Trails and Topography

Areas easy to reach from Malvern

This page differs from Towns and Villages in that it focuses on areas, defined by geographic features or character (and is an attempt to stop pages becoming ludicrously large).

The websites will hopefully give you some idea of attractions in the particular locality. These should be possible to include on a day’s bike ride from the Malvern vicinity, but some more so than others.

Ordnance Survey (Landranger) grid references may be added in italics. Plus we try to highlight refreshment possibilities of most interest to the hungry/thirsty cyclist!

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Also See

Towns and Villages around Malvern, or Further afield page for taking it beyond this – includes county wide sites (Glos, Shrops) and Welsh Borders.

Some pics of places of interest can be seen on a photo album page.

Places in Malvern and the immediate vicinity: see Local Interest.


Black and White Village Trail

This is taking you out of the immediate Malvern cycling area, but worth planning a trip this way (north west of Hereford). Can take in Weobley, Eardisland, Pembridge, Eardisley, Dilwyn, and Lyonshall, which are all pretty villages. There is a published Cider Cycling Route which takes in much of this – obtain from Herefordshire Tourist Information (note: it’s not the Ledbury one!).

Book: Black and White Village Trail (part of Family Walks series) Scarthin Books, ISBN 0 907758 47 9.

The Black and White Trail website has some information and pictures on the trail. Download the Black & White Villages Leisure Cycle Ride (9 or 15 miles) as a pdf, 580KB from Herefordshire Council site.

Eardisland History and community site. Flower festival in late May. Tea room behind the church, phone 01544 388226. Also The Dancing Tree farm shop and tea room SO432591(Wed to Sun) a mile to the east, phone 01544 388764.

Monkland Cheese Dairy could be fitted in a tour. Cafe open most of the year, shut Sundays mid October to Easter. The Pleck, Monkland, HR6 9DB, phone 01568 720307.

Pembridge SO392583

Dunkertons Organic Cider and Perry Mill, SO393569. Worth checking whether mill, pressing area or orchards can be visited. The cider shop is open for tastings and sales, Monday – Saturday 10.00 am – 6.00 pm all the year. Phone 01544 388653. Cider House Restaurant has closed.

Pembridge itself is an interesting ‘black and white’ town, most famous for the free-standing belltower (mostly 17th century but some dates back to 12th). See Pembridge Amenity Trust (or Mediaeval Pembridge but site owner is moving). Visitor Centre in East St, phone 01533 388761. Old Chapel Gallery for contemporary arts and crafts.

Weobley

Jules Bistro (at the top of the ‘square’) is a good place to eat. Jules himself is always happy to see cyclists partaking in his cooking – see pic on CycleTrail album.

Weobley website.

Bredon Hill area

In summertime on Bredon The bells they sound so clear; Round both the shires they ring them In steeples far and near, A happy noise to hear. From AE Housman, A Shropshire Lad.

Bredon.info Picture gallery for places close to Bredon Hill, and a little more.

Kemerton Conservation Trust based around (but not limited to) Kemerton Estate.

Bredon Barn (National Trust) 14th-century Cotswold stone building in Bredon itself. SO919369

Bredon Pottery is (was? – website closed 2010) in the High Street of Bredon itself, open Tues-Sat. Phone 01684 773417.

Toff Milway – Conderton Pottery.

Beckford Silk Mill – tours, cafe (Mon-Sat).

Book: Bredon Hill: a Guide to Its Archaeology, History, Folklore & Villages. Logaston Press, £4.95, ISBN 1873827067.

Vale of Evesham

Pershore (don’t judge the town by the railway station of that name!), Evesham, Honeybourne …

Wychavon district takes in Droitwich Spa, Pershore, Evesham and more. There is a Blossom Trail cycle route (see Cycling Around Malvern), with the train station as a recommended starting point.

Visit Pershore tourist info site.

Number 8 Community Arts Centre has a cafe which is a good place for a coffee, cake or ice cream. 8 High Street, Pershore.

Evesham, Almonry Heritage Centre.

Evesham Town website has a tourism section – accommodation, pubs etc. – plus What’s On.

Evesham Town Council website has some history and places to visit info.

The Fleece Inn at Bretforton holds a regular Asparagus Festival May/June (it is a National Trust property); the nearby The Round of Gras (Badsey) claims to be the only pub anywhere named after this locally grown delicacy.

Forest of Dean

A fascinating area, of early industrial and mining activity which now blends in with the beautiful landscape. Forest of Dean/Wye Valley tourism site. Would be pushing it to visit much of this on a day cycle ride from Malvern but worth looking at possibilities. For example, Lydney rail station is on the Gloucester/Newport line. Symonds Yat (below) is on the north western edge.

Royal Forest Route 20 miles route for walking or cycling (or car). See travel article in The Guardian (from 2004) for a flavour.

See Cycle Hire and Shops for Pedalaway bike hire in the Forest. The Pedalabikeaway Cycle Centre is next to the 12 mile way-marked Forest trail – off-road and rather different to most cycle routes in the area.

Forest Web Royal Forest of Dean community site.

