Day 6 Sunday 19 June Kington to Knighton

Kington is an old droving town, now a small market town.  The Swan, where I stayed last night, is next to the old market square.  The market was moved to a Victorian market all in the late 18th Century. 

The Swan Inn and old market cross Kington
Victorian market hall Kington

I saw the Americans when I went to but my lunch and we would continue to see each other intermittently over the course of the day. Dry weather had returned and I set off down a no through road by the pub to reach a path that dropped down to cross Back Brook .  I then climbed up across common land with sheep grazing between clumps of ferns to cross the shoulder of  Bradnor Hill. Here there were good views back to Hergest Ridge.

Looking back to Hergest Ridge.

I crossed a golf course to re-enter common land with more sheep. I would pass many flocks of sheep over the next few days.

There had been no sign of the Dyke since before Pandy but it re-appeared near the top of Rushock Hill. At first the earthwork was not very impressive, it could have been mistaken from a field boundary, but the ditch was obvious. The Dyke would be my companion for most of the day.  Its height varied from being a low mound to a high bank.

Waking on the Dyke, only a mound at this point. The low ditch can be seen to the West (left) side

As the Dyke got higher the path went along the top. I remarked to two dog walkers that I felt guilty that I was helping to erode the dyke by walking along it. At several places along the whole walk the main problem appeared to be badgers burrowing into it. There were excellent views across the hills and valleys to the west.

The path left the Dyke temporarily to wind round the eastern side of Herrock Hill and then dropped down to join a road and cross a bridge over Hindwell Brook.

Approaching Burfa Bank

I left the road to enter Burfa wood and passed Old Burfa Farm with its 15th century manor hall although this was much restored in the 1970s. Within the wood the Dyke was particularly impressive with a high bank, carrying the path, and a deep ditch to the west. The map shows a large hillfort at the top of Burfa Hill but this was obscured by trees.

A more impressive section of the Dyke in Burfa wood

The Dyke and path climbed up through Granmer wood to pass over the shoulder of Evenjobb Hill where there were good views to the west over the Radnorshire Hills with Rhos Fawr being conspicuous. To the east I could see Prestaigne and the Malvern Hills a long way off.

After a short descent I began to climb again passing through Hilltop plantation before starting a long descent to the Lugg valley. As I approached the river I passed a walker with a full rucksack heading south.  He was one of three Lejoggers I saw on the southern half of ODP, all had started in John O’Groats and were heading south. This man said it was his first multiday trek, a challenging one to start with!

River Lugg

After crossing the river, the undulating nature of the path continued. I crossed Furrow hill, still with excellent views to both west and east.  I then climbed Hawthorn Hill which has a long fairly flat top.  Towards the northern end of the hill there is a monument dedicated to Sir Richard Price who was a 19th century MP. The monument commemorated his role in bringing the railway to Knighton.

Richard Price monument

I descended from Hawthorn hill by passing through some scrubby woodland to cross a road.  Here there was a commemorative stone which didactically stated the Dyke was made in 757AD, the exact date of construction is not known.

The remainder of today’s walk involved a long descent across fields, accompanied by the Dyke, leading eventually to woodland, where it became very steep, and then into Knighton, almost half way along the Trail.

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