Elemental Sculpture Park (Somerford Keynes)

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The Elemental Sculpture Park in Somerford Keynes is only 5 minutes’ drive or 25 minutes’ walk from Nightingale House and is well worth a visit! It opened in 2015 and has well over 100 exhibits, tastefully displayed in extensive grounds. Enjoy and hour or two meandering … Continue reading

Walk from Nightingale House to the ‘Wild Duck Inn*’ at Ewen

 A gentle country walk through farmland and beside the infant River Thames

Walk from Nightingale House on Lower Mill Estate to the Wild Duck Inn at Ewen

Distance: 2.5 miles each way

Time: Allow 1.5 hours each way plus time for refreshments at the Wild Duck Inn

Restrictions: None except for keeping to the Thames Path when it goes through private land.

Directions: (numbers refer to map above)

Turn right out of Nightingale House (1) and walk back through the estate to the entrance in Mill Lane. Turn left onto Mill Lane. (The infant Thames is on your left.) At the end of Mill Lane (2), cross the Spine Road (main road) with care. Turn left along the footpath/ cycle path. Take the first turn on the right signposted ‘Somerford Keynes’ and very soon turn left into Neigh Bridge Park.

Follow the path to your right through the park with the Thames to your right and a lake to your left. At the end of Neigh Bridge Park turn right (3) to cross the little bridge over the river, then turn left and follow the path. (The river is now on your left.) Continue on the path beside the river, passing Kemble Mill and Old Mill Farm to your left. When you reach Upper Mill Farm – just after an old wind pump (tall metal structure with water tank on top) to your right– there is a small bridge to your left with a signpost pointing to Ewen: 1 mile (4). Cross the river here and continue along the Thames Path to Ewen. The river is now on your right.

When you reach the road on the edge of Ewen (5), turn right and when you meet a T junction (6) turn right again. Where the road dips after about 300metres you will find the ‘Wild Duck Inn’ (7) on your right.

*The Wild Duck www.thewildduckinn.co.uk Drakes Island, Ewen, Cirencester GL7 6BY Tel. (0)1285 770310 is a beautiful, cosy inn dating from the 16th century with oak beams and a log fire.  It serves very good food and is popular with locals and tourists alike. Evening meal prices at the Wild Duck can be quite high but lunchtime snacks are better value as portions are copious. We shared a sausage and caramelised onion ciabatta (excellent!) last time we walked to the pub for lunch and it was plenty for two.

 

Slimbridge Wetland Centre

Flamingos at Slimbridge Wetland Centre under an hour from Nightingale HouseHaving purchased our tickets we emerged from the Visitor Centre beside a lake. At first we weren’t that impressed. There were plenty of ducks, swans and coots and at the far end we could see – and hear – the children’s play area. However, we soon discovered that this was just for starters. There was much more beyond.. Continue reading

Watching the Beavers

Beaver Lodge Lower Mill EstateI’m quite embarrassed to admit how long it’s taken us to get round to this, but last night at about 9.15pm we finally braved the muddy path beside Flagham Fen and walked the few minutes round to the hide, hoping for a spot of beaver-watching. No-one else was around, the hide deserted. We sat and waited. Continue reading

Easy Walks from Nightingale House

One of the things we love about the location of Nightingale House is that within a couple of minutes of closing the front door you’re walking beside a lake on a country path. And there are at least three possible routes to choose from. You might like to try any (or all…) of the three walks below (plus see map of the estate in our blue information folder): Continue reading