The Colliers Way starts at Dundas Aqueduct at the northern end of the
National Cycle Network Route 24 and continues through the
Midford and Wellow valleys towards Radstock. The aqueduct at Dundas is an impressive Grade 1 listed, Bath stone structure built
in 1800, carrying the Kennet and Avon Canal over the river Avon from Bath towards
Bradford-on-Avon. Here at Dundas the
delightfully-named Brass knocker Basin formed the junction of the
Somerset Coal Canal and the Kennet and Avon canal.
The remainder of the coal canal is now just a short stub of a few hundred
yards running south from the Basin. The fine city of Bath is
easily reached by road, canal and the railway (at Freshford station)
from Dundas. The Limestone Link long distance path also
follows the same beautiful valley of the Midford Brook for a short
distance to Midford where it branches off towards Combe Hay and
Dunkerton following the old Coal Canal route.
The linear village of Monkton Combe is dominated by the
jumble of the Monkton Combe boarding school buildings. There was once
a brewery in the village and among the oldest buildings is a farmhouse dating
from the 15th century. At Tucking Mill, where the Somerset & Dorset
Railway from Bath joined the Wellow Valley, the 'Father of
Geology', William Smith was born in 1769.
Near Midford the 1775-built Midford Castle looks down upon the meadows and
the old railway line. This unusual country house was constructed with
a floor plan in the shape of the ace of clubs.
The National Cycle Route at Midford crosses the Wellow Brook on an
eight arch, 168-yard long brick viaduct of Somerset & Dorset Railway
origin, which also crosses the main road and the long-closed Great
Western Railway's Camerton branch.
The Hope and Anchor public house next to Midford viaduct is a great place to break a journey for some refreshment, their car park straddles the cycle route and the pub itself stands beside the main road, so you can be sure of finding it!