Dunstable Downs

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.

group-pic
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

Sunday 14 October: Special interest walk – Dunstable Downs NOT CANCELLED

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Dunstable Downs: an extensive chalk and grassland Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty – a walk not to be missed!-)

Amazing views, kite flying and an opportunity to taste the traditional Bedfordshire clanger.

UPDATE ON 11 OCTOBER: DUE TO HEAVY RAIN FORECASTED ON SUNDAY, THIS WALK IS NOW POSTPONED UNTIL FURTHER NOTICE

UPDATE ON 13 October: the walk is back on and we still have  places available – if interested, get in touch with us to book – email walking@cranfield.ac.uk

Walk itinerary: 
 Meet in front of the Cafe Book Shop
Depart at 12:30 PM
Total walk length: circa 10 km (6 miles).                                                                                     Return: circa 18:00 hours.                                                                                                           Terrain: can be bit muddy, there are some stiles to climb over.  Wear walking boots or trainers plus other clothing suitable for country paths.

Stop for lunch at the Chilterns Gateway Centre at the start of the walk.

 Book your place at the Cranfield Students’ Association’s office, 1st floor

Please note: Cost associated is £5 for members and £10 for non members.                          

Have a look at this website on the day of the walk to see if there’s an update.

                   

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Dunstable Downs are one of the 38 Areas of Natural Outstanding Beauty designated in the UK. Learn about Dunstable Downs’s fascinating geology thanks to our walk leader David Thompson, who teaches this subject at Birbeck College, University of London.

This will be a circular walk starting and ending at Chilterns Gateway Centre, that is located about 30 km (19 miles) south of Cranfield University.This pleasant walk will take us along the boundary of Whipsnade Wildlife Park , after a stop to see the Whipsnade Tree Cathedral that was planted by Mr EK Blyth between 1931 and 1939.

 

Sunday 15 April: Special interest walk – Dunstable Downs

Posted on Updated on

Dunstable Downs: an extensive chalk and grassland Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty – a walk not to be missed!-)

Amazing views, kite flying and an opportunity to taste the traditional Bedfordshire clanger.

Walk itinerary: 
Meet in front of the Main Reception
Depart at: 12.30 hours                                                                                                                         Return: circa 17.30 hours                                                                                                                Total walk length: circa 10 km (6 miles)                                                                                 Terrain: can be muddy, there are some stiles to climb over.  Wear walking boots or trainers plus other clothing suitable for country paths.                                                                  Stop for refreshments at the Chilterns Gateway Centre at the end of the walk                   Cost: £5 for members of Cranfield University’s walking society, non-members £8
Book your place at the Cranfield Students’ Association’s office, 1st floor                            Show you membership card to claim a discounted rate when booking a place.                    Have a look at this website on the day of the walk to see if there’s an update.

This slideshow requires JavaScript.


Dunstable Downs are one of the 38 Areas of Natural Outstanding Beauty designated in the UK. Learn about Dunstable Downs’s fascinating geology thanks to our walk leader David Thompson, who teaches this subject at Birbeck College, University of London.

This will be a circular walk starting and ending at Chilterns Gateway Centre, about 30 km (19 miles) south of Cranfield University.This pleasant walk will take us along the boundary of Whipsnade Wildlife Park , after a stop to see the Whipsnade Tree Cathedral that was planted by Mr EK Blyth between 1931 and 1939.