Walking

Walking trail

Dutton Estate walk at Hinton Ampner

Walking trail

This route takes in the historic estate at Hinton Ampner, the final part of Ralph Dutton's vision, for an estate, garden and house that would blend harmoniously into the surrounding countryside.

Towering beech avenues and beautiful countryside views

This 4-mile route takes in the best of all seasons, from carpets of bluebells in spring to the most spectacular colours in autumn. There is an abundance of wildlife from roe deer to rare Barbastelle bats. Starting on open downland with endless views over the South Downs, the walk then weaves through ancient woodland, with avenues lined with beech trees. This walk crosses tenanted, working farmland so please keep dogs on leads at all times, stick to paths and do not walk across any fields.

Map

Map route for the Dutton Estate walk Hinton Ampner

Start:

Gated entrance just off the main drive, behind the Church, grid ref: SU597275

1

As you leave visitor reception, head straight along the main drive with the house on your right and the church to your left. The drive begins to sweep to the left behind the church. You will notice a gate just off to the right hand side; this is the start of the estate walk. Head through the two gates and across the field in the direction of the waymarker. There are often sheep grazing in this field, so dogs need to be kept on leads. At the end of the field turn left on the road. Make sure you keep to the right-hand side of the road, facing the oncoming traffic. 8yd (10m) along the road, turn right on the track denoted by the waymarker.

2

In front of you is a path leading up and along the ridge. About ½ mile (1km) down is a bench; take time to stop here and enjoy the view over the Hampshire countryside.

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3

At the end of this section of path, turn right and head down the ridge. You will often see hares in the fields in the spring so keep a close eye out for them. If your dog is not used to wildlife we advise keeping it on a lead. Follow the path down till you reach the road.

4

To the left of the path you will notice a large house. This was the home of the last of the Dutton line, Joane Dutton, who was the youngest sister of Ralph Dutton, the last owner of Hinton Ampner. Cross the road at this point, again listening out for any passing traffic. Once over the road, follow the path towards the woods.

5

The woodland at Hinton Ampner is mixed and has both conifer and native broad leaf trees. Although this is ancient woodland, Ralph Dutton did a lot of work on improving the woodland and making it a vital part of the working estate. Hinton Ampner had its own saw mill and much of the wood was grown so that the estate could be self sufficient. Hazel was also coppiced and use for many things such as fencing, you will notice many sections of Hazel, and we hope to use this recourse again in the future. The woodland is a habitat for many native species of flora and fauna, in spring there is a dazzling display of bluebells and wood anemones. There are many native creatures that inhabit the woods including badger, roe deer, fox and the rare barbastelle bat. Follow the path as it meanders through the woods.

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6

Turn right onto the last section of woodland, grand avenues lined by towering beech trees stretch as far as the eye can see. Pheasant pens used to line the trail here bu they have been removed recently so walkers can enjoy this area. You will also notice woodland dens dotted through the trees, why not build your own den whilst you are here. As the path comes to an end you will notice a field coming into view on the left hand side. This was the site of a World War II plane crash. During excavations during the 1970's most of the remains of an Allied Fairey Barracuda dive bomber were discovered and removed to RNAS museum in Yeovilton.

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7

At the end of the avenue, exit the woodlands using the kissing gate to the right of the main gate and follow the bridle way to the left. This area can be muddy after prolonged periods of rainfall so be careful on muddy sections. Keep a watchful eye in the field on the left this is another excellent area for spotting hares. At the end of the path take care in crossing the road and follow the path on the opposite side.

8

Turn right onto the Wayfarers’ Walk, a pathway created in memory of the first flight of Geoffrey de Havilland, an aviation pioneer, which runs from Berkshire through to Emsworth in Hampshire. It takes in many sites along its route including Watership Down; the route was in use since ancient times and would have been used by drovers to move livestock. Follow the track back up the slope towards the finishing point at Hinton Ampner.

9

Exit the path through the gate by which you entered and back onto the main driveway. There is a dog waste bin here for any waste. Please take other litter home with you.

End:

Gated entrance just off the main drive, behind the Church, grid ref: SU597275

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Dutton Estate walk at Hinton Ampner

Terrain

Mainly well-trodden footpaths and tracks but some sections are uneven and not suitable for wheelchair users. There are a number of small country lanes to cross, be aware of cars and farm vehicles.

Dogs are welcome, but must be kept under close control at all times to avoid worrying wildlife.

Trail can be muddy in places after heavy rainfall. There are a number of emergency markers along the route. Should you get into difficulty, each marker is numbered and has an emergency phone number on it. Call the phone number, go through to the shop and advise them of the number on the marker. Help will then be on its way.

Dutton Estate walk at Hinton Ampner

Contact us

Dutton Estate walk at Hinton Ampner

How to get here

Address
Hinton Ampner, Bramdean, SO24 0LA
By train

Winchester 9 miles (14.5km); Petersfield 10 miles (16km); Alresford (Mid-Hants Railway steam railway, linked via mainline services at Alton) 4 miles (6.4km). See bus details for transfers to Hinton Ampner.

By road

On A272, 1 mile (1.6km) west of Bramdean village, 8 miles east of Winchester. Leave M3 at exit 9 and follow signs to Petersfield.

Parking: Free, please call 01962 771305 for details of disabled parking.

SatNav: Use postcode SO24 0NH for satnav. This is the postcode for the Hinton arms pub which is 20 metres west from main entrance gates. The house postcode will direct you to the wrong entrance.

By foot

Arrival on foot to main gates off the A272. Make your way up the main drive way to visitor reception using the gates next to both cattle grids. Arrival from direct access from Wayfarers Way, linked to South Downs way, please report to reception at far end of the main drive on arrival.

By bus

Winchester to Petersfield,via Alresford (passing close to Winchester and Alresford train stations and passing Petersfield train station). Number 67 Velvet bus (No Sunday service) 10 minute walk east bound bus stop, 20 minute walk west bound bus stop.

By bicycle

Arrival from main entrance gates on A272, via the visitor reception.

Dutton Estate walk at Hinton Ampner

Facilities and access

  • Car parking is located at the end of the drive off the A272
  • Refreshments are available in the tea-rooms near visitor reception
  • Toilet facilities are located next to the tea-rooms, near visitor reception
  • Dogs are welcome, but must be kept under close control at all times to avoid worrying wildlife