marlborough on this gentle walk along the margins of the River Kennet and through “Treacle Bolly” with Wiltshire History Man aka Nick Baxter.

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Ridgeway ramblings

Monday 5th Jun 2023  |  8.5 miles  |  10.00am  |  £15 per person

Let’s walk and enjoy some ‘Ridgeway Ramblings’! From the intimate valley of the Letcombe Brook, to the wide-open expanse of the downs, this 8.5-mile walk along the timeless chalk track of the Ridgeway is packed with interest, stories and views to take your breath away. Come and join us!

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Image credits (in order of walk date): Cocklebury Farm; Heather Lilley/Forestry England; Philippa Sanders/Pipsticks Walks; Belinda Richardson/Marlborough Town Council; Jennie Collins/Bedwyn Footpaths Group; Henry Oliver; Lesley Dunlop; Judy Hible; Nick Baxter; Philippa Sanders/Pipsticks Walks; Mark Clinch; WALX Wessex; Emma Kirkup; Judy Hible; Alex Cruickshank; Sian Brewer/Forestry England; Charmaine Hoey; Sarah Ahmed; Pewsey Vale Tourism Partnership; Msemmett/Wikicommons; Ann Shepley; Jo Beal; Charmaine Hoey; Creative Commons; Emma Weston/National Trust; Sheepdrove; Pewsey Vale Tourism Partnership.