Footpaths and Bridleways

Footpaths around Monxton

If you notice a problem with any footpaths around Monxton then please report it to our Footpath Representative. Footpaths are cut at least twice a year, but let us know if you think they are overgrown. Click here to email the Footpath Representative – Shaun Crowley.

There are some lovely walks around the village and parish. This map (below) can be purchased in The Hawk or The Black Swan pubs.

Footpath map cover

Amport & Monxton Footpath map

Amport & Monxton Footpath map

map info 1

Map info 2

Points Of Interest

Walk One: Amport, East Cholderton, Hawk Conservancy & Manor Farm

Amport Village Green is the heart of the village. On one side of a line of alder trees hides a small, muddy river while on the other a road skirts the Green with a row of beautiful thatched cottages beyond it.

Back in 1086, East Cholderton – the Hampshire Cholderton – was recorded as Cerewartone. The ‘tone’ ending derives from the Old English ‘tun’, a homestead or village, and the first part of the name is that of the family living there. The full derivation is roughly ‘the homestead of Ceolweard’s people’. Meanwhile Cholderton in Wiltshire appeared in Domesday Book as Celdrintone or Celdretone. This too has a similar derivation, thus perhaps the homestead of Celdrin’s people. There is evidence of both Iron Age and Roman settlements at east Cholderton.

The Hawk Conservancy in Amport is said to have the greatest collection of birds of prey in Britain.  It is owned by Ashley Smith and family who train and breed the birds. Flying demonstrations of hawks and falcons are given daily throughout the summer months.

Walk Two: Amport Woods & Gallops

St Mary’s ChurchAmport House – see Walk 5

Walk Three: Monxton & Gallops

The Black Swan pub dates from at least 1662 and is renowned for its excellent menu and good beer. It’s popular with locals and visitors alike.

Monxton village and Manor were recorded in 1086 in the Domesday Book. The Norman owner bequeathed the parish to the Abbey of Bec Hellouin (in Normandy, France), which continued to receive income from the parish for the next 300 years. The Abbey lost possession of the parish following the Hundred Years War, and it was acquired by the Duke of Bedford and became known as Monkeston. When the Duke died in 1435, Monxton reverted to the Crown and Henry VI, who had recently founded Kings College, Cambridge, gave the parish to the college as part of its foundation. The college sold the parish in 1921 and most of the farms and cottages were bought by the sitting tenants.

Monxton Village Green borders the Pillhill Brook and is a lovely place to sit and enjoy the peace and tranquillity of the area and the river. The area used to be enclosed with a cob and thatch wall and had a house on it until the early 20th century.

Pillhill Brook rises at Thruxton and flows through East Cholderton and Amport, continues through Monxton and joins the River Anton in Anna Valley. Its banks abound with wildlife.  Several types of duck, Canada geese, moorhens and coots are common, herons nest in the trees and a family of swans and cygnets have been seen. The river runs mainly through open land. In places willows, poplars, hazel, hawthorn and alder line its banks. Wild flowers abound: pearlwort, yellow flag, water forget-me-nots, wild mint, rushes and campions. This chalk stream contains trout as well as minnows, bull-heads & eels.

Tucked away among trees by Pill Hill Brook, St Marys Church, with its shingle-faced belfry and broach spire perched on the gable, was rebuilt in early Victorian times. It typifies the many small churches to be found in the Hampshire villages. The present parish church was built of flint in 1853 to a design by Henry Woodyer (1816-1896) who specialised in English Gothic revival architecture. It was erected over the site of the earlier medieval parish church and incorporates the two pillars and their capitals (c.1200) which had supported the chancel arch in the old church.  It is a simple village church with a steeply-roofed nave, a chancel and sanctuary within, while outside there is a good porch and a west end bell-cote which Pevsner described correctly as ‘somewhat overhanging’.  Around St. Mary’s the large churchyard includes several table-tombs – and the observant visitor will be able to spot ‘1852’ on the headings of five drainpipes.

The Monxton & Amport Village Hall was built in the mid-1960s. It is an excellent venue for local clubs and societies, events, family celebrations and children’s parties.

