Date - 4th February 2020 Distance - 4.75 miles
Ascent -
Map - 287
Start point - Hurst Green village hall (SD 6844 3820)


Summits Achieved

Name Height (ft) Height (m) Grid Ref
Doe Hill 472 144 SD 6767 3817



Southey trotted into the room to find Allen and Tetley, pouring over a book.

"What are you on with, pals."

"Looking at the book of walks in Lancashire", replied Tetley. "We must really thank Uncle Roger for buying it for Dad at Christmas, as it has been a catalyst for starting to explore the Ribble Valley."

"We already have a few under our paws, and Tetley and I were looking for one to do on Tuesday", went on Allen. "The weather looks good and Dad has already told me he will take us out."

"That's great", enthused Southey. "The one from Marles Wood, yesterday, was more new ground and we got to see that impressive footbridge over the River Ribble. Quite a sight to behold. So have you come up with an idea for Tuesday?"

Allen was about to reply, when he spotted Shaun, Grizzly and Little Eric. "Ooh tea!", he cheered.

"I know", laughed Tetley, "you are gasping for a cuppa".

"And some cake", added Southey, laughing too.

"Huh", responded Allen. "You are as much a cake stuffer, Southey, as me."

"Aye pal, I have to concede you are right."

Tetley meanwhile was helping Shaun pour the tea, and asked "what delights do you have for the cake stuffers."

"It's a scone day", replied Grizzly. "I have made sultana, while Little Eric has done cherry & ginger. There is butter and jam too of course and clotted cream."

"Oh I am in heaven", said Allen.

Soon we were munching away happily. "They are truly delicious", said Southey.

"It is since we got the recipe and help from Aunt Elaine at Feizor", replied Grizzly.

"Well you have certainly got scone making off to a fine art", enthused Shaun.

Allen cleared his plate and reached for another.

"That's your third", scolded Tetley.

"Well I'm hungry, and Southey is on his third too."

"You're always hungry", laughed Shaun.

Southey now brought the conversation back to walks. "You were about to tell us the idea for Tuesday's walk, when the tea arrived."

"Oh yes", replied Allen spreading the scone with butter and jam. "With Dad having been busy lately, Tetley and I have found one from Hurst Green that is a little over 4 miles. It will be interesting as is takes us through the grounds of Stonyhurst College that has very impressive buildings."

"I recall seeing pictures", said Grizzly, "so it will certainly be interesting to see it for real."

"Roll on Tuesday", cheered Little Eric.


The Walk

Looking at the weather forecast on Monday night, Grizzly said, "the morning looks to be a little unsettled, but better later. I have pointed this out to Dad, and he says that we will make in an afternoon walk."

So we were able to have a bit of a lie in.

As Dad pulled out of the drive, Southey said, "how do we get there."

"Much the same route as we took to Marles Wood. At the De Tabley mews, we went straight on, but today we cross the river to go through Ribchester."

Soon after crossing the river, we passed a right turn. Shaun called out, "it's signed Hurst Green."

"Oh, I did not know there was a short cut", replied Dad as he quickly found a place to turn round.

So, this road eventually brought us to a t-junction, where turning right we arrived after a few miles at Hurst Green.

We were looking for the village hall. "I must have missed it", said Dad as we were soon through and out into the countryside again.

Turning back we saw a gentleman walking along. Dad stopped for directions. He said "turn right at the war memorial. The village hall is then just a few hundred yards on the right."

"Thank you", said Dad.

Dad was soon ready, and Shaun called out, "it's back down to the war memorial."

If you look at the left of the picture, you will see this impressive cross in the Celtic style.

"I wonder what it represents?", mused Little Eric.

"There's a plaque", replied Tetley. "Let's go and have a look."

This told us that it is a memorial related to the second Boer War (1899-1902). Grizzly peered closely and read out the inscription. "This cross commemorates the service of Frederick Sleigh first Earl Roberts KGVC and his companions in arms the soldiers and sailors of the Empire who fought in the South Africa Campaign 1899-1902."

