Ludham Bridge – Ludham – St Benet's Abbey – Ludham Bridge

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Ludham Bridge – River Ant – Ludham – St Benet's Abbey – Ludham Bridge

This long but fully rewarding walk starts at Ludham Bridge and follows a meandering path alongside the River Ant, heading towards the stunning nature reserve of How Hill. The route turns off down a beautiful country lane and then crosses fields, heading for the village centre. On arrival, there is a shop, pub and tea room for some refreshments before the walk back to Ludham Bridge. The route back to the bridge goes via the ancient ruin of St Benet's Abbey. The abbey is one of the most photographed and famous scenes in the Norfolk Broads and well worth the trek down there from the village.

The abbey itself was founded in 1020 and the mill which was built around the gatehouse was constructed between 1729 and 1735. According to history, the builders removed the top storey of the gatehouse to allow room for the sails of the mill. The mill ceased to function when the cap was blown off by a gale in 1863. A slight detour from the path will take you over a stile near the arch and into a large field towards the main abbey ruins. Just some small wall sections remain on the site, with a large wooden cross marking the position of the altar. Legend has it that there was an underground tunnel linking this abbey with the nearby church of Ranworth, which can be seen the other side of the river in a south-westerly direction.

Toilets can be found at the start of the walk near the lay-bys just off the road. Besides the shops in the main village there are a couple of shops at the bridge. These range from giftshops, a cafe, an art gallery and cycle hire.

Update Nov 2016:
due to Permissive Path closures around St Benet's Abbey the route has been slightly altered. The stretch down to the abbey ruins now follows the same route back rather than the permissive riverbank path. This takes you back past Ludham Hall and along a quiet country lane to Johnson Street and the parking area.

England - East England - Norfolk - Broads

Features

Ancient Monument, Birds, Butterflies, Cafe, Church, Flowers, Food Shop, Gift Shop, Great Views, Mostly Flat, Play Area, Pub, Public Transport, River, Tea Shop, Toilets, Wildlife
05/10/2016 - Paul Barnes

Did walk Oct 2016. Path at wp19 closed so had to retrace back to village. Missed best part of the walk,

05/10/2016 - Paul Barnes

Did walk Oct 2016. Path at wp19 closed so had to retrace back to village. Missed best part of the walk,

21/12/2015 - Emma Collins

I did this walk in Dec15. It was thoroughly enjoyable with pretty views, even in the winter. The instructions are clear and easy to follow. Many Thanks

25/10/2011 - Alan Sturges

What a cracker. Great views. A walk to do again and again. A little diversion to How Hill is well worth it.

02/10/2011 - Clive Butcher

We did this walk in late September 2011 and it was a great walk with directions easy to follow. At point 20 we took a shortcut and carried on parallel to the river through the boatyard without a problem. Be aware though that this is permissive with no public right of way and may be closed off.

26/08/2009 - Walkingworld Admin

Roy Davenport reports that he did this walk on 18/8/09, and all was OK. Adrian (Admin)

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Pubs, cafes and restaurants
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