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24 September 2014

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Berkshire Way - Hungerford to Combe Gibbet
View of Lambourn across field
Enjoy the countryside on your way up to Combe Gibbet - it's a very steep climb, but worth it!

This is the second part of the Berkshire Way - a special walk put together by BBC Berkshire - that takes in some of the best sights across the county from West to East...


Click the links below for detailed maps of this walk

Map 1 - Hungerford to Little Common

Map 2 - Little Common to Combe Gibbet


The maps on this page require the free Acrobat Reader plug-in. You'll probably already have this on your machine, but if not it's dead easy to download, free. Just click on the link below.
Download guide and Adobe link

Our maps are from

BBC Berkshire Way Index


BBC Berkshire Outdoors


West Berkshire Council

The Ramblers' Association

The BBC is not responsible for the content of external websites.


Combe Gibbet was erected on top of a Neolithic burial mound. It was only ever put to its use once in 1676 - George Broomham of Combe, and Dorothy Newman of Inkpen were lovers. They brutally killed Martha and Robert Broomham, George's wife and son, who had come across them together on the Downs.

They were seen committing the crime by the barefoot village idiot 'Mad Thomas' who managed to convey what he had seen to the authorities.

They were both tried and then hanged at the Winchester Assizes.

Their dead bodies were hung on either side of the Combe Gibbet to act as a grim deterrent to other would be wrong doers.

Combe Gibbet is a favourite spot for Hang Gliders to launch themselves off from, and is regularly used by members of the Thames Valley Gliding Club.


Distance: 6 miles
Grid reference at start: SU340686
Time: 2.5-3.5 hours
Going: Hard
Parking: Car park in the centre of Hungerford and in car park at Combe Gibbet.


From Hungerford station, pass the Railway Tavern pub on your left following the road up the hill.

At the t-junction with Howard's pet care opposite, turn left walking past the police station.

Leave the Common through the gate to the left of the cattle grid

Walk past the Downgate pub on your right.

Walk through the pedestrian gate, alongside the cattlegrid, and onto Hungerford Common.

Turn right onto the path across the common.

Then veer diagonally left, off the path and across the Common, heading towards Inkpen gate.

Once you're about half way across the common, you can see the sign for the cattlegrid at the other end of the common.

Head for this.

Once you reach the concrete road, turn right and walk through Inkpen gate, alongside the cattlegrid.

Cattle grid
Head for the cattle grid at the far end of the Common

Stay on the road, passing a turning to Sanham Green on the right.

The road is quite winding and busy, so take extra care.

When the road bends sharp left, go straight on following the public footpath sign.

Passing a barn and several red brick houses on your left.

Stay on the tarmac road and ignore any other footpath signs.

You can see Inkpen Hill and Gallows Downs ahead, and slightly to the left.

Keep on this road for one mile, you'll see a large corregated barn ahead on the right, which houses a light aircraft.

Continue on the road, passing Anvill's farm house on the right.

Just past the farm buildings, there are some redbrick houses on your left, turn right down the footpath.

Look out for the footpath sign to your left. before you reach the woods.

Turn left onto the footpath, with the woods on your right.

You're now on a section of the Berkshire Circular Route.

Head across the field. You'll see two gates ahead. Go to the one on the left hand side and cross the stile into the next field.

Follow the fenceline on your left, across another stile.

Keep on going, past the silver birch trees, and you can see Inkpen beacon on your right.

Go through the kissing-gate, and pass in front of stables on your left and tennis courts on your right.

This is Totterdown House.

Take the path that takes you along the connifer hedge, the path follows the route of the drive and you soon end up back on the drive.

Follow the drive away from the house

Follow the drive downhill, the drive comes out onto Sadler's Road.

Cross the road and go over the style opposite you.

This takes you along a tree-lined path.

Go over another stile and keep on the track to the left.

Go over another stile and you go into Inkpen Lower Green.

Turn right onto the road.

Keep going on the road, ignoring the first footpath sign to the right.

Pass the Old Craven Arms house on the left.

Take the footpath on the right, just by Holme Dean.

Follow this path between two fields

You're now on Sands Drove Track, where you meet another track turn left.

Turn right when you meet the road.

Follow the road to Ham and Shalbourne.

As you're leaving Penn, past the sign, follow the footpath to the left.

Gallows Down is now right ahead of you.

Continue on the footpath, now signposted to your right.

You can now see Combe Gibbet on the left end of Gallows Down - your destination on this part of the walk.

Ignore the public bridleway to the right, and continue on the track through the tunnel of trees.

Trees over track
Walk through the tunnel of trees and gear yourself up for a steep climb!

As you come out of the trees, there's a steep climb ahead of you, as you make your way to the top of Gallows Down.

The path up onto the downs is not easy to follow, but when you do reach the top, look for a gate to the right, which takes you onto the Test Way.

Turn left onto the Test Way.

Copse of trees
You can see this copse of trees from the top

Make your way along the ridge, past Combe Gibbet, and onto the car park you can already see in the distance.



Combe Gibbet
Combe Gibbet where they used to hang people

You've completed

Part Two of the Berkshire Way

Well Done!

Berkshire Way Part Three

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