"Every day's a school day", remarked Shaun. Then went on, "the instructions say opposite the war memorial follow The Warren."

Dad took this to be the lane by the Shireburn Arms across the main road. Very shortly we arrived at a stepped gap stile.

"The instructions indicate a kissing gate", said Shaun. then looking again at the map, he went on, "this path is heading to the river, so is not our route."

Returning to the war memorial Dad said, "must be down there along Warren Fold, through those new houses."

Dad strode off, Southey commenting, "it would have been clearer if the instructions had read, 'at the war memorial turn left'"

Past the new houses, the last large house set back is called The Warren. Then along by the wall to climb a stile and by the wall to this kissing gate.

"Now the instructions tell us to go right at a junction of paths."

We came to a kissing gate on the left in a corner that Dad took, only to find that this was leading back to the village hall.

"Oh heck", said Dad. "I am not concentrating. The corner by the kissing gate was obviously the junction. Sorry lads. Must try harder."

So with determined steps Dad kept by the hedge through more kissing gates the path eventually dropping down as a muddy path to then join a surfaced track. Very soon this became a narrow muddy footpath skirting the edge of Fox Hall Wood in which is this pool.

"Nice reflections", commented Tetley.

At the end of the path a gate led into the Stonyhurst College, keeping straight on to pass across the front of the main building.

Stonyhurst College is a Roman Catholic independent school that has been fully coeducational since 1999. It occupies a Grade I listed building. The college was founded in 1593 by Father Robert Persons SJ at St Omer, at a time when penal laws prohibited Catholic education in England. After moving to Bruges in 1762 and Liège in 1773, the college moved to Stonyhurst in 1794. It provides boarding and day education to approximately 450 boys and girls aged 13–18. On an adjacent site, its preparatory school, St Mary's Hall, provides education for boys and girls aged 3–13. Roman Catholicism plays a central role in college life, with emphasis on both prayer and service, according to the Jesuit philosophy. The school's alumni include three Saints, twelve Beati, seven archbishops, seven Victoria Cross winners, a Peruvian president, a Bolivian president, a New Zealand prime minister, a signatory of the American Declaration of Independence and several writers, sportsmen, and politicians. (we acknowledge Wikipedia as source of this information, where much more can be found about Stonyhurst College)

The college has one main church St Peter's seen below.

The college is reached via a long drive either side of which are ornamental gardens incorporating a long pool. This below shows one.

As we continued it became clear how far back the main building went. "Wow", breathed Southey. "What a huge complex"

"Certainly well worth seeing", added Allen. "Quite majestic."

The footpath on a wide drive led to a pair of gates, beside which was a tall stile in the wall allowing egress onto a road.

"It's left", called out Shaun.

The road took us past the cottages of Stockbridge. Soon another property came into view on the right. Southey issued instructions, "just past that building we go left, at the signpost. This is the access to Higher Deer House farm. We go all the way to the farm."

Soon after passing the trailer the long drive stretched out before us. Arriving at the farm, Grizzly commented, "it looks to be derelict. How sad."

Gates blocked our way in front. Shaun pointed, "we go over that stile on the left and then cross the field diagonally."

As Dad set off, Little Eric called out, "look there are sheep and two donkeys."

"Ahh", said Tetley. "A reminder of the Aunt Elaine's donkeys at Feizor, that are named after you and Uncle Brian."

At the far side of the field a stile led into Deer House Wood, and the steepish and very muddy path down into the ravine.

Dad went very carefully but still slipped and skidded a bit. "I could have done with my stick here", he admitted.

Still the descent was safely accomplished to the footbridge over Dean Brook.

The hurrying brook was joined here by a side stream that was unnamed on the map.

The narrow path beyond climbed steeply, first left before it cut back right to a stile into a field.

"We go straight across then right over a ladderstile and follow the path to a stile left onto a broad surfaced track", instructed Shaun.

Here as suggested we took a short detour right, to see Greengore. The house dates back to the 16th century and functioned as a shooting lodge for the Shireburn Family who had royal associations. The hunting lodge was just a large open plan hall, but in the early 19th century it became a working farm and was divided up into rooms much as it stands today. It is Grade II* listed.

