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Willoughby - Hillmorton Walk

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A good walk combining field-paths and canal towpath in very rural surroundings and although of considerable distance, not greatly strenuous as it is mostly on the level. 

Starting from Willoughby, the route takes the narrow road to leave the village, then field-paths before reaching the North Oxford Canal. A short section skirts the lovely Barby Hill, following the contours of the land. Country roads and field-paths are taken again, to reach Hillmorton on the outskirts of Rugby. This is a sizeable village and several of its streets are walked on the way to Hillmorton Locks and Visitor Centre. Once a very important canal centre, it was the British Waterways Maintenance Yard and Section Office. The three locks are in pairs, an improvement carried out in 1840 to speed the flow of traffic. Myriad transmitting masts dominate the sky and are a landmark for miles around. They were once a well-known feature for the working boatmen, especially when lit up at night. 

The lengthy stretch of canal walking on the return journey is delightfully tranquil and green, with many interesting points along the way, until Willoughby Wharf is reached. From here it is but a short distance back to Willoughby Village.  

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