links between local villages
This page documents some off-road or quiet-road links between Bude and nearby settlements
Bude to Stratton
There is a bridleway that links Bude Infant and Primary Schools to the Broadclose HomeZone area and then on to Stratton Primary School. This also provides a link from Bude or Stratton to the Splash Leisure Centre, Curves fitness centre, HarleQuinns 10-pin Bowling and Morrisons supermarket.
To access this link from the Bude end:
either, from near the top of Lansdown Road (just below the Co-op supermarket), go up Broadclose Hill and, where this road curves right into Holnicote Road, continue straight on and follow along the front of Bude Infant and Junior schools and then right along the side of the school's wire-fenced tarmac playing area and through the metal chicane at the start of the bridleway beside the gate of Bude Town Football Club.
or, from the Crescent Car Park, go over the Bencoolan Bridge, round the roundabout, past the front of the Bencoolan pub and turn left into Killerton Road. Go up Killerton Road for 300m and turn left into Holnicote Road. Follow Holnicote Road until it turns a sharp corner into Broadclose Hill. At this point go right and along the front of Bude Infant and Junior Schools (as above).
Continuing eastward from Bude towards Stratton (from the metal chicane beside football club gate), this bridleway/link runs straight for 170m, then kinks right then left and goes down a slight incline (A) and then rises up to join Bartlett Avenue in the Broadclose HomeZone area.
Continue on Bartlett Avenue for 180m to the T-junction with Goldsworthy Drive. Veer slightly left to continue up Goldsworthy Drive and, where Goldsworthy Drive turns to the right, go straight on through the bollards until you come to the fence of the playing field. Go through the metal chicane and follow the tarmac path round the edge of the playing field, through the dip at the end (B) and then 500m on along the tarmac path to Stratton Primary School car park.
Note: those on foot can use an alternative grit footpath that takes a slightly shorter route, going off to the left at point (A) and emerging at point (B)
Those wanting to go to the Splash Leisure Centre, Curves fitness centre, HarleQuinns 10-pin Bowling or Morrisons supermarket should turn right at the T-junction where Bartlett Avenue meets Goldsworthy Drive then, after 50m, left onto Stucley Road, follow round the righthand bend and the supermarket is on the left and the Splash, Curves and HarleQuinns are all on the right.
The access to this link from the Stratton end is at the junction where the A3072 from Holsworthy meets the A39. Go down the lane (opposite this junction) that is marked with a bridleway sign, and with a blue cycle sign on the 20mph post. This lane leads to Stratton Primary School car park and the Gregson Centre. The link is the tarmac pathway that starts at the far end of the car park near the Gregson Centre entrance.
Marhamchurch to Bude
From the square at the centre of Marhamchurch go west past the bus shelter and take Helebridge Road past the side of the church (there is a blue sign near the bus shelter indicating that this route is on National Cycle Network route 3). Continue down Helebridge road past Marhamchurch Primary School (C) and down 500m to where Hele Road goes off to the right just before the junction with the A39. Turn right into Hele Road. After going over over two humped bridges (D) this road veers left and then there is a signed gateway on the left leading to the multi-use tarmac path along the verge of the A39. After 400m cross the A39 at the traffic island and go down the works access road to the start of the multi-use pathway. This pathway leads all the way to the Crescent Car Park at Bude, passing the new Bude Bike Hire / River Life Café on route. All this route is signed with blue NCN3 cycle signs.
Note: 50m beyond the school at point (C) there is a bridleway off to the right (signposted as the 'Planekeepers Path'). Walkers can take this as an alternative route down to the old Foundry at the bottom of the hill. Just before the Foundry building, there is a gate on the left leading to a footpath beside the canal basin that emerges onto Hele Road between the two humped bridges at point (D). For walkers there is also the canal towpath from point (D) all the way into Bude (you might even glimpse an otter or kingfisher if you are lucky). To take this altermative from point (D), use the underpass under the A39 (mentioned below) and turn right onto the canal towpath after crossing two small wooden bridges.
