Ramsey to Bury

Amble through hidden leafy lanes, woodland and field edges. Visit a rural museum. Wander around a town with 60 listed buildings.

Full of butterflies and dragonflies, there's a good chance of spotting kingfishers. Finish with refreshments in a vintage cafe within a florist's shop.


This 4.5 miles (9,900 steps) route is of varied walking through hidden green lanes, woodland and field edges. Options for food and refreshments, great picnic spots too. Heaps of wildlife and historical interest.


Starting point
As you approach Ramsey town centre from the south along the B1040 High Street, look out for the cricket club sign pointing to the left. Turn left and park in Blenheim Road. Walk back to the High Street and turn left. After 150 yards cross the road and head down the footpath on the right between buildings, called Mugglestons Lane.

After a further 150 yards a footpath heads off to the left, but you should take the path heading roughly straight on. Follow the route through woodland and beside housing. After a short distance you'll skirt Ramsey golf course on your left. Cross a small footbridge, as shown below, and walk along a field edge. After just over 100 yards the footpath branches. Take the left-hand fork.


Point 1
The path brings you to Bury and the B1040 Warboys Road. Turn left and walk to the Church of the Holy Cross. Parts date from the 1100s, with most of the structure from the 1300s and 1400s. The font is more than 800 years old.

Walk up the incline into the church grounds and follow the path around the back and far side. There are a couple of benches to sit and have a picnic. Just before the car park, turn left into a narrow footpath. Just over 300 yards and you walk across part of Ramsey golf course. Take care not to cross if anyone is playing a shot.

Point 2
Walk across a field, full of flowering rapeseed if in season as shown below. On the far side, head roughly straight to cross a stream and walk along a tree-lined path with the stream on your right. After 100 yards you'll see more of Ramsey golf course on your left. Keep an eye out for kingfishers along the banks of the stream.

Be careful as you approach three footbridges on your right. Golfers playing the last hole drive over the stream and bank, so ensure any players at the tee to the left have seen you.

Cross the last of the footbridges and turn immediately left to walk along the top of the bank up the footpath towards and behind the golf and bowls clubhouse. Abbey Room's Lane brings you onto the High Street.


Point 3
You can shorten the walk at this point by turning right along the High Street, then immediately left and then left again into Little Whyte, picking the rest of the walk up in the last sentence of point 5 below.

To continue the walk, continue right up the High Street for a few yards and you're facing St Thomas à Becket. The church dates from 1180, the font 1200. Turn right intto Hollow Lane. On your left after 50 yards you'll pass the gatehouse of Ramsey Abbey, shown below. This is all that remains of the oldest English and once great Benedictine abbey, founded in the 7th century. The gatehouse dates from the 1400s.


Point 4
After 500 yards look for Abbey Road on the left and a small copse beside it. This is Booths Hill, a small motte or castle within a moat dating from 1140. There's also an icehouse in the middle.

Continue walking up Hollow Lane. About 200 yards from the last house follow the footpath off to the left to skirt a field edge. Follow the path around sharply to the right. After 80 yards turn left, then left again, to skirt around a small copse. The track heads along another field edge. Follow this around to the left to reach Ramsey Rural Museum, open Thursdays and weekend and Bank Holiday afternoons. There are interesting displays from the past, and the museum holds special events from spring to autumn.

To continue the walk, follow the drive out of the museum grounds to the B1096 Wood Lane.


Point 5
A few yards to the right on the opposite side of the road is Wood Lane Cemetery. The building you see inside the grounds is a listed mortuary chapel split into two parts joined by an arch, as shown above. One half is consecrated for Anglian burials, the other half unconsecrated and for non-conformist ceremonies. The grounds are peaceful to wander around and contain soldiers' graves from World Wars 1 and 2.

Back on Wood Lane, turn right out of the cemetery to head into Ramsey. After 360 yards follow the footpath to the right into Church Green, passing a pond on your left.  Continue straight on into Little Whyte, leading into Great Whyte.

Point 6
Looking down Great Whyte, it's hard to imagine what this part of Ramsey was like prior to the draining of Holme Fen in the 1850s, to allow passage of the railway from Kings Cross to Edinburgh. Ramsey was originally located on an island surrounded by boggy fens, with the Bury Brook running straight down Great Whyte and boats resting on either bank. The image below shows Great Whyte before drainage.


If you're ready for refreshments there are several choices along Great Whyte. Highly recommended is the vintage Wild Frost Cafe at 18 Great Whyte, a cafe within a florist's shop. You might be lucky and bag the leather settee in the window to soak up happy chatter and watch the florist at work. Note, it's shut on Sundays.

To end the walk, return to the top of Great Whyte. Turn right into the High Street and just over 400 yards brings you back to Blenheim Road and the start.

Here's the walk shown on the Ordnance Survey map of 1900.


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