Check out this new Norfolk walk and art experience

On the One for the Rook trail 

On the One for the Rook trail - Credit: Bergh Apton Arts Trust

Walk country footpaths and find music and stories seeping from the landscape.

Part rural ramble, part art, part nature walk, part a plunge back into a mythical past, One for the Rook is the latest venture for a Norfolk village renowned for visionary arts projects.  

For 10 days in September the people of Bergh Apton, near Loddon, are inviting visitors to walk a 1.5-mile trail through woods, meadows and marshes and find art, music, wildlife and words.  

One of the stops along the trail at Bergh Apton

One of the stops along the trail at Bergh Apton - Credit: Bergh Apton Arts Trust

Midwinter Dreaming a production by locals in St Peter & St Paul church Bergh Apton that is being per

St Peter & St Paul church Bergh Apton - Credit: Steve Adams

One for the Rook begins in the porch of Bergh Apton’s medieval church, which becomes a tiny theatre, inspiring travellers to venture out along paths and lanes around the village to a sycamore grove, a singing river, quiet places to watch clouds and hear stories of some of the wildlife along the way, from the birds and trees overhead to flowers and insects underfoot.

The 12 stopping points are where travellers can discover country traditions, taking a posy of protective herbs (rosemary, borage, mint and lavender) before entering the grass-cut labyrinth, gathering pebbles, feathers, leaves and twigs for a mosaic, or using a mirror to trace and walk the path of tree branches overhead. There will be a picnic place, marked by a telephone pole, transformed into a blue-painted ‘riddle pole’ with words winding around it and written on ribbons flying from the top.  


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Villagers have worked with artists, musicians and storytellers to create the trail which circles back to the church and finishes with music, readings, films and lantern projections. And for a permanent reminder they have created 100 CDs with hand-painted covers, of words and music from the project.  

A cd cover for the One for the Rook trail 

A cd cover for the One for the Rook trail - Credit: Bergh Apton Arts Trust

Some of the art work for the One for the Rook trail at Bergh Apton

Some of the art work for the One for the Rook trail at Bergh Apton - Credit: Bergh Apton Arts Trust

The remarkable creativity flowing around Bergh Apton has produced a series of six sculpture trails which ran through village gardens. In the millennium year villagers wrote, produced and acted in a pageant charting the history of the village. When the sculpture trails finished they staged a series of ambitious and enchanting folk dramas based on traditional and biblical stories in outdoor locations across the village. One took audiences on a journey through meadows, gardens and woodland and from the Garden of Eden to Easter. A play for the old feast of Candlemas, performed in the church, was followed by a drama based on ancient stories of the long-lost land which once connected England to the continent  

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One for the Rook can be walked as a contemplative meditation, as a puzzle with clues to solve along the trail, as a nature walk or as a forage through local folklore. It is a celebration of the wild world and a reminder of the importance of neighbours whether wildlife or human.    

One for the Rook is at Bergh Apton, near Loddon from September 8-12 and 22-26. Booking essential.  

Tickets £10. Participants need a mobile phone to hear music and readings. (readings will also be displayed at each halt.) 


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