Type of walk
Free Parking, Off Lead Areas, On Lead Areas, Water On Route, Toilets, Refreshments Available
About this walk
In need of some walks in our new home county, we consulted the locals on the best places to walk a dog, and Thaxted Windmill came up a few times. Head towards The Swan Hotel in Thaxted, but don't park in their car park! Continue on down Margaret Street until you get to the (free) public car park on the left hand side. It's signposted, and there are plenty of spaces, or at least there were when I visited. It's also pretty secure. I left my car's dashboard camera on display, and nobody stole it. In the car park, there are also public toilets, which are open until 5pm every day, according to the signs.
Cross the road and have a wander through Margaret Gardens. There's a little bench and some paths to walk through, but it's quite small. From here, we wandered across to the pretty church. My mother in law says people are welcome to look inside the church, but not dogs. Walk through the church grounds and you'll start seeing signs towards the windmill. Follow the path between the old Almshouses, and you'll see it on your right. Dogs still on a lead at this point.
Once you're past the old gates, you can explore at will. Open the gate on your right and visit the windmill. Again, no dogs allowed inside, but nobody commented when I took my dog on a walk around the perimeter. It's free to go in, but check the website for when it's open. It wasn't open when I arrived.
Exit the windmill and from then on, it's leads/harnesses off and choosing your own route. I headed along the footpath and down the hill to the stream, where my dog had a nice drink. The paths are well signposted, so you can see where you're allowed to go. On my route, there were a couple of roads to cross, so it's leads on for those. You can see the route I walked on the photos, but there are many variants available.
Thaxted is a beautiful old village, and there are plenty of places to stop for a drink, or just to have a look at the historic architecture. If you're a fan of planes, Thaxted appears to be right under the flight path for Stansted, so you'll see plenty of low-flying aeroplanes making their way home.
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Thaxted Windmill, Dunmow, Thaxted
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