Four Churches Bike Ride

The Old British School, Umberslade Baptist Chapel, March 2023

Spring is often the best time to set off on a bike ride around the Warwickshire countryside. I take my smaller camera bag with me which can hold my Canon D5 Mark IV in addition to two lenses, my EF24-70mm f/2.8L II USM and this time my wide angled EF16-35mm f/4L IS USM. I planned my travels around four churches which are in cycling distance and make an ideal circular route. On my way, I passed by Packwood House towards the canal where I can use the towpath and then up towards Lapworth. There is a well-positioned canal bridge that offers good views of the countryside, and this is where I turn onto the road leading to the first church on my trip. As I was passing, there was a canal boat moored up to the bank which lined up for a nice picture. The scene was featured on the Midlands Today weather feed on Twitter.

Canal Scene at Lapworth, March 2023
This scene was featured on BBC Midlands today social media feeds.

St Mary the Virgin at Lapworth
The road to St Mary the Virgin at Lapworth takes you through a quiet part of Warwickshire. Ever since the construction of the M40 which took away a busy access road, the place is a safer place for cycling. St Mary’s church has a prominent position looking out over the Warwickshire countryside. Whilst impressive in size on the outside, it retains warmth and welcome inside. The church was open, enabling me to take an interior picture, whilst listening to some rather good piano music being played by a parishioner. On the outside, I love the texture of the brickwork and the position of the church next to the road. The small outside annex is also interesting.

St Mary the Virgin at Lapworth, March 2023
The cosy interior of St Mary the Virgin at Lapworth. Note the piano player on the right of the picture.
St Mary the Virgin at Lapworth
Upwards view showing the intricate features of the brick work.
St Mary the Virgin at Lapworth, March 2023
St Mary the Virgin at Lapworth.
St Mary the Virgin at Lapworth, March 2023
The interesting addition to the front of the church.
St Mary the Virgin at Lapworth, March 2023
A view from the church towards the Warwickshire countryside.

St Mary the Virgin at Lapworth has a web page that links to further information.

St Thomas’s Church at Hockley Health
Back on my bike, I crossed the busy Stratford Rd and onto another quiet road. There is a steep hill down to a hollow which is fun to ride but there is payback with an uphill climb to St Thomas’s Church at Hockley Heath. This imposing Victorian church is built of red brick. I often pass it in the car on my way to Tamworth in Arden and beyond. Taking the time to stop off and explore the church was fun. The church was locked and therefore most of the pictures show the outside red brick work.

St Thomas's Church at Hockley Health, March 2023
The Victorian St Thomas’s church.


St Thomas's Church at Hockley Health, March 2023
The sign says it all.

For further information St Thomas is part of the Hockley Heath – Packwood Churches

Umberslade Baptist Chapel
The road to the next church is not very bike friendly and luckily the entrance to Umberslade Baptist Chapel is only 100 metres down the road. The approach to this pretty church is via a tree lined avenue. Upon entering the church grounds, the first building you encounter is the Old British School. This old disused building has a printed piece of paper on the door which reads “The Nuthurst British school 1877-1913”. There then follows the name of the Headmistress and the four teachers who worked there. The building sits at the end of the tree lined road and then further on there is the church. However, the dilapidated school house holds the more interesting story. Whilst it is all locked up, I just like to think what it must have been like when the school was active. Now the school is bowing out gracefully.

Umberslade Baptist Chapel, March 2023
The British School House front view.
Umberslade Baptist Chapel, March 2023
The door to the school house with the teachers names on the door.
Umberslade Baptist Chapel, March 2023
The Church cuts an imposing figure against the trees.
Umberslade Baptist Chapel, March 2023
A view of the front face of the Church

To learn more about this church then follow the Facebook group which has atmospheric pictures of the inside.

St Giles’ Church, Packwood
Leaving Umberslade Baptist Church, I crossed back over the busy Stratford road in Hockley Heath and started the journey home. The way back took me past St Giles, Church, Packwood which was the final church of the four. St Giles is a very picturesque church. Cycling down the path, I arrived at the gate where I parked the bike. When I entered the church grounds, my eye caught sight of an array of daffodils on one of the graves. The flowers helped me take a low down view of the church as the picture shows. St Giles church was also open to visitors. The inside of the church catches the light and on a late afternoon, the sun shines through the stained glass windows creating patterns on the walls. The play on light and dark makes a good subject for photography. I lingered in the church for a few minutes taking in the surroundings.

St Giles Church, Packwood, 2023
The daffodils are still out in Packwood.
St Giles Church, Packwood, 2023
The side view of the Church.
St Giles Church, Packwood, 2023
The beautiful interior of the Church.

For further information follow the Hockley Heath/Packwood churches link.

Then it was time to head home, process the pictures and write up a blog of my travels. If you enjoy my accounts of my bike rides here are a few more for you to read through.

Latest products

Aurora Borealis – Poster

Aurora Borealis – Poster

So I have been to Iceland but did not see the Aurora Borealis as it was too cloudy. I did…

Latest Products

0 0 votes
Article Rating
Spread the love
Notify of

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

Inline Feedbacks
View all comments
Would love your thoughts, please comment.x