Dorset walk around Weymouth and Wyke Regis
PUBLISHED: 10:03 05 April 2016 | UPDATED: 10:03 05 April 2016
Edward Griffiths enjoys a bracing walk along the South West Coast Path
From bustling Weymouth Harbour to Nothe Fort, the peaceful Fleet and the South West Coast Path, through old Wyke Regis and across fields back to Weymouth, this delightful walk has it all and offers wonderful coastal views on a sunny spring day.
• Distance: 5¼ miles (8.5 km)
• Time: 4 hours
• Exertion: Not too strenuous. A couple of ascents but few stiles. Some mud after rain.
• Start: Weymouth Town Bridge (Grid Ref: SY678786)
• Map: OS Landranger Sheet 194
• Public Transport: First 3, 6, 8, 501; Damory 206, 207, 253
• Dogs: On leads in town and near roads
• Refreshments: Sandsfoot Castle Café or numerous cafés, pubs and takeaways in Weymouth
1 From the lifting Town Bridge, follow block paved Trinity Road with its fish and chip shop, tearooms and coffee shops. Follow the harbour’s edge along Cove Row, Hope Street and past Nothe Parade’s rows of first floor bow-fronted cottages. Past Weymouth Lifeboat Station, zig-zag through Weymouth Sailing Club and pass the South West Coast Path steps. In 100 yards, take the steps and Tarmac path up through trees to Barrack Road with Nothe Fort gates left. Follow the path alongside the left walls and take the zig-zag path down on Portland Harbour’s side to meet the concrete protection works at Newton’s Cove. Follow the promenade above the carbonate-rich sandstone beach. The ‘pavement effect’ is caused by weathering of the weaker vertical joints in the sandstone.
2 Reaching the first right steps, go up the first flight and turn left to cross Newton‘s Road footbridge. Follow the Tarmac and worn paths up past right houses into Redcliff View Park. Bend right to the road, signed ‘Coast Path’, out into Bincleaves Road. Take left Belle Vue Road and meander for ¼ mile past exclusive properties to Sandsfoot Castle Road. Turn left. Walk down past right Sudan Road bridge and up to visit Sandsfoot Castle and Café. Just past Sandsfoot Gardens, turn right then left onto signed ‘Rodwell Trail’, the old railway track.
3 Follow Rodwell Trail with Portland left, over a bridge and past ‘Wyke Regis Halt’. After the Whitehead torpedo factory site and the housing estate, bend right to pass Smallmouth Beach. Reaching Portland Road at a three-way footpath sign, cross the pedestrian crossing near left Ferryman Inn. Turn into Ferryman’s Way. Through the footpath-signed ‘Private Road and Crab House Café’ gateway follow the drive but veer left onto the Fleet-side path before the high fence gates. The Fleet and Chesil Beach are left. When the fence ends, go up the ‘Coast Path’ steps and follow the path outside the caravan park. When the caravan park fence ends at a kissing-gate, keep following the Coast Path along fenced field edges above The Fleet with fine views.
4 There are two more kissing-gates before you meet a Coast Path stone with ‘Wyke Regis ¼’ right. Past it, continue over and down to a kissing-gate onto the foreshore. Follow the shore to a right fenced track after the ‘Fleet Lagoon’ notice. Walk up the long hedged track to Wyke Castle on Westhill Road corner, signed back ‘Public Footpath’. Turn left up to the right bend. Take right Castle Hill Road down to the colour-washed houses in Wyke Regis High Street. Turn left up to the T-junction with The Albert Inn on the left corner. Turn right into Chamberlaine Road with a continuing blend of old and new houses. Follow the left bend, with 1907 All Saints Memorial Hall on the corner, round into All Saints’ Road and ascend to the right steps opposite Ebor Road up to All Saints’ Church.
5 Walk through, past the church to the lych-gate into Portland Road B3156. Turn left. Cross over before the T-junction and cross Wyke Road to the ‘Public Footpath’ left of the farm gate. Follow the path alongside the cemetery to the end stile with fine views over Weymouth. Over a second stile, go down to the gate/stile into a high field. Descend diagonally right to the bottom corner footpath-stile into a path through trees to a T-junction. Keep right, between tree clumps then aim down the clear path to a wide hedge gap and along the track to the gate/kissing-gate into Markham Avenue. If the house building project has started, follow the diverted route to Markham Avenue.
6 Walk down to Chickerell Road and turn right. Pass a right un-named road, right Tennyson Road, Ashton Road and Gypsy Lane at the Rodwell Trail railway arch. Keep straight on to the pedestrian crossing in Edwards Avenue at Sir Henry Edward’s 1894 almshouses. Cross into High West Street and continue to the right fork steps by the 1896 Town Hall up into Chapelhay Street. Go up and continue, with flats right and super views over the Upper Harbour, to a right bend into Dorset Terrace. Go straight into the flight of steps down to Trinity Road and Holy Trinity Church. Turn right back to the lifting bridge where you started.
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