Scarborough is fortunate in having many green areas on the very outskirts of the town, for quiet relaxation. This short walk is easy-going, but best appreciated in dry weather.
Access to the start is by taking the A171 Whitby Road along Scalby Road, to park in the vicinity of St Luke’s Church, or take a bus.
From St Luke’s Church, wander up Woodlands Drive, with its wide grassed verges and mature trees. Beyond Scarborough Hospital you pass the two entrances to Hovingham Drive, and nearby schools to your right. Nearing Row Farm and a bus shelter, seek a gate off left into a field. Please leash any dogs, as sheep may be in the vicinity.
Cross the field, keeping beside the left hedging, and a gentle rise takes you past cottages on your left as you approach the busy Stepney Road.
Negotiate Stepney Road with care, as you cross to a broad bridleway to the left of a detached residence. This rough track has become grassed over, but may be rutted and muddy in places. Keep to the track as it gently ascends to a gate. Ignore the gate and vear right, as you continue along House Cliff Lane to enter what is known as Harland Nature Reserve. This area is best visited in dry weather. It can be slippery and overgrown at times. You’ll view Box Hill to the left across the field, and Jacob’s Mount lies to your right.
Descending, with the boundary to your left, you leave the Reserve and leave by a gate to continue along a track. Turn left, and enter Lightfoots Road. You’ll see an attractive site of wooden homes at Spring Vale, overlooking open countryside.
Follow Lightfoots Road to crossroads. Here, where Lightfoots Road meets Springhill Lane, turn left into Sandybed Lane. Keep to this lane as it passes St Augustine’s School on your left, and reaches Scarborough’s Sixth Form College near the road junction and traffic roundabout. As five busy roads converge here, cross with care to the Mormon Church, between Stepney Drive and Stepney Road. Next, turn left up Stepney Road for a short distance only, to find an alleyway off the busy road.
Peace returns, as the quiet alleyway is followed down Gilly lees, with its attractive houses and bungalows. At the far end, as it bears right to enter Stepney Drive, I suggest you go straight forward along another little alleyway to enter Hovingham Drive. At the end of Hovingham Drive, turn right along Woodlands Drive to return to St Luke’s Church and Scalby Road.
Alternatively, if you turn left along Hovingham Drive to the west you’ll have The Duchess (pub) on the corner, and shops providing tempting refreshment. Then you can return along Woodlands Drive to return to your departure point.
Distance: 2.5 miles, or 3 miles to include The Duchess/shops.
Refreshment: The Duchess (pub) and nearby shops along Hovingham Drive.
A Christmas Stocking filler!
If you enjoy short walks in beautiful village surroundings, you may choose to drive, or use your bus pass to pastures new.
‘Village Rambles’, priced £3, includes 16 of the villages which Michael and myself have visited this year. With colour, and black and white illustrations it may prompt you to get out and about even in winter.
Few copies now remain at Scarborough and Scalby and Newby Library, and Scalby’s Village Store.