Date - 10th February 2015 Distance - 8.25 miles
Ascent -
Map - OL7
Start point - Parking by canal at Borwick (SD 5242 7295)


Summits Achieved

No summits were reached on this walk



It was Monday evening and Shaun and Grizzly came in to find Allen tapping away on the laptop, with the the rest of our pals looking over his shoulder.

"What are you on with?", asked Grizzly.

"Reviewing the pictures Dad took when we climbed Rye Loaf Hill", replied Little Eric, excitedly.

"There will be enough for a story", went on Tetley. "Now all we need is for Dad to have time to write it.

Looking up, Allen said, "ooh you bring tea. Great!"

"Some homemade shortbread biscuits too", added Grizzly.

After taking a bite, Southey said, "mmm, they are absolutely scrumptious."

"Well I made plenty to ensure they will go round at least twice."

When we were all settled with steaming mugs in paw, Shaun said, "we are walking tomorrow with Uncle Eric. He has suggested a walk from Borwick via Priest Hutton, and Dalton Old Hall. This is part of a walk described in the Carnforth Connect Line 2 leaflet, a bus route that sadly is now no longer operating. He and Dad have devised a circular route, that includes the grounds of Capernwray Hall, although no actual footpath is shown on the map. There is an alternative along the road to avoid this however."

"Sounds good", agreed Tetley. "You and I have probably done parts of this a long time ago, but for the rest of you it will be new."

"Great", cheered Little Eric. "Roll on tomorrow."


The Walk

The start was the rough parking on the Carnforth side of the canal bridge, and for once we were there before Uncle Eric. Getting out of the car, Allen spotted a seat and called out, "will you take our picture there Dad?"

"Of course."

Now when we meet Uncle Eric our pals Barnaby and Lee, always go along to see him. So we all lined up on the seat. Barnaby is the one with the green bow-tie. Lee is wearing his sweater he acquired when he went to visit the Kennedy Space Centre. On the back in white is the word NASA, and he is also wearing his name badge.

The morning was calm, and the canal unruffled providing this nice shot looking south from the bridge.

Very soon Uncle Eric arrived , and we called a cheery "good morning", to him.

"Nice to see you Lads", he replied.

Soon ready our route was across the canal bridge and into the village to the green. Here it was right past Borwick Hall, and then beyond the end of the houses over the gated gated stile left.

The path across the field kept by the wall on the right and led down to the road adjacent to Borwick Church, dedicated to St Mary that was built in 1894–96 for William Sharp of Linden Hall in memory of his wife who had died in 1889. It was designed by the Lancaster architects Paley & Austin.

Turning right soon brought us to the village of Priest Hutton with its green surrounded by houses. The building in the centre was once the village school that closed in 1978.

"OK, where now?", queried Southey.

"We keep on through the village to go left at the junction, and then left again on the narrow cul-de-sac lane", instructed Shaun.

After passing the houses, Shaun then said, "we should go left along this track."

At the end of this was a tall ladderstile that was climbed into a field. Dad snapped Uncle Eric standing on top.

"Phew", said Allen. "Good job we are in Dad's rucksack, as getting over that would be a challenge for us, especially you Little Eric."

Shaun replied, "I would be able to manage it and Little Eric could have ridden on my back."

"Thanks, that is a very kind offer, but staying put in Dad's rucksack is still the best option", responded Little Eric.

It was now across the corner of the field to a gate, where beyond we continued by the hedge on the left to meet a path coming from the left through a gate at Coat Green.

"We go right here", said Shaun.

This led to a gate and then on across the next field to the top left corner, where in the field to the left these horses stood patiently.

After climbing the ladderstile, Shaun then said, "we go round the left side of the field to a gate onto a track, where we go left to and through the buildings of Dalton Old Hall."

Just past the buildings we were faced with two adjacent gates. "So, which one?", asked Grizzly.

"The right hand one", confirmed Shaun.

The way led on with a wall on the right, but where it dropped away, we then kept on ahead rounding a small hill and so come to a stile. Some graffiti on this caused amusement, as whilst not written by him, Uncle Eric has a relation called Clive.

Ahead was the building called Henridding. The clearly waymarked path is diverted around this via a gate left just before it. Beyond the end of Harry Wood it was right through a gap and then again along by the wood to a stile tucked in the wall corner. Bearing right again by the wood we then walked to a corner near the road, climbing this awkward stile that had no through stones on the far side, so necessitating having to jump down.

"Another good reason to be in the rucksack", remarked Little Eric.

"Otherwise we would have needed Allen's rope to get down", said Tetley.

Finally it was along the leaf strewn path to a stile onto the road by the access to Henridding.

"OK", said Shaun looking up from the map. "we follow the road for a short way and then go right along the bridleway by that signpost."

This for first half was a good track, that led through two gates and to pass on the left a building indicated as a meter house. Now open on both sides the track then went sharp left and then soon sharp right climbing up by New Close Coppice.

