Camino Frome Valley – Hikers Guide
We do hope you enjoy your pilgrimage through the Frome Valley. The walk is mainly across farmland so please remember to follow the countryside code at all times; stay on the public footpaths and rights of way, leave gates as you find them, take all your litter home with you and keep dogs under control. If you come across livestock in fields and don’t feel safe consider backtracking and going around that particular section on the roads, which are generally fairly quiet.
Stage 1 – Stanford Bishop to Bishops Frome.
After collecting your pilgrim passport and first stamp from St. James Church in Stanford Bishop turn right at the end of the Church driveway and walk back along the lane to the entrance to the Hawkins farm. Follow the public right of way through the gate in the hedge that leads you around the back of the farmhouse and through the farmyard. The path then follows the right of way out into a field, head slightly to the right of the telegraph pole, there is a gate hidden down in a dip that is hard to see as you walk across the field.
Go through the gate and through the next gate following the way markers, staying to the left hand side of the field. Go over a stile following the footpath, to the left of the telegraph pole down to another stile and then keep going until you reach Avenbury Lane. Turn left onto the lane and take the next right following the right of way down Upper Venn Farm’s long driveway. As you approach the farm there is a gate straight ahead of you which leads into a field. There is a gate half way along the left hand hedge of the field into the next field. Follow the path straight through the middle of the field following the line of trees until you reach a stile.
In a change to the original plan the public footpath has now been re-routed around the woods. The path now takes you left around the edge of the field, through a gate on the right and then along the edge of a hop field below the woods and past the Great Venn onto the farm driveway. Follow the driveway all the way to the end and cross directly over the road through three gates following the footpath through the Frome Valley Vineyard into woods alongside the River Frome.
A stile takes you into a field that follows the path of the river and then diverts over another stile into a hop yard. The right of way isn’t obvious but it runs through the middle of the hop yard (pick a lane!) which should then bring you to another stile in the hedge up into a field over yet another stile into an orchard. Turn right and follow the hedge out of the gate and onto the lane turning left. Follow the lane down onto the road and along to the right towards Bishops Frome. As you enter the village take a left turn through the Industrial Estate and across the playing field angling uphill slightly to your right, you will find a kissing gate into the Churchyard and St. Mary the Virgin, Bishops Frome where you can find your second stamp.
Stage 2 – Bishops Frome to Much Cowarne
Leave the Churchyard through the Lych Gate and cross over the road taking the turning onto the Burley Gate road beside the Chase Inn and past the Green Dragon. Follow the road for 2.5km and then take the left turn signposted ‘Bromtrees Hall’ just after the road bends to the left take a right turn towards Hopes Rough Farm. Just before the farm go through the gate following the public footpath past the farmhouse on your left and through 2 more gates and fields. Cross the River Lodon over the bridge and through what is currently a Christmas Tree plantation, eventually making your way to the left and onto the road. Turn right onto the road and follow it all the way to the crossroads, straight on up a driveway around some barn conversion houses and to the Church of St. Mary the Virgin, Much Cowarne where you can collect your third stamp.
Stage 3 – Much Cowarne to Ocle Pychard
Leave St. Mary’s Church through the gate at the bottom of the Churchyard into a field and through another gate half way along the hedge on the right hand side. Follow the path through a rough planted area and through a gate into a field. The public right of way goes through the centre of the field but if there are crops growing follow the hedgerow along to the left and then to the right heading towards Cowarne Court Farm. Walk around to the right hand side of the farm buildings and then take a right turn up the farm driveway for about 1km.
Turn right onto the main A417 for 100 metres PLEASE TAKE CARE AS THIS IS A VERY FAST ROAD. Cross over the road turn left following the sign to Ocle Pychard. Follow the lane all the way to St. James Church where you can stamp your pilgrim passport for the final time.
Congratulations on completing the Camino Frome Valley!