Beautiful walks in our parish

What is a Public Right of Way

A Public Right of Way is a route over which the public have the right to pass and re-pass.   All Public Rights of Way are highways and are protected by highway law and other legislation.

Some paths may be surfaced and many are tracks across countryside owned by farmers and landowners.   The land over which the Public Right of Way runs is usually private land; the surface of the path is maintained North Norfolk Council as the highway authority, but the subsoil remains the property of the landowner.

Norfolk County Council has a good reference page, click here.

You may take a pushchair or wheelchair on any Public Right of Way but you may encounter stiles, gates and surfaces that limit access.

Types of Public Rights of Way

not to be confused with pavements at the side of the road, footpaths are for use on foot only; there is no right to push a bicycle or lead a horse

for use by horses, cyclists and on foot   Cyclists must give way to pedestrians and horse riders.  There is no right to use a horse-drawn vehicle

The Countryside Code
Footpath 1 image

The Parish Council takes looking after the footpaths seriously, with a councillor dedicated to monitoring their maintenance and ensuring that they are safe for everyone to enjoy.

All we ask is that everyone who enjoys our beautiful surroundings does so within the guidelines of the Countryside Code.   By clicking the appropriate button on the right, you can either view the code on-line or download the 4Mb PDF document.

If you’d like to know more about how you can help us to maintain our walkways and woodland, or if you’d like to report an issue with one of our walkways, please let us know.

Knapton Defibrillator
Walk the Walks

Click on the maps to explore the beautiful walks and footpaths to the north and south of our village, including;

  • The Butterfly Walk & Knapton Way
  • Paston Way
  • the twelve numbered footpaths
  • plus the Norfolk Coast Path about a mile away
Knapton Parish walks & footpaths

A Permissive (or concessionary) path
A path where the landowner gives permission for public use but with the intention that it does not become a Public Right of Way.  A landowner can give also give permission for additional use (such as horses on a public footpath) but this only extends to people given specific permission.
Permissive paths are not maintained by Norfolk County Council.

Knapton to Mundesley Path

The pathway runs alongside the Knapton Road on the west (Cromer) side and is a Permissive Path.

It exists courtesy of White House Farm, which restricts crop growing to just short of the edge of the road to provide a path for parishioners of both Knapton and Mundesley to walk safely between the two villages.

To date, Knapton Parish Council has taken full responsibility for keeping the path clear, thereby providing safe passage along what is a busy 60mph road which has no pavement, but we hope that Mundesley Parish Council will soon share that responsibility, in terms of cost, at least.

In early 2021 Mundesley Parish Council agreed to pay half of the cost of maintaining this walkway.

Knapton Road path image
Knapton to Knapton Green Path

The new permissive path that offers safe passage for walkers and ramblers alike linking Knapton and Knapton Green is now open, made possible thanks to the generosity of land-owner Chris Hicks and farmer Steve Hammond who agreed to leave a strip of unfarmed land along the edge of the field next to the Knapton Road.

Although agreed over a year ago, the Parish Council had to wait until the crops had been harvested before Steve’s friend and colleague, Chris Heath, could work with three parish councillors – Pat, Alan and Peter – to punch their way through wooded areas, around the pond and along the edge of the field separated from the busy Knapton Road by hedging.

The result is a safe walkway between a new safe crossing point almost opposite the bus stop in Knapton Green and the end of the pathway on the Wilds Way estate.

It’s something that’s been talked about for over twenty years but I’m pleased to say that this Parish Council got it done.

Peter Neatherway | Chair

Knapton’s Twelve Footpaths

The first three of our numbered footpaths are in the northern part of the parish, heading out towards Trunch and Mundesley.

Our first footpath starts in our parish and heads north to end in Mundesley parish

Our second footpath runs across fields and over stiles, starting in Hall Road, near MADRA, and finishing up at the North Walsham Road, at Knapton House.

Known as Robinsons Loke, our third footpath starts on North Walsham Road, just north of Knapton House (close to the end of FP2) and heads towards Trunch.

