The Clarendon Way follows the course of a Roman Road arrow-straight through the village of Middle Winterslow, but on its western edge it leaves the road, curving steeply downhill along a track to enter some woodland. It then climbs back onto the hillside, granting some good views before reaching West Winterslow church.
A marvellous high-level walk along the edge of a ridge slowly leads down into the village of Pitton. The trail then climbs uphill to follow tracks through a large expanse of woodland, eventually reaching the ruins of Clarendon Palace.
A long descent leads to the eastern outskirts of Salisbury. The trail ends with a long road walk into the western outskirts of the city, followed by a stroll through the historic centre to reach the Cathedral.
3 hours 7 minutes
Map of the leg
Maps courtesy of Google Maps. Route for indicative purposes only, and may have been plotted after the walk. Please let me have comments on what you think of this new format.
This leg starts off at the junction of The Causeway and Middleton Road in Middle Winterslow at SU240330. Head westwards along Middleton Road through the village; shortly after The Flood comes in from the left, the road curves to the right. Do not follow the road to the right, and instead continue straight on along a track called Cobb Lane. This starts to descend and curves to the left. Near the bottom of the hill the track curves sharply to the right at SU231331; turn left through a metal clappergate that leads into some woodland.
Immediately turn to the left to climb up the hill; near the top the path turns to the right to contour through the woodland. AS it leaves the woodland turn left uphill for about fifty yards to SU229328, where the path curves to the left to head southwards through a succession of clappergates with a hedge on the right. The last clappergate leads out onto a track with the graveyard of West Winterslow church on the right. Continue along this track until The Street is reached at SU229324.
Cross the road and then start down Back Drove towards a farm; after a few yards turn right to follow a footpath that heads westwards with a barn on the left. The footpath soon becomes a track; follow this as it heads between fields, slowly curving to take a more southwesterly course with a hedge on the right. When a track is reached at SU220318, turn right and start following this track downhill southwestwards. When the track curves to the right, turn left down another track that heads southwestwards along the base of the slope. Houses start on the right before the track ends at a road called The Green. Turn left and follow The Green westwards for a short distance. At SU213314 turn right down a surfaced path that leads downhill, passing a play area on the left before ending at the High Street in Pitton opposite St Peter's church.
Turn left to head southwestwards along the High Street. At a crossroads continue straight on along Slate Way. After the last house on the left, turn right along a footpath that squeezes past a sewage pumping station. This follows the hedge on the right, and soon curves to the left to head westwards. The path meets a track that skirts the edge of some woodland. When a track comes in from the right at SU205311 the footpath heads off to the left, skirting just inside the trees towards Four Cottages.
The path crosses a track at Four Cottages and continues on in a rough westerly direction, soon curving to a more southwesterly course and entering the woods. It is easy to follow as it heads southwestwards through the woodland, eventually reaching a junction with a track at SU184301. Follow this track on for a short distance until the sparse ruins of Clarendon Palace become visible on the right. Immediately after the palace the track curves to the right downhill, and then to the left to heads westwards, slowly heading downhill. When the track curves to the right continue straight on along a footpath that crosses a field to join Queen Manor Road. Follow this westwards past Ranger's Lodge Farm before it becomes Milford Mill Road, immediately crossing the River Bourne before entering Milford.
When this road ends at a T-junction turn left along another Shady Bower. This climbs uphill and curves sharply to the right to continue westwards, crossing a railway line in a bridge. Continue on along this road westwards; it becomes Milford Hill before it heads under the A36(T). Continue along Milford Street on the other side towards the centre of Salisbury; continue on until the High Street is reached at SU142298. Turn left to head south along the High Street; it passes under an archway and continues on south towards the cathedral. When the road ends continue on along a path that leads to Salisbury Cathedral, where the Clarendon Way ends.
Places of interest
West Winterslow and Middle Winterslow
West and Middle Winterslow are two villages situated in the east of Wiltshire. Middle Winterslow is the larger of the two villages, whilst West Winterslow is situated about half a mile to the southwest.
The villages have two churches and two pubs.
location UID #39
Pitton is a small village in southeast Wiltshire. It has a shop, a church of St Peterís and a pub, the Silver Plough.
location UID #38
Clarendon Palace was a 12th-century royal residence. It is situated in Clarendon Forest. Starting as a hunting lodge for the Norman Kings, it was expanded by the Platagenet Kings Henry II and III. The Constitutions of Clarendon were promulgated here in 1164; they provoked the disagreement between Henry II and Thomas Becket.
There is little remaining to be seen on the ground, aside from a few flint walls.
location UID #37
Salisbury is most famous for its cathedral and its spire, at 404-feet the tallest in Britain. However, there is much else of interest in the small city. The present city was started in 1220 when the old cathedral city in Old Sarum, on a hillside a couple of miles to the north, was abandoned. Initially the new city was known by the name 'New Sarum', a term still seen in places.
Perhaps the best views of the city are from the floodplain of the Avon immediately to the south, with the cathedral's spire towering above the surrounding buildings. The grid pattern of the old city can still be seen on the ground, and many of the streets are filled with medieval buildings. Unfortunately the roads tent to be fairly clogged with traffic through much of the day.
It is home to two museums (the Wardrobe museum and the Salisbury and South Wiltshire museum), the former covering the history of the Rifles (Berkshire and Wiltshire) regiment, and the latter covering life in the area.
Two long-distance walks start in the city; the Avon Valley Path winds its way south to Christchurch, whilst the Clarendon Way crosses the hills eastwards towards the cathedral in Winchester.
location UID #45
Salisbury Cathedral was started in 1220, when the Bishop moved from Old Sarum, a few miles to the north. It was completed in only 45 years (the 404-foot spire was added afterwards). Some of the stonework of the old cathedral was reused, whilst more was floated down the River Nadder on boats.
The cathedral includes the oldest mechanical clock in Britain (and the oldest working clock in the world), which dates from around 1386.
The cathedral precinct is entered via one of five gateways through the 14thCentury city wall. Inside, the hustle and bustle of the city is left behind, making it an ideal area for rest and contemplation of a trail done or one just to be started.
location UID #46
Wilts/Dorset route 89 runs hourly during the week between Middle Winterslow and Salisbury.