Whalley 23-10-2016 – Leader Tom

Whalley 23-10-2016 – Leader Tom

On a lovely Autumn morning, 12 people turned up at Spring Wood car park for a relatively short and gentle walk.  We set off along the edge of Whalley golf course and climbed up towards Clerk Hill; we then headed off towards Deer Park Wood, taking in the first of the spectacular views we were to enjoy throughout the day.  The path through the wood was very muddy, which made Roy and Dougie feel at home!  We headed down towards Wiswell, but before we reached Sheep Cote Farm, doubled back on ourselves and followed another wet and muddy track up to the worked-out quarry and Wiswell Wireless Station.  We then made our way down to Clerk Hill Road, where the Peak and Northern Footpath Society sign showed us the way towards Sabden; we took this track, stopping along the way for elevenses.

Our route then took us across Whalley Road and up towards Hillside Farm, where we took the lower path through Cobden Farm and up to Back Lane.  At the end of the wood, after a very short walk down the lane, we headed back across the fields and through Readwood riding school before joining Back Lane again.  This took us down Whins Lane to a footpath leading to Hammond Drive, which we followed past Read Hall towards Whalley Road – another one, not the one mentioned previously!  On the way, Roy organised a group tree hug, which needed four people to complete.  After this feat, we crossed the road and walked down past Read Garden Centre where we’d later have our end-of-walk refreshments.  As we walked up the lane before turning left over Cock Bridge, a pack of dogs made it very clear we weren’t welcome – fortunately they couldn’t get over the fence!  Once over the bridge, we took the path back down towards the Calder ,where we found a nice spot for lunch.  A couple on the opposite bank with bows and arrows caused us some slight concern when they aimed them at us, but fortunately they moved on without firing!

After lunch, we climbed up through the woods alongside the river, reaching Whalley Banks and Dean Lane (past a house where I’d lived for about 6 months many years ago), and then turned up the hill to make our way back to Whalley, whilst enjoying more spectacular views. From there, we followed a track back to the car park, passing the new hydroelectric generating plant on the way.

Eight of us returned to Read Garden Centre for our tea and buns – five of us sat outside, but three of our group, who shall be nameless, sat inside – wimps!  It was sobering to see the line drawn on the building showing the height the water reached during last winter’s floods; it was just about level with our table top.  The damage the Garden Centre suffered was very severe, but after a great deal of hard work, they were up and running again in a relatively short time.

Overall, a grand day – not too strenuous – only just over eight miles, great weather, great views, great company – and Mourinho helping Chelsea to yet another great win was the icing on the cake!  (And Burnley beat Everton – ed.)

(Write up Tom, pics Gill)

Slideshow below, but if you wish to see a static view of the pics all in one go, then click here.


  1. Jenny Bruffell

    Excellent walk Tom. The photos are testament to the lovely autumn sunshine. Thanks Tom and Gill for a first class walk.

  2. Interesting write up, Tom – and lovely autumn colours, Gill. Excellent picture of the bee and of the gnome of Barlick. Did Dougie bring that with him, or did he improvise??

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