Belas Knap Walk
This circular walk visits the Belas Knap neolithic, chambered long barrow, on Cleeve Hill. The fascinating scheduled ancient monument dates from around 3000 BC and includes a false entrance and independently accessible side chambers. Excavations in 1963 found the remains of 38 human skeletons, animal bones, flint implements and pottery dating from the Neolithic period (New Stone Age), circa 2000 BC.
Start the walk from the car park on Corndean Road just to the north of the site. From here it's a short climb along a section of the Cotswold Way to the long barrow. You can explore the fascinating English Heritage site where there are also fine views over the surrounding Cotswolds countryside.
The walk then continues west along the Cotswold Way to Wontley Farm and Cleeve Common. Follow the route round past Postlip Warren to the Royal Naval Air Station Merryfield. You pass the River Isbourne and the Postlip Hall Tithe Barn, before picking up a country lane to take you to Corndean Hall and the car park.
This site is situated just to the east of Cleeve Common and Cleeve Hill, the highest point both of the Cotswolds and Gloucestershire. It's a great place to extend your walk with more fine views to enjoy.
Just a mile to the north east from the car park you will find Sudeley Castle. There's a wonderful 1,200 acre estate surrounding the 15th century castle with lots of nice footpaths to try.
The Winchcombe Way long distance trail and our Winchcombe Circular Walk also passes the site.
PostcodeGL54 5AL - Please note: Postcode may be approximate for some rural locations
Please click here for more information
Belas Knap Ordnance Survey Map - view and print off detailed OS map
Belas Knap Open Street Map - view and print off detailed map
Belas Knap OS Map - Mobile GPS OS Map with Location tracking
Belas Knap Open Street Map - Mobile GPS Map with Location tracking
If you head a couple of miles west of the site you'll come to Cleeve Hill. Here you'll find The Rising Sun Hotel, a popular place for walkers exploring the area. The pub is wonderfully positioned on the hill with a fine beer garden with views over five different counties of England. It's the perfect place to relax and enjoy a meal on a fine day. You can find it just to the north west of the site at a postcode of GL52 3PX for your sat navs.
The hill and the surrounding countryside and woods make for a fine dog walk. It's advised to keep them on leads though as sheep do graze around the hill.
Further Information and Other Local Ideas
Some facts about the site:
- 'Belas' comes from the Latin for beautiful. 'Knap' is derived from the Old English for the summit of a hill.
- Constructed around 3000 BC
- 178 feet (54 m) long, about 60 feet (18 m) wide and nearly 14 feet (4.3 m) in height.
- Four burial chambers formed of upright stone slabs, linked by dry-stone walling. They originally had corbelled roofs
To visit the site and nearby Cleeve Hill from the town of Winchcombe you could try the circular Winchcombe to Cleeve Hill Walk. The route also visits Postlip Hall and the River Isbourne.