Author: Richard

Hodnet Footpath Group: meeting

We are having our next meeting at 7.30pm on the 8th Dec.

This is being held at the Wollerton Bowls/Social Club – not the Hodnet Social Club, as (incorrectly) stated in the Parish Magazine.

Anyone interested in our work/helping us, as we consider what our 2022 activities might be, will be very welcome.

If you’d prefer a chat beforehand, please call Richard on 685286.

Annual Glow Worm Walk 25/6/21

In view of the disruption/uncertainty over group events this year, due to Covid 19, Hodnet Footpath Group are not planning our usual programme of public walks.

However, we do intend to run just one event, and that is the annual late evening glow worm walk on the Hodnet to Wollerton stretch of the old railway line. This is scheduled for Friday 25th June (if too cold/wet to go it will be on the following Friday – 2nd July.

This is always a popular event (around 60 people attended in 2019), not least as glow worms are nationally scarce and locally very rare.

This year numbers attending will be limited to 30 pre-booked spaces – reflecting the Government’s limit on numbers attending outdoor events – from 17th May.

Whilst it is possible all restrictions on numbers will be lifted by 21st June, it would be a hostage to fortune to currently assume that IS going to happen. So, to avoid disappointment we are following the current number limit on such events.

Booking for the glow worm walk is free, but is on a ‘first come first served’ basis – but with a reserve list maintained. We will use this reserve list to fill received cancellations or if restrictions are further eased by the date of the event.

For more details/to reserve your place please contact our Secretary, David Wilson, using : or 07970 304169. Please provide/note he will ask you for: your name and contact information, plus the names of those coming with you.  

INSTRUCTIONS: We will meet at 10.30pm by the old railway bridge on Station Road, Hodnet. Come in suitable footwear and clothing. Dogs on leads OK, children too (leads not needed!). Torches may be useful for the homeward walk, which is usually around 11.45pm/Midnight.

IMPORTANT: In consideration of those who may not wish to be part of a larger/unstructured party please do not try to attend this event if you are not able to officially book on. You can of course visit under your own steam on another evening if you wish. Warm dry evenings as it goes dark, from mid June to mid July, are the best times to spot our glow worms. They usually lurk at the base of tufts of grass/straggly vegetation on the edge of the short grassed areas of the old railway line embankment between Hodnet and Wollerton. Look for a pale green/white spot of light.

Help Out to Walk Out!

From Hodnet Footpath Group

Over the past year we have seen a big increase in the number of people using our local paths; partly because of the effect of Covid 19 exercise restrictions and partly, we like to think, because our 10 local walk leaflets coupled with the repairs/signage/clearance work we do have all made it easier for people to discover what is on their doorstep.

With uncertainty still ahead, we are not planning a programme of public walks this year, our priority instead being to carry out neglected items of maintenance, e.g. stile repairs and cutting back vegetation.

As with many such groups, we are surprisingly few in number (and not getting any younger!) so would be very grateful to anyone who would consider joining our group &/or assisting in our occasional work parties. We are a friendly, informal bunch and not only do we do ‘good works’ but we have some fun too!

So, if you’ve enjoyed our walks and appreciate the (often hidden) work that facilitates them, please help to make a difference for the future and get in touch. Contact details are on our webpage, see HERE, or find us on Facebook.

Hodnet Doctor Stops Pancake Day

That headline got your attention!

However, this is nothing to do with the esteemed doctors of today’s Hodnet Medical Centre, but relates to an Feb 1886 Newspaper article, topical at the time, that was this week posted on Facebook’s ‘Shropshire Tales, History & Memories page’.

The article comes from Eddowes’s Shrewsbury Journal, and around 20 years after his death it seems Dr Walmsley was clearly still well remembered – perhaps as he seems to have been Hodnet’s first recognisable resident GP as well as a bit of a character.

At least two of his early medicine bottles survive, see picture of one of them below.

Note. The writer is always interested in acquiring more local old bottles and containers, so if you’ve got some to re-home, maybe after a ‘lockdown clear out’, please do get in touch via email at Contact Me

Have you ever walked/ridden between Peplow and Ollerton? If so please read.

From Stoke Upon Tern Parish Council.

WANTED – People who have walked or ridden between Ollerton and Peplow

For many years some residents of this area have used a route (indicated A – B on the accompanying map) to walk, cycle or ride horses between Peplow Chapel and Ollerton Lodge, and vice versa.

In 2016 (conscious that the described route does not appear on official maps as a recognised public right of way) Stoke upon Tern Parish Council lodged an official claim with Shropshire Council to have this route legally recognised – and thus protected for future use.

The legal process involves examination of historic documents, but rests heavily on past users of the route completing a simple ‘user statement’ – covering matters such as the route used, the years it was used and whether or not its use was effectively ‘as of right’. Some 28 statements were submitted, which the Parish Council felt was a considerable number from a small rural area.

Recently Shropshire Council completed their official investigation, but unfortunately turned down the application. Their reasons for this appear to centre partly on a lack of historical evidence but, more importantly, also from a stated lack of user statements from people who have no connection with Peplow Hall’s tenanted homes or previous owners/occupiers of land at Ollerton Park.

The Parish Council feels that the case for this route being recognised is fairly strong and that, for various reasons, Shropshire Council’s decision is flawed. Accordingly we have lodged an appeal to have the case reviewed by the Planning Inspectorate. This process provides a brief opportunity* to submit new/further evidence, and with that in mind we URGENTLY need EVERYONE who has ever used this route, and may wish to do so again, to complete a user statement.

