Explore the fascinating timber-framed architecture of Herefordshire on a black and white village trail.

START From Leominster, take the A44 towards Rhayader, continuing onto the A4112, signed Brecon. Turn left into Dilwyn with its row of 15 black and white cottages, once a 17th century Tithe barn. Bear right to rejoin the A4112 then turn left. After 2 miles, turn left to Weobley. Charles I stayed here after the Battle of Naseby (1645). John Birch, a Weobley Royalist before he became a commander in Cromwell’s Civil War army, signed the death warrant for Charles I before welcoming Charles II back to England. Winner of the Daily Telegraph’s 1999 Village of the Year competition, Weobley was used in the film Unconditional Love starring Rupert Everett and Kathy Bates. Return to the A4112, following the road left for six miles, with some stunning and extensive views towards the Brecon Beacons until you reach the A4111 and turn right into Eardisley.

17 MILES In Eardisley explore the 12th century St Mary Magdalene church, with its intricately carved stone font and plaque telling the story of the Barnsley family (later used by Charles Dickens as the plot for Bleak House). Like Dilwyn, many of Eardisley’s cottages are converted tithe barns, although some cottages date back to the 15th century. Follow the A4111 north to Kington, with scenic views over the Herefordshire and Radnorshire Hills.

22 MILES Turn left into Kington town centre, where the ghost of Black Vaughan sometimes appears in the shape of a large black dog. This supposedly sparked the idea for Sir Arthur Conan Doyle’s The Hound of the Baskervilles when he visited relatives nearby. Wander around Kington to spot the timber-framed buildings hiding behind their newer Georgian facades. From Kington, return to the A44, heading east to pass Lyonshall and then Pembridge.

29 MILES Pembridge’s timber-framed buildings are some of the best; many were built by wealthy woollen merchants. Explore the 13th century wooden bell tower and the Market Hall – look out for two stones in one corner, which would be struck by a nail when a deal was done (hence the expression “paying on the nail”), and also the beautifully cosy 17th century New Inn. Leave Pembridge along the A44 and, after a mile and a half, turn left into Eardisland.

31 MILES Eardisland’s River Arrow reflects a beautiful chocolate box scene in its still, cold winter water. Look out for the Dovecote and the 1920s AA box, reputedly the only one of its type left. Drive over the river, continue over crossroads, and take the B4529 back to Leominster.

Terrain: Gentle rolling hills, quaint village streets.
Car: Leominster is just off the A49 between Ludlow and Hereford.
Public Transport: Regular trains stop at Leominster on the Manchester to Cardiff line.
Refreshments: The New Inn Market Square, Pembridge HR6 9DZ 01544 388427 The Tram Inn Tram Square, Eardisley HR3 6PG 01544 327251
Nearby: Small Breeds Farm Park and Owl Centre Kingswood, Kington 01544 231109 www.owlcentre.com Adults
More info: For a longer, more detailed trail, get hold of a copy of the excellent Black and White Audio Tour for a small charge. It is available from: Leominster Tourist Information Centre 1 Corn Square, Leominster HR6 8LR 01568 616460
More about BBC Worldwide.