We are seasoned international travellers yet we keep coming back to this delightful corner of rural Staffordshire. Part of the reason is that it is within a reasonable driving distance from our home but mainly it is because there is a quiet rural charm to be found on these walks which are maintained and run by a family business.
After going with friends on May 19th this year we went again the following weekend (Bank Holiday) this time with close family. The chap collecting at the gate remembered us and charged us a £1 less - nice gesture.
This time, we packed our wicker picnic basket with homemade egg mayonnaise sandwiches, a pasta dish, pork and pickle pies and bottles of wine. Leaving it in the car, we set off on a couple of Yoxall's pretty walks. A horse put his head over the fence in the nearby meadow and we stopped for a chat with him.
As usual, Yoxall offered a range of short walks all laid out in the handy guide. They attract people of all ages and, apart from one or two short uphill sections, are manageable by most.
Take your camera - some of the bluebell-swathed vistas through the woods are delightful. On our way back, we headed off on the short walled garden walk, following the meandering woodland path through dappled glades and over a chattering stream.
Back at the car we took our picnic basket to one of the wooden picnic tables in the large meadow which sits close to a lake, unpacked our feast and enjoyed it as dragonflies skimmed across the water and birdsong drifted down from the nearby trees.
We then made our way to the refreshment garden. This is a Yoxall tradition for us - the garden has little tables and, along with tea and coffee, there is a selection of homemade cakes and scones. We ordered coffee cake and orange drizzle cake from the lady at the desk who, along with her daughter, makes all the cakes. Each season, she informed us, they make some 600 cakes.
Then, reluctantly, we made our way home through the highways and byways of this little part of old England.
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