Monxton Manor was originally the farmhouse for Monxton Manor Farm. The house was renamed The Manor and as such it became part of the original endowment granted to the College at its Foundation by Henry VI in 1444. The lands were eventually sold by the College in 1921.

kissing gate is a type of gate which allows people to pass through, but not livestock. The etymology of the name is that the gate merely “kisses” (touches) the enclosure either side, rather than needing to be securely latched.

In 1943 a railway line from the army depot south of Tidworth Road was built to join the Ludgershall to Tidworth line that had been opened in 1901. Ludgershall railway station closed in 1961 along with the northern section of the Midland and South Western Junction Railway to Swindon. The southern section to Andover remains open to allow the British Army to transport tanks and other equipment to and from the depot and onwards to Salisbury Plain.

Monxton Lane track (aka Gallops) was one of the main roads leading to Weyhill, just a mile or so to the north. Weyhill lies at the crossroads of many ancient trackways, many in use long before even the Romans settled here. These trackways include the Harrow Way which was used to move tin from the mines in Cornwall, across the country to the ports in Kent and thence across Europe. Gold from Ireland was also transported via Anglesey and Christchurch Bay and then tracks crossing Weyhill on its way to Kent. Many drovers tracks also crossed at this point and so it seems that at such a confluence of goods and people that trade had been carried out here at Weyhill even before the Normans arrived.

Weyhill Fair was one of the largest and most important sheep fairs in the country trading at its zenith 100,000 sheep a day. The fair also traded large numbers of pigs, horses and cattle. There was also a hop fair and a cheese fair. The fair was also a great place for hiring skilled and unskilled workers; it was one of the largest hiring fairs in the country.

The Portway was a Roman road between Roman Londinium(present-day London) and Durnovaria (present-day Dorchester),  although it more precisely refers to the section of that route between Calleva of the Atrebates (present-day Silchester) to Sorviodunum (the abandoned site of Old Sarum). Port Way covers a distance of 58 kilometres (36 mi) from Calleva to Soviodunum. Halfway along Port Way, it crossed the Roman road of Ermin Street (running from Venta of the Belgae (Winchester) to Cunetio (Mildenhall, Wiltshire)) and Corinium of the Dobunni (Cirencester) at East Anton just outside Andover. The crossroads at East Anton provided the nucleus for a small town which formed after the two roads were built.

Walk Four: Broad Road & Hook Lane

Bec House was built in the mid 18th century as the rectory for St Mary’s Church, Monxton

Monxton Manor (originally the farmhouse for Manor Farm) is a rare example of a late-18th century red-brick house with an unusual canted central bay and uncommon timber roof structure. Together with St Mary’s Church this forms part of the historic core of the village.

The flint and tiled St Marys Church is Grade II* listed and probably dates back to the late Saxon period but was rebuilt in 1854 with a broad spire clad in shingles.

Walk Five: Broad Road, Prospect & Georgia

The Hawk Inn (formerly The Amport Inn) is housed in the former home of the coachman to the Marquis of Winchester. It became an inn in the early 20th century and was modernised in 2011. The land opposite the inn, stretching down to the Pillhill Brook, is owned by the pub and is used in the summer for village and charity events.

At the time of the Norman Conquest what is now Amport parish was made up of seven Saxon settlements. William the Conqueror gave Anne, the largest of these, to Hugh de Port. In the course of time the name Anne changed to Anne de Porte, Annaporta, Anneporte and finally, Amport. Being the largest, it gave its name to the village. Of the other six Domesday manors, three small manors joined to form the manor of East Cholderton; two others, Anne Savage and Soresden combined to form Sarson (on the border between Monxton and Amport). The sixth was that of Appleshaw. These four manors established in Norman times gave rise to the four present day settlements of Amport, East Cholderton, Sarson and Appleshaw. Appleshaw was later created a separate parish. Amport Parish today includes Oklahoma Farm, Georgia Farm and Fox to the south and areas of Quarley, Middlecote and Cholderton to the West

William the Conqueror gave the land to Hugh de Port and since ‘an’ or ‘anne’ was a Celtic word for ‘brook’, so the village was called Anne de Port. Later this became Amport. Evidence of man’s occupation here stretches back over 5,000 years. Twenty-four Neolithic burial grounds are recorded in the parish. Beside the brook is the site of a Saxon Christian village. Today there are still tracks to be found which were once straight Roman roads.

