April Fools?

Look under Other Activities for an account of the Isle of Wight Coastal Walk 23-29th April 2017



Wednesday April 19th. Haigh Hall Stroll. 14 miles. Leader: Norman Thomas.


Twenty one walkers, we started from Borsdane Car Park, through the fields near Westhoughton then made our way to Aspull.  The going underfoot was very good, JT (the mud monitor) was not very happy, he had to search for what little mud there was!  We made our way to Haigh Hall arriving there a bit early for lunch so we decided to carry on to Worthington Lakes.  We had lunch overlooking the reservoirs, very pleasant indeed.  (Good job there were no dogs on the walk as I had forgotten to mention in the Strider magazine they’re not allowed).

After lunch onwards to the Leeds/Liverpool canal and a bit of a slog to Kirkless with an afternoon stop at the pub.  Then over Hindley Hall golf course into Borsdane Woods with many bluebells and other spring flowers – wonderful.  Everybody said they enjoyed the day, the weather was overcast at times but no rain.

Thanks to you all.

Hope to see a lot of you on the Isle of Wight next week.

Happy walking, Norman

Click here for Peter's pictures.


Monday April 17th. Not a Full Shilling. 18 miles. Leader: Norman Thomas.


What a day, we met at Rivington, 32 walkers, 3 dogs, all well behaved.  A 9:00am start, up to the Pigeon Tower then the Pike, through to Tigers Clough and onwards to the Castle for a mid morning break.  We made our way past Lower Rivington Reservoir then Anglezarke Reservoir to White Coppice for lunch.  Some walkers had bacon and egg butties, they looked very tempting, but I enjoyed my cheese butties ha ha!  In the afternoon we walked near the River Goit on to Brinscall, our furthest point.  On the way back we went over Healey Nab, arriving at Rivington at 4:15pm. 

Well done everybody and not a drop of rain, a little mud, the mud monitor (John Thompson) said that was very easy.  When I recced the walk 2 weeks ago with Chris Langabeer and Ian Pickup we met a group of walkers at the Pike who were training for the Yorkshire 3 Peaks and the National 3 Peaks.  I spoke to them about our group and asked them to join us and they did, all 10 of them.  They said it was good training and they enjoyed it very much.

Well done

Happy walking


Click here for Peter's pictures.

Click here for Howard's pictures.


Wednesday April 12th. John Thompson's Stroll. Plodder Walk. 9 miles. Leader: John Thompson.


Six plodders and one plodding dog set off in fine rain from Fold Road along the Manchester Bolton and Bury canal to the stair locks at Nob end and across the lego bridge.
Still on the canal to Bury and then joining the Irwell Sculpture Trail and crossing the river Irwell to the old railway line, along to Hurst Wood and our first stop in a sheep pen.
Back then to the old railway line to the M62 and into Prestwich park, past 13 arches to the Aqueduct over the Irwell where we had lunch on a small beach under the aqueduct and in the dry.
Then over the aqueduct and along the Irwell to go under the M62 and into Clifton Country Park.  Along Fletchers canal where there are still remains of narrow boats ( called starvationer boats ). On then to Fletchers mine and the wheel chamber which drained the water from the mine. Going past the lake over the foot bridge to the Rotary Way and back to the cars and a pint in the local pub.
A good day despite the weather.
9 miles in total.
Thanks to those who came at short notice
Thanks to Hilary for the photos
See you soon






Wednesday April 5th. An ABC of East Lancs. 13.5 miles. Leader: Don Watson.

Twenty eight walkers and four dogs met at Norden terminus for a walk round the hills and valleys of Rochdale on a pleasant, but coolish morning. I called the walk: An ABC of East Lancs, referring to the places we walked, namely Ashworth, Birtle and Cheesden.

I led the walk last year as a Plodder walk of twelve miles walking from Norden through Ashworth Valley, up to Birtle and then to Cheesden before our ascent of Knowl Hill, followed by a circular walk round the four reservoirs of Naden 1, 2 and three and Greenbooth.

This time I changed the route round to walk the reservoirs first, then Knowl Hill and then Cheesden, Birtle and Ashworth and back to Norden. One of our party (Peter) suggested that now it was a CBA of East Lancs and should be called Can't Be A**** of East Lancs, which was received with a lot of laughter.

After the group photograph, we set off down Greenbooth Road passing Doctor Dam before climbing to the top of Greenbooth Reservoir where we passed another walking group who were walking the other way.

After circling the Reservoirs we climbed out of the Naden Valley where we had our first stop and a drink. The next object was Knowl Hill which seems steeper every time I climb it. At the top we had a couple of minutes to take in the 360 degrees view. It was rather chilly on the top so we descended to Ashworth Reservoir on the A680 and passing the Owd Betts pub walked down to the Cheesden Valley where we had lunch at the remains of one of the old cotton mills built to harness the power of the water of Cheesden Brook. Here we celebrated Hilary's birthday with chocolate brownies she supplied followed by a rendition of Happy Birthday led by Norman. We then learned it was John's birthday tomorrow so Happy Birthday was sung once again.

After being refreshed, we pushed on to pass the old school house on our way to Scotland Lane which overlooks Deepley Vale. After a short stop for a sugar fix of fruit pastilles we descended to Birtle through the fields and down the path and quirky tunnel to Elbut Lane near the Pack Horse and Pavilion Restaurant.

Then through the fields on to the cliff path over Ashworth Valley and down to Simpson Clough paper mill. We then walked through the residential caravan park at Gelder Wood and along Naden brook to another ruined mill at Carr Wood and then across School Lane and then the path back to Norden clocking 13.5 miles.

Some of the party went in the Bridge Inn for a drink and natter and some made their way home.

Thank you for joining me on a whistle stop tour of the surrounding countryside of Rochdale, my home town.


Click here for Peter's pictures.



Sunday April 2nd. Red Rose 50 Part 1. 24.5 miles. Leaders: Paul Wadsworth, Ken Noble, Dave Walsh.

26 members enjoyed a day in the sun recceing the first part of the Red Rose 50 from Jumbles to Mellor Brook. A good chance to enjoy the spring weather and check the route description. Thanks to all who came and helped.

Click here for Howard's pictures.

Click here for Ken's pictures.