Godmanchester - Houghton - Godmanchester

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This is a wonderful walk alongside a series of lakes with an abundance of wildlife in Godmanchester Nature Reserve, before reaching a riverside stretch including an interesting lock that has enabled navigation of the river past the mill since 1620. It then returns through the picturesque village of Hemingford Abbots.

Godmanchester is thought to be the oldest town in the county, possibly dating from a Neolithic settlement of farmers developing the light river soils and gravels. Its principal development was during the Roman Occupation starting with the construction of a military fort and the end of a Roman road running from Sandy. The Anglo-Saxons gave it its name Godmund's Caester after the ruins which they found.

A church was first mentioned in 969 and the Parish Church of St Mary may be on the site of a Romano-Christian church. The present church dates from 1623 and is thought to be the largest church in the county. The present town owes much to its past. There are a number of very picturesque early 17th Century timber-framed houses, fine 18th Century merchants' houses including Farm Hall with its tree-lined reflecting pool and Island Hall with its formal gardens and ornamental gardens, including the famous Chinese Bridge.

England - East England - Cambridgeshire - Countryside

Features

Birds, Cafe, Church, Flowers, Food Shop, Gift Shop, Great Views, Lake/Loch, Mostly Flat, Nature Trail, Pub, River, Toilets
31/08/2013 - Duncan Grey

This is a lovely and varied walk with something for everyone. I was a bit confused by the directions around the sluices (waymarks 7 and 8) and preferred the map, but otherwise a fine easy walk. Godmanchester itself deserves a browse if you have time at the end.