New Year Resolutions

Wednesday January 31st. Top Bunk to Top 'o' th Hill. 13.5 miles. Leader: Chris Langabeer.

14 walkers. 13.5 miles. Weather, occasionally heavy snow and sleet.

The group set off from the Eagle and Child, aka Top Bunk.

We climbed on a rather muddy path path to walk around the edge of Fletcher Bank Quarry. A steep decent brought us to the Hamlet of Shuttleworth before passing Bleaklow Animal sanctuary.
After crossing the  Edenfield road we arrived at Dearden Clough with its ruins of a past Industrial Age. After a short break the River Irwell was our next objective, which was followed into Ramsbottom. Onwards through Nuttall Park we reached Summerseat and the remains of the Waterside Inn washed away in the 2015 storms.

Following the River again we arrived at  Burrs Country Park where lunch was taken in the middle of a snow storm!  Leaving Burrs we headed through Walmersley to climb and reach the second name in the walks title Top ‘o’th Hill. Which wasn’t at the top of a Hill ( don’t ask why )

The climbing continued over Walmersley Golf Course accompanied by a snow shower. We passed Cob House Farm, Longcroft House to walk through Nangreaves Village and pass the now closed Lord Raglan Hotel. Continuing along Bury Old Road next came a steep watery decent to reach our cars.

After a change of footwear most of the group spent a pleasant time in the Eagle and Child drinking a very pleasant beer called Top Bunk, what else!
I had found out that the Eagle and Child was once a coaching Inn that was also used as an overnight stop for people travelling on to spend time in Strangeways! The cells are still below in the cellar. We were not allowed to see them.

Thanks to everyone who came despite the weather forecast.




Wednesday January 24th. Little Cracker Safari. 13 miles. Leader: Norman Thomas.


I had 18 walkers and Maude, a very well behaved dog.  Today’s walk started from the Bay Horse Pub in Adlington.  The weather was forecast to be dry, I looked through the window at home at 8:00am and it was hammering down, oh dear!!  The rain stopped at 9:55am, minutes before the walk started.  Storm Georgina was gathering in Scotland and was due to arrive to us around lunch time, good news, she never got to us!  The weather was perfect all day, not a drop of rain and plenty of sun.

We made our way over to Rivington and enjoyed a morning stop at the Castle.  Then onwards to Curleys Restaurant arriving just after 12:15pm. We had booked the small dining room, just enough space for us all.  The staff were wonderful, very friendly and served us quickly.  The food was good and hot and reasonably priced, I think everyone enjoyed the meals.  Thank you again Curleys, you did us proud – 5 star.

After lunch we made our way through Arcon Village, following the River Douglas very closely to Rivington Services and onward over Douglas Golf Course then through Adlington to arrive at back the Bay Horse Pub at 4:00pm.  Perfect timing for us to have a few refreshments!

We had a happy day and I hope you all enjoyed it.

Thanking you




Sunday January 21st. Ruff Road to Chokey. 18.5 miles. Leaders: Dave & Alma Walsh.


Things didn't bode well for the leaders as we missed the Chorley turn off on the M61 & had to double back from the next junction, however we still made it for the 9am start.
A respectable turnout of 12 walkers, 10 more than we expected (in view of the weather forecast) set off from Rufford with the girls outnumbering the boys by two to one. We crossed the A59 & followed quiet lanes & tracks through the flat countryside. It was dry, more or less, when we set off but the rain & sleet driven by a cold wind soon started. After passing along the edge of Mere Sands Bird Reserve we re crossed the A59 & dropped down on to the Rufford branch canal for our morning break. Picnic benches were provided but we didn't hang about too long as it was very cold.
We then walked North up the canal to Sollom. After taking advice from two local fishermen regarding the extreme mud further up the bank where dredging was taking place, plan B was put into action and we followed the road for a while & then joined the path next to the River Douglas. We left the Dougie when we reached the A565 & followed paths over fields to Bretherton where we had lunch. There was a stone plaque in Bretherton dedicated to the famous local astronomer Jeremiah Horrocks who had lived in the area in the 17th century, well Nick had heard of him.
After lunch we walked through Bretherton & followed damp fields to the Midge Hall Chokey (Prison). We couldn't see the Chokey as it was well screened by trees. Further extremely muddy fields led us to Croston where a quick tea break was taken next to the church. With heavy rain now lashing down we followed lanes & tracks crossing the railway line twice back to the cars at Rufford,arriving at 3.30pm.
Thanks to all who attended in trying conditions

Dave & Alma.

