Chard to Combe St Nicholas
One of six circular walks in and around Chard – Walk 5
From Chard Museum, walk uphill and turn into Helliers Road. Cross Touchstone Lane and turn into Laurel Gardens. Continue straight uphill on the bridleway. At the top, where you meet Catchgate Lane you turn right, but first cross and look over the gate at the view over to Combe St Nicholas.
Follow this lane down to a crossroad and turn left on to a minor lane, where a lovely wide view soon opens out. At a bend in the lane, take the footpath on your right (keep to the left hand side of the field) down to the Chard Road by some houses at Chardleigh Green. Turn left and walk along the road for about 200 metres and turn right down Pudleigh Lane. As you drop down towards houses, ignore footpaths to right and left, but turn up a narrow lane on the left, after about 400 metres, just before a red brick terrace.
Go through two gates and follow the lane to a T-junction where you turn left. After about 50 yards take a footpath on the right to cross two fields up to another lane. This is Clayhanger Lane, which you cross. Slightly to your left is another path, signposted for Greenway. Take this and head uphill following the hedge on the right, pass through a gateway and in the top field enjoy the view and then bear left to a gate. In the next field pass through a gateway and head down towards Combe St Nicholas. In the next and larger field walk along the top to a gate hidden in the corner. Bear left down a grassy track to the road. Turn right and walk to the village centre, where you will find an inn, a couple of shops, and a seat on the green.
Resume by turning off the main road into New Road just below the church and school. Around the bend take a sharp left turn and look for a footpath before the first house on the right. At the lowest point, the path turns left, through a gate, to a stile, and then to a gap in the hedge. Follow the yellow arrows to another hedge gap leading to a stile which gives access to Brocole Lane.
Turn right and up the slope look for a stile on the left. This footpath drops straight down to a lane. Turn left and left again at a T-junction on the edge of Wadeford. Soon, as the road bends left, you need a footpath at a gateway on the right, signed for Rackstile. Keep right in this field to emerge on the right of some houses over a stile and onto another lane. Turn right and head uphill for some impressive views.
At the top a clear stony track on the right points you back to Catchgate Lane. (to return quickly to Chard follow the lane round to the left, over the cross roads and down to Crimchard, then turn right to return to the start) This track takes you over Foxdon Hill. At the end of the first field climb a stile on the left and turn left. The path then bears right and returns you to the lane, on which you turn right. At the top, turn left on to the footpath back to Chard.
Grid reference: ST319085
Nearest postcode: TA20 1QW