Leg 7: Staverton to Ratley

RV at SP384474 map sheets 151/152.
Walking from Staverton church at SP541611 to the RV at Ratley church.
Distance about 18 miles (29km).
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More lovely scenery on this leg as you head across north of Banbury and start to think about the Wolds as the ground rises and falls in ever increasing amounts.

Leaving Staverton along the A435 pick up the footpath as it leaves the main road right on the junction with the minor road running down to Hellidon (SP538610). Once on the footpath it takes you in a generally southwest direction down into the valley and the river Leah and Lower Catesby (SP517596). Head straight through and on in to Hellidon.

On entering the village manoeuvre your way around the west end back roads to bring you out on the T-junction at SP513578. Turn right here and follow the minor road down to the crossroads at SP507574. Turn right again and pick up the footpath about two hundred meters along on the left. The footpath takes you all the way to Grange Farm (SP487561), crossing one minor road on the way. Go past the farm and track to SP484561 where the footpath takes a sharp turn due south and heads in a straight line all the way into Upper Boddington.

Leave the village by the church on the Lower Boddington road. In Lower Boddington cross over the staggered crossroads in the village centre and carry on, on the minor road. At about three hundred meters or so a footpath leaves the road and heads past the back of Springfield Farm (SP473510) to a footbridge over the Oxford canal at SP465505.

Once over the canal a short walk brings you into Claydon. Again you need to make your way wets/southwest through the village to leave on the road going under the railway line at SP452498. The path now turns into a metaled track and finally you come to the A423. The footpath continues right across the road into Farnborough.

Follow the road through the village to a T-junction (SP432495) on the western edge, turn right and the track is immediately on the left. This climbs up a sharp little hill to bring you out on the ridge at SP424494. Here the track runs south by southwest down to the M40 and on into Warmington.

Warmington is a complicated little village and it is easy to leave in the wrong place, but a track leaves the road on the western side of the village at SP409477 on the B4100. This takes you up into the woods and follows the contour of the hillside before coming out on the B4086 at SP402475. From here the footpath is across the road and sweeps down and back up into the tiny but lovely village of Ratley, and if you are in time a late afternoon pint.