Spetisbury - Tarrant Crawford - Spetisbury Rings

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Spetisbury - Keyneston Mill - Tarrant Crawford - Spetisbury Rings

Spetisbury is a long, narrow village crammed between the Stour River and the remains of Stour Valley railway line, with the remnants of an Iron Age fort above that.

The walk leaves from the northern end of the village and follows a beautiful path system across a river meadow between the Old Mill and the newer Kyneston Mill, both of which are now simply homes. It then follows the Tarrant River (which flows into the Stour) to Tarrant Crawford, the first of the six hamlets whose name begins with 'Tarrant'.

Here there is an ancient church (at present not open because of repairs) and the remains of an abbey now cannibalised to make farm buildings. From there you follow paths across fields and along a road to the equally ancient Crawford Bridge in a beautiful sprawling river setting. But, most ancient of all, is the Iron Age fort of Spetisbury Rings which is now a must to visit. From this you get some idea of the spread of Dorset downlands to the west and can see the river wending its way by on the east.

Then you go to Spetisbury Halt on the railway. But there are no trains anymore, not even the lines to run them on. However, the track gives a place for a nice easy stroll back to your starting point.

This walk was originated by Colin Campbell. Walkingworld would like to say a big thank you to Colin for all his superb contributions to the website over the years.

England - South West England - Dorset - River Walk


Ancient Monument, Birds, Butterflies, Church, Flowers, Great Views, Industrial Archaeology, Mostly Flat, National Trust, Pub, Public Transport, River, Sea, Wildlife
4/20/2015 - John Crisp

Our walking group have just returned from this delightful walk. It is full of interest, both historical and natural despite being a short walk. The views are great; especially on a sunny Spring day with the colours of the flowers and rape-seed fields accentuated and the rivers sparkling in the sunlight.

9/8/2012 - Diane Turner

This was a pleasant walk with a variety of things to enjoy. There are a couple of hills so you do manage to get some exercise. It is dog friendly although there is only one dog waste bin at the start of the walk.

7/15/2012 - Kai Chandler

I really enjoyed this walk which was easy to navigate apart from one field which was quite waterlogged after months of rain, but I was able to walk around it a short way to find a dry path. The walk offers some great points of interest that Colin Campbell has documented eg. the tiny 12th Century church at Tarrent Crawford, now restored and open to visitors, near which Queen Joan, the wife of Alexander II of Scotland and daughter of King John of England was apparently buried. Look out for the 13th Century wall paintings inside. The second highlight is the opportunity to walk all around the now-tranquil Spetisbury Rings: an Iron Age hill fort with incredible views. Take care to find the exit left from the trailway to the Rings, I missed it at first and had to double back. I'll definitely do this one again!

8/19/2006 - Sylvia Saunders

Lovely walk with spectacular views from Spetisbury Rings. We were even lucky enough to see an egret fishing for supper from Crawford Bridge!

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