Beds Cycle Routes 8 - Old Warden

Bedfordshire Cycle Routes 8 - Old Warden

Lovely scenery, picturesque villages and historic sites are just some of the attractions on this circular route.

How To Get There By Car

Old Warden is signposted from the A600, about 6 miles south east of Bedford. There is a car park beside Old Warden Church.

How To Get There By Public Transport

BY BUS - Telephone Bedfordshire Bus Information Line : 01234 228337, 8.30am – 5pm open 5 days a week or Travel Line 0870 6082608.
BY TRAIN – For timetable information, please telephone National Rail Enquiries 08457 484950.
Click here for the National Rail Enquiries website

Access and General Information

Length: 16.5 miles
Access and General Information
Surface Types: The surface type is hard and firm with no stones larger than 5mm – all the route is paved highway.
Linear Gradient: The steepest are between 1:10-1:13 – on the Cardington to Old Warden road and on the drive to the car park at Old Warden church.
Cross Falls: None recorded.
Width Restriction: There is no width restriction of less than 1000mm.
Steps: None recorded.
Barriers: None recorded.
Refreshments: There are pubs in all the villages except for Ickwell. Cardington also has a village shop which is open from 10am -12am daily. Cople Village Hall has a coffee shop on Tuesday mornings from 10.30-12.00.
Public Toilets: None recorded.
Picnic Tables: None recorded.
Seats: There are seats at Northill Church and at Old Warden Church.

Route Description

The ride is described as starting from Old Warden, but can easily be joined from Bedford by reversing the ride from Cardington described in Route 3.
Start from the car park beside Old Warden Church. Leave the car park and turn left at the bottom of the lane. Turn left for Northill and pass through the picturesque village of Ickwell. Turn left again at the church in Northill and follow the road for 3½ miles to Cople.
At Cople Church turn left to Cardington, and continue straight through Cardington for 4 miles on this road towards Southill. At the T-junction turn left for the 12½ mile ride, returning to Old Warden.
To complete the full length route turn right and follow the road towards Shefford. Turn left immediately under the bridge signposted to Southill. This is a lovely wooded lane leading to Ireland. Pass through Ireland and take a left turn, shortly followed by another, leading to Southill.
Turn left in Southill to Old Warden and bear left at the next fork. Turn right at the T-junction, leading back to Old Warden. Continue through the village and back to the church.

Places to Visit

The Swiss Garden is a unique and fascinating 19th century romantic garden with rare trees, exotic buildings, ponds and a thatched Swiss Cottage. Car park.
The Shuttleworth Collection is a world-famous collection of aircraft and vintage cars, most of which are in working order.
Old Warden is one of the most attractive Bedfordshire villages, built in a picturesque 'Swiss' style by the Ongleys in the early 1800's. St. Leonard’s Church has some spectacular wood carvings inside it.