The village green
We set off from the village green in Ashmansworth, admiring the pretty thatched cottage (Mere Cottage) which faces the green and especially the wonderful topiary.
We walked down the road towards Faccombe and turned off into a track between fields. A lovely open vista lay before us.
After passing through a small wood we followed field edge path, admiring the wide set-aside with loads of Oxeye daisies and butterflies. Hats off to the farmer!
Continuing towards Faccombe we found two isolated buildings, described as barns, but clearly renovated or rebuilt. There was no sign of life.
Entering Faccombe we were drawn to the pretty village pond. I was delighted to see a baby cootbriefly emerge from the vegetation at the edge of the pond. The village pub lies beyond.
We passed the the 18th century Faccombe Manor ...
... and the church of St Barnabas (1865-66).
Leaving the village, we followed a path downhill which then led gradually up Pilot Hill, the highest point in Hampshire at 286m.
On the way up we were pleased to see these pale pink orchids.
We crossed a large field and joined the Wayfarer's Way mainly through light woodland to return to Ashmansworth, passing these attractive cottages on the way back to the start.
Conditions: hot and sunny.
From: Walking in the North Wessex Downs (Cicerone).
Map: Explorer 131 (Romsey, Andover & Test Valley).
Distance: 6 miles.
Rating: four stars.