Todwick Ramblers Club Walks: 2019
14th September 2019
Heath – Stockley Trail – Carr Vale Flash – Sutton Scarsdale Hall – Heath
The walk on Saturday, 14 September 2019 started in the attractive village of Heath, an easy drive down one junction from J31 of the M1. In perfect weather for walking – bright, sunny but with a gentle cool breeze – the route descended gently over fields to cross under the motorway on a farm access track. On the other side, public footpaths crossed a number of large arable fields which the farmer had recently ploughed up. Whilst this increased the navigational challenge a little, the distant landmark of Bolsover Castle confirmed we were following the correct bearing. Soon picking up the Stockley Trail, a former railway line, the group took our first tea stop at a stone sculpture called “Breaking the Mould”, depicting the transformation of an industrial area into a peaceful nature haven.
The walk then continued on paths through two nature reserves, passing lakes, bird hides, viewing platforms and information boards. The first area was named after Peter Fidler, born in Bolsover in 1769 and famous in Canada as map maker and chief scout of the Hudson Bay Company. The second reserve, Carr Vale Flash, is regarded by many as one of the best places in Derbyshire to view waterfowl. After a brief stop to look over the reserve, we continued over fields to the other side of the valley, eventually coming to our lunch stop in front of the romantic ruins of Sutton Scarsdale Hall. The hall, now in the possession of English Heritage, was built in the 18th century by the 4th Earl of Scarsdale who wanted to better Hardwick Hall. The attempt bankrupted him sadly. It was bought by speculators who stripped it and much of its contents ended up in North America.
The final section of the route crossed rolling fields back to Heath, where the walk ended for most of us in the beer garden of the pleasant Elm Tree pub for a well-earned rest.
Ken Whetter – Leader
8th September 2019
4th Todwick Ramblers Charity Walk
The fourth Todwick Ramblers Charity Walk took place on Sunday, 8th September 2019 at Rufford Abbey Country Park. This year’s chosen charity was Macmillan Cancer Support.
On a beautiful morning 23 adults and 4 children, plus 2 dogs, Poppy and Henry, met for an easy 3.25 mile stroll around the parkland. Initially, the walk took us through a mature woodland area where a stop was made to view two of the old Ice Houses. Ice used to be taken from the nearby lake and stored here until required, the ice being insulated by layers of straw between the layers of ice. We then continued along the Broad Ride, a wide stretch of grassland before starting our walk around the lake. Stops were made for the children to view the ducks, geese and swans before taking a coffee break by the side of the lake at Rufford Mill.
The weather now was glorious and it was a wrench to move away and back to the walk which continued around the lake. Our next pause was at the Animal Graves where the racehorse Cremorne is buried. This horse won the Derby in 1872 by a short head after his owner Henry Savile wagered most of the Rufford Estate on him winning.
The final part of the walk took us by the Long Meadow and into the children’s play area before admiring the bronze statue of an oil rigger in the gardens. In the Second World War 2 billion barrels of oil were extracted from nearby Eakring by 42 American oil workers to aid the war effort.
The walk had been an easy one and I am sure gave confidence to the 3 lady Members who had come on their first walk following operations.
Many thanks to all who came on the walk, both Members and friends / family, including all those who contributed but could not make the walk.
A total of £197 (which we will round up to £200) was collected. A magnificent effort.
Ernest and Judy, Walk Leaders.
28th August 2019
Barlow fishing lakes – A61 Unston Bypass – Hallowes Golf Course – Barlow fishing lakes
On Wednesday, 28th August 2019, 11 walkers and Poppy the dog gathered at Barlow fishing lakes for a 5.5 mile walk around the Barlow area of Derbyshire. The weather was just right, not too hot and dry.
