Beyond Anglesey Abbey
Anglesey Abbey, Gardens and Lode Mill, Quy Road, Lode, Cambridge, CB25 9EJRoute details and mapDownload as a print friendly PDF
This circular route lets you explore the footpaths beyond Anglesey Abbey, taking in Lode Mill, the winding fenland waterways sitting high above the surrounding land, and vast open skies.
You will come to Stow-cum-Quy Fen, designated by Natural England as a Site of Special Scientific Interest (SSSI), and follow the footpaths back towards the village of Lode and Anglesey Abbey.
- Bus stop
Start: Anglesey Abbey car park, grid ref: TL533621
Walk away from the Anglesey Abbey Visitor Centre, through the car park to the far corner on the left. Here you will find a footpath running along the side of a field. Follow the footpath, passing through a narrow gate and you will emerge near to the Anglesey Abbey nursery garden. Bear left following the path behind the tennis court and alongside allotments. Turn left to follow a narrow path which brings you to Lode Mill (pictured).
A water mill has stood here for hundreds of years. While for most of the time it has been used to grind corn into flour, around 1900 it was converted to grind cement. Lord Fairhaven, to whom we owe the magnificent Anglesey Abbey house and gardens, bought the mill in the 1930s and restored its exterior. In 1982 the mill was restored to full working order and today it grinds the wheat from the National Trust's Wimpole Estate.
Cross the little bridge by the side of the mill, turn left and follow the path alongside Quy Water, towards Stow-cum-Quy.
You'll pass by the Fairhaven Bridge and alongside woodland areas, including the Wildlife Discovery Area at Hoe Fen, part of the Anglesey Abbey gardens. Eventually the path will reach open fields, where the winding line of the water sits high above the surrounding fields, drained hundreds of years ago so farmers could work the land.
Eventually you'll reach the road. Here partially double-back on yourself to follow the sign towards Quy Fen. You'll cross the field diagonally to reach a gate in the far corner. Pass through the gate and follow the bridleway to the right. As the path bends round to the left, stop and admire the old oak, a mix of living and dead wood, providing a habitat for a whole range of invertebrate species.
As the dirt path becomes a gravel track continue straight ahead. When the path forks, continue to the right until you reach Quy Fen.
Pass through the gate onto Quy Fen and follow the path keeping to the right, towards Lode. Here you can find the memorial stone in the middle of the field. Continue along the grass path until you reach a gate and little bridge and the end of Quy Fen.
Quy Fen has been designated as a site of special scientific interest (SSSI) by Natural England for some of its plant communities. Beware of the fens in stormy weather, for when lightning strikes this flat landscape you can often be on the highest point.
Cross the bridge and take the path straight ahead, following the waymarkers. You will cross fields to join a wide track, Head Fen Drove.
Head Fen Drove, a track from Lode towards Quy and Horningsea, is part of the Harcamlow Way network of paths and bridleways notionally linking Harlow and Cambridge.
Follow the drove straight ahead, ignoring additional paths off to the right then the left. You'll eventually reach a cross roads. Here take the very right path, stepping over the metal bar, to the side of the gate. Follow the path to the left, round the edge of the field. This path will bring you back to Lode Mill.
From the mill, retrace your steps along the path, past the allotments and alongside the field to reach the Anglesey Abbey car park.
End: Anglesey Abbey car park, grid ref: TL533621
- Trail: Walking
- Grade: Easy
- Distance: 4.6 miles (7.4km)
- Time: 1 hour 30 minutes
- OS Map: Landranger 154
The walk takes you along flat grass paths and droves, expect muddy conditions at times. Some areas of the route come very close to open water. This walk is suitable for dogs walkers. However, please note that you will be near farmland so there may notices requiring dogs to be on lead.
- How to get here:
By bus: Stagecoach route 10 from Cambridge. Alight at Lode Crossroads stop
By bike: NCN51, 1¼ miles. View local cycle routes on the National Cycle Network website
By car: 6 miles north-east of Cambridge on B1102. Signposted from A14, junction 35
By train: Cambridge station, 6 miles
On foot: Harcamlow Way from Cambridge
- Food and Drink : Redwoods Restaurant in the Visitor Centre.
- W.C's : In the Visitor Centre
- Parking : Free 50 yds
- NT Shop
- Contact us