Thank you to Dave for the pictures.

Cannot find any images for gallery 4468


Wednesday January 17th. Eccles to Bolton. Plodder Walk. Leader: Neil Woodcock. 10 miles.


SIX walkers met at Eccles Railway Station on a dreary damp Wednesday. They were there to follow the disused  Tyldesley Loopline to Heywood Park, Bolton.

A Little history: Opened on 1 November 1887, Monton Green was the first station on the London and North Western Railway's Manchester and Wigan Railway, which connected Eccles with Wigan and the Tyldesley Loopline which connected Tyldesley, Leigh and Kenyon Junction. Other stations on the line were located at Worsley and Ellenbrook. The station was built on an embankment at the road junctions of Canal Bank and Parrin Lane in Monton.

The Tyldesley Loopline was earmarked for closure in the Beeching Report, and Monton Green closed on 5 May 1969, along with the rest of the line.

The route is popular with walkers and cyclists, as the path gives excellent views over the local area.

The first part of the walk was along roads into Monton and opposite the start of the disused railway the unusual lighthouse on the Bridgewater canal built by a local person.

It was up onto to the trail passing a golf course on the right along what is now a hard standing path past dismantled stations.

About a quarter of the way along the route at a junction the Plodders stopped for a drink and comfort stop at Roe Green.

After this we carried on and passed under the Thirlmere/Manchester water pipeline.

It was then onward still on hard standing paths which had been a muddy path on my previous ventures along this route.

Lunch stop was at the old dismantled Little Hulton station just as it tried to start raining, luckily it was only a few spots and didn’t last.

Now it was heads down and more of the same.

A slight diversion had to be made to cross the M61 motorway but this was done without incident.

As we approached Bolton some of the walkers, who where locals, were amazed at the route and where it went as they were not aware of it.

Once arriving at Heywood Park, Bolton, the locals then took over the walk taking us the best way into the centre of Bolton, stopping for a drink at a charity tea shop before we all went our separate ways.

Thanks to all the walkers for bearing with me on a route which I hadn’t reccied due to the rail strke.




Wednesday January 10th. Horwich to Hollywood and Back. 14 miles. Leader: Chris Langabeer.


14 miles. Weather: Foggy at first, brightening up with some sunshine.

22  walkers set out from Horwich on the road to Hollywood.

Walking past Horwich cemetery there was a short climb to Bottom o’th Moor before passing  Coleman’s, the oldest recorded house  in Horwich, built in 1425 and after modernisation was recently on the market for £3 million.

Passing by the Old Links Golf course and Bolton Wanderers training ground, we arrived at the Elizabethan Gatehouse to the now demolished Lostock Hall. Formerly the home of the Anderton Family.

Onwards, we crossed the Bolton to Preston Railway line to arrive at Chew Moor to recross the Railway and walk over Bolton Municipal Golf Course and arrive at our objective Hollywood, or  rather Hollywood Lodge, the gate house to the former estate known as  Hollywood. The main building is now called Beaumont Private Hospital.

We then walked to  Markland  Hill, Doffcocker Lodge, where lunch was taken. Crossed over an extremely muddy field where points were lost according to my number 2!

After crossing Bolton Old Links Golf course and reaching Barrow Bridge, there came a steep climb  leading us to Smithhill Dean Road, further climbing saw us reach the edge of Smithills Moor. Next came a short downhill section before the last climb of the day up to Burnt Edge.

From here it was downhill all the way! we passed Moncliffe Quarry, walked through Arcon Village to arrive back at our cars. Several members of the Group then spent a pleasant hour in the Ale House Pub.

Thanks to everyone for coming on the walk, I hope you enjoyed it.