So, turning back we followed the track, going right at the fork, but not before Allen had called out, "look a seat."

"Great" cheered Little Eric. "Photo time for us."

"OK", laughed Dad, "get yourselves settled so I can line up the shot."

Presently the the track became a tarmac lane and we came to New House. "Are we going to the trig point on Doe Hill?", asked Southey.

"Yes lad", replied Dad. "Although it is only 472 feet we can count it as another summit."

"There's the stile to access it", called out Grizzly, pointing right.

The trig point was immediately in view and soon reached.

"Let's sit on top", suggested Southey.

"I'm not sure as it is a bit windy and you are very light", replied Dad.

"Please Dad."

"Ok", replied Dad eyeing the water and mud surrounding the trig point. "Don't say I didn't warn you."

We got settled but as Dad raised the camera a gust caught Southey and he rocked back. Dad got him upright, but then another gust caught us and he rolled off the back.

"Oh dear pal", called out Little Eric, "are you alright."

"Yes, but my sweater has got a bit wet."

Dad dried him off, then wedged him in by Shaun, and bingo.

Then we looked around at the superb 360 degree panorama. "Wow!" exclaimed Tetley. "Just a shame the distant views are not clearer."

Dad took this shot looking north to Longridge Fell. It's summit is Spire Hill that we climbed to on 15th July 2015, as part of our Forest of Bowland Fells challenge.

As we settled again in Dad's rucksack, Southey remarked ruefully, "at least Dad didn't say I told you so, when I fell off the trig point."

On the road again, Dad strode off down to the junction.

Looking left Grizzly pointed, "there's Pendle Hill. Ever present above the Ribble valley." Then peering he went on, "the sun is catching the summit."

"Summiting it marked the completion of our Bowland Fells challenge", said Tetley. "That was a great six months exploring all of them."

"It surely was", agreed Southey, and one challenge at least that I can say I have completed."

Making no apologies here we are on Pendle Hill with Dad on 25th November 2015

At the junction Shaun instructed, "turn left, then take the first right, to the church."

So here is the church of St John the Evangelist, Hurst Green. It was built in 1838 on land donated by the Fenton (of photography fame) family. Unusually the Internet drew a blank in providing further information.

"Can we go in and look round?", asked Grizzly, who likes to see churches.

"Of course lad, provided it is open of course."

It was and here are a few pictures from our interesting visit.

First looking along the nave...

The organ, close-up.

" I wonder which hymns were sung at the last service?", mused Little Eric.

Later we searched the Internet, but unfortunately not knowing the version of the hymn book used at the church, we could not come up with a definitive answer.

Here is the chancel with its beautiful three light stained glass east window.

And finally the font.

Of interest in the churchyard as this obelisk.

It is dedicated to the memory of Ikutaro Sugi, a 'Japanese Subject' who died in October 1905 at the age of thirty. He was an 'assistant commissioner in the Chinese Imperial Maritime Customs'. It is thought he had some connection with Stonyhurst College.

Leaving we returned to the lane dropping down and then steeply up into the village and just a few yards left to the village hall.

"Right picnic time", cheered Allen, rubbing his tummy.

"Hungry as always, like Dad", laughed Little Eric.

"I know where you are going Dad", said Tetley. "To Millie's that you spotted by the war memorial earlier."

"Got it in one", laughed Dad.

Millie's was excellent, warm and welcoming. Dad told us the had a delicious hot bacon lettuce and tomato sandwich with side salad and crisps. Then a nice piece of Victoria sponge (no surprise there!), all washed down with tea, extra hot water being provided. Dad chatted to the owner who he thought was Millie. However that was the previous owner and they had retained the name. Like Elaine's it is open all year except Monday and a week of closure at Christmas. Chatting to the owner about walks, she recommended we do the Tolkien Trail, that goes by the river. We like that idea. Telling her how good the food was he went to say that he would heartily recommend the cafe.

So a very happy group, Dad then drove us home.

"Thanks as always for a taking us", said Southey.


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