Waltham St. Lawrence
This lovely walk begins on a public footpath in the village of Waltham St. Lawrence just past the allotments, opposite Paradise cottages. After a short stretch of woodland the path turns diagonally to the left and then a sharp right hand turn will take you across cow fields which are full of buttercups at this time of year. Reaching a quiet country road at the end, a row of cottages ‘Tied Cottages’ should be passed on the left.
In the fields plenty of wildflowers can be enjoyed. Keep you eyes peeled for these as they are often very tiny and low to the ground. Red clover is plentiful and if you are lucky you may also spot the less common Zig-zag clover as well as plenty of tiny yellow flowers of another type of clover- Black medick. In the road-side ditches, plenty of larger umbellifers and these can often be a challenge to identify, including one with large pompoms looking a lot like Cowbane – one of the less common types in this part of the world.
Shottesbrook park includes a picturesque lake which is surrounded by plenty of water-loving Yellow Iris. Close to the lake’s edge the frilly petals of another water loving plant – Bogbean can be found.
Around Shottesbrook Lake
St. John the Baptist Church
Shottesbrook church has a notably dramatic spire. There are plenty of Speedwell and other common wildflowers in the churchyard. The bright blooms of Red Valerian seems to thrive under the shadow of the yew trees in the churchyard.
Continuing along the path passed the church at Shottesbrook, you will eventually return to the the row of Tied cottages that were previously passed going the other way. Along the roadside a few Perennial Cornflowers– most likely garden escapes and some bright pink Common Mallow can be seen at this time of year.
Woodlands and Fields
The last section of the walk also includes short stretches of woodland and open fields where large swathes of wood speedwell turn the ground beside the path into a bright blue carpet.
Before reaching Waltham St. Lawrence village centre, a narrow footpath passes the local burial grounds and here there are various types of Forget- Me-Nots and Speedwells grow profusely among the red clover and plantains.
This walk has good paths and is on flat ground with a couple of easy stiles. Towards the end of this flat walk, in the centre of the village the Bell Pub can offer welcome refreshments. This characterful pub, is also dog friendly.
Happy Wildflower hunting in June .
Kim Mackenzy Andrews is a children’s book author, nature writer, photographer, and artist.
Find her Nature books for children on Amazon.
Wildlife articles for nature lovers: – patch reporting for the BBC Wildlife magazine.
Kim Mackenzy Andrews Children’s Author
*PARENTS* Get your FREE play with nature activity ideas here.