Day 33 Monday 2 September Great Malvern to Worcester

Miles walked: today 13 cumulative 500.5

When I left Bath I wished I had planned to keep walking to Edale. However, since then my left thigh has been troubling me, becoming more painful after about 8 miles and waking me at night; so I was quite happy that this was my last day for a couple of weeks.

I stopped for a coffee before I left Malvern and got chatting to a man in the coffee shop. I grumbled about virtual paths and brambles and he suggested walking down the Teme valley where the paths were well defined. This meant walking a bit further than I had planned but I took his advice and it was a good walk.

I left Malvern on a footpath through woodland and common land (pretty) and then through an industrial estate (not so pretty). I passed the Morgan factory.

Just outside Great Malven is the Beauchamp Community. This is a church and almshouses built by the Beauchamp family in 1864. It was originally built for the poor of the parish but is now open to Anglicans from anywhere in the country.

The buildings contain frescoes of historic significance but are only opened to the public for attendance at church services or on specific open days.

I then followed roads and paths down to the Teme valley. On the way I passed the Normal chapel of St John at Branford

Apparently it is lit by candlelight. It was locked so I was unable to go in. Before I descended into the valley there was a good view back to Great Malvern.

I then followed the river Teme the rest of the way to where it drains into the Severn.

The river passes under the A road at the site of a medieval bridge and the Battle of Worcester. This was the final battle of the Civil War when Charles II was defeated by Cromwell’s New Model Army (Elvis Costello knew his history) and Charles began his flight to the continent.

The old bridge still crosses the river at Powick and there is a memorial to the many Scots who died at the battle

Between here and the Severn there are information boards describing the battle. At the time there was no river crossing here. The Parliamentarians built a crossing by mooring boats to each other along one bank and letting one end of the row float downstream until it hit the other bank thus forming a floating bridge, the only time the tactic has been used in the UK.

I then followed the Severn upriver to Worcester. As I approached the weir I had a good view of the cathedral

As I walked through Worcester to the station I completed the 500th mile of the journey. It is now time to put my feet up for a couple of weeks. The next stage is a short one: from Worcester to Edale.

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