Here we kept rather too far right rising to the ridge, but it did give us an extensive view of the surrounding countryside. There was a building down to the left and Shaun said , "we should actually have gone to left of that."

Indeed when we had descended, we could see the gate posts in the fence line that we should have walked between. So gaining the path we dropped down, coming to a gate to the left of the buildings of Hill Top Farm and across a small rough field to a gate on to the road.

"It is right now past the farm", said Shaun, "then very soon left and across the railway line."

As instructed we 'stopped looked and listened' before making our way across.

"I guess it is straight across now to that footbridge?", said Allen.

"Yes pal", replied Shaun. "It spans the River Keer."

Heading half right the path led to a stile and then on up towards Brown Edge Farm. Here on one of the tall electricity pylons maintenance engineers were abseiling to carry out the work. "You would not get Uncle Brian doing that", laughed Southey, "as he does not have a head for heights."

"According to the map the footpath is through the farm and along its access to the road", advised Shaun.

Arriving at the road, and seeing a sign, Tetley remarked, "the path is in fact now diverted, although from the way we have come there were apparently no waymarks to indicate this, and I suspect that it will be a while before this is reflected on the map."

"Decision time", said Dad.

The idea had been to take the path opposite to Gunnerthwaite Farm and on to Cinder Hill Farm, before walking through the grounds of Capernwray Hall that is a Christian Bible & Holiday Centre.

"Well there are dotted paths shown on the map to and through the grounds, but what is not clear is whether they are public rights of way", said Shaun, peering closely at the map.

"That is the nub of it", agreed Uncle Eric.

"If access was not allowed, we would have to back track about a mile and a half", said Dad.

"I think it would be best to take the alternative along the road", responded Uncle Eric.

"I agree", said Dad.

"And me too", added Allen on behalf of us all.

Uncle Eric then said, "the lady who manages the Christian bookshop, where I work in Kendal, has been to Capernwray Hall, so I will ask if she knows whether it is allowable to walk through the grounds."

So turning right we strode out along Keer Holme Lane, that after a while bent right. Allen called out, "there is another of those stone buildings, and there is a crest set in the end wall."

"Me thinks this is to do with one of the aqueducts", mused Tetley.

Well we went and had a look and from the lettering on a metal cover deduced it indeed the Thirlmere Aqueduct ran below, and the crest was that of Manchester Corporation.

High on the hill we could see the similar building we had passed earlier, showing the line of the aqueduct, Grizzly saying "the building we passed shown as 'meter house' must be part of it too."

A side road joined from the right at Lancaster Bank, and now beside the railway line we passed a bridge, Dad remarking, "a cattle creep."

"More like a giraffe creep!", replied Uncle Eric.

We all laughed out loud at this remark.

The road climbed a little and looking left, Allen called out, "there is Capernwray Hall." The day was cloudy and drab, so not the brightest of pictures.

This was once the home of the Marton family from about 1820, at the time that George Marton was Lord Lieutenant of the County of Lancaster. The whole estate was much larger than Capernwray Hall, comprising some 27 or so farms in the area, plus Borwick Hall just down the road. In 1946 it was sold by auction to the Thomas family, to subsequently become the Christian Bible and Holiday Centre it is today.

Passing a gateway to Lake House, Southey called out, "look there's an alligator running along the top!"

Eventually we reached a road junction, going right to cross the railway. At the bridge Uncle Eric stopped and pointed, "that building was once Borwick Station."

"We are so glad that you are with us", said Shaun, "as we would probably not have given it a second thought."

Uncle Eric lent us some magazines with pictures of the station, and externally apart from the modern porch structure the building is the same. There were platforms either side of the tracks and on that opposite the station building was a small waiting room. The platforms extended to about the tall bushy tree at the line side. Here sidings ran parallel to the running line and one ran behind the station to a cattle dock and goods shed. All this was removed after the station closed on 12th September 1960.

All that now remained was to follow the road into Borwick. Passing Green Hill, Allen said, "wow that is some tree house.

The circle was completed as we passed the stile we had taken that led over the field to Borwick Church. Passing through the village it was left by the green, pretty with snowdrops and primroses growing out of an old tree stump.

Arriving back at the cars, Southey said, "that was a very enjoyable walk in lovely countryside. Thank you some much for suggesting it Uncle Eric.

"You are welcome", he replied.

Allen said, "we did not met any other walkers, and for once we have a sheep picture free story too", he cheered.

"Time for a snack", said Dad. "How about going to Greenlands?"

"That's fine", agreed Uncle Eric.

Dad had a nice ham roll with salad and a cup of soup, with a pot of tea. Uncle Eric meanwhile had a toasted teacake and hot chocolate.

We meanwhile had our picnic in the car, with our pals Barnaby and Lee.

For us all it rounded the day off nicely.


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