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Bicycle Ride recommended route

Moreton-on-Marsh to Broadway

Bicycle Ride · Cotswold
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  • Lower Slaughter Manor
    / Lower Slaughter Manor
    Photo: Josiah Skeats, Macs Adventure Ltd
  • / Crossing the Stream in Lower Slaughter
    Photo: Josiah Skeats, Macs Adventure Ltd
  • / Great Views From the Road
    Photo: Josiah Skeats, Macs Adventure Ltd
  • / Cottages with Character
    Photo: Josiah Skeats, Macs Adventure Ltd
  • / A Rare Flat Section
    Photo: Josiah Skeats, Macs Adventure Ltd
  • / Broadway Tower
    Photo: Josiah Skeats, Macs Adventure Ltd
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Today’s ride from Moreton-on-Marsh to Broadway passes through picturesque Cotswold scenery, and visits many charming villages, including Lower Slaughter, voted the most beautiful village in the Cotswolds.
moderate
Distance 36.8 km
2:30 h
377 m
413 m

Today’s ride is a little shorter than normal allowing plenty of time to stop and explore the many attractions along the way. Just a few kilometres after leaving Moreton-on-Marsh, you will pass Batsford Arboretum and Sezingcote House. In Batsford Arboretum you can wander through the largest private collection of trees and shrubs in the country; it follows the rhythms of nature and the seasons meaning no two visits will ever be the same. Sezingcote House is a 200-year old Indian Palace dropped into the luscious Cotswolds' countryside; it’s a strange and unlikely, yet somehow effective and gorgeous combination. Just before reaching Broadway you will pass Snowshill Manor which houses the eclectic collections of Charles Wade, with every room crammed with artefacts from around the world.

Of course, even ignoring the stops along the way, it's a stunning ride with all the charming villages and picturesque countryside so characteristic of the Cotswolds. From the road you can enjoy views that stretch out over farmland, country estates and rolling hills. You will pass Lower Slaughter, voted the most beautiful village in the Cotswolds, though I imagine there are quite a few contenders for that title!

Author’s recommendation

If you finish the day with enough energy to tackle another hill(!) the steep climb from Broadway up to Broadway Tower leaves you richly rewarded with beautiful views, all the way to the distant Malvern Hills.
Profile picture of Josiah Skeats
Author
Josiah Skeats
Update: June 28, 2019
Difficulty
moderate
Stamina
Experience
Landscape
Highest point
258 m
Lowest point
75 m
Best time of year
Jan
Feb
Mar
Apr
May
Jun
Jul
Aug
Sep
Oct
Nov
Dec

Safety information

This route take place mostly on rural roads. Drivers are generally used to seeing cyclists so are courteous, passing slowly and giving plenty of room. Be sure that your cycling is predictable with no erratic motions, and whenever you are changing roads, communicate that with hand signals.

There are some testing uphills and thrilling descents today, where it is tempting to let loose of the brakes and fly down; on these country roads however, it is important to cycle expecting the unexpected and adjust your speed appropriately, so whether there is a pothole or an escaping sheep you have enough time to slow down.

There are a few sections on busier roads but these are always fairly short. Before turning onto a busy road, it is advisable to consult the map and read the turn-by-turn directions, so you know where you are turning off and don’t have to stop on the edge of the road to check.

Tips and hints

Points of Interest

Sezincote House

Sezincote House feels lost. The rolling hills of the Cotswolds are certainly a bizarre setting for this ornate 200-year old, Indian-inspired, Moghul Palace, but somehow the combination works well. You can enjoy a tour of the house, and wander through exquisite gardens, resplendent with temples, waterfalls and canals.

More information available here: http://www.sezincote.co.uk/

 

Batsford Arboretum

Just 1 mile outside Moreton-on-Marsh, Batsford Arboretum is the largest private collection of trees and shrubs in England, spreading itself across a 56 acre swathe of land. The interest is year-round and depending on which season you visit, different plants will be flowering and stealing the limelight; maybe it will be the snowdrops, or maybe the Japanese cherry trees, or perhaps the handkerchief tree!

More information available here: http://www.batsarb.co.uk/

 

Snowshill Manor and Garden

Inside Snowshill Manor you can discover the extraordinary collection of Charles Wade, who lived here during the first half of the 20th century. His motto was ‘Let Nothing Perish’, and every room of the house is crammed with his curiosities. To quote the National Trust, ‘Snowshill is neither a museum nor a home, but one large treasure trove of delights.

More information available here: https://www.nationaltrust.org.uk/snowshill-manor-and-garden

 

Broadway Tower

Broadway Tower stands on the second-highest point of the Cotswolds and the views are spectacular, ranging all the way to the distant Malvern Hills. Previously the hill on which it is situated was also used as a beacon hill, due to its prominence.

More information available here: https://broadwaytower.co.uk/

 

Food and Drink

You pass lots of small villages today but opportunities for food and drink are limited with most lacking a pub, café or shop. Lower Slaughters has several cafes and pubs including the very grand Lower Slaughters Manor. Kineton and Snowshill both have a pub, and there is a café in the National Trust property, Snowshill Manor.

By far the best selection of food and drink is at the start and finish, in Moreton-in-Marsh and in Broadway.

Start

Moreton-on-Marsh Market Hall/Clocktower (127 m)
Coordinates:
OS Grid
SP 20477 32419
DD
51.989853, -1.703199
DMS
51°59'23.5"N 1°42'11.5"W
UTM
30U 589044 5760703
w3w 
///fried.merge.restored

Destination

Broadway War Memorial

Turn-by-turn directions

0.00km – Start in Moreton-on-Marsh between the Market Hall/Clocktower and the mini-roundabout. Standing between them, facing the Market Hall, TURN LEFT and cycle for 80 metres towards another roundabout. At the next roundabout TURN RIGHT, taking the third exit towards Batsford Arboretum. This road is somewhat busy so be sure to cycle carefully.

