Sunday, 21st December

             

         

 

Walk: Haslam Park, Cadley, Greyfriars, Lightfoot Green, Broughton, Woodplumpton, Ingol, Cottam and Ashton.
Start Point: Haslam Park, Ashton on Ribble, Preston.  The park can only be approached from the west because of a dual carriageway. Grid Reference: SD 518 307
Distance: 9.25 miles Ascent: 300 feet
Time: 5 hours    
Weather: Grey and blustery
Comments: Seven cheerful souls followed “public paths” and paths in public open spaces for nine and a half miles. Although the walk was in an urban area the paths passed through fields and commons with the usual country smells and mud. Leaving Haslam Park via the Lake we crossed the Lancaster canal and followed a muddy path, which crossed Jubilee Common, to Walker’s Lane at Greyfriars. A short way along Walker’s Lane we joined another footpath that took us to Lightfoot Green (Grasshoppers Rugby Ground). Over the M55 motorway there is a sand quarry / tip (formerly Lightfoot Green Farm). Here we took a path towards Broughton that crossed a railway. Shortly before Broughton we turned left (West) to re-cross the railway at Bailey’s Bridge heading for Toplands Farm and the outskirts of Woodplumpton. Instead of entering Woodplumpton we turned south to cross a pedestrian bridge over the M55 and passed by Houghton House Farm to reach Lightfoot Lane. The route then took us down Walker’s Lane (now severed from Lightfoot Lane) via Wychnor and Manor Court on to a public path leading to Walker's Lane near Greyfriars. After retracing our steps to the stile at which we had joined Walker’s Lane earlier we took a more westerly route on public open spaces paths to reach Tag Lane, Ingol. Crossing Tag Lane we took a path via Cottam Hall Lane to reach another set of public open space paths at Cottam. We meandered along these paths to reach Valentine House on the canal side. (Formerly a farm it is now part of a university sports complex). Following the canal towpath in an easterly direction until we reached a large lock basin we then walked down the side of the lock gates to arrive at some traffic lights. Instead of crossing the road we turned left and followed a path in the general direction of Savick Brook to a track (Cottam Lane) and continued in the same direction to climb the steps to the rear, gated entrance, of Haslam Park. A walk up the main park avenue saw us back at the start point.

 

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