SUNDERLAND, TRAILHOLME & MARSH LEA
from POTTS CORNER

 


Summary

Date - 11th April 2018 Distance - 5 miles
Ascent -
330ft
Map - 296 Start point - Parking at Potts Corner (SD 4134 5716)

 

Summits Achieved

No summits were reached on this walk

 

Preface

Allen and Tetley were having a siesta, when their peace was interrupted by Southey.

"The magazines have arrived, pals. "Here is your Dalesman, Tetley, and your Lake District magazine, Allen."

"Thanks pal", they both replied.

"Has yours come too?", queried Allen.

"Yes it has."

Eager, they all settled down to reading.

About half an hour later, Grizzly and Little Eric arrived with the tea and cakes.

"Great", cheered Allen. "I'm gasping for a cuppa."

"Cakes too", added Southey.

Tetley meanwhile had got the plates and mugs, lending Grizzly a paw to fill the latter.

Little Eric announced, "Grizzly had made chocolate caramel shortbread, and my contribution is peach and apricot slice."

We all dug in. "The peach slice is scrumptious,", said Tetley.

"As is the caramel shortbread", went on Southey with a look of ecstacy on his face. Then pausing to take another bite he said, "where's Shaun?"

"Oh I saw him chatting with Dad", replied Little Eric.

"Maybe it's about a walk", said Allen.

Well we soon found out as just minutes later Shaun, came trotting in. "I bring news. Dad wants to go for a walk, but just in the local area."

"Wherever", replied Tetley. "It will just be great to be out.

A steaming mug was passed to Shaun, and the cakes offered. "Thanks Southey."

Then Grizzly went on. "I have been looking at the map, and while we have walked extensively locally, I have found a car park at Potts Corner near Middleton." He quickly opened the OS app to show us.

"Ooh yes", said Allen. "I did not know that existed."

"So", went on Grizzly. "We can walk to Sunderland Point, then take the footpaths via Trailholme & Marsh Lea, then towards Middleton, before heading south to the road and back to the start."

"That is a great idea", cheered Tetley. "None of us Dad included have never been on those paths."

"Do you want to tell Dad, Shaun?", asked Allen.

"No pal, you can go as usual."

"OK, but fill my mug up please",

"Will do tea belly", laughed Tetley.

We did not have long to wait, and the smile on Allen's face told us the walk was on.

"Great", cheered Little Eric.

"Here's to the best Dad in he world", added Southey.

 

The Walk

Although it was not far to the start, we were up early to make sure we did not hold Dad up.

Hearing him close the car hatch, Tetley called out, "come on pals let's get settled on the front seat."

As we ran out, we said "good morning" to Uncle Brian and our hug pal Gladly, who were busy with the Telegraph crossword.

"Thanks", replied Gladly. "Have a good time and behave yourselves."

Taking the back road, Dad drove to Middleton, where he turned left on to Carr Lane. This is narrow and winds its way towards the coast. At one point by a bend it seemed to go straight ahead. In a few yards Dad said, "I should have gone left."

We looked and seeing a barrier, Southey asked, "what is this?"

"The entrance to the private retirement community", replied Dad.

Turning round and back on Carr Lane, it was not long before we arrived at the rough coastal car park called Potts Corner.

The day was to be dry and bright but cloudy with a cool wind.

While Dad got his boots on, we got ourselves hunkered down in the rucksack.

Pointing Shaun said, "our route is along that track."

Ready, Dad shouldered the rucksack and strode off. The track meandered eventually leading up to a gate.

As we approached, Shaun called out, "it is not through the gate, but right along the grassy shore."

Dad strode on and eventually reached a gate and signpost, on the west side of the promontory of Sunderland Point.

"Through the gate I suppose", said Grizzly.

"Yes lad", replied Dad, "but first we are going to visit Sambo's Grave. A must for anyone who visits Sunderland Point."

In a short distance Dad climbed the steps to the gap stile to the enclosed area surrounding Sambo's Grave.

"How lovely!", exclaimed Allen.

"Just look at all those wonderful tributes that have been left by children", pointed Little Eric.

"Please tell us the story", enthused Southey.

