We’ve been doing a lot more exploring of random public footpaths recently, as are a lot of other people. I recently saw a post by one of the owners of Church Farm in Weston Turville, Buckinghamshire that they were running a pop-up cafe on one of the public footpaths. A quick search of the local rights of way (yes I’m that sad!) and I had our route planned. This is a family friendly walk around Weston Turville across flat public footpaths. It has some stiles and kissing gates so it isn’t suitable for pushchairs. It can also get quite muddy in places so decent boots are an essential.
There are various routes and public footpaths that you can explore around this area. This particular walk crosses some grazing fields, goes around the edges of some fields of crops, along the disused Wendover arm of the Grand Union Canal and through a private woodland. It’s a pretty impressive range of things to see in such a small area!!
The walk is quite popular with dogs but there are lots of signs asking for dogs to be kept on leads. Apparently they have free range chickens and dogs kill more of them each year than the foxes do!
How long will the walk take?
Our walk took about 1hr and 15 minutes. But that also included a lot of stops to look at particularly interesting stones (I kid you not!), several snacks and a tantrum (about a stick). I reckon toddler-free families would do this in about an hour.
This is my step-by-step guide to this really family friendly walk on the edge of Weston Turville. It’s actually quite an easy route to follow but I’ve included lots of photos to help guide you.
Stage one – The church car park and church yard
The starting point of this route is the car park of St Mary The Virgin CofE Church. There is a gate to the left of the church and a path that leads down the side of the church.
This is a public footpath even though it goes through the church yard. At the end of the path is a kissing gate. Go through it.
Field one – pasture for grazing
Walk diagonally through the field. At certain times of the year it can be hard to see the path itself, but you’re aiming to walk in a straight line from the kissing gate to the gate at the back of the field.
Field two – crops
Once you’ve gone through this first gate don’t turn left. It looks like this is the only public footpath from the signs, but what you want to do is walk around the edge of the field that you are currently in by walking straight ahead and turning right at the corner of the field.
Continue walking down this path to the very end. The public footpath is wide and it’s nice and clear where the path ends and the field starts. At the end of this field you come to another kissing gate which brings you onto the disused Wendover arm of the Grand Union Canal
The Wendover arm of the Grand Union Canal
Turn right when you go through the kissing gate and walk along the old tow path. This is a really beautiful walk along the Grand Union Canal. It’s now more like a wide but shallow stream TBH, but it’s very pretty. The footpath is really wide so there’s plenty of space for everyone but it is, being a tow path, right next to the water’s edge so keep an eye on the little ones.
Follow the tow path until shortly before the bridge. There’s a woodland on your right along most of this section. This is a private woodland but, just before the bridge, there’s a permissive footpath (near the bin). Take this path and follow it all the way through to the road. From all of the signs and the barriers I assume they’ve had a lot of problems with people trespassing. Please make sure you keep to the foothpath which is quite clearly marked.
The woodland section
Continue walking through the woodland section for a few minutes. This path comes pretty much straight out onto a very busy road. Keep an eye on the little ones here. Turn right and you’ll see a house on your right. Walk towards this. Immediately to the right of the house is a public footpath, follow this.
You’ll follow a muddy track between some gardens and the other side of the private woodland you just walked through. At the end of this you could turn left and continue around the edge of Weston Turville reservoir. For this walk you don’t want to turn left, but keep walking forwards.
Field three – more crops
The public footpath on this section of the walk around Weston Turville is slightly less family friendly because the path is trickier. The path is on two levels, with a steep slope between them – something the kids had great fun running up and down! The rabbits have also had a lot of fun around here so there’s quite a lot of holes to lose little ones down! You’ll also get little flashes of the view across the reservoir and sailing club. In fact there’s stunning countryside views all round on this walk!
Keep walking across the field until you get to the gate. There’s no way you can go wrong on this section! There’s a stile to get into the next field. This bit is particularly boggy – you have been warned!
The pop-up cafe
If you’re lucky, and if you’re walking on a nice weekend, then you might find a pop-up cafe at this point. Most of the land and public footpaths that you’ve been walking on in this part of Weston Turville are actually part of Church Farm. They run this little pop-up cafe partially to help get to know and educate the people walking on the public footpaths around the farm. We spent a while talking to them and they’re lovely!
Field four – Horses!
I have seen so many people asking if there are family friendly walks in Buckinghamshire that have horses on them. Well this one does! The public footpath here is not down the drive, but it’s next to the fence in this field. At the end of the fence there’s another kissing gate to get out of the field and return to the car park.
A family trip to the farm
One thing I liked about this route is that the owners of Church Farm have put lots of signs up telling you what’s going on around the farm. It’s partly because they’re part of the Chilterns AONB farmer cluster. You can find out more about that here.
Our Church Farm Weston Turville family walk review
This was such a nice walk! It’s easy on little legs (although a little muddy at times) and there’s lots to see. As well as being family friendly, this walk around Weston Turville is a good length. You get some decent exercise but don’t completely knacker the kids! Some of the kissing gates were a little bit small so I had to take the backpack off to get through them!
How to get here and parking
Address – Church Walk, Weston Turville, Bucks. HP22 5SH.
This is a very small car park so if it is full please don’t park on the road itself. It’s used for farm access and I’m sure in a battle between a combine harvester and your car, the combine would win!! There aren’t any parking restrictions on the nearby roads but, if you are parking on them, please make sure you park responsibly.
There are no public toilets along this route. Other than the pop-up cafe there’s nowhere to get food. There are, however, a couple of pubs in the village.
There are lots of other family friendly walks in Buckinghamshire, Bedfordshire, Oxfordshire and Hertfordshire on the website. You can find all of them here.
Hi, I’m Vicky. My husband and I live in Aylesbury with our three children; a 10 year old son, an 8 year old son and a 3 year old daughter. I (mostly) love spending time together as a family. We visit all kinds of places and we’re quite happy to drive a fair distance for a decent day out. A few years ago I decided to set up Free Time with the Kids as a way to share our experiences of these family days out. You know, the essential information you need to know before your visit that can be surprisingly hard to find out. Where do I park? How much will it cost me to get in? Are there any discounts available? Are there loos? Can I take a picnic or get food? My aim is to be your go-to guide for all your free and cheap family days out across Bucks, Beds, Oxon, Herts & slightly beyond. I really hope you find the reviews helpful. If there’s anywhere that you’d recommend please get in touch email@example.com or get in touch via Facebook