Marhamchurch to Widemouth Bay
This route follows the route (described above) from Marhamchurch down to the two humped bridges in Hele Road. Just before the first humped bridge there is a footpath off to the left leading to an underpass under the A39. Push your bike through this underpass, cross the two wooden bridges and then, when you reach the canal towpath, turn left through the gateway onto the path leading to the Weir Coffee-house/Bistro.
When you reach the concrete farm track you are on the permissive bridleway (detailed in the 'Gentle rides' section on the 'Cycle routes' page) that leads up to the coffee-house/bistro and all the way to the coast road just north of Widemouth Bay. When you reach the coast road, turn left onto it to cycle down the hill to Widemouth Bay.
Note that for walkers there is a footpath that goes off to the left after 100m along the concrete path (100m before the coffee-house/bistro) and goes across to the coast road at Widemouth Bay near the Bay View Inn pub.
Marhamchurch to Stratton
From Marhamchurch square, follow round the wall of the pub and take Hobbacott Lane which goes off to the left at this corner. Continue along Hobbacott Lane for 650m until the cross roads. Turn left and continue down this lane (Howards Lane), which contains several dips and rises, for 2.5km (ignoring two possible side turnings off to the right) to emerge onto the A3072 just east of the river bridge at Stratton.
Note that about 750m along Howards Lane (just before the first house of the Cann Orchard hamlet) there is a sign on the right for the 'Planekeepers path'. This is a route for walkers which follows the line of the old canal and up the route of the canal's 'grand inline plane' at Hobbacott to the A3072. Go right, along the verge of the A3072, for a short distance before taking a green lane on the left through the fields to Launcells church. From there, the 'Planekeepers path' continues on a footpath to quiet Diddies Lane, then left along Diddies Lane and finally, just before the river bridge, left again to follow a riverside footpath to the free car park at Stratton. Bude's Tourist Information Centre has interpetation leaflets about this 'Planekeepers path' walk.
Stratton to Flexbury
There is a bridleway from Poundfield (the road which runs west from the the junction where the A3072 from Holsworthy meets the A39) through to residential roads at Flexbury, and thus to the Crooklets beach end of Bude. Parts of this are a bit bumpy and there are some steps to negotiate.
To access this bridleway, go west along Poundfield towards Stratton Bowling Club. At the point where this road turns right after the Bowling Club, take the long driveway on the left leading to Seasons at Burn Park (note that this driveway has some speedhumps).
After 600m, (just before the gateway to the Burn Manor reception building), the driveway splits; take the left fork.
Continue along this for a further 160m until the point where the tarmac lane ends in a wider area. At this point, go through the wooden gate on the left onto a wide earthen bridleway. After 90m this goes round a corner to the right and narrows. It then turns left and runs along the back of gardens (this is the bumpy bit) and begins to descend slightly. About 180m after the left turn there is a set of steps going up to the right with steel hand rails.
Cyclists need to use these steps (as the straight-on bridleway path ends at the edge of the golf course where it turns into a footpath across the golf course to the Co-op supermarket). Beside the steps is an earth slope so it is possible to walk up the steps pushing a bike up the earth slope and then feed the bike under the metal chicane at the top. Beyond that is a short narrow path (push your bike) leading to the back of some garages and two more shallow steps. You emerge onto the corner of Meadow Drive.
Cycle straight on down Meadow Drive (don't turn right towards Lea Way or left into the cul-de-sac) and, at the T-junction, turn left into East Fairholme Road. At the cross roads, turn left again into Flexbury Park Road and cycle downhill for 300m to the big church at Flexbury. At the junction beside the church, turn left to go to Bude - or turn left, then immediately right into Downs View Road to go Crooklets beach - or turn right to cycle up to Poughill.
Note: the cycle sales and repair shop (North Coast Cycles) is in Summerleaze Avenue which is the second sideroad off to the right in Downs View Road.