14 miles, allow two and a half hours. Hilly to start then easy cycling.

Distance

14 miles

Terrain

Quiet Country roads

Start from

Craven Arms: Shropshire Hills Discovery Centre

Nearest to

Craven Arms

Parking

Craven Arms: Shropshire Hills Discovery Centre

The route

The best way to see the Shropshire Hills is by bike! Cycle from the Shropshire Hills Discovery Centre in Craven Arms and in five minutes you are in the heart of the Shropshire Countryside. Discover for yourself superb views, hidden valleys, ancient castles, quiet woods and sleepy villages.

Starting from the Shropshire Hills Discovery Centre at Craven Arms. This route turns left at Round Oak signposted for The Fish and Hopesay. From Hopesay, carry on down the valley to Aston on Clun. Turn right on the B4368, after 1⁄4 mile take the first left. Follow the River Clun upstream along a narrow lane via Clunbury to join the main cycle route at the junction of the B4385, turning left continue to Twitchen.

Places of interest:

Wart Hill

Site of an Iron Age Hillfort. At 324m the fort has excellent views of the surrounding hills and is the focal point of ‘The Wart Hill Wander’, a Secret Hills Walk.

Hopesay

A quiet village in a hidden valley. The church of St Mary’s (built 1192) has a fine Norman doorway. Part of the churchyard is a Wildlife Meadow and picnic area.

Aston on Clun

Every May the villagers decorate their rare Black Poplar ‘Arbor Tree’ to commemorate a local 17th century wedding. But the custom may originally go back much further, to honour a Celtic goddess. This is the last tree dressing ceremony in England.

Lydbury North

The village is dominated by the large estate of Walcot Hall. A Georgian House with Arboretum, once occupied by Clive of India. Open May & June (limited days). The Norman parish church has a massively buttressed clock tower with a unique carved bell frame, holding a peal of 6 bells.

Hopton Castle

Built in the 14th century on the site of an earlier castle. It was the scene of a very bloody siege in the Civil War, when all the occupants were massacred & thrown into the ditch nearby. The nearby Hopton Wood is excellent for mountain biking, with over 15 miles of specially developed off road paths.

Clungunford

13th century church on a Saxon site. Next to the church is the remains of a ‘Motte’ and bailey fort probably used to defend the bridge crossing the River Clun.

Roman road

Part of the Roman Watling Street West which links Caerleon with Chester. Local places linked were the roman garrison town of Bravonium (now called Leintwardine) and Viroconium (Wroxeter) near Shrewsbury.

Refreshments

Craven Arms has plenty of facilities for refreshments. The Bird on the Rock tearoom at Abcott serves teas & light lunches.