The opening of the Sturmer Steps Heritage Trail
We had help with our trail from University of Cambridge, Cambridge Community Heritage and the Arts and Humanities Council.
The trail we have built involving local residents will expand the catchement group interested in sharing their memoirs and photographs and providing information for our archives. It will strengthen the community spiritually and economically
The first heritage board in the pocket park
OLD RAILWAY STATION
We start in the children's play area in Water Lane. Look at the building across the road which was once the railway station and is now a private house - the platform is still visible. Don't forget to study our first heritage board in the youth shelter and pick up a leaflet by the notice board. Leaving this park - walk along the amenity walk which used to be the railway line - see if you can spot the violets that still grow in the woods - seed blew there from the nurseries in the village where they were cultivated and taken up to London by train. When you get to the old railway bridge, go right up the steps and then turn left to the main road. Just along the main road, to the right, almost opposite the entrance to Long Lindeth is an ancient burial mound. It is thought to date from the Bronze Age.
Turn left down the hill and look out for the sign for Sturmer Nurseries on the right - there is a lovely tea room here (not open on Thursdays). You will see our second heritage board just by the sign. Cross the road with care at the traffic island.
Walk up the gravel path - Church Walk - towards the church. St Marys is the oldest building in the village. We think people have worshipped on the site for over 1000 years. Go inside the porch to see the Norman Arch with ancient symbols to ward off evil.
ST MARYS CHURCH, STURMER
The third heritage board is at the village hall (turn right down the hill as you leave Church Walk). This was built as Board school and opened in 1877. By 1881 the school was attended by 93 children. It closed in 1947 and has been the village hall since 1962. We have held re-enactments of the Victorian Schoolroom with local school children here since 2013.
Carry on crossing Water Lane with Riverside House on your left. On the right you see the fine Georgian Village House, Abbots Hall built by the Purkis family, who owned most of the village in the 1800s.
Note The Old Rectory on the left where the Sturmer Pippin apple (the logo for this website) was developed by Ezekiel Dillistone.
The new barn development futher down on the right is on the site of the piggeries which were once attached to the 16th century Abbots Farm.
Continue on to Linnetts Lane and pause for a moment to peek at the oldest cottage in the village - Linnetts. This is believed to date from the 1300s and the owners have found ancient wall paintings in one of the bedrooms and the loft space. The next cottage is Roost End Cottage - this is slightly younger than Linnetts and then you arrive at Mere Cottage which has stood on this spot since 1540. The heritage board gives details of the flora and fauna in the Mere and Roman finds in the fields nearby.
If weather conditions permit carry on past Mere Cottage and take the bridge across the Stour Brook turning left along the footpath and arriving back at the children's play area. Sturdy footwear is recommended. Otherwise retrace your steps back to the main road and the start of the walk.
For a view over the village take the footpath diagonally across the field at the five finger post over the bridge at the end of Linnetts Lane or walk up Hill Lane (almost opposite Water Lane where the play area is located)
We know numerous people are following the trail and we have also had some organised tours. If your group would like a guided tour with refreshments in the village hall we can organise this for you for a small donation - ring Jo Porth on 01440 703087 or email - email@example.com
Hope to see you soon!