The footpath starts on the east side of Mundesley Road, roughly half way between Trunch and Mundesley, by a stile at the parish boundary.   It heads north east, past three stiles to grid reference TG 3069 3582, then turns (with a width of 2 metres) in a slightly more northerly direction for approximately 70 metres to grid reference TG 3075 3585 where the path crosses the parish boundary into Mundesley parish.   Continue for a hundreds yards or so to meet Trunch Road, almost opposite the Mundesley School.

MADRA to Knapton House
Starts from a stile in Old Hall Road, close to MADRA, and runs west, past two stiles and turning north west, to meet the North Walsham Road, opposite Knapton House, by a kissing gate.

view the map here, or download it here

Robinson’s Loke
Starts from North Walsham Road, just north of Knapton House, and runs northwest to the parish boundary to join Trunch Bridleway No. 7, which can then be followed north to join the Knapton Road, close to Trunch.

view the map here, or download it here

The other nine footpaths effectively make up the Knapton Way, a circular walk around the parish of around 5 miles.

 (Old Hall Road to Restricted Byway No. 5). Starts from Old Hall Road, Knapton village side of the car park for the Butterfly Walk / Paston Way  crossand runs north-west to join Restricted Byway No. 5. This footpath does not follow the railway cutting

(Old Hall Road to Parish Boundary). Starts from Old Hall Road immediately south of the railway by a stile and follows the railway north eastwards to another stile, then turns south eastwards to the parish boundary where it joins Restricted Byway No. 11.

(River Mount to Dead Man’s Grave). Starts from the road at River Mount by a fieldgate and runs north eastwards along the boundary to join the road at Dead Man’s Grave.

(North Walsham Road to New Cross). Starts from North Walsham Road at Grove Corner and runs southwards to junction of Bridleway No. 4 and continues to county road.

(North Walsham Road to Royston Bridge Road). Starts from the North Walsham Road (B1145) at The Beeches and runs south east to Footpath No.6, then south westwards alongside the railway, crossing under the railway, to Brook Farm. The path joins Footpath No. 9 then bears eastwards to Stone Cottages on the road leading to Royston Bridge.

(Dead Man’s Grave to Knapton Station). Starts from the road at Dead Man’s Grave and runs north eastwards along the boundary to Knapton Station where it joins Footpath No. 12 and Paston Footpath No. 1.

 (Restricted Byway No. 5 to Footpath No. 8). Starts from Restricted Byway No. 5 by a stile and runs southwards to join Footpath No. 8 by a stile.

(Footpath No. 6 to Royston Bridge). Starts from Footpath No. 6 at Brook Farm and runs south eastwards along the bank of the canal to Royston Bridge.

(The Street to Knapton Station). Starts from the Street and runs north eastwards past two kissing gates to cross the railway, where there are further kissing gates, to join Restricted Byway No. 11 by another kissing gate.

Knapton Way guide image
Knapton Way

The Knapton Way is a circular walk of approximately 5 miles within the parish boundaries and generally follows public rights of way and “quiet lanes”, minor rural roads.   The directions are based on starting the walk at the car park at the head of the Knapton Cutting in Hall Lane.   This first section of around 1000m is also known to locals as The Butterfly Walk, see below.

To follow the Knapton Way, you can download written directions by clicking the page on the left, or you can download the route map by clicking the image on the right.   If you’re not familiar with the area you might want to download both, just to be sure…

Also remember that certain sections are occasionally muddy and overgrown so suitable clothing and footwear is recommended.

Knapton Way map guide
The Butterfly Walk

The Knapton Cutting Butterfly Nature Reserve, known locally as the Butterfly Walk, follows the picturesque path of the old railway track from North Walsham to Mundesley which was closed in 1964.   It’s now a public walkway and forms part of both the Knapton Way and the Paston Way footpaths.

The butterfly reserve (the first section you enter, down the steps from the car park) is full of of wild flowers, scrub and undisturbed grassy banks, which make it an ideal habitat for butterflies with nineteen different species having been recorded.

