< Ashburton - Bovey Tracey >

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Ashburton - Bovey Tracey


• Start: SX756 699 North Street, Ashburton
• Finish: SX814 782 Bovey Bridge, Bovey Tracey
• Distance: 13km/8.1 miles
• Ascent: 331m/1086ft
• Descent: 378m/1240ft
• Refreshments: Ashburton, Ilsington, Bovey Tracey
• Public toilets: Ashburton, Bovey Tracey
• Tourist information: Ashburton, Bovey Tracey
Turn left up North Street (towards Buckland in the Moor/Widecombe) alongside the River Ashburn to reach Greatbridge; turn right before the bridge on Rew Road, signed to Waterleat. At Rew Cross stay on the main road straight ahead and continue upvalley, passing the curious wedge-shaped former mill building, and continue until a steep climb gains Halshanger Cross.
Keep straight on to Bagtor, then gradually descend. Cross the River Lemon in woodland and climb steeply to Birchanger Cross. Keep straight on to descend to a junction, with Haldon Ridge visible in the distance. Turn left and continue into the village of Ilsington.
Ilsington, dating from Saxon times, is an attractive small village with a good pub and an interesting group of buildings near the 14th/15th-century St Michael`s Church; the original building above the lychgate housed a school for 30 boys in 1639 (according to records). The welcoming Carpenters Arms was at one time the brew house for the village alehouse (now St Michael`s Cottages), and opened as a public house in the early 19th century. Tin, lead and silver was mined locally from medieval times to the to early 20th centuries.

At the junction turn right to pass The Carpenter`s Arms, then turn left. At the next junction turn right to Liverton/Newton Abbot.
Descend steeply through woods for 800m; take the second lane on the left, almost at the bottom of the hill. Cross a stone bridge then ascend a steep hill to Woodhouse Cross. Continue straight on through Brimley, then descend to the outskirts of Bovey Tracey....
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Stay on Brimley Road to the junction with Ashburton Road and bear left. Follow this road alongside swimming pool and church to the T-junction and turn left (opposite St Johns Cottages). At the junction with Station Road opposite The Dolphin Hotel at the bottom of the town turn right, signed to Chudleigh (B3344). After 300m reach a pedestrian crossing. Dismount and walk on for 10m on reach the entrance to Mill Marsh Park (left) just before Bovey Bridge.

Bovey Tracey - the `Gateway to the Moor` - lies just outside the National Park boundary, and has expanded enormously over the last few years. The town is home to the Devon Guild of Craftsmen and the Dartmoor National Park offices (see below) and has a good range of eating and drinking establishments. The Heritage Centre is housed in the former railway station. In the English Civil War the Royalists were defeated by the Parliamentarians (under Cromwell and Fairfax) at the Battle of Bovey Heath, 1646, outside the modern town.