CHRISTMAS OFFER Subscribe to Dorset Magazine today CLICK HERE

A ramble around Piddletrenthide and Plush Hill

PUBLISHED: 10:54 16 July 2018 | UPDATED: 10:57 16 July 2018

The Brace of Pheasants in Plush

The Brace of Pheasants in Plush

Archant

Butterflies, buzzards and beautiful views sum up this lovely summer walk around Piddletrenthide and Plush Hill

Careful farming and maintenance of natural spaces has helped butterflies to thrive on this chalk hill farmland. You should see marbled whites, brimstones, gatekeepers, peacocks, red admirals and what Jill, a clearly knowledgeable Stour Valley Ranger I met a few years ago, identified instantly as ‘LBJs’ aka little brown jobs.

West Hill and Plush Hill offer magnificent views to the north as far as Duncliffe Hill and Win Green on the edge of Cranborne Chase, and Hardy Monument above Portesham in the south. If the long ascents find you wilting, feign fitness. Above you hungry buzzards may well be circling!

The Walk

1. Piddletrenthide is listed in the Domesday Book as paying tax for 30 hides, hence the name. Left of the Piddle Inn, take the signposted bridleway-path along the River Piddle and over the footbridge. Follow the track passing left barns. At left bridleway-gates, go around the right bend. Continue past two fine houses to the Cerne Abbas road. Turn left up the hill for 50 yards. Take the right bridleway-signed hedged path, then track with left fields and right gardens. After a left barn, drop down to pass the right lane and continue along the track past Malthouse Cottage. Keeping to the main track, pass more cottages and arrive at another lane, signed straight on ‘Bridleway’.

Piddletrenthide from West Hill trackPiddletrenthide from West Hill track

2. Go right, down the lane, passing The Barn and bending left. Visit All Saints’ Church with its magnificent 1487 tower, adorned with gargoyles, other strange animals and a sundial. Then, continue along Church Lane, passing lovely thatched cottages, to the B3143. Turn left, carefully for 100 yards to the right footpath-signed track. Through the gate, walk slowly up West Hill’s ancient sunken track, passing a chalk quarry. Before the top gate, take the left footpath-stile. Over into the large field, bear slightly right aiming for the top right end of the facing tree-line. Roughly 250 yards before those trees, veer off right to find the fence’s footpath-stile in the wildlife friendly field edge. Over, you should be between a left horse jump area and right cattle pens. Follow the green track along right trees down the field to a right hairpin.

3. Go over the facing footpath-stile/gate and follow the green farm track with terraces either side, then bending right down to a stile/gate. Over, join a sunken chalk track descending to 1½ gates onto the road. Turn left into ‘Plush’. Pass The Brace of Pheasants at the T-junction and turn right for ‘Hazelbury Bryan’. Follow the lane, passing the Old School House and bend left before rising past Millers Barn. Note the right footpath-gate. This is your route. But continue up the hill to visit St John the Baptist Church, designed by Benjamin Ferrey, a pupil of Augustus Pugin, in 1848. He designed the first villas in Bournemouth, in Westover Road, in 1837. The church was deconsecrated 30 years ago and restored in the 1990s as a concert space which is also home to the Plush Festival (plushfestival.com) taking place this year on 3 – 6 August and 14- 16 September.

4. Returning to that footpath-gate, go through and walk slowly up the angled track to the top zig-zag and fence footpath-stile. Over, turn half-left up the field, aiming 50 yards left of the top ash tree. Finding the hedge’s footpath-stile, go over and continue in the same direction over the huge field, aiming initially for the right end of the top clump before passing left of the concrete water tank. If not harvested yet, reach your target by following tractor tracks. Arriving at open ground, between top and lower woods, meet a bridleway-track descending outside the top wood. Turn right and follow the track along the left hedge. Keep following it, with a left hedge, no hedge, passing a left turn, and a right hedge.