There’s a diversity of flowering species such as black knapweed, yarrow, sheep’s sorrel, primrose, oxeye daisy and hoary cinquefoil.   There is also the Small-Flowered Catchfly, which is classified as endangered in the United Kingdom.  You can click the button on the left to learn more.

Further along, the main body of the railway cutting is dominated by young oak woodland and the old railway bed supports primroses, wood avens, herb Robert and lords-and-ladies.

Along the cutting, which continues over the Dilham canal, there are also areas on each side of deciduous and wet woodland. Here you can find tree species such aspen, birch, hazel, sycamore, holly and in places mature oak and alder. Woodland to the east is bordered by Pigney’s Wood community woodland.

Paston Way road sign image
Paston Way

The Paston Way is a twenty two mile trail with Cromer at its northwestern end, where it links with The Norfolk Coast Path and Weaver’s Way, and North Walsham at it south eastern end where it again joins with Weaver’s Way.   Walkers discover the area’s beautiful medieval churches, each one with its own hidden history including one which was even moved brick by brick from a cliff top to save it from the sea.

The route makes use of footpaths, bridleways, beaches, a disused railway line, quiet lanes and some minor roads.

En-route from Edingthorpe, it stops to pay special attention to Knapton’s St Peter & St Pauls church, before winding its way to Paston and then joining the Norfolk Coastal Path at Bacton heading for Cromer.

The path takes its name from the Paston Family, made famous by the “Paston Letters

Norfolk Coast Path
Wheelchair Access
Wheelchair Access to the Norfolk Coast Path

The Norfolk Coast Path runs for 84 miles from Hunstanton in west Norfolk round to Sea Palling on the north east Norfolk coast with much of this walking trail running through the dramatic landscape of the Norfolk Coast Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty.   Through seaside towns and villages, tidal marshes teeming with wildlife, wide sandy beaches, pine woodlands and huge skies.

The original Norfolk Coast Path combines with the Peddars Way (which it joins at Holme-next-the-Sea) to form the Peddars Way and Norfolk Coast Path National Trail, one of 15 National Trails in England and Wales.

It also connects with Weaver’s Way at Cromer and Paston Way at Cromer, Trimingham, Bacton and Mundesley

Knapton’s Parish Woodland
Pigney Woods image
Pigneys Wood

This beautiful site is actually within the Parish of Knapton.
The 23.5 hectares (58 acres) of land at Pigneys Wood was purchased in 1993 by the North Norfolk Community Woodland Trust (NNCWT, a community based conservation charity) and it has been managed by them for the past 24 years. NNCWT successfully reverted the site from arable land to woodland by planting over 20,000 trees of 40 different species during this time as well as restoring important wetland areas and improving the access and interpretation of the site for local people by providing guided trails.

The site has a number of special wildlife features including an impressive 450-year-old ancient oak tree ‘The Old Oak’ which is next to a small woodland area which boasts a carpet of bluebells in spring.

Pigneys Wood provides an important wildlife refuge for many birds such as the goldcrest, nuthatch, Cetti’s Warbler; insects such as red admiral, peacock and holly blue butterflies; dragonflies such as the emperor, migrant hawker, blacktailed skimmer and Norfolk hawker, and mammals such as otter, water vole and badger. Occasionally rarer visitors have been recorded such as a Camberwell beauty butterfly in November 2011 and a bittern in March 2013.

In September 2017, Pigneys Wood was entrusted to Norfolk Wildlife Trust to continue the conservation management of this wildlife-rich nature reserve. NWT aims to build on NNCWT’s work by further enhancing the range of habitats present as well as improving the visitor experience to encourage more people to enjoy the wildlife on this special site.

Other features at the site include a renovated barn, reed beds, and information boards on wild flowers, butterflies, trees and birds. There is provision for wheelchair access and a number of areas where you can simply sit and enjoy the view or, if you wish, have a picnic with the family.