The Gainsborough Trail
Welcome to the Cornard Walk, the second section of the Gainsborough Trail, named after the famous Painter Thomas Gainsborough, the portrait and landscape artist born and educated in Sudbury who walked, sketched and painted some of the natural landscapes you will see on this walk. The Cornard Walk is part of an approximate 12.4 mile continuous walkable route which will eventually encompass the whole of the Sudbury area, giving access to the best of the countryside in Sudbury, Great Cornard, Chilton and beyond.
The Cornard Walk
This section covers the Cornard Walk, 7 miles of varied landscapes from riverside paths, open glades and woodlands to viewpoints overlooking the landscape that inspired Thomas Gainsborough. Discover historic Bakers Mill beside the meandering Stour, ancient Danes Hole where Boudicca’s army defeated the Romans (possibly!), and chalk cliffs that gave rise to Sudbury’s brick-making industry.
Stage Five – The Pot Kilns
The Pot Kilns was once the site of 19th century potteries producing coarse earthenware. The Water Tower is the highest point of the trail with views across Great Cornard and Sudbury.
Stage Six – Shawlands Wood
Shawlands Wood is a nature reserve of woodland glades where invertebrates flourish. Shawlands Wood is owned by Great Cornard Parish Council and managed by the Sudbury Common Lands Charity. The wood’s existence owes much to the hard work of local conservationist George Millins.
Stage Seven – Towards Cats Lane
The descent to the Maldon Grey Public House in Cats Lane is very steep due to this having been the site of 18th century chalk mines. Geological conditions here were ideal for the extraction of chalk of high purity, an essential ingredient for brick making. Just before the pub, a short detour to the right leads to the chalk cliff face rising above housing.
Stage Eight – Allotments and Armes Wood
The descent from Newton Road to Cornard Road passes allotments and a substantial wooded area known as Armes Wood. This land is managed by the Eden-Rose Coppice Trust and is voluntarily managed by Graham Lucas. In 2019, volunteers planted 700 trees including Hazel, Oak, Hornbeam, Silver Birch, Wild Cherry and Rowan.
Great Cornard WalkRead more
The new Great Cornard Walk was officially launched on 7 May 2022. After a lot of work in sorting out…
Meadow Walk leafletRead more
As one of the most popular free leaflets available from the tourist information centre in Sudbury, Suffolk, The Gainsborough Trail…
Website updateRead more
In order to help provide information on this Gainsborough Trail we have updated our website to simplify and modernise it…