|Walk:||Oxendale Hall, Osbaldeston Hall|
|Start Point:||Whalley Road, Mellor Brook||Grid Reference:||-|
|Weather:||A dry day, but prospects of flooding, due to overnight rain.|
14 walkers set out from the village of Mellor Brook on Higher Commons Lane passing under the A59 on this 7 mile ramble. We very quickly encountered the results of past months rain and flooding. The stiles were under water and alternative crossings had to be found, as we managed to reach Commons Lane dry for a moment, then on to Osbaldeston Lane. We crossed open farmland plodding through deep mud and water to reach our coffee stop at Park Gate. We set off again following tarmac to reach the entrance to Oxendale Hall a fine 17th Century Manor House currently owned by a Jersey based property company. The house was built in 1656 with 5 bedrooms and 4 receptions by the Osbaldeston Family. We encircled the property through woodland with a descent to a stream crossing in Old Park Wood where we stopped for lunch. Onwards after lunch we headed for Osbaldeston Hall another fine property built for the Osbaldeston Family Edward and Maude in Circa 16th century, with 7 bedrooms and 4 reception rooms. We set off to then follow the river Ribble but unfortunately the pathway had been eroded away due to the water height on the river. An alternative route was planned which we had to share with the farm owner and his operations of manure spreading on ajacent land. Once we completed the detour we were back on track to hit another woodland and ravine crossing in Mercyfield Wood. We then reached Nightfield Lane another tarmac path before entering another stile to take us across farmland again and a muddy wet plod through a river crossing and out onto Commons lane again. Having suffered the mud and wet conditions the leader took us back to Mellor Brook on the tarmac road of Commons lane instead of the final farmland crossing which was clearly underwater.
Almost time to go
The start looks dry enough . . .
but as soon as we get off the road we encounter water . . .
lots of water
Preparing the stile . . .
using the bread crate . . .
Picking the safe spot
One at a time
Welcome coffee stop . . .
comfy seats for some . . .
ready to go again
Daffodils in January??
Osbaldeston Hall . . .
where we join the River Ribble . . .
which is swollen after yet more heavy overnight rain
Soon we have to retrace our steps . . .
back to the farm . . .
whose heavy machinery can't access the fields - hence "tank" spreading from the road
Frank and John lend a helping hand . . .
as we make our way back to the cars