A delightful walk with fine views of the Mendips and Glastonbury Tor via 15 acre copse and Northbrook and Beerway Farms. Distance - about 5 to 6 miles. Duration 1.5 hours. (Can be muddy in parts, particularly near Buscott.)
Start from St Mary's Church Shapwick, walking east along Northbrook Road until you pass Sunflower Cottage on the right. Take the next right along the Chestnut Lane to Ashcott. Continue along this lane round the sharp left hand bend (this could have easily have been the old Pilgrim's Way to Glastonbury Abbey since it seems to point directly to the Tor). In a half a mile when you reach a small copse on the left take the green lane indicated by the footpath sign. In the summer this lane can be rather overgrown with nettles and thistles, so be prepared! Continue down this lane until you reach a field. Head straight on keeping the hedge on your right. Here you have magnificent views on a clear day of the Mendip Hills; in particular you can see the pointed top of Crook Peak to the north-west and as you come eastward, Cheddar Gorge and the television mast above Wells. Beerway Farm is the closest farm looking north-west. At the end of this field and the next, climb the stile and continue straight on keeping the hedge on your right. At the third stile climb over and carefully make your way across the ditch, turning left along the side of another field with the hedge to your left. Continue straight on at the next stile along the side of another field and take a stile at the side of a gate on to a stone track. Walk up the stone track for 50 metres and where the track bends round to the right (into Fullpits Lane), turn left and go straight on to the field ahead ignoring the gate on the left. Turn sharp left in this field and head down hill keeping the hedge to the left. When you reach the end of the field, continue straight on through a gap in the hedge along the side of the next field. At the end of this field climb the stile by a small group of trees and cross a small bridge and turn right along the 'L' shaped edge of a field following the way mark signs until you reach the far diagonal comer in between Fifteen Acre and Buscott Copses. You may be lucky enough to see some of the deer which roam the levels at this point. There is also a lovely view of the Wedmore Ridge and the line of houses at Meare in the distance. At the corner of the field, canny straight on through the gateway along the side of the next field keeping the copse on the right. At the end of this field carry straight on until you reach the country lane to Buscott. Bear left to Coppice Gate Farm (about 3/4 mile) where you turn sharp left heading up over the hill past Northbrook Farm and then back to Shapwick past Beerway Farm. It is interesting to note that in the L H field on the Shapwick side of Beerway Farm, is the site of the original Shapwick Parish Church (St Andrews) before it was moved to the centre of the current village in 1331.