Walk in Spencer's footsteps around Burghclere

Walking trail

Follow in the diminutive footsteps of the little man with big ideas. This gentle walk takes in the places that Stanley Spencer lived, loved, and was inspired by during the years he lived in Burghclere, creating his epic First World War themed masterpiece – Sandham Memorial Chapel.

Grassy slope and footbridge makes the extended route unsuitable for pushchairs or wheelchairs. Keep dogs on leads.


Map view of Sandham Memorial Chapel, Hampshire


Sandham Memorial Chapel, SU463608


1.Start at the Sandham Memorial Chapel. Parking is available in the layby opposite the chapel, or alternatively in the Burghclere Village Car Park.

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Pencil drawing of Sandham Memorial Chapel


2. Turn left out of the Chapel and commence along the brick-bordered road that is in fact the bridge over the old Winchester to Newbury railway line. After the bridge take an immediate left down 'Pound Lane'. 'Sandham House' is the second house on the right along this road.

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Pencil drawing of Sandham House in Burghclere Village nr Sandham Memorial Chapel, Hampshire


3. Continue to the end of this road and follow it round to the right. You are now on the Ox Drove.

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4. Continue along this road onto the dirt track for approximately 100yd (91m) until you reach a kissing gate on your right hand side. Take this footpath across the field and along a tree bordered path, until you emerge opposite the Church of the Ascension, where the famous glass artisan Lawrence Whistler undertook his final commission, which was inspired in part by Spencer.

Sandham - Church of the Ascension, Burghclere


5. For a shorter version of the walk, leave the churchyard by the main gateway, onto Harts Lane, turn left, and follow the road back towards the chapel. This route is recommended for anyone with pushchairs or those who wish to avoid uneven terrain. Otherwise: leave the churchyard by the side gate, nearest the war memorial, and turn right. Follow the pavement for 27yd (25m) to the farm gate and signed footpath entrance. This will take you to the field behind the church. Walk through the first field, go through the small gateway to the second field, and follow the footpath along the edge of the crops. Go through the next two gates, walk down 'Jacobs Ladder' through the spinney of trees. To reach the main road, cross over the stream using the footbridge made of railway sleepers, and then cross the final field to meet with Spring Lane. Now you can either turn left for a closer look at 'Wellside' of 'Cottages at Burghclere' fame, or to skip this, turn right and go straight to 'Old Station House'.

Sandham - 'Wellside' - Bill Fuller


6. Retracing your steps back up Spring lane, and then continue uphill, where you will see the Old Station House on your left. Formerly the stop on the Winchester to Newbury railway line known as 'Highclere Station', it was from here that Stanleys supplies would arrive by train and be transported by horse and cart to the chapel.

Sandham - Station House - Bill Fuller


7. At the end of the lane turn left, cross the old railway bridge and on your right you will once again see the chapel.

Sandham well head


Sandham Memorial Chapel, SU463608

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Walk in Spencer's footsteps around Burghclere


There are some unmade paths that can be muddy in wet weather.

Walk in Spencer's footsteps around Burghclere

Contact us

Walk in Spencer's footsteps around Burghclere

How to get here

Sandham Memorial Chapel, Harts Lane, Burghclere, RG20 9JT
By train
By train: Newbury approximately 4 miles (6.4km)
By road
By road: 4 miles (6.4km) south of Newbury, 0.5 miles (0.8km) east of A34. From M4, follow A34, then brown signs. From A339 (Basingstoke to Newbury) follow brown signs and white National Trust signs. Exit A34 at Tothill services.
By bus
By bus: There is a limited 7A bus  service to Burghclere from Newbury Bus Station. For details go to Traveline
By bicycle
By bike: View local cycle routes on the National Cycle Network website.
Walk in Spencer's footsteps around Burghclere

Facilities and access

  • No onsite parking. Parking is available in the village car park 0.8km (0.5miles) away or on street by the village church. The chapel can only accommodate 25 people at a time, pre-booking is essential. Due to the images in the paintings being copyright to Spencer's estate, we're really sorry but we can't allow photography inside the chapel. No refreshments available. Picnics welcome in the grounds. Dogs welcome in the grounds. Fully accessible toilet available