If you have not already completed a statement please do get in touch with the Clerk (details below) immediately and the necessary forms will be sent to you. After completion they can be scanned and emailed back or posted. In either case the Clerk will arrange for them to be submitted to the Planning Inspectorate.

Any documentary evidence/photos of the route in past use would also be welcome, especially any relate to claims already received of past use by the military, e.g. troop movements between Peplow Railway Station and RAF Peplow (aka Childs Ercall/Eaton upon Tern airfield) during and after WWII.

If you’d like to help secure this route for future generations please consider whether you or others in your household could complete a statement, or if you know of relatives, friends or neighbours who may have used it and could do so– even if they’ve since moved away.

*Documents need to be submitted to the Planning Inspectorate by 27thNovember 2020.

If the appeal is lost there will be no opportunity to revisit the subject, so please don’t delay ACT TODAY!

Graham Bould.

Clerk – Stoke Upon Tern Parish Council

Email: or Phone: 01952 594758

Claimed route is shown in black.
Note FP 9 is rarely used and officially ends by the river.

Annual Glow Worm Walk is Cancelled

For the avoidance of doubt, as the Hodnet Footpath Group’s walk programme for 2020 was posted on this site at the start of the year (in a pre-Covid age!), the scheduled group walk next Friday (19th June) is not running – like all our events so far this year.

That does not mean that people cannot go and try to spot these curious creatures under their own steam – most appearing along the embankment at the Wollerton end of the former railway line walk from Hodnet to Wollerton. If you do wish to do so, choose a warm evening after dusk, e.g 10pm onwards at this time of year; and then look for the little blue/white glow in the base of the longer grasses at the edge of the track. In the right conditions you should see a few, and if you’re lucky tens of them – it’s nature and unpredictable!

Do not:

  • all go on the 19th June – a week or so either side usually produces results.
  • if others are there doing the same, maintain ‘social distancing’.
  • disturb them, they only get one chance to breed.

Stoke Heath cut off – as Wollerton Wetlands Flood!

Storm Dennis has seen the Wollerton Wetlands live up to their name, as these pictures show.

River levels are about 1ft down on their peak last night; and whilst those familiar with this area will recognise the footbridge, much else at the moment is ‘beneath the waves’ – with a walk over the field path from here to Stoke Heath definitely not on the cards!

Hodnet Footpath Group – 2020 Walks

Hodnet Footpath Group are pleased to announce dates for their accompanied (public) walks in 2020.

They seem to attract a diverse bunch of people, so why not come along for a pleasant stroll in good company? Make a note in your diary now, and keep up to date via the Hodnet website’s homepage or our groups Facebook page.

Free parking is available at all start points. Accompanied children and dogs [on leads] welcome on all walks. Sensible footwear advised, and maybe a torch on the Glow Worm walk. Most walks are of 2 – 2.5 hrs duration, but May 8th likely to be 3- 4 hrs.

If weather is terrible, these events will be cancelled and then run at same time/same day the following week.

The walk routes can be seen in the relevant walk leaflets, downloadable from


March 30th – Hodnet to Hawkstone Hall hotel (with planned tea/coffee stop and optional walk around their beautiful gardens), via Marchamley (Hodnet Walks 3). Depart 11.00 AM Lyon Hall car park, Hodnet.

May 8th – (May Day Bank Holiday – not 4th May as shown in many diaries printed before the Government changed the date!). Walk from Hodnet to Fauls (Hodnet Walks 6). Depart 11 AM Lyon Hall car park, Hodnet.

June 19th – Annual evening Glow Worm walk (Hodnet Walks 1). Meet by old Railway Line bridge on Station Road, Hodnet, for a 10.30PM departure.

July 30th. Summer Evening walk from Peplow to Stoke on Tern (Hodnet Walks 9).Depart 7pm from Peplow Chapel.
Sept 23rd – Walk around Fauls (Hodnet Walks 7). Depart 11 AM from Fauls Church.

Waste Not Want Not!

What sort of world is it where people living in a country with a developed household waste collection service feel it is necessary, let alone acceptable, to dump rubbish on the side of the road?

This is the result (at the bottom of Mill Road, Wollerton) of someone seemingly happy to inflict their ‘discarded’ Christmas on the rest of us. It’s so wantonly done there are gift tag names on much of it!

Shropshire Council have now been notified of this incident.

Whilst there may be an innocent reason behind this’deposit’, if anyone does know of a family where an Emily Rose, ‘baby Janey’; Kenny [aka baby Kenny?] or Indiana may have received presents; or who the givers – Dean, Jade, Jessica, Talia or Uncle Leroy or Aunt Kerry may be, then please consider letting them know it’s been dumped there – in case they wish to arrange its removal; or let Shropshire Council know their details, so that they may investigate further.

This case of fly-tipping was also covered in the Shropshire Star – ‘The tree still had the decorations on!’

A New Year’s Resolution?

At this time of the year many of us traditionally wonder how to get a bit fitter – but don’t like the idea of joining a gym or jogging alone, etc. Well, here’s a possible alternative:

If you like walking, love the countryside and enjoy hands on projects, why not help the Hodnet Footpath Group to monitor, repair and improve our local footpaths?

We need new volunteers to help with our main work plus organising occasional local walks, updating our walk leaflets and generally promoting our work.

We’re a friendly bunch who enjoy keeping active, getting outdoors and our [your?!] work also provides a community benefit – our local paths are now so much better used than they were before our group started in 2011.

Why not come along to our next meeting and find out more, or give us a call beforehand for a chat.

We’ll next be meeting on Thursday 16th January 2020 7.30 p.m. at Wollerton Social (Bowls) Club

For more information contact David Wilson on 01630 685305

Steve Alden on 07774 969339