I apologise for not getting this posted last week but we had a landline failure last Tuesday, realised on Wednesday, reported on Thursday and on Tuesday the BT man came to call.
These notes are provided to enable the walk to be plotted on a 1:25,000 map.
From the car park cross the road S and E into Chapel Street, at its end take footpath on left across the first field, bear right at second and head up the E side of Robin Wood. At Woodend Cottage take track W to Ingleby Toft. Walk N to footpath on left to Ingleby. At W of village take footpath on right heading W to Caves and on to Mill Plantation, turn right and follow paths towards Twyford and W across the fields to Repton. Walk down Monson Lane to Milton Road follow SE take first road on right, Springfield Road, near far end take footpath on left head E to Milton, Foremark and Seven Sprouts Farm. Take track heading towards Ingleby Toft, in about 400m turn right just after the small lake, back to Ticknall
Sunday was a stunningly good day for a walk, warm with gentle breezes and Spring really hitting the high notes everywhere we looked.
The aim of this walk was to take Mrs G to parts of this area she'd not seen before mainly Robin Wood, Ingleby and the walk along the River Trent passing Anchor Church and the Caves. We were also using it as a training walk for our holiday in June when we plan to walk the Cumbria Way from Ulverston to Keswick taking four days, then spending a couple of days on short walks in the area, making time for shopping, I'm sure.
I am sorry to say that after the very good way marking on the Hallaton walk in Leicestershire a few weeks ago, here the sign posting was frequently not always obvious nor clear and many of the stiles were in poor order. This did not detract from the walk except for the bad language from Mrs G, as she struggled to climb over yet another over height stile, she’s only 5ft tall and as we know all the men who build stiles are 6ft 6 inch tall with 36 inch inside legs.
Ticknall, as well as being the gateway to Calke Abbbey and Park is a super little village, well worth spending sometime wandering around. We parked at the Village Hall where part of the car park is for public parking, there are also some decent toilets here.
The walk from Ticknall to Ingleby is straight forward, across the fields and through some new woodland areas then through or up the side of Robin Wood and across the top. The path down to Ingleby was not clear it actually heads towards the north west corner of the field to join the road outside the John Thompson Free House, which I am assured by the lady who lives next door to the landlords father says is the best pub in Derbyshire with terrific food. This wonderful lady, with whom we spent some twenty minutes chatting, tends to the spring flower garden alongside the rock pool and well in the middle of the village.
At the west end of the village there is a short steep climb to a fantastic viewing point overlooking part of the village, the River Trent and its flood plane to the north of the river with Derby in the distance. We sat here in the sun drinking in the view and eating Kit Kats before they melted.
I have visited the caves a couple of time when it’s been cold and dank and found them a bit forbidding. This time we spent quite a few minutes exploring and sort of poking about. I have no knowledge of the caves and Church’s history but we could begin to imagine how the very poor or outcast or even monks or hermits may have lived here and what a cold, damp, miserable place it must have been and how desperate or driven the people had to be to live here.
From there across the fields towards Twyford and on to Repton the way was flat and a little boring, relieved by the butterflies (can anyone tell me what this one is) and hundreds of the sheep and their lambs. Ohh Mint Sauce!!
Needless to say we had a roast beef dinner at Repton Tea Rooms
The way back to Ticknall from Repton was by way of Milton and Foremark Hall and school (above). Then along the tree lined track to Heath Wood, on to Seven Sprouts Farm where we managed to take two wrong paths within 500 metres of each other, the first was a few metres down the wrong track and back, the second took us passed some interesting old ruins and up the stream along the small valley beneath Coppy Hill, passed the lake at the head valley and a 10 minute faff trying to cross the brand new sheep fencing. What we should have done was to take the track on the right at the bottom of the small spur, well before we reached the ruins.
Once over the fence it was through a small dish of a valley and over the hill back down into Ticknall. A good walk that we very much enjoyed