Cherry Hill
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Cherry Hill

Public Footpath No. 5 leads to Cherry Hill, along the boundary between Herringswell and Barton Mills.

It has changed so much - from a lovely walk with masses of wild flowers and golden gorse, and skylarks singing - to an overgrown path as no one can cross the very busy A11 road, which was opened in 1986 by Peter Bottomley MP. Cherry Hill 1.jpg (69322 bytes)It must now be approached from the Tuddenham Road. Cherry Hill is not a steep hill - from the bottom it looks to be no more than a small undulation from fenland.

It crosses two fine, spacious fields, running southwards from the A11 opposite Bell Lane for perhaps a mile or more, to the point where Tuddenham/Worlington Road meets Herringswell Road.

It presents no challenge to old or young, horse-riders, animal lovers, courting couples, runners or joggers; it is the perfect length for the stroller at anytime of day at any season.

Yet it rises to the highest vantage point on Barton Mills, offering views on a sunny day of:  

The Breckland Forest to the North East 
The Fenland to the North West 
Church Towers of Barton Mills and Mildenhall 
The Towers of Ely Cathedral, 12 miles distant 
The coniferous woodland and leafy lanes of Herringswell  
The light loams and chalk pits on the brow of the hill 

Cherry Hill 2.jpg (23394 bytes)The Path is recorded as long ago as 1290, separating the two great open fields of the Medieval Benedictine Abbey of St. Edmundsbury.

In 1942 the Scottish Regiment were stationed on Cherry Hill with anti-aircraft guns and a searchlight. They built a cement "Pill Box", which is still standing in the year 2000. A beacon was built on the pillbox for the V.E. Day celebrations on 8th May 1995, which was lit that evening.

In 1977, Barton Mills W.I. did a sponsored walk over Cherry Hill through to Icklingham Heath. The final total of 287 was raised to buy an orthopedic bed for Newmarket General Hospital.

In 1999, Barton Mills W.I. took part in the Suffolk Millennium Challenge Landscape Recording Project and choose Cherry Hill as their area, recording the landscape once in January and again in July.

Copyright 2000: E. Smart
 

A Forest Heath District Council (Suffolk) Project supported by the Heritage Lottery Fund as part of the Millennium Festival 2000 Designed by ArtAtac