Forest of Dean Sculpture Trail.

Model Village Lydney Park estate, phone 01594 845244. Looks fun from the pics on the web site.

Dean Forest Railway; Perrygrove Railway on the edge of the Forest.

Ruardean Garden Pottery.

Forest of Dean (community) radio broadcasts on 1521/1503 MW.

Dean Heritage Museum.

May Hill

A prominent landmark south of Newent, it can be seen for miles around – the hill with a distinctive clump of trees of top.

Taynton is just to the east and is the home of the Taynton Squash Perry Pear and award winning walnuts. According to a now defunct website, Glasshouse village right on the edge of the hill is actually a part of Taynton.

Staunton (Snigs End SO793291) and Lowbands (SO775315)
Chartist Cottages

and Oldest Mormon chapel

Lowbands road signDating from mid 1840s, this was an attempt by the Chartist Movement to settle the “working classes” on the land. Some 40 dwellings (?) were built at Lowbands. Quote from The Chartist Land Company “Second Chartist estate consisting of 23 smallholdings with model cottages laid out on a network of lanes around a schoolhouse and 10 acre common water meadow. 22 working horses and rows of fruit trees were provided along with firewood, manure and seeds.” Surely there must be something useful on the web about Lowbands history, other than National Lands Company page on Wikipedia? (A Chartist location map was on Kidderminster Revolutionaries site, which seems to be defunct.)

There is a farm b&b (Kilmorie Smallholding) at Snigs End (Staunton/Corse), phone 01452 840224. Once you know what to look for, you can spot many Chartist cottages in and around Corse/Staunton – there’s a sign on the green outside the pub (Prince of Wales?) saying ‘Chartist Settlement since 1848’. Quote from The Chartist Land Company “81 plot Chartist estate laid out on 268 acres ….. The third National Chartist petition was taken to parliament in 1848 on a cart made at Snigs End & pulled by estate horses.”

Book: The Chartist Land Company by Alice Mary Hadfield – the story of the Chartist settlements of Heronsgate, Great Dodford, Minister Lovell, Snigs End and Lowbands. Try Amazon.co.uk for availability. Chartism: A New History, by Malcolm Chase, Manchester University Press 2007, from Amazon.

News item from Sept 00: “The Chartist settlement of Snigs End is to become a conservation area in a bid to preserve a unique part of British social history. Key buildings of the settlement, just to the south of Staunton, have been conserved since 1976. Now, following a period of public consultation carried out this summer by the Forest of Dean District Council, conservation area status is to be extended to preserve for posterity the settlement’s original layout and distinctive cottages.” From Hereford Times.

Just to the east of Lowbands is Gadfield Elm, which has the oldest Mormon chapel in the world (SO784313, phone 01452 840576), built in 1836 (originally by the United Brethren). Open Weds, Fri, Sat, Sunday pm – toilets available when open, picnic area. Also see local BBC pages.

Symonds Yat

Also see Ross-on-Wye info. Earth Heritage Trust has published a geology/landscape Trail Guide – driving/walking.

Wyenot.com Some nice pics as well as info.

Goodrich Castle (an English Heritage property). Has its own Earth Heritage Trust Trail Guide too.

Wyedean Canoe and Adventure Centre Symonds Yat East, phone 01594 833238, email: wcc@wyedean.co.uk. Alternative: Symonds Yat Canoe Hire, Symonds Yat West.

Wye Valley Butterfly Zoo. Symonds Yat West.

Tenbury Wells SO594678

and Teme Valley

Tenbury Wells Visitors Guide. Check out the unusual Pump Rooms, built in 1862.

Tenbury Museum – also try info on Culture 24.

Teme Valley for Tenbury Wells and further upstream (Ludlow, Knighton). Mainly local history.

Go West tourism project up the Teme Valley.

Burford House Gardens has a National Collection of Clematis. West of Tenbury Wells.

Kyre Park Gardens SO623632. 29 acres created 1754, has recently been restored, large collection of ferns. Tea room. Phone 01885 410669. 

See Mistletoe festival info on Events page.

Tourist Information Centre: 21 Teme Street, WR15 8BB, phone 01584 810136.

Woolhope Dome

A beautiful if rather hilly area west of Ledbury. Earth Heritage Trust has published a geology/landscape Trail Guide – ten miles so possible to cycle (there’s also some info in their Frome Valley discovery guide).

Good views from the picnic spot half way or so up the hill from Cockshoot to Checkley (SO577385). Canwood Gallery is on the road from Checkley to Woolhope village – check website for when exhibitions are on.

The Crown at Woolhope village has good beer and food, and is likely to be packed on a Sunday. The Butchers Arms,  nearby, is another good food option.

Fownhope SO580345

Parish site Includes some info sheets for local walks. Fownhope Gallery, phone 01432 860220. Looks like The Greenman pub has been refurbished and gone upmarket, food-wise.

Wyre Forest

Towards Bewdley/Stourport, so on the edge of the area.

Wyre Forest Visitor Centre. They had 01299 402776 as a phone contact for local cycle hire.

Tourism site.

Visitors Guide.

Comments welcome

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