Newchurch to Ivychurch
FOLKESTONE TO FARNHAM ROBUST RAMBLE
Section 6 Out
Newchurch to Ivychurch
Map: OS Explorer 125 Romney Marsh
Distance/Time: 4 miles/ 2.5 hours
Start: The walk starts at the church entrance in Newchurch. Very limited parking by the church and on-street.
Comments: Newchurch has very limited services. Only a teashop with limited opening from midweek. The stiles in the paddocks at the start of the walk are poor. In some sheep pastures gates and hurdles have been put in to contain the animals but may require climbing. Much of the marsh is now arable land. In wet conditions this produces very muddy walking and slows progress. Allow extra time for this. The church at Ivychurch is called the cathedral of the marshes and deserves a visit. There is a fascinating exhibition of historic marshland farming.
With Newchurch parish church on your left, walk on along the main road. Pass a little nature reserve and look for a fieldgate on your left with a stile at the side. Cross into a narrow paddock and turn right to walk up the field, with the hedge and road parallel on your right.
Cross a stile in mid-field and keep on to a further stile in a hedge leading to a road.
Ignore the close of houses opposite and turn right on this road for 15 metres, then left, onto a concrete track between houses. At the end, cross a stile into a field. Keep forward to a stile in mid-field, aiming for a distant farmhouse. Over this stile, keep on in the same direction, to the far corner, then cross a footbridge and stile onto a road.
Turn left on the road, passing old farm buildings, a turning left, and then some newer farm buildings. At the end of these, the road swings right to pass a house.
The next short section of path may be impossible to find. In which case stay on the road until reaching the long footbridge on your left into a field corner, as described below.
If possible, with the house ahead, leave the road, bearing slightly left across the concrete yard, before the house.
Keep forward, passing between the house on your righthandside, and a concrete tractor shed on your left. Soon reach a field and keep forward, across the field, parallel to the road over on your right.
At the top end of the field bear right across a tree trunk and over a ditch, out onto the road.
Turn left for a few paces, then left again, off the road, over a long footbridge into a field. There are power lines crossing ahead.
Go forward along the edge of the field with a stream on your left. Follow this stream until it turns sharply left. Here, leave the stream and continue on, bearing slightly left, across the field, to a footbridge in the hedge ahead (pass a wooden bungalow over on your left).
Cross into a pasture and again go forward, very slightly right, ignoring a stile over on your left. At the far corner ahead cross a stile into a campsite. Keep on in the same direction and soon reach a footbridge and stile onto a road (not quite so easy to see if caravans are using the site).
Cross the road to a further footbridge and stile into a field. Follow the stream and hedge on your right, past a ruin on your left.
Keep on across a further field to an old metal fieldgate. Through this follow the hedge and ditch on your right towards power lines.
Before the end of the hedge cross a footbridge on your right. Turn immediately left to follow the other side of the hedge. At a wire fence cross a poor stile and keep on in the same direction to a footbridge.
Cross and keep on again in the same direction with the blunt tower of Ivychurch appearing ahead. Eventually reach a further footbridge onto a road.
Cross the road and enter a vast field. Keep forward with a stream called the Brenzett Sewer on your right. Follow this for a mile (on the OS map the path appears to cross to the other side then eventually recross. There is no sign of this so stay with the stream on your right).
Ignore the first farm bridge on your right. After a mile reach another farm bridge over the stream with some isolated fence posts going away up the field over the stream your right. Do not cross the bridge but bear left away from the sewer, over the field towards the white house of Melon Farm. Aim to the right of a large grey barn by the farmhouse.
Cross the field to emerge onto a road by the barn (if crossing the field is not possible, simply follow the Brenzett Sewer all the way round the edge of the field to emerge onto the road at Melon Farm Lane bridge).
Cross the road and pass by a metal fieldgate, to go forward up the field, passing a telegraph pole. At the top reach the end of a hedge. Turn right on a path going directly towards Ivychurch church tower.
Leave the field through a kissing gate into a paddock and continue to a footbridge and kissing gate into the churchyard. Follow the fence on your left past the church on the right, out to a road and the Bell Inn. This is the end of the section.
