Somerset: Clapton in Gordano to Cadbury Camp loop walk
A four mile round walk taking in St Michael's Church in Clapton-in-Gordano, Clapton Court, and Cadbury Camp Iron Age Hillfort, which is managed by The National Trust.
Location: 12 miles north east of Weston-super-Mare and 2 miles south of Portishead, off M5 Junction 19.
Parking: On Clevedon Road or through the gate (when unlocked) to the parking area at top of tarmac track, just below the level of the church.
Access: Relatively steep approach. Wide tarmac path from east side through churchyard to south door. Ramp inside to the south porch, wide aisles and reasonably wide south door.
Distance: 4 miles
Terrain: Field, woodland and paths as well as tarmac road with uphill and downhill sections. Includes descent which can be a bit rocky and wet underfoot.
Start : St Michael’s Church, Clevedon Lane, Clapton in Gordano, Somerset, BS20 7RH
Walk down the slope onto Clevedon lane passing Clapton Court on your left, which itself has some mediaeval features and is recorded in the Doomsday book. Continue around a corner until you find a left turn up by the riding school which goes up a grassy lane and around to the right to a gate.
Cross over some paddocks through a series of gates until you come to a kissing gate which leads towards some trees. Follow this path with the M5 on your left and bluebell woods sloping down to the right until you get to steps up onto the bridge over the motorway. On the far side of the bridge look back to what was once a mediaeval agricultural landscape and now views the Severn Bridge, Avonmouth, Portbury Docks and Portishead.
Following the path the woods sloping up to the left have disused coal-pits in the hillside behind the church. To the right a fence and trees sloping down towards the noisy M5. The noise of traffic will decrease as you walk up away.
At the top of the path turn left along a surfaced lane and then sharp right back and this will take you past a house with gates on the right and up a stoney probably ancient pathway to the National Trust Cadbury Camp iron age hill fort which has much to explore.
Exit Cadbury Camp by the same gate and continue down the lane as far as the sharp turning you took earlier. However here carry straight on up Cadbury Camp Lane and continue for about a mile until you find a bridleway to the left by Badgers Wood. Follow down this path which becomes a bit rocky and wet underfoot. It’s high banked sides give the appearance of a holloway suggesting much use over many centuries. At the bottom bear right onto tarmaced Wood Lane, pass The Rectory on the left and on through the short tunnel under the M5.
At this point
EITHER take an immediate left which goes up through a couple of fields with M5 on left and Nicholas Wood to the right into a horsey field. This field is quite steep and uneven and might be difficult to cross if very muddy. At the bottom of that field is a path and gate that takes you into St MIchael’s Church car park.
OR continue down Wood Lane to the Black Horse Inn. The pub building dates back to the 14th Century and a good stop off for refreshments. With the pub in front of you turn left onto Clevedon Lane the left again along the pathway parallel with Clevedon Lane which takes you back to the gate into St Michael’s Church car park.