We walked past several ponds then uphill via steps through woodland towards Dronfield. At the top the walk continued alongside fields of recently harvested wheat then through a meadow and across a small stream. Then came another climb through a plantation area of pines, over the A61 Unston Bypass and onto Hallowes Golf Course to join a lane, passing the house of Sheffield legend Dave Berry (biggest hit The Crying Game). We continued downhill through ancient woodland back to the valley bottom and along to our start point. A rain shower welcomed us back at the cars. A nice walk enjoyed by all.
Nigel and Jude Singleton, walk leaders with the help of our local Dronfield friend Carol.
5th July 2019
Ashford in the Water – Pennyunk Lane – White Peak – Monsal Head – Monsal Trail – Headstone Viaduct – Headstone Tunnel – Ashford in the Water
The picture book pretty Derbyshire village of Ashford in the Water was the starting point for 11 of our members on a lovely sunny July morning.
The walk commenced with a short climb out of the village soon to take the walled stony and grass track of Pennyunk Lane. This ancient right of way rises slowly giving panoramic views over this part of the White Peak eventually reaching Monsal Head.
Although a little early, our lunch stop was taken at Monsal Head to take advantage of the seating, ice cream van and the views down along the River Wye.
Refreshed, we descended the bank down onto the Monsal Trail, diverting from our route to look over the Headstone Viaduct. Retracing our steps along the trail we entered Headstone Tunnel, at 533 yards long the longest on the trail and open to walkers since 2011. Emerging from the tunnel back into to sunshine and leaving the trail over a stile we followed field paths back into Ashford in the Water.
Although a short walk of just under 5 miles, and for Derbyshire easy walking, all agreed that it was a splendid walk.
Terry, walk leader
20th June 2019
Farnsfield – Tearoom – Halifax Bomber Memorial – Combs Wood – Robin Hood Hill – Farnsfield
The walk on Thursday, 20 June 2019 from the attractive village of Farnsfield began, by popular request, with a visit to the nearby tearoom for coffee and teacakes. Then, after a brief stroll through the village, we turned beyond the church to cross a couple of fields on well-marked paths to join a farm track. Soon after, a short diversion was democratically agreed to visit a Halifax Bomber Memorial. This peaceful, enclosed setting commentates the crew of a WWII bomber who died here returning from operations.
Regaining the main route, our select group continued along the lane to enter Combs Wood for a short and steep climb to the track at the top. From here, we struck out across meadows to the highlight of the walk – the small but shapely Robin Hood Hill. Rejoicing in our good fortune with the weather, we enjoyed our lunch stop with impressive views over rolling farmland.
The second half of this 6.5 miles walk, took us back to Farnsfield along a forestry track, a gentle descent on a sunken lane and some field edge paths, all of which were clear and easy to follow.
Deciding that one visit to the teashop was not enough, we ended the walk with ice creams its sunny garden.
19th June 2019
Todwick – Harthill – Beehive Pub – Todwick
Thanks to the 10 ramblers and 1 dog for accompanying me on my evening walk on Wednesday, 19 June 2019. A beautiful warm evening across the fields to Harthill and around all the ponds.
We were very lucky with the weather and managed to avoid any showers. Only one wrong turning but in my defence the paths were so overgrown since I last walked them, they were at times difficult to follow.
The walk ended at the Beehive pub where we enjoyed a meal and a well-earned drink.
5th June 2019 – Ramblers’ first coach ramble
Todwick – Fiskerton – National Cycle Trail No 1 – Lincoln – River Witham – Todwick
31 members and friends boarded the Maxfields coach at Todwick and Kiveton for our inaugural coach ramble. 29 were keen to walk and two came along to simply enjoy a day out in Lincoln.
The walk started at Fiskerton and followed 5 miles of the National Cycle Trail No 1 into Lincoln following the River Witham.
The village of Fiskerton was prominent in the Iron Age as a ferry point and many artefacts have been found, mainly in the river, from that period. Fiskerton was also home to 49 Squadron RAF which, in the later years of WW2 bombed both Peenemünde (V-2 Rocket base) and Berchtesgaden (Hitler’s Eagle’s Nest) The walk along the side of the River Witham was level and easy but care had to be taken when cyclists came along. The river is navigable and several narrowboats and pleasure craft came past us. We saw swans with cygnets, a heron and a cormorant. Alongside the path were several noticeboards with information about the area, its history and features. Ever present was the site of Lincoln Cathedral high above.
