Monday, 13 August 2007


Burrington Church

The walk begins at the church in the pretty village of Burrington and is essentially in three stages. The first involves a steady climb through woods to to foot of Black Down. The second involves a longer stretch across the foot of Black Down, parallel to the ridge. And the third involves - obviously - a steady descent, across the common of Burrington Ham and finally again through woodland.

Burrington Combe

The natural rock fissure of Burrington Combe is famous as the inspiration for the hymn Rock of Ages. The Rev Augustus Toplady was inspired to write it as he sheltered from a storm in cleft in the rock.

Although only four miles, this walk offers a good work out and some wonderful countryside.

Black Down from Burrington Ham

From: Village Walks in Somerset by Anne-Marie Edwards (Countryside Books 1999).

Map:Explorer 141 Cheddar Gorge and Mendip Hills West.

Rating: 4 stars.


Marvellous views from the Down across to the Severn Estuary and Wales. Black Down is the highest point on the Mendips at 1000 ft.

We went off the route on the way back and ended up walking 5 miles, having made a much more comprehensive examination of Burrington Ham than planned. The familiar story of over-confidence - we thought we remembered the way from the last time we did this walk. However, once we realised we were lost, the basic geography kept us straight: keep going downhill, keep the road on the left, keep Black Down behind.

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