North Malvern - The Worcestershire Beacon - Holy Well - St Ann's Well - North Malvern

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This walk was originally contributed by Terry Price. We would like to express our thanks for all his hard work over the years. Richard Hardy has kindly agreed to take over the contributorship, for which we are most grateful.

The Malvern Hills rise dramatically from the floor of the Severn Valley. The path over the tops is sometimes described as an urban Ridgeway. The outward leg of this circular walk follows the ridge as it climbs over End Hill, Sugarloaf Hill and The Worcestershire Beacon. The Beacon, at 425 metres or 1394 feet, is the highest point on the hills and has a toposcope, which is an outline map showing directions and distance to all the prominent landmarks that might be seen, given good eyesight and a clear day.

Dropping down from the Beacon, the route crosses to the west of the Wyche Cutting (toilets) and returns to the ridge to pass over four more hills, before dropping down to a lower level for the return journey. The path passes Holy Well, where Malvern water may be sampled, before rising up to cross to the east of the Wyche Cutting (public house).

A visit is made to Earnslaw Quarry, where the removal of Malvern stone for building purposes posed its threat to this Area Of Outstanding Natural Beauty, work having continued as late as the 1960s. Much conservation work has taken place since then and the quarry now boasts a lake complete with fish and other wildlife.

The walk continues across the face of the Malverns, where views looking down onto Great Malvern and its largely Victorian buildings are gained. The last 'port of call', is to St Ann's Well, another of the 72 wells that were popularized by the Malvern 'Water Cure' in Victorian times. The well building, which dates back to 1815, now serves as a cafe where refreshments may be taken. The final part of the walk continues along the side of the hill, to return to the car park at North Malvern Quarry.

The walk can be easily shortened (to 5.5 miles) by using the road going west to east through the Wyche Cutting, joining Waymarks 9 and 14. This reduces the overall distance by approximately 3.5 miles.

England - Central England - Worcestershire - Countryside

Features

Birds, Butterflies, Flowers, Great Views, Hills or Fells, Lake/Loch, Pub, Toilets, Wildlife, Woodland
23/09/2017 - Marie Arymar

A lovely walk and a great way to explore the area as this is our first time to Malvern. Just one tiny thing for Richard: the Holy Well drinking water is currently closed for use due to a failed bacteria test, so people will be unable to quench thirst or fill up bottles for a while. Thank you for taking the time to map out such a stunning, varied walk as this one.

11/03/2017 - Tony Goddard

This is probably one of the most stunning walks I have done! It takes a fair bit of effort to get up to the top of the hills but once there the views are stunning in all directions. We went after a couple of days of quite heavy rain but because of the height etc the going was pretty dry. We did the shorter version of the walk cutting across from 9 - 14. By our measure this was 7.5 miles so the longer version is at least 1.5 - 2 miles longer than the 9 miles stated. Just a great day out

25/03/2015 - Ann Williams

Four of us went on this walk last weekend. The weather was spectacular so the views were amazing. The climb at the beginning has left us with aching legs but well worth the effort. We did half the walk, moving from 9 to 14 but would like to return to do the rest.

23/03/2015 - Judy White

This is one of three Walking World walks we did while on a week's holiday in Great Malvern (the others were 2437 and 2518). For us, it was a great introduction to walking on the Malvern Hills, although the views were affected by low cloud for part of the day. We had lunch sitting on a well-placed bench at Wyche Cutting. The instructions were clear and easy to follow and paths were good underfoot. Not an easy walk, with a lot of ups and downs, but well worth the effort.

10/08/2013 - mark evans

Hats off to Dave Berry for writing this walk. Completed this on 27th July 2013 and it was brill, excellent views and a good combination of walking features. The directions are good but be careful not to miss the small path at number 17 otherwise you will be way of the mark. Overall I rate this a good five and it is what it says on the tin, a lung buster to start !!

02/06/2011 - Suzanne Evans

Completed this walk over the weekend and although it was raining heavily throughout and very cloudy it was still enjoyable. One I will have to do again in better weather as the stunning views were nowhere to be seen as we were walking in clouds at the highest points. The paths at point 17 are quite tough so take care as it was really tricky at certain points, however I can imagine on a clear day the views from certain points along this path are spectacular. Terrain reminded me very much of the Wrekin but on a grander scale.

27/02/2005 -

Completed this walk yesterday - a hard first few mkiles, specially in the snow. Don't be fooled by the word moderate, the first couple of miles are a lung buster, but it soon develops into a great undulating walk. I'll do this again for sure, although maybe in reverse next time. Allow some time as there are some lovely stop offs. Just a quick note regarding the way points. The holy well section.. there is a path that goes off right at a 90 degree angle, that isn't mentioned in the notes - ignore it and take the right of the 'parallel' paths. Other than this, the route was a doddle to follow, quite testing in places and great fun.

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