After stops for coffee and snacks we reached Lincoln and members did “their own thing” for a couple of hours until it was time to re-join the coach and be taken for a pub meal.
Some managed to find the “Hidden Lincoln Tennis Ball”. Don’t ask.
A lovely day out enjoyed by all!
The Team – Jude, Nigel, Julie, Les and Marion
Todwick Ramblers’ Walking Holiday in Northumberland, 29 April – 2 May 2019
A total of 24 Club Members made the long journey to Northumberland for this – the 6th Todwick Ramblers’ Walking Holiday. Although the first walk was not until Monday afternoon, most travelled up on the Sunday hoping to avoid any potential delays on Monday morning.
Monday, 29th April 2019
21 Members met outside Hulne Park in Alnwick for a 1.00 pm walk start. The weather was warm and dry with no rain forecast. A good start to the holiday! The park is a private estate owned by the Duke of Northumberland, (the Percy family). As a result, no vehicles, cyclists or dogs are allowed in the park and walkers are requested to keep to designated paths. We had chosen to walk the mid-range of 3 designated walks a stated distance of 4.7 miles.
On entering the park there was a line of metasequoia or dawn redwood trees which is a fast-growing deciduous tree native to China. When we had visited the park last October they had looked splendid. The walk took us along well-marked paths through woodland, fields and alongside the river Aln. About halfway through the walk we faced a steep climb up to Hulne Abbey but the views from the top were well worth the effort. The Abbey was founded in the mid 13th century by Carmelite Friars, who were given certain privileges by the then owner John de Vesey. These were continued when the Percy family took over the estate. Time was taken for us all to walk around the Abbey ruins before having a coffee break sat on a grassy bank with magnificent views over the park. In recent times the Abbey has played a major role in the film Robin Hood Prince of Thieves. Continuing the walk took us over the river Aln, by a number of fields and hence back to our starting point, an accurate distance of 5 miles (as per Mr Calladine).
Tuesday, 30th April 2019
18 Members plus 3 guests and 2 dogs met in the Cottage Inn car park for a 10.00 am start. The weather was forecast to be bright and sunny with no rain and this proved to be the case. Initially the walk took us along a road until we were able to cut inland along a farm track and across fields. It was from here that we were able to see the sea for the first time. Unfortunately, we had to cross a field containing cows, but certain members of our group showed great bravery and we all crossed safely.
After crossing a stream and a further field we continued along a track towards Howick Hall. This Hall and the grounds are owned by the Grey family, the most distinguished member of the family being the 2nd Earl Grey (Charles Grey), who was Prime Minister between 1830 to 1834. He married Elizabeth Ponsonby and they produced 15 children, all of whom they educated at home. Howick is also the home of Earl Grey tea and when Elizabeth used it in London it proved so popular that she was asked to sell it to others. Consequently, this is how Twinings came to market and it is now sold worldwide. Sadly, the Greys did not register the trademark and as a result have never received a penny in royalties.
After a short break we continued our walk along a quiet country lane taking us down to the coast where we followed a byway southwards until we reached a small bay. It was here that some of our group went to view the Howick Hillfort which was built in the Iron Age. We then continued south along the coastal path, past Sugar Sands and Howdiemont Sands before stopping for lunch overlooking one of the many glorious bays. The weather was wonderful and it was a wrench to have to leave! We started by retracing our walk as far as the Howick Hillfort where we then continued along the coastal path northwards which would take us all the way back to Craster. On route we passed the Bath House at Rumbling Kern. This was built for the earlier mentioned Charles Grey as a bathing house by the beach. On reaching Craster we discovered a kiosk selling drinks and most of us sat outside having a refreshing drink before continuing our walk through The Arnold Memorial Nature Reserve and then a field back to the Cottage Inn. The weather had been ideal and we had covered a distance of 8 miles.
