Sunday, 24th July 2011

   

            

 

Walk: The Huncoat Trail
Start Point: Mill Hill car park, Childers Green Grid Reference: SD 787 308
Distance: 9.2 miles Ascent: 1,250 feet
Time: 5.5 hours    
Weather: A fine sunny day
Comments: The Huncoat Trail is a circular walk roughly following the old parish boundaries of the historic village of Huncoat, which was recorded in the 11th Century Domesday Book when Lancashire was still largely covered by peat moss and woodland. It was a cross-roads for two packhorse trade routes.
Two or three starting points are possible, and our group of 23 set off from the car park and picnic site at Childers Green. Down through some woods before the climb, gentle at first over fields and woods, before it gets steeper to climb over a grassy shoulder, leading to a steep gully littered with heaps of stone spoil. The top is much flatter known as Hameldon Scouts, disused stone workings. No gain without the pain, and the views were magnificent. The path near Windy Harbour Farm skirted the edge of quite a steep gorge before reaching the old Kings Highway and across fields to Slate Pits Farm and the underpass for the A56(T). On to Peel Park, down to Within Grove and on to Huncoat where the old stocks and new Peace Garden were seen, before lunch.
Then on to cross the railway line near the station and through the pit top nature reserve, site of the Huncoat Colliery, 1885 to 1968. Soon the M65 was crossed by footbridge to reach the Leeds and Liverpool canal. After 1.5mls we left the canal at Shuttleworth House to pass under the M65, over the railway, to the high level path through the deep wooded gorge in Castle Clough Wood. This took us back to our cars.

Scroll down to see photos of the walk

Setting off from the car park at Childers Green

 

Exit from Hameldon Woods . . .

 

and up a steep gully past the stone spoil heaps . . .

 

to admire . . .

 

the view

 

We make our way around the edge . . .

 

with another fine view, including Pendle

 

Two small tortoiseshell butterflies

 

Looking back over Hameldon Scouts and Great Hameldon

 

Tight squeeze for some but not for Debbie . . .

 

near Slate Pits Farm

 

Group at Memorial in Peel Park

 

Village stocks at Huncoat . . .

 

with a long history

 

Lunch stop

 

We can see where we have been as we make our way . . .

 

to a high stile . . .

 

to cross the M65 . . .

 

to reach the Leeds and Liverpool Canal

 

Tranquil moorings

 

Marjorie has a fine collection of painted lanterns

 

We leave the canal . . .

 

at Shuttleworth House

 

Castle Clough Wood . . .

 

and back to the car park

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