Hampshire Countryside Service

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Do you have a question about Beacon Hill? Seen a plant or animal you can't identify?

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31 questions so far


12/01/2015 11:07am

Jean Cousens

My father used to be a keen hillwalker but now can walk only a few hundred yards on the level.

I like to take him to places along the A3 (from his care home in Walton) from which we can get good views in the car with possibly a short walk he can manage.

Are there any such hilltops in Hampshire with carparks at or near the top from which he can see a view?

Thank you


The Ranger Replies

There are a number of areas you could visit. Have you tried Butser Hill just off the A3 or Ashford Hangers near Hawkley. Both these sites are in the Petersfield area just off the A3 and are managed by Hampshire County Council. Alternatively, you could try Hindhead Common and the Devil's Punchbowl. You can park at the visitor centre and there is a great view across the Surrey Hills a short walk from the car park. This is a National Trust site. I hope this helps.



01/12/2014 03:04pm

I see that there is open access land on beacon hill, I wondered if there was a map which details the extent of this area and defines the perimeter of it?

The Ranger replies

Hi, the open Access land extent can be viewed on www.magic.gov.uk. This website shows all the conservation desigations for the UK and should be able to show you what you want to know. Go to the interactive map and if you click on 'Access' in the 'Table of contents on the left, you will be able to view Access land on the map. Hope this helps.



02/10/2014 03:52pm



Where is the car park in Burghclere? I am going for a walk up Beacon hill on Saturday.

Thank you

The Ranger replies

Information on Beacon Hill can be found at www.hants.gov.uk/countryside/beacon-hill. Parking is located off the Northbound carriageway of the A34.



17/03/2014 12:41pm

Alison Bents

I was planning on leading my local Surrey Ramblers group on a walk starting from the CP at Beacon Hill on 3/8/14 as there will be a special Heroes at Highclere event with a flypast. However after checking with Highclere Castle they have told me that there are no views of Highclere from Beacon Hill. The whole idea of the walk was for us to be able to view Highclere Castle from the top of Beacon Hill. Can you please confirm if this is correct and that it is not possible to see Highclere Castle from Beacon Hill ?

The Senior Ranger replies



The Castle is visible from the top of the hill if distant and best seen through binoculars.  A fly past would certainly be visible.





29/08/2013 08:18am

simon M

Why can’t you access the hill fort, or it's access route, from the North? Stiles allow access to Cross Dyke which, in turn, brings you up onto the North side of the hill. However, from there, the W-E barbed wire fence prevents all access to the fort (which is also surrounded by its own barbed wire!) or it's access corridor. Even worse. The N-S barbed wire fence at the bottom of the hill then prevents access to the car park (and thence the access corridor). The only exit from the North side of the hill is to backtrack and drop down to Ivory Farm and walk round (which means that you have to climb up the hill again! This seems crazy, especially since there is an old padlocked gate (again topped with barbed wire) near the top of the W-E fence which provides access to the hill via a kissing gate

Also why has the track S of the car park (past the disused pit) been closed/marked as no footpath since this would provide access to Thorndown Plantation and the Wayfarers Walk without having to go on a large loop via Old Burghclere

Not impressed!

A Ranger replies

Thank you for your detailed question, but on this occasion, there is no easy answer. Unfortunately, the majority of the land you are referring to is owned and managed by the Highclere Estate and is not in our jurisdiction. The fences you refer to are all managed and maintained by the Estate as are the padlocked gates. The best forum to air any particular concerns or requests about specific rights of way issues is to use the online reporting system. Many thanks for your interest in this site and sorry not to have been more help.



06/08/2013 01:07pm

Mike Osborne

Can you please tell me what the total elevation and distance is if we walk from the car park to the top of beacon hill? We only walked into the centre of the hill and didn't walk around the perimeter.

A ranger replies

The total elevation of the hillfort is 261m and the total distance from the picnic area, around the hillfort and back down is 2km. There are some spectacular views form the top as you walk around the site. The entire site is Open Access, so access can be gained to the rest of the hill to the south. Enjoy your walk!



23/07/2013 08:52am

Gemma Le Claire

Please could you let me know if there is an area to have a BBQ picnic on Beacon Hill. If not would you be able to suggest somewhere near by that you can use a BBQ.

A Ranger replies

We don't provide barbeque facilities at Beacon Hill. The site is protected by Byelaws which prohibit the use of barbeques. The only Hampshire County Council public barbeques are located some distance from the Beacon Hill area, so it might be worth contacting West Berkshire District Council, tel 01635 42400. There is certainly barbeque facilities at Snelsmore Common in Newbury only a few miles away.



23/07/2013 10:05am

Tom Barr

Is paragliding permitted from Beacon Hill? If it is not permitted why is this, given that it is only an occasional and harmless activity? Many thanks in advance for your reply.

A Ranger replies

Beacon Hill is part of a privately owned estate. Although Hampshire County Council manages part of the site to facilitate access to the top of the hill, the Estate has rules as to what activities can take place here.

Although hang-gliding and paragliding may seem harmless the hill is grazed by sheep which can easily be worried by such activities causing them to overheat from stress and exhaustion.

Please respect the owners wishes to restrict these activities from their property.



27/06/2013 11:48am

tony collier

Can the public walk west of Beacon Hill car park towards the stud, then turn north through Beacon Pass and Lime Tree Avenue and then onto the Castle. Thanks for any info.

A Ranger replies

Beacon Hill is Open Access land under the Countryside & Right of Way Act 2000, but it is managed by more than one body. Hampshire County Council leases the land including the picnic area, access up the hill and the hillfort itself. Access can be gained to the rest of the hill (south of the hillfort) via a kissing gate. Any further access is part of the Estate and it is uncertain if there is any route through to the Castle.



10/04/2013 10:21am

Lesley Macintosh

Is there a picnic area close to a car park where there is not too much climbing involved, please?

A Ranger replies

There is a picnic area next to the car park with no climbing involved. It id not however particularly picturesque. being next to the A34.


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