3.60km – As you reach the crest of the hill after a long climb through Bourton-on-the-Hill, TURN LEFT following the signs to Sezingcote and Longborough. From this high vantage point there are long, expansive views on your left.

6.80km – As the road forks BEAR RIGHT to continue through a wooded section. After 200 metres, at the T-junction with a busy road TURN LEFT following the sign to Stow.

8.30km – As the road makes a sweeping left-hand turn after a slight downhill, TURN RIGHT onto the narrow country lane towards Swell. Continue through the ‘Unsuitable for HGV’ sign.

8.60km – BEAR RIGHT and then TURN LEFT to head downhill on a hedge-lined lane, still following the signpost to Upper Swell, ½ mile away.

9.70km – When you reach the T-junction on the main road, TURN LEFT towards Stow-on-the-Wold and then after 100 metres, with the guesthouse on your left, TURN RIGHT following the signpost to the Slaughters.

11.20km – At the crossroads, CONTINUE STRAIGHT ON to pass the red post-box, sheltered bus stop and community notice board on your right, and the war memorial on your left. After 50 metres, TURN RIGHT to head uphill towards the Slaughters.

11.30km – TURN LEFT off of the main road and onto an uphill lane with cottages on both sides, following a sign towards Slaughters. Continue straight for 2.4 km ignoring all side roads and enjoying the views on both sides.

13.90km –Near an impressive cottage BEAR LEFT to head downhill towards the 40mph signs and towards Lower Slaughter and Bourton-on-the-water, ignoring the right turn near a grand cottage towards Upper Slaughter.

 14.80km – After entering Lower Slaughter, as the road makes a sweeping left-turn around the church grounds, and with the pub and stream directly ahead, TURN RIGHT following the signpost to Upper Slaughter and The Mill Museum. After 20 metres BEAR RIGHT to keep the stream on your left.  Lower Slaughter has been voted the most beautiful village in the Cotswolds and is worth exploring; perhaps you’d like to have tea in the exquisite Lower Slaughter Manor.

15.00km – This is beautiful cycling with the stream on your left and picturesque cottages on your right. Just before the path bends right to pass the watermill on your left, TURN LEFT to cross the small stone footbridge and join the road. Immediately TURN RIGHT on the road.

15.70km – Ignore the left turn and BEAR RIGHT towards upper slaughter, admiring a large, striking house on your right. You pass Upper Slaughter on your right, as you tackle a long uphill climb with fantastic views stretching over farmland and to distant hills.

17.50km – After a long climb and a slight downhill, you reach a T-junction with the B4068; TURN LEFT towards Cheltenham. After 300 metres at the crossroads, TURN RIGHT from the main road and towards The Quarry and Cotswold Farm Park.

18.90km – The road begins to flatten out. TURN LEFT onto a narrow country lane following the sign to Guiting Power, 3 miles away, and Winchcome, 8 miles away. Continue straight enjoying the flatter cycling.

21.70km – After you reach the T-junction with a stone wall directly ahead, TURN LEFT to head downhill towards Guiting Power. Go slowly on this downhill as the junction arrives abruptly.

22.20km – After 500 metres of downhill you will abruptly reach another T-junction with Guiting Grange Estate on your right, TURN RIGHT towards Guiting Power and Winchcombe. After 200 metres, CONTINUE STRAIGHT ON passing the grand gates and gatehouse to Guiting Grange Estate on your right, and ignoring the left turn into Guiting Power.

23.50km – After crossing a bridge the park forks; BEAR RIGHT to continue heading uphill. CONTINUE STRAIGHT ON for 3.3 km, passing through Kineton which has a pub where you can stop for food and drinks.

26.20km – With the schoolhouse on your left and the church on your right, CONTINUE STRAIGHT ON, ignoring the right-hand turn to Temple Guiting.

27.80km – After passing the 30mph signs and immediately reaching the crossroads, CONTINUE STRAIGHT ON crossing the busy to resume your journey on the narrow lane.

32.00km – TURN LEFT to head towards a path of woodland, following the sign to Snowshill and Broadway, 3 miles away.

33.10km – After entering Snowshill, CONTINUE STRAIGHT ON the main road passing the church on your right and then Snowshill Manor on your left. Enjoy a long downhill, ignoring all side roads, with fantastic views to the flat agricultural plains of Worcestershire ahead.

36.70km – After entering Broadway you will reach a T-junction; TURN RIGHT onto Broadway High Street. After 100 metre finish beside the World War Memorial.

Note


all notes on protected areas

Coordinates

OS Grid
SP 20477 32419
DD
51.989853, -1.703199
DMS
51°59'23.5"N 1°42'11.5"W
UTM
30U 589044 5760703
w3w 
///fried.merge.restored
Arrival by train, car, foot or bike

Equipment

All normal cycle equipment and outdoor gear is required, including a helmet, gloves and a wind-break layer. Even if it doesn’t appear necessary ensure you bring enough warm and waterproof clothes as weather conditions can change quickly.

Padded shorts are recommended, as saddle pain takes the fun away very quickly!

This route is mostly on rural roads so be sure to bring a bottle of water and a snack in case you find yourself a long way from the shops.


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Difficulty
moderate
Distance
36.8 km
Duration
2:30 h
Ascent
377 m
Descent
413 m

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