1:00 pm; Hinxworth
In the end I walked out to Ickleford, getting there before the bus even arrived. Then straight out of Ickleford at 9:10, on a well-signposted path (the Icknield Way Trail) to the north fringe of Letchworth, then a little road walking to a path which runs northeast along the Hertfordshire / Bedfordshire border.
The main task of the morning was avoiding Letchwoth, not that I have any objection to Letchworth, but this is a border walk, and so I am tracking the paths along the border with Bedfordshire, or closest to it. It is possible to walk actually on the border for somewhat longer, but with no wish to stroll on the A1(M) nor the A1 half-motorway come to that, I took parallel paths.
This is still completely new territory for me. When plotting the route beforehand I was concerned about whether it was walkable. Apart from last-minute diversions and a missing path, in fact it is walkable and the navigation is not too hard either, with the map marked up. It needs an up to date map though: when I switched to an older map, one of the key paths, a modern cycle route, was missing.
I took a big loop out of the projected path to take me through Radwell, which was a delightful revelation.
There is a goodly string of churches along the way in tiny places – Newnham, Caldecote (which is no more than two houses – the church is in the farmhouse garden) and then Hinxworth.
Hixworth is the northernmost village in Hertfordshire, apart from Royston. I have just enjoyed fish and chips at The Three Horseshoes – much to be recommended.Please donate to the Stroke Association: click here.