After the Walk November 2021

Sunday November 28th. Preston Guild Wheel. 22 miles. Leader: Hilary Scott

We have had many discussions wondering what people want from a walk. Well, Judging from this turnout, it's tarmac, urban and snow! 15 people and 2 dogs came to Broughton to walk the cycle track the Preston Guild Wheel. Leaving Preston Marriott hotel we set off in the opposite direction to the route most cyclists take. In the event, it wasn't that busy with the cycling fraternity but plenty of other people were out on this cold day. It is 2 years since we've walked this route and I was amazed how much housing had sprung up along the way. Green fields gone forever but such is the march of progress. 

After 4 miles we had a morning break at a cafe where some bought hot drinks. Onwards through Cottam and over near a huge new motorway link road, more green fields lost forever. Along a busy main road and then we turned off to walk by the River Ribble for several miles. A few flakes of snow had now turned a lot heavier but luckily the wind of Friday/Saturday had dropped so it didn't feel too bad at all.  A quick diversion to look at Preston Marina but the snow prevented us seeing the usual view of the city. Onwards past Nick's house and into Avenham park for lunch. The cafe was closed unfortunately but the overhang of the building kept us dry.

Onwards, still by the river, to Brockholes and to the steepest gradients of the whole walk. There were Twitchers in the woods looking for a rare kingfisher but we didn't spot it. The afternoon drinks stop was next to a Starbucks, some had a fresh hot drink as a treat. The final miles had to be walked at a slower pace as the temperature dropped and black ice appeared on the tracks. We all made it back safely though. Well done to Kay on her first LDWA walk, I hope you enjoyed it. Well done also to Poppy and Alf, our canine companions, who must have had cold paws at times. Certainly Alf had a big sleep that night I believe!

Finally, thanks to Preston Marriott Hotel who allowed us to park for free. 




Wednesday November 17th. Jabber the Hutt 13.5 miles. Leaders: Dave and Alma Walsh.


Eight of us set off from Hut Lane. The weather forecast was for a dry day but it was wet underfoot & we had promised Nick some mud.


After crossing a stream we climbed up to a road to Kay's Farm from where we followed a path towards Healey Nab. Before reaching the Nab we turned left uphill & then down over soggy fields to an extremely muddy track.


Drier fields followed before another muddy track led us to our morning break stop overlooking Healey reservoirs. We walked passed the reservoirs & reached a bridge at the side of a Ford which we crossed to head towards our lunch stop at Brinscall.


We lunched overlooking the duck pond where some Muscovy ducks took an interest in Roger's lunch. Moving on we followed a road uphill to find a track which took us to another track next to to the Goit which took us past White Coppice cricket ground to Anglezarke reservoir.


We walked along the eastern edge of the reservoir encountering more mud. After crossing the dam we went down the road to find fields which we followed back to the cars on Hut Lane.


Thanks to the attendees & Hilary for her photography.


Dave & Alma



Pictures from Dave

Pictures from Hilary



Sunday November 14th. Two Rivers. 18 miles. Leader: Nick Halford.


13 people and Poppy the dog met outside the Dolphin pub, where a blanket of atmospheric mist lay over the marsh and river.

We started south following the river Douglas upstream to Tarleton lock, where the Rufford branch of the Leeds &Liverpool canal forms Wigan's route to the sea. It became sunny, still, and warm, and continued so for the rest of the day. Turning east, skirting Much Hoole, a pause and silence was held at 11:00 for Remembrance Sunday. Along twenty acre lane, wet fields and quiet lanes, to lunch at Longton Brickcroft, a group of good sized lakes where the clay was dug, now a delightful nature reserve. Quite how half the group managed to get lost here, even temporarily, I'm still not sure.

Now generally north, some Longton streets, more wet fields and lanes, with a mile detour saved by risking a flooded path. Good fun. One very enclosed footpath before breaking out on the banks of the Ribble. West now, downstream on the Ribble Way, before turning where, unseen with the tide out, the Douglas joins the Ribble, nearly at the sea.

Thanks to everyone for a good day despite the challenging stiles, and the beet field, and particularly Paul & Jeanette for sharing their lunch after I forgot mine, again!



Thank you to Jane, Jeanette and Pauline for the pictures of the day.


Wednesday November 3rd. Lady and the Tram. 12.5 miles. Leader: Hilary Scott.


Well weren't we lucky? After some horrendous rainy days we had a fabulous day at the seaside. Sunshine, light wind, lots to look at and eat!

Eight walkers met at Fleetwood Ferry terminal to walk to Squires Gate. No chance of getting lost - it was a straight path, just keep the sea on your right and no mud, an added bonus.

We set off through Fleetwood with the sea at  high tide. A small fishing boat was going out for the day and two ferries passed us presumably from Heysham. Visibility was excellent, we could see Ingleborough, the Lakes and Barrow. Barbara was well equipped to look for local birds and was rewarded by sighting migrating Sanderlings. 

There's lots to see along the prom, the buildings at Fleetwood, Rossall Point coastguard building, Rossall School etc. Jaquie showed us the new sea defences with the story of the Sea Swallow, further on we passed parts of the story; the Shell, the Ogre and the Ogre's paddle. Morning coffee was just before Cleveleys by the Shell, the tide was going out now and the Ogre was appearing from the sea. 

Onwards towards the Tower which still seemed a long way away. Past the Wreck Memorial and nearing Bispham the talk turned to chips.... There is a good chippy there so a few went to buy chips for lunch which always smell so good in the sea air. The illuminations are still up so we could now see the Tableaus on the way to Blackpool. 

North Pier came and went and then we were under the iconic Tower. You just have to read some of the sayings on the pavement in front so a few minutes were spent here. There were fresh donuts on sale at South Pier, Barbara succumbed to these. The end was in sight now but there was time for a dance under the Glitterball for Dave and Alma.

We just managed to catch a tram back to Fleetwood with a jovial conductor who had a smile for everyone. It was a treat looking at where we had walked.

Thanks to everyone who came and to Jacquie (a local girl) who told us so may fascinating stories of the area.