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Exploring Kirknewton and the Cheviot Hills

Written by Northumbria Byways on

Set in the Glendale valley, running from the Cheviot Hills onto the Milfield Plain, Kirknewton is a peaceful agricultural village, located just six miles from the popular town of Wooler. The village is also just a short drive from the Scottish Borders and owing to its position within the northern area of the Northumberland National Park, is highly popular with walkers looking to enjoys its rolling hills and stunning countryside views.  

Northumberland National Park 

Northumberland’s national park is the perfect place to leave behind the busy demands of day-to-day life and take in the splendor of the natural world. Northumberland is home to some of England’s cleanest rivers and boasts vitalizing fresh air that will truly refresh your spirit as you take in the local landscape. The park’s remote location also provides some stunning locations for stargazers, meaning that budding astronomers of all ages will be sure of a real treat. To help you take full advantage of the night sky, the Northumberland National Park hosts several Dark Sky Discovery Sites, which are set well away from any light pollution and have been designed to provide excellent public access, including firm ground for wheelchairs users.  

Getting Out and About 

Kirknewton itself is ideally located to take full advantage of some of the very best of what Northumberland National Park has to offer. Although the parish of Kirknewton is one of the largest in the United Kingdom in terms of its geography, it is ironically one of the smallest in population, meaning that the village and surrounding area are the perfect destination for anyone looking to enjoy peace and quiet in a rural location.   

The village is also a popular spot for walkers looking to tackle the Kirknewton Hillfort Trail, which represents a fantastic way to explore the impressive remains of the region’s 2,000-year-old Iron Age hillfort. The walk itself is a moderate jaunt where you may be lucky enough to catch site of a Cheviot goat or two, before returning to Kirknewton village for a refreshing drink and a bite to eat.  

Wooler and Beyond  

The town of Wooler lies just a short drive from Kirknewton and features several pubs, shops and places to eat, including the Black Bull Inn, serving traditional pub meals and the Milan Restaurant, which offers a tempting slice of Italian cuisine and delicious pizza.  

Beyond the immediate area, there are also several other welcoming villages and local attractions that are sure to provide something of interest for visitors of all ages. Chillingham Castle for example, is an impressive private castle, set just over four miles away from Wooler. The site has been owned by a single family since the 1200’s and features a lovingly restored Great Hall, State Rooms and even dungeons. In fact, these dungeons and accompanying torture chambers form the back drop for hosted ghost tours for those who are brave enough to get involved. 

For rail enthusiasts, the Heatherslaw Light Railway Company is a wonderful local attraction situated just over seven miles away from Wooler and is a splendid destination for the whole family. The 15-inch railway is traversed by the company’s ‘Bunty’ and ‘Lady Augusta’ steam locomotives, as well as its ‘Binky’ diesel engine. The line travels between Hetherslaw Station and Etal Castle on a return journey of four miles through the charming Northumbria countryside. Further to simply enjoying the stunning views, there is the option to stop at Etal Station to visit Etal Castle, explore the local village or enjoy some refreshments at the Lavender Tearoom or village pub.  

Home Away from Home 

After exploring the local area, you’ll be sure to want somewhere comfortable to rest your head before embarking on the next day’s adventure. Northumbria Byways is proud to offer an exciting collection of holiday homes that provide the perfect base for exploring everything that Kirknewton and the Northumberland National Park has to offer. These include Coldburn Cottage, Dunsdale House, Hethpool Mill and The School House, which are all set within the picturesque College Valley in the Northern tip of the park area.   

If you are tempted by the natural beauty of the Northumberland National Park and the region’s friendly collection of local villages, why not contact the Northumbria Byways team for the best local knowledge in discovering an idyllic rural getaway.

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