THERE’S lots of variety to enjoy in the course of this walk, from Malvern’s pleasant Victorian suburbs, with their ever-present hill views, to the woods and orchards traversed by the Worcestershire Way near Crumpton Hill.

Most of the orchards are devoted to apple trees but there are pear and cherry orchards too – a rare but welcome sight these days.

One local grower, Tom Norbury, produces award-winning cider, along with perry, fruit wine, juice and jam.

You may find his farm shop open – you’ll pass it soon after the New Inn, where local produce also features strongly on the menu.

It’s encouraging to see newly planted woods in places, and there are plenty of mature trees to admire too, including the magnificent willow and poplar pollards which line Whippets Brook near Sandpiper Crescent (point five). There are some beautiful old houses here and there, particularly Ashcroft and Sandlin House, while the construction of a new but traditionally styled timber-framed house near The Norrest demonstrates that old skills have not been entirely lost.


Start: Link Top, Worcester Road, Malvern; grid ref SO774469.

Length: Eight miles/13km.

Maps: OS Explorer 190 and 204, OS Landranger 150.

Terrain: Pasture, arable, orchard, woodland, quiet lanes, no noticeable hills.

Footpaths: No problems on the Worcestershire Way. Elsewhere, several paths are neglected and waymarking is absent in many places. Paths across arable fields are not all reinstated after ploughing.

There is a fair amount of road-walking towards the end because of difficulties with the footpaths off Halfkey Road. However, improvement work does seem to have started so you may find some issues have been dealt with.

Stiles: Four.

Parking: Link Top.

Transport: First 43/44 to Link Top; trains to Malvern Link; Astons 417 to the New Inn;

uk/bustimetables or 01905 765765.

Refreshments: Shops and pub at Link Top; New Inn and Norbury’s farm shop near Storridge.


1 Cross the Leigh Sinton road (B4503) and follow Hornyold Road until it bends left. Go straight on instead, on St Peter’s Road.

Walk to St Peter’s and turn right on Cowleigh Bank. Take the second left to meet Broadlands Drive at its junction with Sayers Avenue. Turn left on a track, then shortly take a footpath on the right. Keep straight on at a junction, walking along field edges. When the path forks, go left up a bank to join a woodland path.

Turn right along the edge of an orchard when you meet the Worcestershire Way. Follow the Worcestershire Way for about one-and-a-half miles.

2 About 400m after passing The Norrest you’ll come to a timber-framed house, newly built in traditional style. Leave the Worcestershire Way here and turn right through a hedge gap to find a bridleway. Turn left and follow a brook on your left closely.

Eventually the bridleway crosses the brook but you continue in the same direction, through orchards.

Keep straight on at two adjacent junctions, joining a track which meets a lane opposite a house called Ashcroft. Turn right.

3 Two paths are signed at Lower Sandlin Farm. Cross a stile to take the left-hand path, walk along the edge of a field next to the driveway, go through a gate and bear left, passing left of aviaries and a polytunnel to enter a large field. Bear right to a gate in the right-hand hedge opposite. Go through the gate, turn left through another gate and proceed to a dingle. The path through the dingle has recently been improved and is easily followed until it emerges into a field. Go diagonally towards a farm then turn right when you meet an access track.

Turn left on another track when you reach a junction by a pool.

4 Approaching another junction, go diagonally right, cutting across the corner of an unfenced field to a stile hidden in the trees just to the right of a track junction.

Walk straight across a narrow wood-pasture to find an overgrown stile. Continue straight across an arable field to a stile at the far side where two paths are waymarked in the next field. Take the one which goes roughly straight across. At the far side turn right along the field edge. When the path forks go to the left to walk along the left edge of a small triangular wood.

Cross a footbridge at the other end of the wood and enter a field. Go obliquely right towards a row of houses at the far side. Pass to the left of the large, white-painted one at the left end of the row.

5 Turn right on Hereford Road then take the first left, Dragons Lane. Ignore branching paths and keep straight on at a road junction, joining Halfkey Road. Follow it to a residential area and turn right on Hospital Road, then go left on Sandpiper Crescent and take a path on the right after number 15.

It’s easily followed to an unmarked junction at a fence corner, where you turn left. Follow the fence to its end then keep straight on until you can cross the brook on your right at a footbridge. Follow a well-trodden path past a new housing estate to Sayers Avenue.

6 Turn left, then first right on Cales Avenue. Go straight on at a junction then left at the end of the avenue to meet Leigh Sinton Road. Turn right, then shortly cross Somers Park Avenue to Albert Park Road. Turn right when you meet Queens Road then cross to a footpath which climbs to Alexandra Road. Turn left, then very soon right on another path, Laburnum Walk, which leads to Link Top.