FOLKESTONE TO FARNHAM ROBUST RAMBLE
Section 6 Return
Ivychurch to Newchurch
Map: OS Explorer 125 Romney Marsh
Distance/Time: 5 miles/ 3 hours
Start: The walk starts by The Bell Inn in Ivychurch; there is limited parking here.
Comments: There are long sections across arable fields with few features or waymarks. There are many footbridges. In wet conditions going is very slow. It is always advisable to carry the OS map of the area but in foggy conditions a compass is also necessary. There are some very poor footbridges and stile; take care.When the sun is shining the views are tremendous. Allow time to pause at St. Mary-in-the-Marsh with its church and pub.
Leave the Bell Inn and turn left along the road. Pass houses and then a farm where the road swings right. Turn left through a wide gap into a field. If the path is not marked, head straight across the field towards distant farm buildings. On reaching a cross path turn right to reach the end of a hedge.
Here keep forward, along with the hedge on your right, towards distant power lines.
Keep by the hedge and ditch. These wiggle in and out but the path cuts straight across from corner to corner, following a more direct route.
When the hedge and ditch turn sharply right and head away down the field edge, go straight on across the corner of the field to a reedy corner of a ditch ahead. Here bear left, across the open field, aiming for a lone tree with a church in the far distance, beyond power lines.
Pass the tree on your left and keep on with a ditch on your left. At the top of the field cross a footbridge and keep on in the same direction. A stream comes in from the right. Walk forward, parallel with it, but don’t go over to it or cross it.
On reaching a stream ahead, cross a second footbridge and again, keep forward, aiming for distant buildings and still parallel with a stream over on the right.
Just before power lines, cross a sunken footbridge. Bear right, under the power lines, across a field, to a further footbridge, then keep on across a further field, towards bushes and a distant house.
In the bushes find and cross a footbridge and go forward with a ditch on your right to another footbridge onto a road.
Cross the road to yet another footbridge into a field and head across towards the now clear tower of the church at St. Mary-in-the-Marsh.
Reach a second road and bear right a few paces to a footbridge on your left. This leads to a large field. Across it is the church and to its right The Star Inn. Aim between the two buildings and walk straight across two fields (there is no hedge between the two). Eventually emerge onto a road in front of the church (if you have had to walk these fields when newly ploughed then you may need a rest here ! A visit to the church and inn is recommended.).
Ignore the main road and turn left along the side road, passing the church on your right. On passing the buildings of Haffenden Farm on your right, cross a stile on your right into a vast field.
Go diagonally left across the field to a line of bushes by a narrow pond in midfield. Cross a poor stile at the lefthand end of the line of bushes, into a large field.
Again go diagonally left across the centre of this field, aiming just left of a farm in the distance and a tall tree above the far hedge (ignore a pair of isolated cottages over on your left).
At the far side of the field, at a bend in the hedge, cross a stile into a sheep pasture. Go across the centre of this field (there may be horse paddocks) to the top corner, by a farmhouse. Here cross another stile, by a metal fieldgate, onto a road.
Turn right on the road, passing the farmhouse on your right. Soon reach a pair of houses on your right.
On your left, opposite the houses, are two metal fieldgates. A footpath starts here but there is no stile or waymark (ignore the signpost just visible further up the road, this is another path). Cross into the field as best you can.
Immediately turn right along the field edge with the hedge on your right and the road beyond. At the top corner of the field turn left, still along the edge, eventually coming to a stile and footbridge in the hedge on your right. Cross into the field beyond.
Go up the field aiming for the distant church tower at Newchurch. Cross a footbridge at the top of the field and go straight on up the next field still aiming for the tower.
On reaching the top corner, meet a stream coming over from the left. Keep forward into the next field with this stream down on your left.
Soon reach a farm bridge on your left. Cross this and head diagonally right across another field towards a substantial footbridge at the far side.
Cross this and bear right in rough grass, along the field edge with a hedge and ditch on your right.
Where these end keep straight on across the field. Aim right of a lone concrete post midfield, and right of a cream painted bungalow in the distance. Look for a white manor house, to the right of the bungalow. Aim towards this and a rough and overgrown exit onto a road.
Turn left along the road to Newchurch. Pass the village hall and look for a stile on your right. Cross into a paddock. Cross a further stile in midfield. At the top corner cross another stile, out onto a road, just before the church at Newchurch and the start of the section.