White Hart - Alton, Hampshire
 
Holybourne has stunning countryside right on its doorstep.  At the White Hart we welcome walkers and are happy for our car park to be used by walkers who intend to enjoy our refreshments on their return.  
 
Here are some of our favourite local walks, ranging from an evening stroll to a challenging and enjoyable hike up Holybourne Down.  We hope you enjoy them as much as we do! 
 
 
AROUND THE CHURCH Just under 1 mile. Approx. 20 – 30 minutes.
 
On tarmacked surfaces throughout. A beautiful stroll, visit the Church and village pond and see the beautiful cottages of Holybourne.
 
1. Leave the pub by the front door and turn left along the village street.
 
2. Continue past Friends of the Elderly – The Lawn (former home of Victorian novelist, Elizabeth Gaskell) on your left.
 
3. At the top of the hill turn left up Howards Lane, follow the lane to the top, round a sharp corner to the right until you reach the Church.
 
4. Turn right through the wooden church gate, follow the path with the church to your left and the pond to your right.
 
5. When you reach the second church gate turn right onto Church Lane, past the pond and continue until you reach the T-junction with the main village street.
 
6. Turn left at the T-junction and you will see the White Hart on your right.
 
 
NEATHAM Just over 1 mile. Approx. 30 minutes.
 
Includes footpaths through fields, comfortable walking shoes recommended. Great to see local farm animals over the fence and the opportunity to play Poohsticks too!
 
1. Leave the pub by the front door and turn right along the village street. Take the 2nd right turn – Lower Neatham Mill Lane.
 
2. Follow Lower Neatham Mill Lane under the railway bridge and continue to the end of the lane. You will see the footpath gate to your right at the entrance to the field. However, we do recommend that you first go through the underpass and see the beautiful river and Lower Neatham Mill – a perfect spot to play pooh sticks and sometimes if you are lucky will see the resident kingfishers! There is a second bridge a little further past the barn on your left. Then return back to the footpath previously mentioned.
 
3. Follow the track through the field, you will come to a second footpath gate and go over a small bridge too. Enter into the second field and follow the footpath through the field of the Mill Cottage Farm Experience where you will see their animals – please keep you dogs on a lead.
 
4. When the footpath meets the lane, turn right and continue to the top of the lane.
 
5. Turn right along the main village street and continue until you reach the White Hart on your right.
 
 
THE FIELDS OF HOLYBOURNE 2 miles. Approx. 40 – 50 minutes.
 
Wellies/walking boots recommended. Absorb the beautiful views of the arable fields around the village, with views of the downs too. If you are lucky you may see deer and more than likely will see the buzzards, red kites and herons of which there are many.
 
1. Leave the pub by the front door and turn left along the village street.

2. Turn right into Church Lane, follow the lane past the pond and church.

3. At the junction to Howards Lane (just past the Church) turn right onto the footpath that runs alongside the perimeter wall of Manor Farmhouse.

4. Follow the footpath along the fence line to your left until you enter the first field.

5. Just before you reach the second field turn left and follow the footpath up the hill.

6. Continue around the perimeter of the field, through the hedge into the third field and continue down the hill with the hedge to your left.

7. At the bottom of the hill turn right onto the bridle-path. At the T-junction turn right.

8. After approximately 5/10 minutes St Swithun’s Way footpath will cross the bridle-path that you are currently walking on. Turn left onto St Swithun’s Way.

9. Once you have crossed the field continue up the steep path through the hedge and immediately turn right.

10. Continue until the gap in the hedge (large enough for a tractor) and follow the path down the hill and to the left over a small footbridge.

11. When you enter the meadow turn left and follow the footpath around the perimeter of the meadow, with the village cricket pitch on your left.

12. At the end of the meadow turn left onto the bridle-path. At the village street turn right, past the village play park and continue until you see the village shop on your right and the White Hart on your left.
 
 
HOLYBOURNE DOWN 3 miles. Approx. 1 – 1 ¼ hrs.
 
Walking boots/comfortable wellies essential. This walk does include walking up a gentle but long hill and coming down the steep incline of Holybourne Down that requires a reasonable fitness level. The views however are amazing from the top of the down and it is definitely worth the effort. In late spring part of this walk is through delightful bluebell wood.
 
1. Leave the pub by the front door and turn right. Cross over the road and continue past the village shop, the village play park and turn left onto the bridle path.
 
2. Turn right into the meadow and follow the perimeter along two sides. Follow the path into the second corner, over the footbridge and up the track into the field above.
 
3. Turn left and follow the hedgerow along the field. At the end of the field turn right and continue until you meet a gravel track.
 
4. Turn left onto the gravel track and follow the track all the way up and along the top of the hill.
 
5. The track will take you through the hedge at the top of the hill, continue until you come to a T-junction – turn left towards the woods.
 
6. As you enter the wooded area there is a path to your left through the woods (take care of roots on the path). If you reach the double 5-bar gates on your right you have gone too far.
 
7. Follow the track through the woods, onto the top of the down. This track will now continue to the bottom of Holybourne Down. On a clear day you have spectacular views over Holybourne, Alton and the surrounding area.
 
8. Once you have reached the very bottom of the Down turn left onto the bridle-path and continue straight on until you reach the village street.
 
9. Turn right onto the village street, back past the play park and shop. You will see the White Hart on your left.
 
 
UP HOLYBOURNE DOWN TO UPPER FROYLE  5 miles. Approx. 2 hrs.
 
Walking footwear essential. Recommended for walkers with a good level of fitness. Climb Holybourne Down and discover the beautiful views the other side! Continue into the neighbouring village of Upper Froyle with its chocolate box cottages.
 
At the turn of the last century, Upper Froyle was home to Sir Hubert Miller, who spent much time in Italy. He brought back many beautiful church vestments, as well as a number of statues of saints. The statues, which are a key feature of Upper Froyle, were positioned on the outer walls of many of the houses, giving rise to its other name, ‘The Village of the Saints’. (A leaflet showing the positioning and names of the statues can be found in the church).
 
1. Leave the pub by the front door and turn left onto the village street. Immediately turn right onto Church Lane.
 
2. Go past the church and continue on the lane past Manor Farm and the national speed limit signs until you reach the bridleway with double gates across. Turn right onto this track.
 
3. Continue along the bridleway and at the T-junction turn left. Round a small corner you will see the permissive bridleway that is fenced off on your right (do not go over the style into the field – although this is a footpath there are often livestock in this field – best avoided).
 
4. Follow the path up and over the downs. At the very top the path will take you through the woods (take care of roots in the path) and when you join another tractor size track turn right.
 
5. Follow this track for approximately 1 mile. As you enter Upper Froyle the track becomes a surfaced road. Go past the white cottages and turn left onto the track at the end of the hedge.
 
6. Continue along this track until it banks round to the left (with no entry sign) at this point turn right (almost straight on) past the cemetery on you left.
 
7. Turn right onto the lane, at the triangle in the road the church is to your left if you wish to visit. To continue your walk turn right at the triangle along the main village street.
 
8. The main street takes a sharp corner to the left – take a right turn (again almost straight on) off the main street. Where the lane splits stick to the left hand lane, past Rawles Motor Sports and continue along the marked footpath.
 
9. This footpath will take you across fields back towards Holybourne, through a small wood. When you reach a gravel track with paddocks and Bonhams Farmhouse to your left, continue straight over the track and continue along the edge of the field with the hedge to your right.
 
10. Follow the footpath down a steep bank in the hedgerows, across a large arable field and then turn left onto the bridle path and continue straight until you reach the village street.
 
11. Turn right onto the village street, past the play park and shop, and you will see the White Hart on your left.
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