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...RELAX WITH FAMILY AND FRIENDS.........CYCLE THE PEACEFUL LANES OF WEST NORFOLK...



TWENTY TWO MILESRIDE SIXWest Acre   Castle Acre   Lexham   Litcham  Dunham   Sporle
The ride includes some lovely 'hidden' lanes. It takes in the picturesque village of Castle Acre, with it's castle and Cluniac Priory. There are plenty of places of interest,and many pretty picnic spots.
RIDE STARTS AT: ECOTECH CENTRE CAR PARK.
(See "Swaffham Information" page for map showing car parks).

Leaving the EcoTech car park,go up the road by the superstore, straight across at the little roundabout, and up to the junction at the busy main road. Take very great care negotiating this next short section. Turn LEFT on to this very busy road for about 50 yards, then, just before the bypass bridge carefully turn RIGHT into New Sporle Road.

After a short distance the road bears left between the walls of a dismantled railway bridge and goes past a large pond. The road soon widens and you come to an offset crossroads.

Turn LEFT here into Sporle Road which winds its way back up to the by-pass. A few yards before the by-pass, on a sharp left hand bend, you will see a little bridle lane. Turn RIGHT into this and follow it until it dips down,turns LEFT to dive under the bypass, and turns left again, to eventually come out on the Sporle road again. Turn RIGHT here and continue along this lane, over a disused railway bridge (you will cross these "Beechams' follies" four more times on this ride), and down the hill to a "T" junction in the village of SPORLE.

Turning LEFT here, go past the "Squirels Dray" P.H. and the church on the right and continue to the end of the village where you come to a crossroads. Take the lane to the RIGHT and follow this for one mile until you see a sign for a golf course.

Turn LEFT into this delightful little lane which winds its way across a landscape with hardly a house to be seen. Ignore a turning on the left at Wood Farm, then, soon after a left hand bend, you arrive at the village of GREAT DUNHAM. At the junction, continue straight on, which after a few yards brings you to a "T" junction on the Litcham road.

litcham.church1.jpg - 8303 BytesTurn LEFT here and go straight on towards Litcham. You soon come to a lovely long downhill section which carries you quickly on to Litcham Common, (a good picnic spot) and then up to a "T" junction close by a bridge over the River Nar.

Turn LEFT here into LITCHAM village, where there are a few small shops,a Post Office, a pub and an interesting church with a red brick tower.

Soon after the church you will come to a turning on the LEFT, signposted Gayton. Take this road until it joins another larger one going in the same direction, where you continue straight on. This road can sometimes be a little busy, but you are not on it for long. About half a mile after some little cottages on the right, at the start of a woodland area, the main road bears off to right and you take the lane to the LEFT,which dives into the woods.

lexham.road.jpg - 11724 BytesOnce through the dense woods you enter the parkland of Lexham Hall and then back into woods again, where the lane narrows considerably. At East Lexham, ignore the turning to the right and the one to the left and continue straight on down the undulating and very narrow lane into West Lexham, where the lane turns sharp left then right past the Hall.west.lexham.jpg - 8155 Bytes

Ignore the right turn round the bend, go over the little bridge and take the next lane on the RIGHT which soon joins another up to the A 1065 Fakenham road and turn LEFT. Although this is a busy road, it is very wide here, with ample room for vehicles to pass you without causing any problems, but take care. The road runs downhill for half a mile where you will see an unmarked lane on the RIGHT.

newton.mill.jpg - 9727 Bytes Cross with care and take this narrow lane (it gets narrower) which crosses a bridge over the River Nar. The building on the bridge was once a watermill, now a "modern conversion". Once over the river the lane bears left across a little green, usualy inhabited by noisy geese, then on up a rise, following the lane until you arrive at a crossroads.

Go straight across here where you join another lane going to the LEFT and which will bring you to a junction at a small green. Go straight across and up to a "T" junction, where you turn LEFT, past bungalows and a shop,up to a sharp right hand bend in the road. westacre2.jpg - 154870 Bytes

Once round the bend you are in CASTLE ACRE village centre and 50 yards brings you to Stocks Green, where the main road turns left through the Bailey Gate, part of the old fortifications.

bailey.gate.jpg - 22571 BytesIgnore the main road and keep straight on here, going along with the green and the church on your left. Just after the church there is an ancient cottage and then a little lane.

Turn LEFT here and follow this tiny lane down to the river,(a popular picnic place) where it bears right and goes over a very narrow concrete bridge, with hand-rails on one side only! The very prudent will get off and walk.

Once over the river, the lane, which can be a bit muddy in wet weather, climbs up for a while before leveling out and taking a sharp bend at a farm. Soon after this you will see a lane on the RIGHT, which you take and then join a larger road going to the right.westacre.common.jpg - 11109 Bytes

This lane leads you through woods for over a mile before turning sharp left. The area across the road to the right is privately owned, but the owner allows public access to this pretty spot, which with the shallow, clean river is an ideal spot for picnicing with the family.

If you are not stopping, carry on around the bend and continue on until you reach a crossroads. Turn LEFT here and prepare for a long haul upwards out of the valley. The lane rises steadily for about a mile, through open farmland and then levels out into pretty woodland. Then, after about a mile and a quarter it joins a larger road going in the same direction.

This road runs straight into Swaffham and you will now be able to see the wind turbine over to the left. You will soon cross over the bypass, and then as you aproach the town, just before the railway bridge, you will see an unmade lane on the LEFT. Turn in here, (if you have narrow road tyres, I would advise dismounting and walking the short distance to a gap in the hedge on the left). Here there is access to the industrial site and the EcoTech. You can now continue straight on and return to the EcoTech car park


Sketch map only - Not to scale

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Castle Acre Priory
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The information on this website was correct at the time of writing - however things change, so if you find any errors please let me know. You are free to download any of the route descriptions or pictures, but I would appreciate feedback, especially if you ride some of the routes.........HAPPY CYCLING.
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Page updated 25 - 10 - 03