Ancaster Walk One
Ancaster is steeped in history and there is evidence of a prehistoric settlement. It is probably best known as a site of a Roman Town. There is a choice of three circular walks in and around Ancaster and Sudbrook using field paths, tracks and quiet lanes. This route is shown in red on the map.
Playing field and Social Club car park off Ermine Street
SCENIC, TRAFFIC-FREE ROUTE THROUGH BEAUTIFUL WOODLAND AND ROLLING COUNTRYSIDE
This walk is set in the attractive countryside around the historic town of Ancaster.
The town has a long and important history dating from the prehistoric period. An Iron Age settlement developed into an important Roman town on Ermine Street, the Roman road linking London, Lincoln and the Humber. Ancaster sits on the County’s limestone backbone, known as the Lincolnshire Edge. Limestone has long been quarried in the local area and the stone, known as Ancaster stone, widely used for building and carving, including at Belton House and Lincoln cathedral. Look out for the Roman trail signs around the town which describe points of interest, including the statue of the three goddesses on the church wall.
The lakes were formed after sand extraction during which there were a number of archaeological discoveries including a middle Bronze Age cremation burial. Now a holiday complex, refreshments are available at the restaurant beyond the chalets. Look out for mallards, coots and herons on, and around, the water.
There is a gate on the right into the churchyard, where there are a number of yew trees. Yew trees are often found close to churches and there are many legends as to why this is so. One has it that it was the custom of Christian missionaries to preach under the trees and then build their churches close by. The yew symbolises resurrection and was reputed to protect against evil influences disturbing the dead.
This cemetery is a Site of Special Scientific Interest (SSSI). It is one of only two sites in the country where the tall thrift grows. It is a rare form of the sea pink which is found on coastal cliffs and marshes. Two Roman coffins can also be seen in the cemetery. A board at the entrance provides further information.
Moor Closes, is a 61/2 hectare Lincolnshire Wildlife Trust Reserve and SSSI. The wet meadow is home to a variety of wildflowers including marsh orchids, spotted orchids and marsh valerian. To maintain the meadow diversity the Reserve is grazed with cattle. If you visit the Reserve, please keep to the waymarked route.
- 1Leave the car park, turn left and after about 70m turn right into Angel Court. Follow the road round and then walk between two rows of bungalows to a gate in a panel fence onto a path, once an ancient drove way.
- 2Follow the public footpath directly opposite. Cross the meadow by bearing slightly left, heading for the middle of the far hedge to a fence and gate.
- 3Walk straight across the next narrow field to a lake. Turn right and follow the public footpath around the edge of the lake. The path opens out into an area with large trees. Turn left and follow the path beside the larger lake. Continue straight along the path to the road.
- 4Turn left along the roadside path towards the traffic lights.
- 5Immediately before the lights turn left along the lane and public footpath. Continue along the lane passing the church and cemetery. Follow Back Lane (past the gate into Angel Court), along a wooded path over a stream and past Moor Closes Reserve on the left.
- 6At the end of the lane is a T-junction, turn right along a rough track to the Old School House. At the end of the track turn right and follow the road to Ermine Street. Turn right to return to the starting point.
This walk uses field paths, tracks and roadside pavements.
There are no stiles on this walk but you are likely to encounter livestock.