THE valley of Elmley Brook is a lovely place, with flowering meadows, a beautiful old pear orchard and patches of woodland full of birdsong.

The village of Elmley Lovett stands close to the brook and has only a handful of houses today, but St Michael’s Church is surrounded by fields full of ridges, hummocks and hollows which mark the site of what archaeologists call a DMV – a deserted mediaeval village.

A splendid avenue of oak trees leads across one of the fields to the church. There is access land to explore at Bryan’s Green, consisting of woodland, grassland and wetland – a good place for a picnic on a sunny day.


Start: Cutnall Green, on A442 north of Droitwich; grid ref SO880685.

Length: Four-and-a-half miles/7.2km.

Maps: OS Explorer 204, OS Landranger 139.

Terrain: Pasture, paddocks and arable; no hills.

Footpaths: Mostly good, with some exceptions. Waymarking is patchy, unclear or absent in places and there are some poor-quality stiles with wobbly or missing steps. One path has been over-cropped with broad beans – it’s not a problem now (though still an offence) but may become so as the plants mature. 17 stiles. At one point you may have to climb over a padlocked gate hanging precariously from one hinge.

Parking: It may be possible to park at the Memorial Hall on Addis Lane (please check locally). Otherwise, find suitable roadside parking.

Buses: MHS 20 operates from Droitwich to Hampton Lovett, three times a day Mon-Sat, while First 133 operates three return journeys, Mon- Sat, between Droitwich and Kidderminster via Cutnall Green. Visit or call 0871 2002233.

Refreshments: Pubs, tearooms and shop at Cutnall Green; farm shop north of Cutnall Green.


1 Take School Lane (by the shop and tearooms) then turn left on New Road. Take a footpath on the right after 200 metres. Walk along the edge of a recreation ground then continue straight on along a field edge. Cross a brook to another field and continue in much the same direction to a path junction at a hedge corner ahead. Keep straight on beside the hedge, changing to the other side of it when you come to a gap. Cross a stile in the next corner and proceed to Elmley Brook.

2 Cross the brook and turn right through meadows. There are glimpses of a pear orchard on the other side of Elmley Brook. Once you’ve passed the orchard you should cross the brook at a bridge, then turn left, still following the brook. Continue in the same direction after passing through a gate. Just before the brook bends to the right a stile gives access to a field, in which you bear left to return to the brook. Follow it to Mill Cottage, turn left at a junction, cross the brook, pass a water garden then descend steps to a field. Walk across it, cross another brook and head towards St Michael’s Church.

3 Enter the churchyard through a gate near the left corner.

Walk to the far side for good views of the DMV site. Leave the churchyard at the gate by which you entered it and turn left, soon moving away from the church and adjacent house to join tyre tracks across the field towards a lane.

Turn right along the lane and keep straight on at a junction. Soon after passing the access to Mill Cottage, turn right past a sandstone outcrop.

Climb slightly to enter a field, keep to the left-hand hedge until it bends left, then proceed across the field to a gate at the far side. Continue across another field to a gate in the far left corner.

4 Rejoin the lane and turn right, soon walking past the pear orchard seen earlier. Look out for overhead power-lines crossing the lane, shortly after which you’ll find a path on the left. Pass through some young trees then bear left across a bean field to a stile at the far side. Continue through two more fields towards a farm. Joining a track, turn right, then left to reach a junction marked by a fingerpost.

5 Turn right, following a track towards the A442. Keep straight on when the track bends left.

Reaching a hedge corner, next to a solitary oak tree and a pylon, continue across the field towards a fingerpost just visible beyond a notch in a bank at the far side.

Cross an overgrown stile to the road and turn right, taking great care.

Turn left on another road soon after Bannut Tree Farm (if visiting the farm shop you can cut through, saving 200 metres of road walking).

6 Take a path on the right, indicated by a broken fingerpost, followed by a nettleinfested stile. Keep left through two fields, then continue straight across another to the far side.

Turn right past Elmbridge Fishery. Cross a stile and footbridge then turn right through a poplar plantation to reach a waymarked post, no longer upright, at the edge of the plantation. It is impossible to say for certain which way is intended at this point. The waymark arrow could be indicating an access track running past a fishing pool, or a grassy path to the right of it.

It seems slightly more aligned with the grassy path, and this is quite well-trodden. On the other hand, the access track is much closer to the actual line of the right of way. Take whichever you think best, then cross the access track when it bends right. Join a second, parallel track (Monarch’s Way) and turn right to Bryan’s Green. Walk to Addis Lane and turn right to Cutnall Green.