Olney Trails guide you around the Georgian market town of Olney, the “Home of Amazing Grace”.
Explore the world of the lacemakers, local history & trades or walk in the footsteps of 2 famous residents - the influential poet William Cowper & slave ship captain turned man of faith and Abolitionist John Newton. Along the way find out about the landscape and local life which inspired William to write the poetry loved by the Romantic poets and John to write the famous hymn “Amazing Grace”.
There are many cafes, pubs, and restaurants to encounter along your way as well as a variety of speciality shops -You can even buy an Aston Martin! To add a further buzz to your visit the weekly market is Thursday and local Farmer’s market on the first Sunday of the month. In spring and summer, the town is decorated with stunning floral displays for the enjoyment of all.
Check out local websites to find out the opening times of the Cowper & Newton Museum & dates of annual events such as the Pancake Race on Shrove Tuesday, the Cherry Fair, raft and duck races, the Big Olney food festival (BOFF) , firework display and the Dickens of a Christmas . Emberton Park which offers lakeside walks, children’s play areas, fishing, boating and camping facilities is also close by.
The trails draw on the work of the Olney & District Historical Society and the Cowper & Newton Museum. Inspiration for the new app trails comes from the earliest published guided walks for Olney: ‘Cowper, illustrated by a series of views’ from 1803 and ‘The Rural Walks of Cowper’ from 1822. The trails are also indebted to local historian Elizabeth Knight MBE for information included in ‘John Newton’s Olney’ and Jim Styles & Reg Perkins for their works ‘From Romans to Roundabouts’ and Let’s Talk About Olney’.
The Olney walks were funded by HeritageMK from an Arts Council grant and researched and written by volunteers from the Olney & District Historical Society and the Cowper & Newton Museum.