Central England – Edge Hill, Warwickshire<
Distance: 13km/8 miles
Type: Rolling countryside, wooded escarpment
Where: Circular walk from Ratley via Hornton and Edge Hill.
Start/End: Ratley Village Hall (SP382475).
Terrain: Field and woodland paths and tracks, with stretches of waymarked routes.
Maps: OS Explorer 206; Landranger 151.
Among the peaceful south Warwickshire countryside, in the fields below the Edge Hill escarpment, the first major battle of the Civil War took place on 23 October 1642. With approximately 12,000 men per side (estimates vary), the Royalists deployed on the Edge Hill ridge, while the Parliamentarians occupied the ground below to the south east of Kineton. The Royalists descended and a fierce battle ensued. The result was inconclusive, but not surprisingly there were many casualties. It’s not possible to visit the actual battle site today since it lies within a huge MOD depot, but you can enjoy the views from the ridge, along which run two longdistance paths – the Macmillan Way and the Centenary Way. Short stretches of two other waymarked trails, the d’Arcy Dalton Way and Battlefields Trail, are also included in this relatively gentle walk.
Click below to see a route profile and view the route on an Ordnance Survey map