A leisurely walk with breathtaking views

A great way to see the spectacular remains of a 2,000-year-old Iron Age hillfort in breathtaking surroundings.

A nice moderate walk where you can spot a Cheviot goat or two, then enjoy a pot of tea or pint of beer in Kirknewton having lapped up some significant ancient history.

Download the PDF guide to Kirknewton Hillfort Trail

Download Route

Walk overview

Walk difficulty
Moderate
Walk distance
3 miles / 4.8km
Walk duration
3 hours
Location
The Cheviots
Recommended OS Map
OS OL16 1:25000 The Cheviot Hills
Accessible
No
Dog friendly
No

Step by step route

Start at St Gregory’s church

Start at St Gregory’s church, the heart of the village for more than 800 years. Follow the track through the village, past the Old Smithy. Keep to the track following it uphill past the ruined shepherd’s cottage on your left.

Keep to the left track

Keep to the left track, as it curves around the hillside to the sunnier southern side of West Hill. People have probably lived here for more than 5,000 years. You can see that the ground is marked by ridge and furrow and other signs of early field systems.

Follow the track through a gate

Follow the track through a gate and continue past the ruined cottage on your left, to a stile. Cross the stile.

Take the path on the left up to the top of West Hill

Take the path on the left up to the top of West Hill where you will find the remains of an Iron Age hillfort. Retrace your steps from the top back down to rejoin the main path. Hillforts were built by Ancient Britons more than 2,000 years ago during the Iron Age. Each had ramparts of earth or stone enclosing an area where timber roundhouses once stood. At West Hill, you can see the footings of stone roundhouses built during Roman times, long after the hillfort was abandoned.

If you don't want to climb West Hill

If you do not want to climb West Hill take the path to the right and follow it to the stile at the head of the field wall by the burn. From here you can either take the path back down to Kirknewton, joining onto the main track that you came up and turning right, back to the village.

Or you can climb St Gregory’s Hill

Or you can climb St Gregory’s Hill where you will find the ramparts of another hillfort. The ramparts on this hillfort were more elaborate on the side facing West Hill, perhaps to impress the neighbours.

Return to the village along the road.

Come down the hill along the waymarked track around St Gregory’s Hill, and return to the village along the road.

Walk route

Getting there

Kirknewton is 6 miles northwest of Wooler.

Follow the A697 north, at Akeld turn left onto the B6351 which goes through Kirknewton. Please park carefully on the roadside verge. Please do not block any gates or the road.