Wednesday, 3rd November 2010

   

            

 

Walk: Catterall, Calder Bridge, Dimples, Kirkland Hall and Churchtown/Kirkland
Start Point: The Horns Inn Grid Reference: SD 483 429
Distance: 5.3 miles Ascent: 135 feet
Time:      
Weather: A dull Autumn day
Comments:

Kirkland is a civil parish located on the banks of the River Wyre midway between Preston and Lancaster in the county of Lancashire.  It is also the historic name of the village of Churchtown within the parish.  Kirkland forms part of the Wyre district.  It has a long history centred on its parish church, St Helen’s, once known as the Cathedral of the Fylde.

The church includes:-

·         a lepers window;

·         a grave marker for the village’s only victim of the Black Plague;

·         a large rafter, once known as the “new beam”, supposedly presented to the parish by King Henry VIII at the time of the reformation.

On a grey day the first time leader led her group of twenty nine through the old village of Kirkland, passing St Helen’s Church prior to crossing the River Wyre.  Whilst crossing the river, Catterall Hall could be seen to the right. Turning east the leader took her group upstream of the River Wyre to cross the busy A6 to continue along the Wyre to its confluence with the River Calder.  She then followed the River Calder to Calder Bridge and performed “Crossing Duties” before using highways to reach the Lancaster canal at Dimples.  Leaving Dimples Lane the route then followed the canal towards Lancaster.  The canal is carried over the River Wyre by a 34 foot high aqueduct that was engineered by John Rennie.  The aqueduct was first used in 1797.  Shortly after the aqueduct it was intended to turn west and use part of the Wyre Way known as “Many Pads” to reach the A6.  Unfortunately recent heavy rains had caused pond-ing at a stile and it was impossible to pass through.  Returning to the canal the quick thinking leader took the group a little further north to use Kepple Lane as an alternative route to the A6.  Back on track the group left the A6 at Cross House Farm heading for Kirkland Hall.  Alas the heavy rains had also caused flooding in a field gateway.  No Problem!  The leader with help from one of the more mature members placed timbers in strategic positions to enable people to practice their balancing and acrobatic skills when regaining dryer ground.  By this time there was moisture in the air as well but with not far to go the group made it safely back to the Horns Inn for a well earned meal.  Well done leader.  We look forward to your next ramble.

 

Scroll down to see photos of the walk

The leader's debut

 

Entering Churchtown or Kirkland . . .

 

and passing a monument

 

Garstang St Helen's Church at Churchtown . . .

 

and the rear of the church

 

On the Wyre Way

 

About to cross the River Wyre

 

Catterall Hall

 

Another form of leisure

 

The confluence of the Rivers Wyre and Calder

 

Beside the River Calder . . .

 

and another form of leisure

 

The leader on crossing duty

 

Catterall

 

For sale

 

Respite

 

A hidden message perhaps

 

The Preston to Kendal canal at Garstang

 

Some information

 

Impassable

 

Canal basin at Garstang

 

Wayside marker

 

Power for the cheese makers perhaps

 

No turning back here

 

Bridge builders

 

Same church, same day, different time

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