Earls Barton to Ecton via Cogenhoe
8 Km = 5 miles = 2 hours walking + stops
Ecton to Cogenhoe Lock (3 Km)
The walk begins at "The World's End". As well as food and drink, this historic hotel offers accommodation too.
Ecton is a charming village with a large number of ironstone-and-thatch cottages and another pub, mentioned in the village guide on-line. Look out for the unusual village notice board.
After the A45 crossing, the remarkable charm of this walk is interrupted briefly by an area prone to some fly-tipping but it is worth ignoring this for the prevailing joys of following this section of the Northamptonshire Round long distance footpath.
Cogenhoe Village (1 Km)
Cogenhoe (pronounced "Cook-nuh") is approached over an ancient bridge which crosses one of the overflow streams at Cogenhoe Lock on the River Nene. The lock itself is beside open farmland where curious cows study the human activity.
On the other side of the lock is Cogenhoe Mill Holiday Park. A small shop is open here for an hour or two each morning and afternoon.
The road to village runs steeply up to the point at which this walk turns east toward Whiston. However, from that point the winding road is much flatter for the 500m diversion to the centre of the village. The homely Royal Oak pub there welcomes walkers and dogs.
Cogenhoe to Whiston Lock (2 Km)
Resuming this walk at the junction of a number of paths, the way leads across wide and open fields to Whiston Lock. There are views of Whiston Church with its unusual pinnacled tower.
Whiston Lock to Earls Barton(2 Km)
Some will find the narrow arching bridge over the A45 road a little unnerving but it is modern and safe and quickly crossed. Thereafter, the footpath follows the line of an older road a few metres to side of the modern highway, first on the west, later crossing to the east as it approaches Earls Barton.
At the junction at the top of Aggate Way, exhausted walkers will find the stop for buses to Northampton a few metres to the north along Northampton Road while the stop for Wellingbrough and points east is 100m closer to the village along West Street. Those with energy left, however, will want to explore the centre of this ancient settlement. The church is famous for its Saxon Tower. The Old Swan pub is alongside The Square, which boasts a number of small shops and, for a small village, a surprisingly varied department store called Jeyes which has a Coffee Shop and a Museum.
Stagecoach Bus Route X46/X47 »
Thrapston - Raunds - Rushden - Wellingborough - Earls Barton - Northampton
Guide Dogs and Assistance Dogs are always allowed on busses. Most drivers are happy for other well-behaved dogs to travel too. Expect to find sheep in some of the fields.