Porlock – Hawkcombe – Ley Hill – Doverhaye - Porlock

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The walk starts in Porlock and passes by St Dubricus Church, which was open when I visited. Much of the present building dates from the 13th Century. It contains a very old clock – probably around 1450 - and a fragment of a pre-Norman (i.e. pre-1066) cross which is set in the west wall of the south aisle. The Chapel of the High Cross is situated directly above the porch and can be accessed by a squeeze stairway.

The outward leg of the walk passes through Hawkcombe Woods National Nature Reserve. This is a Site of Special Scientific Interest on account of its rare ferns and lichen which thrive in the clean air. There are also various bird and butterfly species. Hawkcombe is a delightful valley with sessile oak woodland and a tumbling stream.

After ascending the valley's side the route passes Lucott Farm, then heads cross-country to Ley Hill with good views of Dunkery Beacon. Ley Hill has archaeological interest. After Waymark 12 the route, marked on the OS Explorer map as 'Flora's Track', passes through a medieval field system. Further down the valley's side (grid ref 892450) archaeologists have excavated a 'deserted medieval settlement comprising the remains of seven buildings visible as low stony banks along a hollow way', one of several ancient pack-horse routes in the area. Although not on our route today, a detour could be made to view this by those interested.

Our route then descends through Doverhaye Woods and emerges in the eastern end of Porlock. As you turn left on to the main street Doverhaye Museum is on the right-hand corner.

There are no stiles on the route but a possibility of livestock around Lucott Farm.

England - South West England - Somerset - Exmoor


Birds, Cafe, Church, Flowers, Food Shop, Gift Shop, Great Views, Hills or Fells, Museum, Play Area, Pub, Public Transport, Restaurant, River, Tea Shop, Toilets, Woodland

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Distance away
16.8 Miles