Jun 9, 2013 · 12:00 PM
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Walk, Sunday, 9th June 2013, Freeland to Blenheim Palace, Optional 11 or 7 miles
Meeting point: Outside St Mary the Virgin Church, Freeland, Witney, Oxon OX29 8AL at 12.00 noon or
At the Green, Opposite The Cock Inn, Combe, Oxon, OX29 8NT at approx 1.15 p.m.
This walk passes through the Freeland Woods and emerges on Cucko Lane. Here we’ll cross fields and take in a lovely wooded path with a stream before emerging in a riverside field and then in Combe. Once in Combe we will meet any other walkers at the Green (opposite The Cock Inn Pub) at approx 1.15 p.m. before continuing through the beautiful village towards Blenheim Palace.
Blenheim Palace marks the site of the original Royal Manor House of Woodstock. Henry II lived here, and installed his mistress Rosamund Clifford in a retreat by a well nearby. The well survives, and is know as Fair Rosamund’s Well. The manor house survived until 1723. In 1704 John Churchill, Duke of Marlborough, defeated the French at the Battle of Blenheim. In recognition of his military feat, Queen Anne presented the Duke with the royal manor and funds to build a monumental house. The house was substantially completed by the early 1730’s; the eventual cost is reckoned to have been about £325,000. It has been described as the largest house in England, and covers some seven acres of beautiful grounds.
We will try and stop off at a pub for a drink and a short rest if you like, but please bring a packed lunch, waterproofs (just incase), water and some money for the pub stop.
PLEASE PARK IN THE VILLAGE HALL CAR PARK IN FREELAND. YOU CAN ONLY GAIN ACCESS TO THIS SIDE OF WROSLYN ROAD VIA THE A40 AS THERE IS A PART ROAD CLOSURE IN THE VILLAGE.
I hope to see you there!