Down Tuttons Laneat the end of the walkDown Tuttons Laneat the end of the walk

5. Through the end gate, signed back ‘Bridleway’, cross the road and Doles Ash Farm drive. Follow the right hedge’s grass track down. Continue along wooden fenced section with Doles Ash Farm below you, and through trees and along grass track again with a right hedge. In 100 yards, take the right, hedged, unsigned, narrow bridleway-path. If the narrow path is deep mud, go over the fence section left of the path’s entrance and follow the right hedge to the end gate to rejoin the route. At the end, continue down the hedged grass track. Past a left barn, go up and over, and continue down to the B3143. Out of Tuttons Lane, turn right back to your starting point and the Piddle Inn.

Panoramic views from Plush HillPanoramic views from Plush Hill

Distance: 5¾ miles (9.25km)

Time: 4 hours

Exertion: Fairly strenuous on farm tracks and bridleways over hills and fields. Two fairly stiff ascents

Start: The Piddle Inn, Piddletrenthide. Park in Wightmans Orchard or nearby on B3143.

Grid Ref: SY907893.

Map: OS Landranger Sheet 194

Dogs: On leads on roads and in fields with livestock

Public Transport: Damory Coaches 307

Refreshments: The Piddle Inn or Brace of Pheasants for lunches

0 comments

Welcome , please leave your message below.

Optional - JPG files only
Optional - MP3 files only
Optional - 3GP, AVI, MOV, MPG or WMV files
Comments

Please log in to leave a comment and share your views with other Dorset visitors.

We enable people to post comments with the aim of encouraging open debate.

Only people who register and sign up to our terms and conditions can post comments. These terms and conditions explain our house rules and legal guidelines.

Comments are not edited by Dorset staff prior to publication but may be automatically filtered.

If you have a complaint about a comment please contact us by clicking on the Report This Comment button next to the comment.

Not a member yet?

Register to create your own unique Dorset account for free.

Signing up is free, quick and easy and offers you the chance to add comments, personalise the site with local information picked just for you, and more.

Sign up now

More from Out & About

Wednesday, October 17, 2018

The guide to Dorset’s best firework displays and bonfire events happening in 2018

Read more
Monday, October 15, 2018

From festive light switch-ons and Santa’s Grottos, to German Christmas markets and late-night shopping, we’ve covered what’s on in Dorset this season

Read more
Monday, October 15, 2018

Dorset villages are some of the most beautiful in England – think winding lanes, thatched cottages and a cosy pub or welcoming tea room. We suggest ten of the prettiest villages to visit in the county

Read more
Monday, October 1, 2018

Autumn is a great time to brush up on your gardening knowledge with the help of some experts, as well as see some well known gardens in a different light

Read more
Friday, September 14, 2018

Follow in the footsteps of the Romans on this lovely walk that takes in rare habitat, ancient woodland and glorious views

Read more
Tuesday, September 11, 2018

This challenging coastal walk rewards your efforts with spectacular views along the Jurassic Coast

Read more
Tuesday, September 11, 2018

Marine photographer Steve Belasco shares some very special wildlife moments

Read more
Wednesday, September 5, 2018

TravelSupermarket has uncovered the top 25 most popular UK beaches on Instagram after analysing hashtags used for over 1,100 beaches and Bournemouth comes out on top

Read more
Tuesday, August 28, 2018

Ride + Stride, Dorset Historic Churches Trust’s annual fundraising event, is a great way to explore and support some of the county’s more unusual places of worship

Read more
Monday, August 6, 2018

This easy level walks takes in an ancient village described as The Mother of Bournemouth and Throop Mill of the River Stour

Read more
Friday, July 27, 2018

Martin Clunes and his family have called West Dorset home for over two decades. Here he shares some of their favourite local places

Read more

From paddling on the Frome to admiring one of the best vistas in Dorset, Adam Lee-Potter’s beloved home town just keeps getting better and better

Read more
Monday, July 16, 2018

Butterflies, buzzards and beautiful views sum up this lovely summer walk around Piddletrenthide and Plush Hill

Read more
Sunday, July 8, 2018

Visit Dorset reveal their favourite lesser-known local beaches to explore if you want to get off the beaten track this summer

Read more
 
A+ South & South West

Newsletter Sign Up

Sign up to the following newsletters:

Sign up to receive our regular email newsletter

Our Privacy Policy

Topics of Interest

Subscribe or buy a mag today


subscription ad

Local Business Directory

Property Search