The Castleman Trailway and The Old Thatch

Posted on


The Castleman Trailway is a wonderful 16.5 mile route which follows much of the old Southampton to Dorchester railway line.  The route is marked with the green and yellow Castleman Trailway logo and this can be found at main entrances, on way marker posts and on street lampposts.

We recently discovered a woodland section of the Trailway which is located near Uddens Trading Estate in Wimborne.  There’s roadside parking on Uddens Drive and from here we walked just a couple of minutes down the lane going past Chestnut Grove on the left and the trading estate on the right.  We then saw a sign for Canon Hill Plantation and a small car park.  From here you can enter the woodland and you’ll see a large information board and map.


There’s lots of pathways to take but we spotted a big table and thought this would be a good spot for a picnic with our friends before venturing on into the forest.

We decided to take the wider path and stuck to the Trailway post makers which took us through the woods where the children had great fun climbing trees and discovering ready made dens to play in. 

From here we walked further on the woodland path, over a bridge and onto another wider path which we would have carried on if the kids hadn’t begged us to go back into the woods.


We found another huge den and a table close by so we could stop for a break and listen to all the birds singing in the trees.  My husband’s eagle eyes spotted a bat box high up in a tree and I’m sure there’s lots of wildlife to be seen once night falls.


We were walking for almost 2 hours on our loop and our weak bladders and slightly weary legs were ready for the pub so we went in The Old Thatch which is on a couple of minutes away on the same road that we parked on.  They have a fantastic woodland play area called ‘Bear Island’ and once we all got drinks we sat down to enjoy the sun while the kids explored the large play frame and swings.  If you’re looking to stay longer then the restaurant offers a varied menu with main meals and children’s meals.  In the summer time you can order pizzas in Bear Island and having eaten in the restaurant and garden before, I can thoroughly recommend both.

The Old Thatch Apr 2024 3

Dorset is such a diverse County with so many places to visit, where shall we go on a woodland walk next?

If you would like to read more about the Castleman Trailway Route then please visit the Dorset Council website.

For more information on the pub we visited including upcoming family friendly events, please visit The Old Thatch.


Need more ideas on places to visit in Dorset?  If so, please check out some of our other Blog posts below.

Where to see Planes, Trains and Automobiles

Free or low cost things to do in Dorset with kids

Crazy golf courses in Dorset

Tout Quarry Sculpture Park in Portland

Longham Lakes Circular Walk

Castleman Trailway Apr 2024 2

Add a comment:

Leave a comment:
  • This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy Policy and Terms of Service apply.


  1. Paul James

    For information on wildlife, habitats, conservation, restoration and much more; visit Friends of Uddens and Cannon Hill Woodlands.

    Posted on

Add a comment