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June Walks Giveaway: Draycott Sleights, Somerset

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June Walks Giveaway: Draycott Sleights, Somerset

This walk is reproduced from our popular walking book 'Bristol & Bath Year Round Walks'. 

📥 To download this walk and take it with you, click here!

DRAYCOTT SLEIGHTS, SOMERSET

Distance: 5 miles 

WALK HIGHLIGHTS

Draycott Sleights is one of the less well-known beauty spots of the Mendip hills, an area of unimproved limestone grassland with fine views across the Somerset Levels towards the Quantock Hills and Exmoor, the Bristol Channel and the Welsh Coast. This is altogether perfect walking country for a fine summer’s day.

RECOMMENDED PUB (in case you’re reading this in the future, when pubs are open again) 

The Strawberry Special Inn, BS27 3TQ

HOW TO GET THERE & PARKING 

Follow the A371 into the centre of Draycott before turning south into Back Lane to reach a junction with Station Road. Turn left and park on the roadside by the
Strawberry Special Inn. Sat Nav: BS27 3TQ.

OS Explorers 141 Cheddar Gorge & Mendip Hills West. Grid ref ST475507

THE WALK

1. Facing the Strawberry Special, follow Station Road to the left before turning left into Milking Lane. In 300 metres, at a junction, turn right onto a track shown as Dolemead Lane on the OS map. In just under ½ mile, at a junction with Latches Lane, turn right and walk for ½ mile up to the A371, ignoring a right turn called Westfield Lane along the way. Cross the main road, the Cider Barn on the left, and follow the lane opposite towards the Mendip escarpment. In 150 metres, at a junction with Top Road, pass through a gateway opposite and follow an enclosed path to a field. Cross this field to a gate, walk up the left edge of the field ahead to a gate and stile on the left, immediately past some farm buildings.

2. Cross this stile, turn right and walk uphill to a stile at the top of the field. Climb uphill through Batcombe Hollow and, by a standing stone, bear right and follow a path that shortly bears left before climbing uphill to a gate at the top of the field beyond a standing stone and pond on the left. Beyond this gate, turn right and walk across to a gate in the right-hand field boundary, 100 metres up from the bottom corner of the field. Cross a track to a handgate opposite and enter the Draycott Sleights Nature Reserve. Bear half-left and follow a path that passes above a series of rock faces. In ¼ mile, towards the far end of these rock faces, bear right to a post and drop downhill to a gate in the bottom right corner of the field. Continue along a track to New Road.

3. Cross a stile opposite and follow the right edge of the reserve ahead along to an old stone barn, ignoring a right turn along the way. Keep ahead to the far side of the field and a gate and stile at the entrance to Rodney Stoke NNR. Drop downhill through woodland to a gate and field, before walking down to the bottom right corner of the field ahead. Cross a stile, follow a path down to a road just past a property called Rose Mount and turn right to reach the A371 in 350 metres.

4. Cross and follow Stoke Street opposite to reach Rodney Stoke’s church in ¼ mile. On a bend by the church, cross a stile and walk across the field ahead to a gate before crossing the next field to a stile in the wall opposite to join a lane. Follow this lane to the right to reach a road junction in 700 metres. Turn right, signposted Draycott, and continue to a junction by a small green in 650 metres. Turn left and, ignoring all side turns, follow the road as it winds its way back to the Strawberry Special.  

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  • Alex Batho
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