Day 315: Melton to Felixstowe

Distance: 16.69 miles

Ascent: 887 feet

Weather: Sunny Spells

Accommodation: The Mayhew’s house (Kindly Offered)


After a lovely rest day in Melton, celebrating Nat’s birthday and being looked after and fed so well by her auntie and uncle I was ready for the start of another week. Today was a little shorter and as I needed dropping the short distance back to the station I waited till Nat and her mum were being dropped at the station and then set of about 10am.

The sun was out and the walk out of Melton and down the Deben River, almost immediately passing Woodbridge was lovely. There were some really nice buildings including a mill, and some quaint boats as well. The path actually dropped down onto a sort of shingle beach after Woodbridge before heading up Martlesham Creek.

From here the OS map still shows a path that follows the river directly along embankments and across the flats, but having checked an aerial shot it was clear that the embankment was either deliberately breached to make a wetland area or had been breached in a storm, so I would have to take an alternative route. Luckily there was an easy alternative taking, paths and quiet lanes to Waldringfield.

Again, after Waldringfield there was a path shown on the map following the river but again it had been breached I believe again deliberately to make a wetland area. Finally a short distance after Hemley I was able to join the embankment proper that followed the river. The sun was still out and the 4 miles or so to Felixstowe Ferry were lovely.

When I got to Felixstowe Ferry I took a little break and had a cup of tea before carrying on. The final 3 or so miles of the day were lovely, mainly along a promenade and passing lots of beach huts (in fact over 1000 based on the numbering). Felixstowe had a much nicer frontage than I was expecting and with the sun forming a haze over the giant container port cranes made for a great vista at the end of the day.

I had an email from Nicky Mayhew a few months ago kindly offering accommodation in Felixstowe, and I met her and her sister walking along the promenade with their dog. They drove me the short distance to their farm and then kindly cooked me a lovely dinner. In fact Nicky is walking the coast of Britain in stages herself. Eventually we worked out the link between her and the walk and it turns out her son went to school with my brother’s wife’s brother, Ed Shires (that is hard to understand I know.) But then we realised this wasn’t the way she had found out about it but instead about a 6 stage link originating with a fives player.

A shortish day, with nice weather and again incredible kindness. This is turning out to be a run of luxury on the walk but I will be back in the tent from tomorrow.

charles compton