If you moved to Fairfield for its rural location, enjoy walking, cycling or horseriding, or would just like to be able to ditch the car once in a while, this might be of interest.
The Etonbury Green Wheel is a long-term vision creating a linked loop of publicly accessible green spaces and paths around the towns and villages of Arlesey, Astwick, Fairfield and Stotfold. The wheel’s outer ‘rim’ is supported by ‘spokes’ – linear paths which lead from the towns and villages outwards to join the circular route, as well as giving access to the wider countryside.
The route uses some existing public paths (which have been enhanced as part of the project) and has created new additional routes to form a continuous circular network. The walking routes have now been completed, and plans are ongoing to change existing paths and create new ones to give cycle access or bridleway status to the complete circuit, including the provision of links to the National Cycle Routes 12 and 51.
The Wheel’s greenness is literal, because it is in the natural countryside, and metaphorical, in that it encourages healthy, recreational activities and trips using non-motorised sustainable transport – feet, bikes and horses!
The locations within the Green Wheel may be destinations in their own right, or the new routes may provide access to other attractions further afield. The Kingfisher Way and Hicca Way walks, the Great North Cycleway (National Cycle Route 12), Etonbury Wood, Stotfold Watermill nature reserve, Arlesey’s Glebe Meadows and Old Moat nature reserves; Fairfield’s own Blue and Green Lagoons and our new Orchard Trail (see p3) are all accessible from the Green Wheel and are now all accessible by foot.
Although its main purpose is to give us all better access to the countryside, the Green Wheel will also protect, manage, enhance and promote biodiversity, landscape and heritage.