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Pub Walk (37) Saturday 3rd November 2012, from the Royal Oak, Gretton

North Cotswold Branch of the Campaign for Real Ale


   Seven members of North Cotswold Branch of CAMRA met up at the Royal Oak, at Gretton (Photo 1) for the 37th and a repeat adjusted walk to welcome new Landlord/Lady Rob and Lucie who have a fifteen year lease and have completed a  welcome makeover. (Photo 2) The earlier walk No 7 was held in 2009, we have covered some ground and 30 pubs since then.


   In glorious sunshine after early morning rain we headed west from the pub car park through the attractive village of Gretton and turned into the first road on the left. The road turned into a track and at a junction of footpaths we turned right past several large gardens Care is required here when emerging onto a road and taking a footpath heading east just south of a private drive. Turn left at the next junction of paths heading uphill along the Wychwood Way.(Photo 3). The subsequent climb up to Langley Hill was the highlight of this walk and required care in several wet places with the many natural springs. (Photo 4) The long climb required several rest stops giving a chance to enjoy the stunning view behind.(Photo 5)


   At the top we rested (Photo 6) and the view (Photo 7) before joining the Gloucestershire Way and turned initially East to Abbots and then North downhill towards Gretton Hill Farm. The walking was much easier here and at the bottom, reaching the road (Photo 8) we turned left and walked on the verge back to the Royal Oak, having completed a spectacular and challenging circular walk, shorter than normal due to the conditions and back at the car park before noon.(Photo 9)


   6 real ales in excellent condition awaited (Photo 10) namely :- Wye Valley HPA, Jennings Cocker Hoop, Marstons EPA, Cotswold Spring Trooper, Oxfordshire Ales Trick or Treat, and Brakespear Oxford Gold. The Royal Oak is a supporter of Local Ale and the range includes two mandatory Marston Brands.


   It is advisable to book a table if you wish to eat in this very popular pub and our reserved table in the superb conservatory awaited, (Photo 11) with an outstanding view over the adjacent Glos and Warks Railway towards the Malvern Hills. and excellent food and service.


   As a bonus were able to view the steam trains running  past on their way to  Chicken Curve and onwards to Toddington.


   We look forward to the next walk at the reopened Killingworth Castle at Wootton on Dec 1st. This is a joint event with North Oxford CAMRA.


Report by Roger Price


Tel 01451 810305

Mob 07850 429630



Pictures taken on the walk:




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^ Photo 5 ^

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^ Photo 9 ^

^ Photo 10 ^

Photo 11 >