Brown’s Folly Nature Reserve – 8.1.17 *FEATURED WALK*

January 11, 2017 at 5:10 pm

Happy New Year from Bath Ramblings.  We are pleased to offer you our second fully featured walk which is a 4.5 mile (approx) circular hike starting and ending at St Swithin’s Church Bathford.

‘This very pleasant walk (thanks to Nigel Vile) started from St Swithun’s Church in Bathford before starting a steep climb up to Brown’s Folly. Following a pause to recover it was a gentle walk through the Nature Reserve down to the main road then a brief walk before descending under the road via the dry arch. Another gentle – if muddy – path led to the Conkwell to Bathford lane and finally back to the church. On a clear day the views across to Claverton are wonderful – sadly this wasn’t one of those days. A pleasant walk through fields and woodland and along a country lane gave a variety of scenery.’

Walkmeter Map




Starting at St Swithin’s church walk down the narrow alleyway to the left of the graveyard.  When you emerge cross over the road and cross the green to the right of the houses until you come to a stile (there is a sign warning of cows in the field, the herd we came across were pretty docile)  From now on the path is an upward climb until you get to the tower.


The reserve is home to many rare creatures and plants

Cross the field diagonally until you get to another stile into the woods.  You will now be following the Pepperpot Trail through the nature reserve.


3 – Brown’s Folly is known locally as The Pepperpot

Follow the track through the woods, if you come to any forks take the high road and keep climbing.  As you emerge from the woods a wider path crosses the track, turn left onto here for a short while (50 metres or so) then sharply right into the craggy area beneath the ridge.


1 – the rocky path leading to the folly

You should be able to see the tower now and make your way towards it.  You will eventually come to some steep stone steps to climb up to the summit.

Brown's Folly

2 – Brown’s Folly

The Folly doesn’t have a door anymore, have a peep inside but we don’t recommend climbing the old and crumbling steps.


As you reach the folly turn directly right and carry on the path through the woods again.  It’s all downhill from here so just follow the path in a downwards direction.


Home to the greater horseshoe bat, one of the rarest mammals in the UK.


4 – the woods

You will emerge on the A363 (known locally as Sally in the Woods and reported to be haunted!)  Walk along the left verge for about 200 meters until you come to a large driveway.  Take the path down to the right of this drive and you will travel under a dry arch.


5 – take the path down and turn right to cross underneath the arch


cross under the dry arch

After the arch turn left and follow this (often muddy) path through more woods until you come to Warleigh Lane.


6 – the second lot of  woods


7 – The American Museum


8 – the rolling hills of Bath

Turn right and follow the lane for about 2 miles.  On a clear day there are views of the back of Claverton, the American Museum and the Bath hills to the left.


9 – Quirky trimmed up house on Warleigh Lane

Eventually you will again come across the A363 which you need to cross to get into Pump Lane which leads straight back to the alley way by the side of the church.


the views on a clear autumn day