At Tealby walk up the steps to All Saints church. The church dates back to the 12th century and is made from locally quarried ironstone. Inside you’ll find a memorial to George Tennyson, grandfather to poet laureate Alfred Lord Tennyson. Walk left through the churchyard to the road, then along Rasen Road for 100m before turning right at the public footpath sign to Walesby. Pass through a gate and follow The Viking Way through the field, watching out for buzzards and kestrels circling the sky. Follow the yellow markers as they direct you through a kissing gate then along the edge of the next field. Cross over a bridge and walk through a gateway, continuing uphill. At the next yellow marker, bear right, skirting around the base of the hill towards farm buildings. At the gate in the corner turn right and follow the footpath alongside the woods. Now pass through a gate and follow the field boundary to your right, keeping an eye out for yellow markers. Look to your left for outstanding views towards the River Trent. In the fields on your right you may notice a flock of Lincoln Longwools, a native rare breed of sheep with a long dreadlocked coat.
2. Valley wander
Cross the farm track and follow the line of the fence. Cross a bridleway, and after a kissing gate, continue diagonally uphill. Continue along the path as it veers steeply downhill into the valley and then up the other side. The path can be a little slippery here so watch your step. The bumps on your left are yellow meadow anthills, which attract green woodpeckers from the nearby woodland. At the top bear left towards the Rambler’s Church.
The atmospheric Rambler’s Church is a great place to shelter from the weather and enjoy a picnic. Unusually for such a small village, Walesby has two churches, the original All Saints’ on the hill top and St Mary’s in the centre of the village, which was built in 1913 when it was assumed parishioners were unwilling to walk up to the church on the hill. Inside you’ll find a stunning stained glass Rambler’s Window. Walk left around the church and through a gate, then down the hill. Take a right at the road, before turning left after 15m down Moor Road. Turn right at the bridleway sign and follow the trail to the end of the field, before bearing left across the next field to a cattle grid. Pass through the gate and walk uphill. As the path forks bear right around the hill, looking back for amazing views over the Wolds. Pass through a gate and follow the footpath alongside a dry stone wall. Follow the path as it zigzags along the edge of the field, before passing through a gate and walking along the right of the field. Climb over a stile and on to Normanby Le Wold.
Walk past the church, then take a left-hand footpath leading downhill along the edge of Claxby wood into the village. Turn left at the road along Normanby Rise, and follow it as it turns sharp left. When the road bends right, continue ahead down a minor road. Turn left up a track just before a farm. After half a mile this brings you back to the fork where the path split just north of Walesby. Here you rejoin the Viking Way and retrace your steps back to Tealby.
Click on the map below for an interactive version of the route.