Via Stowe and Offa's Dyke - October 2005
A Knighton Round Walks with a Camera
Walks with a Camera © Geoff’s Pages 2011
Although Knighton is in Wales, it is unusual in having its railway station in a different country - just over the Teme in Shropshire. It was from the latter that we began this walk - a little under 8 miles, taking in the rolling south Shropshire hill country with its extensive views. In Welsh, the town is Tref-y-Clawdd - "the town on the dyke" - we would follow Offa's Dyke for the return part of our wanderings. A pleasant path in Kinsley Wood parallels, then descends to the A488. Crossing the road, we headed gently uphill towards the hamlet of Stowe, whose tiny church is a landmark from the main road along the Teme Valley. Behind the church, a track climbs steeply through Holloway Rocks before levelling out on the high grassy plateau of Stow Hill. The rain and the season had yielded a fine crop of mushrooms and toadstools of many varieties - we had to tread carefully to avoid some wonderful specimens. Our route now turned sharply westwards towards Five Turnings, where we would re-cross the A488. Lunchtime loomed - but
nowhere to sit, the ground being saturated from the previous day's rain. "In an emergency, you can eat your lunch standing up" advised my companion, whose stomach seems to contain a pretty accurate clock on these occasions. A substantial gatepost at the road junction made a makeshift table - but, yes, we had to stand. Our path had dropped gently from Stow Hill - now it would rise again as we turned slightly south of west and headed for the skyline and Offa's Dyke. As we neared the dyke, the sun finally managed to break through properly - it had been trying for a little while, but not really succeeding. Now to the south-west a fine panorama of Welsh hill country opened out, with Knucklas Viaduct prominent in the middle distance, and beyond, the route of our walk last December along part of Glyndwr's Way. On the horizon lay the high plateau of Radnor Forest - the highest ground in eastern mid-Wales at a little over 2000'. Below us, the Teme shone blue in the warm sunshine - an idyllic scene. Our walk along the route of the Dyke was just over a mile - and probably the slowest part of the day's outing, as we made the most (attempted to...) of the light and the scenery. But good things must end, and soon we were descending steeply to the river, which the path crosses on a footbridge alongside the railway line, thence following the river downstream (and eventually, for the last few yards, in Wales) back to Knighton. A good 'un!
Approaching Stowe Lych gate, Stowe church Pool, Holloway Rocks View to Radnor Forest, Holloway Rocks Pool on Stow Hill Mushrooms, Stow Hill 2x Caer Caradoc... New House Farm, as seen from Five Turnings Offa's Dyke and the view to Knucklas Skyscape, Offa's Dyke The view to Radnor Forest Sheep and sky, Offa's Dyke View to the Teme valley, Offa's Dyke The descent to Panpunton "Welcome to Wales" - approaching Knighton

View A Knighton Round in a larger map
Back to Walks with a Camera Contact Geoff