Sunday, 16th December 2012
||Bolton- By-Bowland, King Henry’s well, Fooden,
Gisburn Bridge, Steep Wood, Gisburn Cotes, New Laithe, Dockber
||Car park at The Spread Eagle Sawley
||SD 776 466
||Cool with no wind, sunny all
||After the heavy rain of the previous
Friday, Sunday dawned bright and sunny with no wind, a perfect day
for walking albeit muddy underfoot as has been the case for most of
the year. 15 walkers enjoyed a walk which started by heading along
the River Ribble to the village of Bolton-by-Bowland, pausing to
look at the remains of an ancient cross before heading into the
After photographing the stocks on the village green we headed up to
the church of St Peter & St Paul where there has been a church on
this site since 1190. From there it was onto King Henry Mews, so
named because the Lancastrian King Henry VI retreated from the
Yorkist army during the Wars of the Roses after his defeat at the
Battle of Hexham in 1464. He lived at Bolton Hall, sheltered from
his enemies by the then Lord of the Manor and House of Lancaster
adherent, Sir Ralph Pudsey. Henry lived at the Hall for a year,
prior to his capture and eventual execution at the Tower of London
in 1471. The hall has long since disappeared and the Mews are a
legacy of that era. Along the road to the mews there was time to
look at the oak tree planted in 1911 to commemorate the coronation
of King George the V before continuing on to King Henry's well.
Legend has it that King Henry discovered a spring at Bolton Hall
during his stay and this can be seen today housed in a purpose built
stone 'house' which is now on private property.
From King Henry's well we followed the course of the Ribble up to
Fooden Hall Farm before reaching the road and eventually Gisburn
Bridge. Lunch was taken at the entrance to Coppice Farm as we began
the homeward leg towards Sawley on the other side of the valley.
Through coppices and muddy fields we joined the Ribble Way and
climbed up through Steep Wood to Gisburn Cotes Hall. Shortly
afterwards we reached the site of the Gisburn car boot sale where
the many bizarre sculptures and pieces of artwork kept everyone
After taking the obligatory photos it was down the track to Dockber
Farm and back to Sawley where after a change of clothes we were
joined by Betsy for another superb meal.
Thanks to all those who participated in making this a pleasant day
out and as ever, to the Spread Eagle staff for their friendly
service and excellent food
Scroll down to see photos of the walk
Gathering in the Spread Eagle car park - but we have 10.5 miles to go before our
The fields are still very wet from Friday's rain
Crossing Skirden Beck
The tree marks the spot . . .
of the ancient cross base
The village green in Bolton-by-Bowland . . .
with the war memorial across the road
The church of St Peter and St Paul on the spot where . . .
there has been a church since 1190
The remains of an ancient cross as we walk along King Henry Mews
The oak tree planted in 1911 . . .
commemorates the coronation of King George V
King Henry's Well
The weir on the River Ribble
A legacy of the wet summer . . .
but why is Tony hanging onto the post?
Lesley reveals the problem!
A sunny bank for elevenses
No doubt where this path is going
Heading for . . .
the 16c Fooden Hall Farm, one of only two buildings in the country with a
dovecote above the porch
A trap from days gone by
Crossing Park House Beck
Gisburn Bridge . . .
and from the other side
Back into the mud as we leave the road behind
but first we have to re-join the Ribble Way . . .
with a rather full River Ribble . . .
and climb out through Steep Wood
Crossing the first bridge . . .
and the second, of the Leyland to Colne railway line
A rather modern stone circle . . .
and Garry reckons he can save England . . .
but sadly, after only one shredded wheat for breakfast, he can't make the grade!
'Men forwards' as Tony and Ray admire 'the view from the loo' . . .
and ladies backwards
Lucky for some!
Sculptures in the woods . . .
and a bizarre bar
The it's time to head into Sawley . . .
to celebrate another successful year of walks
Phil tries the Rib-eye Steak topped by onion rings . . .
while Kath finishes off with Apple & Blackberry Crumble
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