Date: Friday 12th January, 2018
Meet at: Beccles, Dell Car Park, Bungay Road, NR34 9PH
Map Ref: TM 41812 89984 Maps: Maps: OS on Bing Google OpenStreetMap
OS Map: X 231, OL 40
Picnic: Picnic or Two Pubs
Dogs: Registered assistance dogs only. More
Guide Book: Waveney
Walk Number: 12
Start from the car park near Beccles quay (P&D) or try the Dell car park.
Walk south, then west towards the town and alongside the cut, where boats are moored. Cross the footbridge and turn right along Fen Lane which bends left to main road. At the Quay there is a small cafe. At the main road, turn right and cross the bridge over the river Waveney.
Once over the river, carefully cross the road and take the footpath at the side of the bridge parapet. This is the Norfolk bank of the river. Follow the river and footpath, south and later west for about one-and-a-half miles when you enter the trees at Dunburgh. The path briefly leaves the river bank and you come to a footpath junction. (1) Turn left and back at the river, follow the path round to the right. Continue beside the river as it bends right along Geldeston Dyke until you reach a boatyard. Head through the boatyard up to the road and Wherry Inn (refreshments). At the Wherry, turn left and at the road junction, turn left into Station Road. Follow this until you come to a track across the marsh, signed to the Locks Inn (refreshments). This track floods in wet winters. After the Locks Inn, cross the Waveney into Suffolk using the iron bridge.
Head south across two meadows and marsh, over a wooden bridge over a dyke. In winter these marshes can flood and become impassable without waders! A pumping station might be visible, lurking in the trees in the distance. Through a wooden gate next to an iron gate, turn left and head east along a grassy track, into a wooded path. Go through a metal kissing gate, right and left, into a pasture and continue with the woodland and hedge on your left. When you reach a metal gate go through and turn left to an unusually tall stile. Go over this and keep straight ahead aiming east. Follow the path until you reach a house on a stony lane. Go straight across the lane and continue east. This will bring you back to the main Bungay road by two cottages.
Optionally divert via the secluded Dell woodland path avoiding some of the stretch beside the main road.
At the main road, head left passing the Elizabethan Roos Hall. When you reach Puddingmoor there is a choice of routes.
Turn left down Puddingmoor. Follow the lane, passing below the church, then left into Northgate. (2)
Go straignt on and left at the the town sign into Ballygate, past the old Sir John Leman school.
The routes rejoin at the church of St Michael with its detached tower. Turn north down Northgate. Cross over the road at the bottom into Fen Lane and back to car park via the footbridge.
(1) At Dunburgh, if the river bank path is overgrown or flooded, use this alternative route from the footpath junction. Take the right-hand path uphill to a quiet lane. Turn left and left again at the next junction. Head towards Geldeston until you see the The Wherry Inn on your right and continue to the road junction where you re-join the original path.
(2) Half way along Puddingmoor, the "meadow" has parking and there is access to the river. There are seats with a river view.