Home » My End to End Land's End to John O'Groats long walk blog » My End to End walk: Leg 8: Days 30 to 33: Stroud to Worcester; August 28 to 31 2017, 53 miles (85 km). Total walked so far: 431 miles (694 km)

My End to End walk: Leg 8: Days 30 to 33: Stroud to Worcester; August 28 to 31 2017, 53 miles (85 km). Total walked so far: 431 miles (694 km)

Most of this leg was walking along the river Severn, through Gloucestershire, into Worcestershire.

Reflections on the river Severn near Worcester.

Wine in Gloucestershire?  Sure!

Great tree to sit in..

Dave and Bob: 78 and 79 years old, doing the whole Cotswold way camping out and with huge backpacks! Bob said he was in the armed forces more than 60 years ago. And here I am thinking I better do this walk now, as I won’t be able to in 10 years… They were a real inspiration to me.

“Hi Catherine,
Many thanks for the photo – one to put in the album.  It was lovely to find you sat on that grassy bank, almost as if you were waiting for us.
We made Bath yesterday and will spend Sunday here before returning; Bob to Scotland and me to Sheffield.
Good fortune in all your travels,
David and Bob”

Soon will be saying goodbye to the Cotswold Way…

Approaching Gloucester, two friends meet on Robin’s Wood Hill.

Gloucester and the Malvern Hills.

oak hug!


I spent a long time trying to untangle a sheep’s horns from a mangled fence on a pretty remote part of this trail (remote for Gloucestershire)  but only succeeded in getting his paw out. I didn’t take a picture. I didn’t think he would have appreciated it. Thanks to technology, it was easy to google the farmer and give him a call. He thanked me and said he would be right down to untangle the poor guy. Was a sorry sight! Still, I wish I had taken a picture now!

A few years ago near Bath in Somerset, a heard a sheep calling as he was drowning in a ditch, just his nose emerging from the murky green water, his wool all mangled into the blackberry brambles.  No one was around, I stripped down to my underwear and jumped in, went under water and pushed and pushed. from under him. A wet sheep is pretty heavy!  Adrenaline got us both out onto the bank eventually. I’m just glad no one was there to see this sorry sight as we emerged from the slime!  My brother the vet says sheep are always finding new ways to get themselves into precarious situations.

Twekesbury’s Norman cathedral.

Very impressive Norman columns


Bridget says this is called a Lincoln Imp door knocker. Thanks Bridget!

Timber framed Tudor era houses are many here in Tewkesbury, where the War of the Roses ended in 1471, and the house of York came crashing down… We Ames’s have the same three white roses on our family crest, so I suppose it was my ancestors seeking refuge in this cathedral and being crushed by the house of Lancaster? 

Supposedly the “oldest pub in England” from 1301, to the sign of the old Black Bear

Bear bating was a favourite entertainment….Unthinkably cruel to people like us…

The trail, always….

My friend for today

River Severn from now on for some days… Sometime hard to see the trail through the nettles.

Louise says: “the herbiage to left of nettles along the river bank with the pink flowers is himalayan balsom – another non native invader introduced by Victorians for its pretty looks”

Thank you Louise! 🙂

Spent a long time on this beach, at sunset. Watching and listening to an osprey (?) who was on the top of the tree almost as long as I was on the beach. The Severn: “The longest river in Britain”.

Louise again says: “Not sure that you saw an osprey in Tewkesbury – they dont sing as far as I know – they mostly stick to lochs and coast in Scotland but think there are some famously nesting at Rutland Water.”

So here is a very bad picture of the bird, what do you think?

Louise wrote: “I think it may be a juvenile buzzard – which would explain the white chest – was it calling a lot ? May have been asking for food from parents.”

I have a wonderful camera with a 200mm lens, but it weighs 2kg at least and that is 1/4 of the total weight I carry, so instead I have a much lighter and less powerful one I got in the pawn shop next door, perfect for walking, not for great pictures… Sold a couple of watercolours, bought a camera!

One of my ‘country homes’

Sunrise at Upton-upon-Severn

A third cathedral on this pilgrimage walk, Worcester


Thanks for looking….my comments are pretty dire here…….I seem to have lost the ability to write but…..

I found incredible peace and deep happiness walking these four days (on my own this time).  Something transformative happened. But I can’t seem to be able to explain. Just feeling very very good. I guess it’s the magic of silence and walking?

There is a 500-year old pilgrim in Worcester cathedral. You can see his boots and his staff. So this is nothing new….

And Henry VII  buried here put the white rose inside his red rose and starburst, as he married Elizabeth, from the house of  York, making peace and prosperity. Little did he know…it’s not easy to have Henry VIII for a son……