Past events

Saturday 18th February: Milton Keynes Walk – Caldecotte and Willen Lakes

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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.

Book online here

P1320146Photo from a past walk: Cranfield University students enjoying a visit to Milton Keynes.


Saturday 4 February: Stewartby Lake – Forest Centre – St Mary Church

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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.
Walk itinerary:
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

Book your place online here.

 Weather forecast:unsettled.Please bring a waterproof jacket in case it rains.

Sunday 4 December – Olney Christmas Market Walk

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Step back in time! Join us for a walk to the historical market town of Olney with its Victorian-themed Christmas market.

Walk itinerary:
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.

Book online here.

dsc01313After 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.

merry-xmasOlney 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.

Did you know? The author of Amazing Gracehymn, John Newton, was a resident in Olney. Learn more.

For history of the market town of Olney, click here.



Saturday 26th November – Salcey Forest Afternoon Walk

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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.

533698_10151707926365095_1997359578_nWalk itinerary:
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.

1004941_10151707927860095_1132880326_nAbout 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.

253790_114468385306364_1374999_nReminders 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.

998454_10151707928000095_10953251_nIt 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



6 great walks we had this October!

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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:

featured-imageSunday 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.

Our 1st walk, 1st group picture!

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 touchFinally..

Congratulations! Our 1st star walker is HoiKen, an MSc student from Malaysia, who attended

 all of our six walks in the month of October!start-walker

Castle Ashby (Sun. 15/06/14)

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The cost has now been reduced to £5.50 for members, £6.50 for non-members

Hiking Sunday! Join us in this double-walk to Castle Ashby.

The journey will begin with a 10.4Km route called A Fine State of Affairs that will take us from Castle Ashby village through fields to the River Nene, Whiston lock, and St Mary’s Church to finally end up again in Castle Ashby village.

But that is only the beginning, just after a quick rest it will be time for Castle Ashby. We have booked a guided tour to learn all about the property gardens: the Italian garden, the Orangery, the Butterfly garden, the Secret garden, the Maltese cross, the Rainbow border, and the Arboretum. After the tour we will be able to enjoy some of the house amenities, including: the Walled Garden Tea Room, the Garden Gift Shop, the Plant Centre, and the Farmyard (I have been told that it has teapot pigs! Awww…).

Activity date: Sunday, 15th of June 2014
Meeting point: The Café Bookshop (Cranfield University)
Departing time from Cranfield: 09:30
Arriving time to Cranfield (approx): 17:00
Walk length (approx): 10Km (3hours, route to the River Nene) + 6Km? (1.5hours, gardens) <> 16Km
Club members only?: No. But limited spaces depending on the whole number and the drives’ number.
Sign up at: Email with “Belen – Castle Ashby” in the subject title
Sign-up deadline: Thursday 12th of June by 1pm
Price: £5.50 members and £6.50 non members (includes transport, entrance fee to the house, and guided tour). Please bring the exact amount of money.
Meal provided?: No. You can bring packed lunch or buy something in Castle Ashby Village (e.g. The Buttery). However, ensure you bring snacks to keep the energy high during the walk and sufficient water.
Gear: Wear appropriate clothing and walking boots for a country walk taking into account the weather. It is liable to be wet and muddy underfoot.
Other information: Drivers Wanted. If you have a car and are willing to drive please let us know in the email. The drive will be reimbursed.  If we get sufficient drivers we will bring down the walk cost. 

Carrington Arms chess tournament (Sun. 01/06/14)

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Ever thought the chess game in Harry Potter was really cool and wished you were there…well now you can! The Walking Society and Chess Society are joining forces to bring you a chess tournament and burger social at the Carrington Arms.


chess set

Everyone will have a chance to play someone on the large chess set at the Carrington Arms (ok maybe it’s not quite as big as the Harry Potter chess set….) then enjoy a yummy burger from their delicious steak counter (veggie option available)







 Note: we only have three chess clocks so can people with smart phones download a chess clock app for the day 



Activity date:  Sunday, 1st June
Meeting point:  The Café Bookshop (Cranfield University)
Departing time from Cranfield:  10:30
Arriving time to Cranfield (approx):  15:00
Walk length: 4.5 miles
Club members only?:  No. But limited to 16 people
Sign up at:  Email with “Sarah – Chess walk” in the subject title
Sign-up deadline:  Friday 30th May by 1pm
Price: Free (except for burger cost – see below)
Meal provided?: Burger will not be paid for but the walking society will pay £4 towards every meal. Menu is
Gear: Wear appropriate clothing and walking boots for a country walk taking into account the weather. It is liable to be wet and muddy underfoot.
Other information: Each game will last 8minutes. If you win, you get one point, if you lose, you do not get points, and if it is a draw you get 0.5 points.  The person who finishes with more points is the one who wins! For more details see link