Hartley Wintney - Walk through the past and present
Hartley Wintney village has many historical sites that you can visit, ranging from the Middle Ages to the Second World War. To find out more visit the Hartley Wintney Parish Council website.
Download route map 1mb pdf
Length: 5 miles
Time: 2.5 hours
Follow the route in a clockwise direction. There is some road walking but the village is set in a rural location, so traffic is only local and spasmodic.
Public transport: Stagecoach 7 between Aldershot and Reading.
Accessibility: one stile, several kissing gates, several ‘v’ squeeze gaps. Undulating tracks with one fairly steep descent.
The walk starts from the centre of Hartley Wintney village. Cross the pelican crossing and turn left along the pavement. After 100m take the first right into Hardings Lane, pass the Fire Station and turn left following the road clockwise around the two areas of common land - Causeway Common and Cricket Green (the second oldest cricket green in Hampshire), as far as a point immediately left of the cricket pavilion. Turn left up Cricket Green Lane and, on reaching the A323, cross at the pelican crossing and turn right along the pavement then left into Green Lane until you reach the footpath on the left leading past St John’s Church.
Continue along this path through the Mildmay Oaks (planted in 1820 to provide timber for post Napoleonic warships) to a drive leading to Oakwood School on the right of the common. Cross over the drive passing the pond on your right and follow the pavement right round until you see a kissing gate in the corner of the field on the opposite side of the road. Cross over and continue along the footpath that is parallel to the road until you reach St Mary’s Church (the eastern end of which was built in 1234). Views to the east extend to Hog’s Back and the North Downs on a fine day. Continue down the steps turning right through the gate to the Burial Ground, turn left through the lychgate passing the entrance to St Mary’s Church (the grave of Field Marshall Lord Alanbrooke can be found on the left along the gravel path, take the second path to the right and on towards the hedge).
Almost immediately turn right down to the road. Take care when crossing the road to the footpath on the opposite side of the road and follow the path downhill to Mitchell Avenue. Cross over the road and pass on through the woodland. Almost immediately the footpath divides at a fork, take the left hand path which leads to Dilly Lane (the woodland path runs parallel to Mitchell Avenue and is King John’s ride, along which in 1215 King John came from Odiham Castle to sign the Magna Carta at Runnymede). Turn right, passing an antiques shop on your left. On reaching the main road (A30) cross over and continue along Thackham’s Lane for about a mile.
There are a number of listed buildings along this quiet lane. Two barns were created by upturning boats and using the timber frames. Continue to the woods at West Green Common.
Turn right by Wst Green House, and follow the raised track between fine oak trees, emerge into West Green Road and continue right along the road passing the Dutch House. After a couple of bends, turn left up the drive taking the second kissing gate on the right (this can be very wet at times). The path continues along with a sharp left turn at the stile, uphill with the woodland on your left. The 18th century Hazeley House is visible on your left as you continue through the kissing gate onto Arrow Lane. Turn left at the lane taking care until you reach the main road (B3011), cross over the road to the gap in the bund onto a concrete track on Hazeley Heath. The notice board here has information about the wildlife on the heath. Continue for 100m then turn right along a broad track through a plateau of grassland.
Turn left along a concrete track, passing regenerating heathland that can be seen in the dip on the right, to concrete structures (these were used for training WWII troops on how to extract bogged tanks), follow the route down the slope onto wild heathland. The views here to the east are across the Hart Valley to Warren Heath (the land here is part of the Thames Basin Heaths Special Protection Area, set up to protect rare heathland birds). Continue along the track until it branches, taking the left hand branch and across two boardwalks. Just before you get to the telegraph pole turn right into the woodland by the River Hart, continue over the bridge and on through the rough field.
Continue through the kissing gate, keeping the hedge on your right through a further two kissing gates, over a small bridge that brings you to a paddock. Turn right along the river and pass through a five-barred gate and on through a second small gate. Recross the river by the bridge (the ford on the left was used by King John on his journey to Runnymeade) to emerge onto Springwell Lane opposite the amenity site. Turn left along the road, and the forest then right into a dead-end lane. Pass the Queen Anne farmhouse of Hares Farm on the right and continue through the pedestrian pinch point to enter the village by Hunt’s Common, stopping at the Patrick Vaughan Community Orchard on the left. Continue on to the main road (A30), and return along the High Street and the start of the walk.
Hartley Wintney is a delightful village. The route entails walking along roads and care should be taken especially with children, also care is advisable when walking near the Hart River, the rate of flow can be quite high. Parts of the walk can be quite muddy so waterproof boots are recommended.
Nigel and Debbie Wright, from Chineham.
Download this walk or get a larger version by calling 0845 603 5638.
Walk supplied by Councillor Susan Band of Hart District Council