Discover Milton Keynes: Join us for a lovely walk along the picturesque Caldecotte and Willen Lakes, admire the unique Peace Pagoda and a historical church. Great views all around!
Walk itinerary: Meet in front of the Main Reception Depart at 11.30am. Return: circa 17:00 hours. Total walk length: circa 10km. Stop for refreshments at Caldecotte Arms Surface mostly suitable for trainers but can be muddy and wet underfoot. Transport provided from the university and back.
Cost: £5 members, £7 members. Cost covers transport, pay for own refreshments. Limited number of places available, book by Friday evening 17th February.
Join us for a pleasant walk from Cranfield University, via Cranfield village and the wooded Marston Trift, to the Forest Centre & Millennium Country Park, with a view over the Stewartby Lake, where we will stop for a lunch at the cafe (bring your own lunch or purchase at the cafe). This will be followed by a walk to the ancient St Mary’s Church at Marston Moreteyne where we will get a tour of this historical church. Transport back to the university included.
Meet in front of the Cafe Bookshop. Depart at 10.30am.
Those joining us at Cranfield village, meet us at 11.30 am in front of The Swan pub.
Return: circa 16.30 hours Total walk length: circa 10 km (6.5miles) Surface: mainly tarmac or gravel path but it may be muddy. Cost: £6 members, £8 non-members. Stop for lunch: at Lakeside cafe
Weather forecast:unsettled.Please bring a waterproof jacket in case it rains.
Step back in time! Join us for a walk to the historical market town of Olney with its Victorian-themed Christmas market.
Meet in front of the Main Reception Depart at 11am Return: circa 16.30 hours Total walk length: circa 2 km (1miles) Surface: muddy at river meadows walking to Olney, then tarmac. Cost: £5 members, £8 non-members.
After a short taxi ride, about 15km north from Cranfield University, this walk will take us across the fields from the quintessential English village of Clifton Reynes, popular with walkers, to the market town of Olney. We will pass Olney river meadows of the River Great Ouse and beautiful St Peter and St Paul church.
Olney Christmas Market: On 4th December the annual ‘Dickens of a Christmas’ market will take place in Olney; with market traders dressed in Victorian clothes and stalls offering everything from gifts, holly wreaths and wrapping to delicious mulled wine and hot chocolate. Learn more on Olney’ town council’s website.
For history of the market town of Olney, click here.
Visit the nearest densely wooded area to Cranfield University the beautiful Salcey Forest. Enjoy the magnificent views from the top, as we follow its tree top trail.
Meet in front of the Cafe Bookshop by the large chestnut tree Depart at 13.00 hours Return: circa 17:30 hours
Total walk length: circa 10 km/ 6miles
Lunch/ Refreshment stop at Salcey Forest cafe at the start of the walk. Bring your own lunch or purchase.
Number of places: only 8 – more places will be available if more volunteer drivers come forward. If you are a driver, get in touch.
Cost: £3 (members), £6 non-members
Book your place online here.
Surface mostly suitable for trainers. Bring a waterproof jacket and a bottle of water with you.
About Salcey Forest: A former medieval hunting forest, it can be found in the south of the county of Northamptonshire, to the east of Hartwell village and about 23km east/north of Cranfield University. Map of the forest can be found here.
The Tree Top Way rises to 15 metres above the woodland floor, with a crow’s nest platform at 20 metres reached by steps. The structure offers stunning views across Salcey Forest and the adjoining woodlands of Yardley Chase.
Reminders of the forest’s past are visible, such as miles of ancient woodbanks, building remains and ancient trees. The ‘druids’ or veteran oaks in Salcey are rare and amazing wildlife habitats, and some of the old oaks are believed to be over 500 years old.
It is said that during the Second World War, elephants from circuses were put to use to fall trees in the forest. There is a pond named The Elephant Pond where the elephants could bathe at the end of the day. The forest was served by its own railway station on the Stratford-upon-Avon and Midland Junction Railway until 1908.
More info: Forestry Commission
Photos: @Cranfield University's Walks
The student society Cranfield University’s Walks had a busy month. Following our attendance at CSA student societies and clubs fair on 1st and 4th October, 6 local walks were organised for students and staff. The aim of these events was to show that Cranfield University and its surrounding areas are located in the midst of beautiful countryside that is ideal for walking.
A quick glance at the walks we’ve done in October:
Sunday 2nd October, a circular walk to Cranfield village: Fantastic turnout for our 1st walk! More than 40 students and staff set off from Cranfield University and continued on the cycle path to Cranfield village. The cycle path had been only recently completed; it appears to loosely connect to the national 51 cycle route that goes from Cranfield village to Marston Moretaine and Bedford.
In Cranfield village students were shown the site of the St Peter & St Paul’s church, Swan pub, and Budgens and Co-op supermarkets . Our group admired the views towards the Forest of Marston Vale, a community forest stretching behind the village high street towards Marston Moretaine. Return journey was led via the public footpath that circumnavigates Cranfield airport.
Saturday 7th October – A walk & shop trip: Discovering Bedfordshire’s best kept secrets! Following a short drive, 7 of us set off from the village of Great Barford, known for its beautiful medieval bridge. The walk continued along the River Great Ouse to Danish Camp and with a stop at the historical Willington Dovecote and Stables. Final stop was at Go Outdoors store on the outskirts of Bedford, a perfect place to unwind for some shopping – new walking boots, base layers, hiking socks and more!
Sunday 8th October, special interest walk – geology of Dunstable Downs: A minibus took our group of 13 about 30km south of Cranfield University, to visit the highest point of East of England. After a lunch at The Chiltern Gateway Centre run by National Trust, we met with our guide who teaches geology at Birbeck College, University of London. This was a circular walk, circa 10km in length. It included a stop at at the Whipsnade Tree Cathedral. We learned about the fascinating history of the area going back millions of year – think of dry valleys, shallow seas and lots of chalk!
Saturday 15th and 22nd of October, a walk to Lodge Farm and Farm Shop: There was a group of 25 and 8 of us respectively on these short walks from Cranfield University across the fields to the quintessentially English village of North Crawley and then to Raw Milk Dairy and Farm Shop run by Angela and Gary Adderson on the outskirts of the village. Homemade cakes, bread, fresh raw milk and cream awaited us. We enjoyed complimentary teas and coffees whilst sitting in Angela’s garden and even got a tour of the dairy and learned about milking cows.
Tuesday 25th October, a special evening walk in the dark: 31 of us headed in the dark from Cranfield University via the footpath that circumnavigates the airfield to Cranfield village and beyond, via Marston Thrift to the village of Marston Moretaine. On the way students learned local ghost stories. Huge thank you goes to The Bell pub at Marston Moretaine for accommodating our large group for refreshments. Special spooky-themed cakes were made for us by Angela from Raw Milk Dairy and Farm Shop at Lodge Farm.
Our October walks were attended by staff and MSc and PhD students from across different schools. European countries were well-represented; we also had students from Australia, USA, Guatemala, Mexico, Cameroon, Nigeria, Saudi Arabia, Japan, Malaysia, China, and India.
More walks are planned before Christmas. Would you like to get involved helping Andrew and Kristina organise future events for students and staff at Cranfield University? There are volunteer positions available to join our award-winning team, visit our Committee page to learn more. Or do you have a car and would you be willing to be one of our volunteer drivers and thus help us cut out transport costs? We like to hear from you, get in touch! Finally..