The present Amport House was built in 1857 and replaced two earlier houses built on the same site. After use by the Royal Air Force during World War II, it was purchased in 1957 by the Ministry of Defence and is now the home of the Armed Services Chaplaincy Centre. It is an impressive building set in beautiful gardens laid out by Sir Edwin Lutyens. Amport House was built in 1857 to a design by the architect William Burn. It has a Victorian grey brick façade under a grey slate roof (replacing two previous houses on the same site). Of significance are the gardens. Sir Edwin Lutyens designed these with their lime walks and terraces, while the planting scheme was drawn up by Miss Gertrude Jekyll. The House is a Grade 2 listed building and Amport Park is a Grade 2 Registered Historic Park and Garden.

St Mary’s Church in Amport was built about 1320, probably on the site of a wooden, thatched church. It has been extended and altered several times. In 1988 it was re-roofed and now will stand for many more decades.  St Mary’s Church is in the benefice of Amport, Grateley, Monxton and Quarley. There are no remains of the original church, which was probably built of timber and thatch.  The present church was built of knapped flint in the Decorated style during the years 1320 to 1330.  It was luckily completed before the Black Death reached the south of England. Amport’s priest was one of many who died of the disease during the outbreak of 1348/9. The advowson of this church was given in 1217 to the Canons of Chichester cathedral by William de St John, son of Adam de Port after whom the village was named, and still remains with Chichester Cathedral. The first record of an incumbent at St Mary’s is in the register of Bishop John de Pontoise of Winchester which, as its very first entry in 1282, notes the institution of Thomas de Anne to the vicarage of Anne, as the village was known at that time. The church was extended and considerably restored in 1866 and re-roofed in 1988.

In common with many villages, Amport developed as a collection of modest cottages grouped around the church. These cottages were cleared away to make way for landscaped grounds for the Amport estate, and the residents were rehoused in new cottages on The Green.  The 13th Marquis commissioned a house built to the east of the current Amport House and closer to the church – an engraving dated 1806 shows an earlier house built in the classical style.

Amport School was founded in 1815 by Sophia Sheppard, a local resident, for the education of local children and still has representatives of the Sheppard Trust on its governing body. The school is now a voluntary aided Church of England primary school catering for up to 84 children from the age of 4 – 11

Amport Village Green is the heart of the village. On one side of a line of alder trees hides a small, muddy river while on the other a road skirts the Green with a row of beautiful thatched cottages beyond it.

Walk Six: Hook Lane, Broad Road & Dunkirt Lane

At the Abbotts Ann end of Dunkirt Lane a large Roman Villa was built. Mosaics taken from this villa are now in the British Museum.

The village name Abbotts Ann was derived from the Celtic river name ‘Anne’ meaning ‘Ash Tree Stream’ (now known as the Pillhill Brook). The first settlements in the area can be traced back to 50BC when the Atrebates cleared the forests and cultivated the land. First mentioned as Anna when reportedly granted to the New Minster of Winchester by King Edward the Elder, it was later recorded in the Domesday Book. Before the Norman invasion the land was granted to the Abbey of Hyde and became known as Ann Abbatis (the ‘Estate on the River Anne belonging to the Abbott’). Little Ann was granted to the Abbey of Wherwell. After the dissolution of the monasteries the estates passed back into secular hands.

In 1806, Robert Tasker settled in Abbotts Ann and later took over the Blacksmith’s business. Tasker and his brother developed the first iron plough, which become so popular that they set up the Waterloo Ironworks in Anna Valley to cope with the demand. In 1831, Robert Tasker built the school on its present site in the village, and leased it to the Revd. Samuel Best, the Rector of Abbotts Ann. Built 39 years before education became compulsory, the school was one of the first in England to take children of all denominations.

Walk Seven: Monxton & Abbotts Ann

No Points Of Interest listed.

 

Footpaths parish whole


Right click on the image above to print, or see/print the individual maps in greater detail 
below:

Hampshire definitive-maps 08-19

Hampshire definitive-maps 08-18

Hampshire definitive-maps 08-17

Footpath (Monxton) 08.19

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