Social media gets a lot of bad press but there are some positive benefits from it. I have accounts with Facebook, Instagram and Twitter, but find that being active on all three is too time consuming so these days mainly confine my activities to Twitter. Over the couple of years I have been tweeting I have met a few of the people I engage with through this medium and today I have arranged to meet Sarah and her cocker spaniel Jack for a cup of tea at the Periwinkle Cottage tea rooms in Selworthy.
I have decided not to use the car today but walk directly from the Caravan and Motorhome Club’s site in Minehead. On leaving the site I turn left and walk uphill along the pavement besides the A39, Hopcott Road. On reaching Hopcott I turn left to follow the narrow tarmacked lane as it heads steadily uphill passing Higher Hopcott and then entering woodland with a steep final ascent to reach a small car park.
There are a network of paths leading from this car park, I take the route of the Macmillan Way West still heading uphill. I ignore a path on the right soon after leaving the car park and then where the Macmillan Way forks to the left I take the right fork to follow a footpath along a track.
I am still heading steadily uphill; the path starts to level slightly on leaving the trees to enter an area covered in gorse offering fine views.
On reaching a crossing of paths I turn right to follow the route towards Tivington. I am now back on the Macmillan Way heading west to reach another crossing of paths. Here the Macmillan Way turns left towards Wootton Courtney, however, I keep going straight ahead soon reaching an Ordnance Survey trig point tucked to the left of the track on a high bank. I have already bagged this trig on a previous walk.
At the next crossing of footpaths I continue straight on to pass the National Trust plaque and enter Holnicote. Within a short distance the track forks and I take the left route towards Tivington.
I leave the trees to join a hedge-lined track and get a cracking view over towards Dunkery Beacon.
The track reaches Tivington near to the thatched 14th century Chapel of St Leonard. Apparently this chapel of ease closed during the dissolution of the monasteries it was restored in 1896 and re-consecrated in 1940. Sadly it is locked so I cannot take a peek inside.
Back on the road I head north through the hamlet and at a fork in the road go left to soon pass Tivington Farm and then carry on to Venniford Cross where I go over the A39 and join a track, Eight Acre Lane, going steadily uphill.
At a junction of tracks I turn left and follow the farm drive towards East Lynch Farm. As I approach the farm I take a footpath on the right, which runs behind a fine old barn. I stay on the wide grassy track as it sweeps by farm cottages, ignoring a footpath on the left and continuing uphill.
On reaching a tarmac lane I turn left and follow this road steadily downhill to reach the attractive 15th century white washed All Saints Church at Selworthy.
Soon after the church I go through the gate besides the War Memorial to meet up with Sarah at Periwinkle Tea room. In the current circumstances meeting up with anyone is rather different than normal. But the way things are set up at this attractive tea room means we can chat whilst social distancing. Over a cup of tea Sarah shares with me some of her local knowledge of walking on Exmoor and I pass on details of some of my favourite local walks.
After chatting with Sarah for an hour or so it is time for us to part ways. I head back up through the gardens of the tea room to the War Memorial. I now take the footpath on the left that soon heads into the attractive Selworthy Combe. Where the track forks I go left to go over a bridge.
The path now heads steadily uphill on an attractive path through the trees.
On reaching a small dam in the stream I stop to search for an Ordnance Survey rivet. Over the last few months rivets and cut benchmarks have been added to the list of things to “bag” whilst out walking.
It takes a bit of searching, but in the end I spot the small metal rivet that formed part of the OS mapping of this area.
I continue up the combe to reach the Memorial Hut that was erected in 1878 by John Barton Arundel Acland the youngest son of Thomas Dyke Acland (1787 -1871). One of the inscriptions inside reads “In remembrance of the father who during more than fifty years took Sunday walks up this Combe with his Children and Grandchildren training them in the love of nature and of Christian poetry this Wind and Weather hut was built”.
From the hut I walk uphill to a minor road and turn left and follow the road to reach a car park with a stunning viewpoint towards Porlock Weir.
From the car park I turn around and follow a footpath besides the road heading back towards the Memorial Hut. As I near the hut I cross the road and take a track north east to reach the trig point at Selworthy Beacon.
From the trig point I take a path heading east on a track running close to the road.
Through a couple of gates the path sweeps to the left towards a car park. There are a network of paths back to Minehead from here. I continue to the east heading towards trees in the distance. On reaching the trees I turn to the right to cross the road and then take a footpath on the left running parallel to the road and heading downhill through gorse bushes.
This track joins the road by a cattle grid and the route is then downhill along the road to enter Higher Town and reach the 15th century St Michael’s Church. Apparently in the past a beacon was shone from the tower of this church to guide ships into the harbour below.
I continue along the road for a short distance and then turn right onto a road called The Ball and follow this to a junction with Ballfield Road where I turn right and continue heading downhill into Minehead. In the centre of the town I turn left into the Parade and then wander through the residential streets to return to the caravan site.
It has been a good wander. I have covered twelve and a half miles. It was good to meet up with Sarah and her lovely dog Jack. Hopefully on another visit to this area we can catch up again on a walk.
You can view this 12.5 mile walk on OS Maps download the GPX File Here (Subscription to OS Maps Required)
To follow my walk you will need Ordnance Survey Explorer Map OL9 Exmoor
6th October 2020
© Two Dogs and an Awning (2020)