Saturday, September 04, 2010

A seven mile run at Great LIvermere Suffolk

Broad Water
I drove out to the village of Gt Livermere a village about 6 miles North West of Bury St Edmunds.

According to Ekwall the meaning of Gt Livermere's name is the lake where rush or iris grew.
I parked close to the church called St Peter and commenced my run setting of past the large memorial stone around the village before heading past the church.

St Peter & St Paul at Lt Livermere
The weather was sunny with lots of fluffy clouds as I prepared to set off for my long run of the week which is up 1 hr and 10 minutes. Today's run called for a 5 minute blue zone easy jog followed by an hour in the green zone medium effort running before finishing with another 5 minutes of easy running.

Oldbroom Plantation
Looking towards Ampton
Gt Livermere is dominated by the large Livermere Park.I entered through an impressive gate house with large pillars. Once in the park it appears to be something of a wildlife sanctuary for bird life.  The park is over 400 acres and I literally had the run of the place to myself as I never saw anyone else during my 70 minute run.

Every where there were geese not only on the large lake called Broad Waters but all over the estate. The former house of the estate built in 1700 was demolished in the 1920's.

Ampton Water
There is a right of way path which takes you through the park emerging at the village of Ampton. Looking at the Ordnance Survey Map Explorer 229 I thought I would follow a marked pathway which would take me on a circular journey around the estate and village.  The run was on a mixture of soft sandy paths, flint pathways , woodland trails and fields.

Initially I crossed the lake at a narrow part known as Long Water. From here there are some views of St Peter & St Paul a derelict church in the village of Little Livermere. I tried running there once only to find keep out signs.

Footbridge at Ampton Water
Gt Livermere
The right of way path takes you away from the lake on a direct route to the village of Ampton. You emerge out of the park through the gatehouses on the Ampton side of the estate but I wasn;t choosing that route today. Instead I took a left turn following a small sign that could be easily missed directly across fields. As the fields had recently been ploughed I found I was running in and out of the furrows. This was difficult to master so as to avoid running like a crab as one moment you might find one foot in the furrow and the other on the ridge.

This short field section took me back to the lake in the section known as Ampton Water. There is a lovely footbridge to cross over and with beautiful views in all directions you just want to keep crossing the lake over and over again.

Ampton Water
Once over the bridge you enter woodland known as the Oldbroom Plantation. I was expecting to run about a kilometre in the woods before returning to Great Livermere by the road. However after several twists and turns in the lovely cool wood the pathway was blocked by some felled trees. Initially I decided to do a U turn but I decided to see if I could get over or round the trees. After being stung on the legs a few times I admitted defeat and turned around. It was a pity not to be able to complete the circular run but it gave me an excuse to run over the footbridge again.

I then had time to run over to Ampton and the far side of the estate. My longest run to date went well albeit at a slow pace . I am just aiming for time and distance on my feet with my training at the moment. The schedule I am following has yet to introduce any harder paced intervals.

Footpath at Livermere Park
This really is a great place to run so peaceful and quiet. I guess at weekends you are more likely to bump into the odd birdwatcher or walker or farmer. As you run through this park you are filled with thoughts of the former history of this estate which was in private hands for over 200 years.


  1. Thanks for visiting my blog! Those photos are great, looks like a beautiful place to run.

  2. Wow, very memorable run there crab man. Thanks for sharing the story and the pics. Now these are the posts I have been dying to read about. Keep it up man. Oh, there is this tripod exercise that you can do to strengthen up the foot to prevent PF. You stand up and lift up placing pressure on the big toe, little toe, and heel like a tripod. Do each foot for about 30 seconds to a minute depending on your current strength. Thought I would share that with you man. Take care.

  3. Thanks Kenley I will certainly give this exercise a go anything to try and avoid a repeat of pf


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