"Well lads, Sambo was a almost certainly a crew member and the servant of the ships captain on a West Indian Trading ship. He came to Sunderland Point around 1736 and died in Upsteps Cottage. That much is certain. Whether he died of a broken heart because he thought his master had left him and gone to Lancaster, or he died of sickness or some other cause, is lost in time. He presumably had not been baptised so could not be buried in consecrated ground, so some of his shipmates buried him here."

"What a wonderful story", breathed Tetley. "So poignant and what a peaceful resting place."

A plaque adorns the grave, containing an elegy written in 1796 by Rev James Watson a retired headmaster at Lancaster Grammar School.

We were all quite moved by what we had seen and read, and sat a little while in quiet reflection on a nearby seat.

Dad said, "the words of the elegy reminds us that over 200 years ago there were already influential local people who recognised a common humanity that all people are judged by their worth and not their skin colour."

Ready to move on, Grizzly asked, "will you take our picture here?"

Returning the gate, we strolled along The Lane.

"Look at that fantastic ship model", called out Little Eric.

At the end we were now on the east side of the point, and the houses of this tiny community, this below being part of First Terrace.

"Let's go and have a closer look at that sculpture?", suggested Tetley.

Beyond the end of the tarmac is Second Terrace.

This tiny community is reached by a narrow road from Overton. It is cut off each day by the tide, when the only way to get there is either by foot across the fields or along the shore edge or by boat.

"Where now?", asked Grizzly.

Shaun was quick to reply. "We follow this track to the left, but very soon go right onto grass and over the ladderstile in the hedge."

By the stile is a sign reading - Low Road 1.75m.

"We head for that footbridge by the electric pylon" instructed Shaun.

Dad ploughed his way across the boggy field and once over the bridge it was clear the route led over a further two footbridges. At a soil access track we crossed and kept on to yet another footbridge.

Ever present to our left was the towers of Heysham Nuclear Power Station.

The ladderstile in the above picture was our next objective the crossing of it made more difficult for Dad by this boggy pool

"Squelch, squelch". remarked Southey

"Humph", replied Dad.

Sheep were grazing here, and as Dad raised the camera to his eye, Allen, called out, "noooo, there goes the sheep picture free story. And I was doing so well!"

"Now where?", asked Little Eric.

"Through that gate and up onto the embankment and towards Trailholme Farm", replied Shaun.

Now the route was over a ladderstile on the left, but Dad took the easy option along the track into the field. This track, flooded in places, soon became metalled and Dad walked to the gate at the far end. It was padlocked, so he climbed over.

Shaun said, "strictly we should have taken the rather hidden stile on the right onto the adjacent track that comes to the same point."

The way was now left to pass through the yard of house called Marsh Lea, where this bear stood with his paw raised in welcome.

"He's one of the Derwent Bay Bears", said Allen.

Leaving the yard via a stile, we arrived at a signed crossroads of paths. "We keep ahead", advised Shaun.

This led us to pass through gate into a pasture, passing a pool where swans were swimming.

Now the route got a bit confusing, for both Shaun and our Dad.

Shaun said, "the map shows we should exit this field to the right."

"Agreed lad, but I just cannot see where this is. So, what I intend is to stride that mesh fence into the into next field and walk to the ladderstile on right."

"Oh dear", said Southey worriedly.

"Don't fret pal", reassured Tetley. "Dad and Shaun will sort it out."

By the ladderstile we stood to get our bearings. Shaun pointed and said, "I think if we cross half left to that stile at the corner into the caravan park, we will be on the return route."

"That's spot on pal."

Once over the stile we kept left to cross three more stiles, like this one below.

In the last field we reached a signed gateway. "It's right here", said Shaun.

The path led to a kissing gate into the yard of C&R Autos, and we followed the access track to the road.

"I like the sign for the business", called out Grizzly.

Now on Carr Lane, it was just the matter of going left to its end at Potts Corner.

"What a lovely walk", said Southey. "Thanks Dad."

"Nice to have explored new ground locally too", went on Allen.

And finally one thing of note. Our pal, Shaun, the original member of our group, passed the milestone of 6000 miles!

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