by Maureen Robinson
Driffield lies about 20 miles south of Scarborough and 12 miles south-west of Bridlington. It’s considered the capital of the Wolds, being an important centre for both commercial and cultural activities.
This admirable walk of little over four miles is level and easy to follow. Linking Driffield with the King’s Mill area and Little Driffield, and following Water Forlorns along a section of the route, the way is varied. You may allow time to spend a few enjoyable hours exploring Driffield’s attractions too.
If you approach Driffield from Scarborough along the B1249, heading south along Scarborough Road, turn right down Windmill Hill to park in North Street near public toilets.
Walk past the public toilets and go left as signed to the town centre and sports centre. Ahead towers the lofty All Saints Church which is a landmark for miles around, and is passed on your right. Follow Middle Street North to the road junction only. Observe the Bell Inn to the left, before entering Mill Street.
The Bell Inn was built in 1742, and the bell would speed many a stagecoach on its way. Turn immediately right along Mill Street, shortly noting the public library dated 1939 to the left, and council offices to the right. Driffield Town Cricket and Recreation Club features on your left. Where Bracken Road swings left from number 45, you should keep straight forward along King’s Mill Road and seek the first opening on your right into Driffield Millennium Green.
I suggest you explore King’s Mill, before following a good footpath which cuts across the centre of the Green, with a pond and seats to the left. When it forks, bear right and head towards the A614.
Leaving King’s Mill, access the A614 and turn right along the verge footpath. Just before the roundabout, cut off left and cross the road to enter, beyond fencing, the attractive outskirts of Little Driffield. Keep straight ahead, admiring the grassed verges. In springtime they’re bedecked with dancing daffodils. Next, bear left into Church Lane and sit beside the idyllic pond to enjoy your picnic and share it with the ducks.
Having renewed your energies, leave the village pond behind you and ascend Horsefair Lane.
At its far end, departing Little Driffield, cross the A166 with care and take a permissive track opposite, signed: “Unsuitable for Motors”. About half-a-mile of easy walking leads to Cross Trods. Crossing Spellowgate, enjoy another half mile of walking along a grassy track with fields either side and bird life to observe.
Heading roughly north towards East Hills, your path drops gently into the valley.
Reaching a public footpath sign turn sharp right behind the hedging to follow a field footpath and rich arable land all around. In the far distance features Driffield’s All Saints’ Church. Its 500-year-old spire proves a great landmark!
To your left is a ditch, which varies in its condition. Although often dry for much of its length, it does carry water as you progress south-eastwards. The name – Water Forlorns!
Beyond a stile, mount railed steps up the embankment to access the A614. Cross with care and descend similar steps to continue your route between hedging and Water Forlorns.
Following the edge of a field, you quickly reach a section of path between private woodland and lake which is protected by metal rails, and the rear gardens of local residents.
Continue, and a good footpath returns you to your departure point.
Distance: 4 miles approximately of easy level walking.
Refreshment: I suggest taking a picnic to enjoy en-route, but there are plenty of options in Driffield itself.
NB Binoculars are always a good idea for spotting wildlife, and reading distant notices.
Although details were correct at the time, please remember changes can occur even overnight, especially on farm land.