Ivinghoe Beacon to Knettishall Heath
a 110 mile walk along the oldest road in Britain

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© Icknield Way Association 2015

The Oldest Road in Britain

The Icknield Way is unique among long distance tracks because it can claim to be "the oldest road in Britain". Extending from the Dorset coast to Norfolk, the ancient route of the Icknield Way consists of prehistoric pathways, old when the Romans came. Dotted with archaeological remains, it survives as splendid tracks and green lanes along the chalk "spine" of England.

The Icknield Way Path runs from the end of the Ridgeway Path at Ivinghoe Beacon, near Tring, to the start of the Peddar's Way at Knettishall Heath, near Thetford, for 110 miles (177 km), split into eight suggested day walks.

The Icknield Way Association looks after the interests of the route as a whole, monitoring any actions that may threaten its integrity and urging improvements to the route for walkers.

The route takes the walker over some delightful country, including the Chilterns and Breckland, often with striking panoramic views, through some charming villages, and along miles of beautiful green lanes. The Icknield Way Association has aimed to find the most pleasant route for walking, as close as possible to the general line of the ancient icknield Way.

Since the first edition of the Icknield Way Guide was published in 1984, towns such as Luton and Hitchin have expanded their suburbs. Subsequent editions of the Guide have been  based on experience gained over the years with substantial changes to the route near the start from Dunstable to Letchworth, to keep it generally in the open countryside.

The Association hopes that you will find much of interest and intrigue in this unexpectedly attractive lowland route along this part of the ‘Great Chalk Way'. Detailed route descriptions and clear maps are supplemented with notes on the geology, geomorphology, archaeology, flora and bird life, with backup information on public transport in the area.

Two alternative routes allow a visit to the interesting village of Toddington, and a final destination at Thetford.

Interactive map of the full route

There is now an interactive map of the full route that with the facility to turn on and off  various layers (like the riding routes) and identifies parking, railway stations. http://route.icknieldwaytrail.org.uk/

Your Photos

If there are any photos you would like added to the site please email them to webmaster@icknieldwaypath.co.uk

Professor Thurstan Shaw:

Following the recent death of Professor Thurstan Shaw, the Association’s founder and Chairman for many years,  a Memorial was held at  Sidney Sussex, Cambridge.  Here are links to contributions made at the Memorial.

The Nigerian Television film is here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gvRwiUVhFsM&feature=youtu.be

Susan McIntosh's talk in Thurstan's honour is here: http://upload.sms.cam.ac.uk/media/1731634

AGM Talk

The talk ‘Edward Thomas’ given at the 2013 AGM by Richard Emeny can be read here

Icknield Way Film

Click here to view ‘The Icknield Way: a Journey’ a film by Luisetta Mudie, first shown at our 2012 AGM.

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