Toggle mobile menu visibility

Platinum Jubilee walking and cycling trails launched in tribute to late Queen

Norfolk County Council, 12 May 2023 00:00

Following a weekend of royal festivities, five new walking and cycling trails for Norfolk were officially launched yesterday (Thursday 11 May 2023) in honour of our late Queen.

The Platinum Jubilee Trails were the brainchild of the Norfolk Lieutenancy's Platinum Jubilee organising committee, and have been over a year in the planning. They were opened yesterday by Lady Dannatt MBE, HM Lord-Lieutenant of Norfolk at an event at Norfolk County Council's Environment Hub at Gressenhall Farm and Workhouse. The launch event began with a short presentation about each of the five routes, with an optional guided walk along one of the trails, The Wendling Way. The walk provided stunning views of the Wendling Beck Environment Project, and attendees had a chance to interact with the project team, learn more about the trails, and the local ground-breaking landscape recovery work in the area.

The Trails have been created to be within reach of all parts of Norfolk. They combine some existing and some improved rights of way, together with completely new sections, opening up parts of the county which previously had no public access. They encompass all aspects of Norfolk landscapes - coastal, woodland, arable, historic and urban.

The Trails have been created as a partnership between the Norfolk Lieutenancy's Platinum Jubilee organising committee, Norfolk County Council, the Westacre Estate, other landowners, and several prominent Norfolk businesses.

James Bagge DL, chair of the organising committee, said: "We are delighted to announce the launch of these new Trails. Originally conceived as a way of celebrating Her Late Majesty's Platinum Jubilee and her love of nature and Norfolk, they will now stand as a permanent tribute to her life of remarkable loyalty and service."

Thomas Courtauld JP DL, the committee member responsible for leading the Trails project, said: "Accessibility to the natural world, and encouraging exercise and outdoor experience were central themes of last year's Jubilee celebrations. These Trails will help foster environmental education and wellbeing for residents and visitors to Norfolk for many years to come. I would like to pay special thanks to Norfolk County Council and the Westacre Estate whose dedication and generosity have made all this possible."

Cllr Eric Vardy, Norfolk County Council's Cabinet Member for Environment and Waste, added: "It has been a pleasure for our Council to help support the Platinum Jubilee Committee develop these trails. Norfolk County Council's strategy, 'Better Together for Norfolk' had the clear action to "Grow the Norfolk Trails network to encourage everyone to explore and benefit from their local countryside and biodiversity". I'm really pleased that these new routes deliver on this, and make great additions to our extensive trail network."

The trails, from east to west, are:

  • The Eastern Maritime Way - a 12-mile dedicated cycling route, starting at Great Yarmouth Railway Station before taking in many of the east coast's hidden treasures. The first gem is the Ice House at Haven Bridge, a key building in the history of the town's fishing industry. The route then follows the River Yare to Gorleston and its beautiful sandy beach where you can see the promenade's latest attraction, a genuine Banksy. After passing through Hopton, Corton and the UK's most easterly location at Ness Point, the route finishes at Lowestoft Railway Station

  • The Chet River Circular takes walkers on a circuit around Loddon and Chedgrave and is ideal for families, with the inclusion of an additional, accessible 'out and back' stretch along the River Chet. The route is notable for its abundance of diverse bird and insect life and starts and finishes at the stunning Loddon Staithe - a lovely spot for a picnic. It is supported by Adnams and South Norfolk Council, and runs for just over 2 miles

  • The Wendling Way, running from Dereham to Gressenhall Museum, features a mix of fascinating history and landscape, including the most exciting rewilding project in the country - The Wendling Beck Environment Project. It runs near three Sites of Special Scientific Interest (SSSI) - Rush Meadow, Dillington Carr and Hoe Rough. A 1.2km stretch has been newly resurfaced and has been granted permissive access for cyclists. It connects Dereham to a much wider network of trails, including the Nar Valley Way and Wensum Way. Supported by Norse, the trail runs for just over 3 miles

  • The West Acre Way, running from Gayton to West Acre, opens up part of the Westacre Estate to public access for the first time. Here, a rewilding project in part of the Nar Valley has introduced White Park cattle, Exmoor ponies and Iron Age pigs. Passing through the stunning locations of Walton Common and Walton Wood, the route is incredibly rich in wildlife. It is supported by Greenyard, and runs for just over 7 miles

  • The Elizabeth Way, running from Heacham to King's Lynn, partly along the route of a disused railway line which is being resurfaced to improve access along his section, this Trail covers some of the richest and most diverse habitats in Norfolk. It passes through part of the Sandringham Estate and Wild Ken Hill and is supported by Ben Colson and colleagues of the former Norfolk Green bus company. The Trail runs for just under 16 miles. A diversion is in place at Dersingham for a few more weeks while the new surface settles between Dersingham and Ingoldisthorpe - keep an eye on the Platinum Jubilee Norfolk website for further updates

Information boards which will be situated at the start and end points of each Trail, will feature route highlights and QR codes, and offer access to information on their ecology and history.

To learn more about the Platinum Jubilee Trails, please visit:

Last modified: 14 May 2024 12:45

Share this page

Facebook icon Twitter icon Email icon


Print icon