The Coffin Walk - Part 02
w/e 22 April 2012
All this week's pictures were taken with a Kodak DX6490

Whilst the Coffin Walk is a circular five mile route and is one of a series of Country Walks in and around Erewash, for the purposes of this website we usually split such walks into smaller sections, walking each section at irregular intervals, photographing on the way, and then retracing our steps to our starting point to pick up the route again further on at a later date. For this particular section our original plans were thwarted as we shall see shortly but to reach our starting point at Wilne Cross we parked on a small car park (right) at Orchid Wood about a quarter of a mile down the lane from where we finished Part 01.

Orchid Wood

In Orchid WoodExit From Orchid WoodWe could have returned up the lane the quarter mile to Wilne Cross and then continued along the bridleway from there in a southwesterly direction towards Church Wilne. Care should be taken along this road as there are no footpaths and traffic travels at speed along the straight road so instead, we opted to make the wood a short detour and followed a path between the trees (left) and through the clearings (above) to rejoin the Coffin Walk via a small footbridge (right).
Coffin Walk

The secret to regaining the Coffin Walk through the wood is to keep bearing right at all the options along the path but even if you go wrong, the wood is not very big, is a very pleasant area and you'll soon find your way through it. Even though it was announced this week that the East Midlands was now officially in drought conditions following two dry winters, the forecast for the week was rain, rain and more rain. We decided therefore that we'd do this section of the walk on Monday before the rain arrived but even so the bridle path, already churned up by horses, was quite muddy with some standing water.
A little further on the conditions deteriorated even more with the water spreading all the way across the uneven path which became ankle deep in mud. Our previous walks along this path have usually been in the autumn and experience told us that it could be muddy but this is the first time we have seen conditions so bad that it made it impassable for walkers to proceed in safety without the aid of wellington boots! So, as we were unable to proceed any further we returned to the Orchid Wood car park and drove around to Draycott to attack the section from the other end. Our revised plan entailed walking the second phase of this section in the opposite direction to regain the muddy Coffin Walk path and then turning to continue the original route into Draycott.

Path Intersection

Although named the "Coffin Walk" it is only the route from Breaston to Church Wilne that is the actual Coffin Walk after which the five mile route is named. That said path is crossed shortly before reaching Church Wilne by the Midshires Way which is the route to follow now.
Midshires Way

Flood BankFlood BankThere is an option suggested in the Coffin Walk leaflet to continue to Church Wilne and St Chad's Water but the Midshires Way follows the relatively higher and drier ground of the flood bank towards Draycott. A second stile about half way along the bank separates the fields and the undulating features in some of them again betray the ridge and furrow farming methods of the mediaeval period.
Draycott Apartments

A prominent feature visible all the way along this part of the walk is the former Victoria Mills factory at Draycott. Together with the green capped clock tower, the lace factory was built between 1888 and 1907 and in more recent times was used by J H Parry for the manufacture of electrical components. Even more recently it has been converted into more than one hundred apartments.
Road Crossing

The path along the flood bank reaches Wilne Road - Church Wilne to the left, Draycott to the right - but our route is straight across to continue along the flood bank at the side of the River Derwent.
Private Fishing

River Intake WorksRiver Intake WorksThe Derwent has travelled almost sixty miles from its source on Ronksley Moor but here is close to its confluence with the River Trent. The gallows type structure on the river bank (left) is part of Severn Trent's River Intake Works opposite (right). Despite the DCAC notice, trespassing is a civil wrong or tort and subject to civil actions. It is criminal actions that are liable to prosecution.
River Derwent

This is probably the most picturesque part in this section although it doesn't last long as the path leaves the flood bank to pass behind the cottages in the distance.
Between The Buildings

Behind the cottages the narrow path passes between buildings and along a short but winding path flanked by tall hedges to regain Wilne Lane on a corner in the road.
Into Draycott

Emerging from the narrow path it is only a few more steps into Draycott and although on;y a couple of miles from the beginning of the walk in Breaston, the leaflet indicates that a refreshment stop can be made in the town centre if required. This however is where we ended Part 02 and to where we will return later to begin Part 03.
Back to Part 01
Forward to Part 03

Country Walks Index
Special Features Index

Terms & Conditions of Use
This website is copyright but licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 2.0 Licence.
Please credit the photographer Garth Newton, or add a link to these pages.