A Walk from Beckley


This interesting two-mile walk starts from Beckley Church, though if you prefer, being circular, it could as easily have started at the RSPB Reserve car park down Otmoor Lane.  It takes in most of the old village, the RSPB reserve on Otmoor and the Abingdon Arms hostelry on the way around for much needed liquid refreshment or even lunch.


I parked my car beside Beckley churchyard wall on a recent sunny day knowing the weather was forecast to stay fine and clear.  The path follows a well-defined route initially following the Oxfordshire Way; often alongside boundary fences so finding your way should not be too difficult.


A map of the route is shown below: -


Directions: -


  1. Go down Church Lane to the end.  By a bench take a stile on the left and follow the well-trodden path (The Oxfordshire Way) over the field and into Noke Wood.  As you emerge from the wood you can take in a pleasing and expansive view of Otmoor and the RSPB reserve.  Turn right here and follow the path along boundary fence keeping Sling Copse on your right.  If you are lucky the wild primroses may still be out but you will have plenty of chance to take in the bluebells.
  2. Eventually after a sharp right turn in the path you come to the edge of a field with a ditch and hedge on your left.  The path goes alongside this ditch all the way to Otmoor Lane.  Her you can turn left into the RSPB Reserve car park and follow the track around to the reserve where you can chose to go either way along the almost perpetually muddy farm track beside the Reserve proper to view the bird life – take some good binoculars or better still a telescope and tripod.
  3. The way back now goes up Otmoor Lane to Beckley.  Turn right at the top of the hill and make your way to the Abingdon Arms for refreshment, the menu is excellent and there are also tables and seating on the garden terrace –weather permitting!   The inn gets its name from the Earls of Abingdon who owned Beckley Park from 1540 until the 1920s but before that the Beckley Estate was owned by the Crown – Edward I and Henry VI are both known to have referred to it.
  4. After refreshments it is fortunately a short walk along the road to your car.