This walk explores the countryside between the market town of Sandy and the village of Everton, following part of the Greensand Ridge Walk. The walk passes through pasture parkland and woodland, offering fine views and passing interesting features.
I have added just under a mile to this walk, basically taking a longer route through the RSPB grounds, no four legged friends even on a lead are allowed through the RSPB grounds, but there is a public footpath that leads back to Sandy.
Start/Finish: High Street Car Park, Sandy SG19 1AG
Distance: 10.5 miles
Toilets: Entrance to High Street Car Park (I checked this morning, 31st March and these particular toilets are not open on a Sunday! There will be two short breaks during our walk, 1st pub in Everton and 2nd Cafe/Shop at RSPB Entrance
Contact: Ian on mobile[masked]
There is evidence of a settlement in the Sandy area from atleast the middle Iron Age suggesting that early Sandy wouldhave been a self-sufficient farming settlement using theplentiful water supply as a resource. Excavations haverevealed remains of a roundhouse and pottery has beenrecovered in the cemetery and allotments area.The town gained importance when the Romans arrived in AD 43 and grew up around a Mansio (mansion) on the Romanroad that ran from Baldock in Hertfordshire to Godmanchesterin Cambridgeshire and developed to meet the needs of theRoman Imperial Post system. This was a network ofmessengers and later of relay posts, where the samemessenger could change horses and continue the journey.The collapse of the Roman Empire and withdrawal of theRomans from Britain in 410 AD would have initiated the returnof Sandy to its agricultural roots.A large number of Roman remains have been found in Sandy,and it seems likely that it was once a thriving Romansettlement. Some of the remains are on display at SandyTown Council Offices.
The Pinnacle is owned by the Pym family and is leased toSandy Town Council. The outcrop of the Greensand Ridgethat was formed about 125 million years ago is 300 feet abovesea level and provides excellent views over the Ivel Valley.‘Caesar’s Camp’ near the Pinnacle is the site of a British hillfort of Pre-Roman origin.
Tempsford Airfield was built in 1941 and during World War IIwas used as a base for Special Operations Executive (S.O.E.)agents. The airfield was closed to the RAF in 1947, and is stillintact. The field barn beside the bridleway, once formed part ofGibraltar Farm and remains as a memorial to those agentswho took part in many dangerous operations in occupiedEurope, while assisting the various Resistance movements.Equipment for these operations was issued in the barn andracks for supplies and equipment can still be seen
This is an ancient woodland of about 60 acres and recordsindicate that a wood has been on this site from at least 1297.Most of the trees are pine but there are some fine specimensof native trees. The lime trees are thought to be about 200years old when the wood was extensively replanted but someof the oaks date back 300 years. Evidence shows that it wasmanaged as a plantation from the early 1800’s with a variety ofexotic trees that were probably planted when Woodbury Hallwas first built.
This was one of a number of important country houses built inthe early 18th century along the top of the Greensand Ridge,which runs through Cambridgeshire and Bedfordshire. Amongthem Everton Hall and Hazells Hall close by, and further to thewest, Ickwell Bury, Ampthill Park and Woburn Abbey.
The Hall, built of sandstone in approximately 1710 for JohnPedley MP, was damaged by fire in the 1940s and has sincebeen rebuilt in brick to a design by Sir Basil Spence.Valley Farm, a medieval farmhouse at the foot of the hill belowTetworth Hall is believed to have been built about 1650 on thesite of huge stone circles in part of Canons Manor. A significantmoat system lies around it, fed by nearby springs.
St Mary’s Church
The major feature of the village of Everton, the present buildingdates from the 12th century with 14th century additions to thetower and porch. The 11th century Domesday Book records achurch on the site. Until the boundary changes in 1974, muchof the present Everton parish, including the church, was in theformer county of Huntingdonshire.
This is the national headquarters of the RSPB and is a naturereserve opened in 1961. The woodland, heath and acidgrassland here cover 180 hectares, and are being restored toform the largest stretch of heathland in Bedfordshire.
There is a charge of £1 per person / per walk to help cover the cost of hosting this group on meetup and purchasing of maps and kit requried to organise and lead these walks. If you can please pay me £1 on arrival and can I please request exact money as I may not have sufficient change on me. Thank you Ian
Please read the 'Read More About Us' section on the homepage before signing up for this walk, ensuring appropriate fitness and suitability for this walk.
Climbing, hillwalking and mountaineering are activities with a danger of personal injury or death. Participants in these activities should be aware of and accept these risks and be responsible for their own actions and involvement.