Wednesday, 1st May 2019
20 Members met in the Cottage Inn car park for a 10.00 am start. The weather was forecast to be okay until early afternoon when rain would commence. Before starting the walk I apologised on behalf of Mr Calladine, Mr Barraclough and myself for the boisterous behaviour at dinner the previous night of our respective wives Helena, Sylvia and Judy plus Wendy and Jackie!
The walk took us down into Craster where we picked up the coastal path going north towards the ruins of Dunstanburgh Castle. The castle was built as a fortification in the 14th century and is now managed by English Heritage, although National Trust Members can also get in free. The walk took us around the castle, then past Greymare Rock which was formed by volcanic pressure that folded the limestone. Between April to August it is a breeding ground for kittiwake and fulmar. It was close to here where we stopped to look at some concrete bunkers which were built during the Second World War before continuing to Embleton Bay. The weather by this time had deteriorated and the heavy clouds had started to produce rain. As a result, I think we were all pleased to call at the Dunstanburgh Castle Golf Club for drinks.
Suitably refreshed we set off again this time walking along the beach to Low Newton. Unfortunately, it was almost high tide so walking along the beach was made difficult due to the soft sand. How much better it was in October last year when the tide was out. Lunch was taken at Low Newton. We had planned to sit on the grass surrounded by the old fishermen’s cottages, but this was not feasible due to the rain.
After lunch we set off inland to walk back over the tops to Embleton Bay. On route we passed the Newton Pool Nature Reserve and a number of our party went into the purpose-built hide to view the wildlife. Not much was on view, however, probably due to the poor weather. From Embleton we skirted alongside the golf course, past Dunstan Steads to again pick up the coastal path around Dunstanburgh Castle. We then cut back inland crossing fields and woodland before reaching Craster and hence returning to the Cottage Inn.
What should have been a glorious walk was somewhat spoilt by the weather. We had covered a distance of 9.8 miles. Apologies to everyone as we had estimated the walk at 7.5 miles!
Thursday, 2nd May 2019
Due to the poor weather and the fact that some wanted to set off on the long journey home, just 11 Members met in the Cottage Inn car park for a 10.00 am start, before driving the 4 miles to High Newton. The walk took us down in to Low Newton, stopping on route to mention the Church of St Mary the Virgin which is made entirely out of corrugated iron and will be 150 years old next year. From Low Newton we picked up the coastal path going north around Newton Point where we observed a former long-range navigation station from the cold war era. Continuing along the coastal path brought us to a sandy bay below us known as Football Hole, apparently getting its name because football games used to be played on the grassy tops above the bay. It was here that we cut inland crossing a couple of fields before picking up a road to take us back to High Newton and our starting point. By this time the rain had stopped. Typical! The walk had been a short 3 miles, probably enough after the earlier walks.
Finally, many thanks to all who attended this walking holiday and apologies once again over the walk length on Wednesday. A special mention for Terry and Helena Calladine, Neil and Anne Hawksworth, Carol Ibbotson, David Simpson and Lyn Masterman who completed all 4 walks. You must have been mad!
I have put photos that I took on to a Flash Drive which can be connected to a device via a USB connection. This same Flash Drive also contains photos that both I and Mick Barraclough took on the walking holiday in Wensleydale back in 2015. We don’t appear to have aged much in 4 years.
Some photos are also on Google Photos
Ernest and Judy Wraith.
25th May 2019
Crich – Crich Tors – Crich Chase – Cromford Canal – Benthill – Crich
On Saturday, 25 May 2019, ten members met at Crich marketplace for a 5-mile circular walk which began with a steep climb out of the village onto Crich Tors. Beneath our feet was an old tunnel which carried George Stephenson’s Crich mineral railway.
From the Tors there were magnificent views all around. We crossed 3 fields and entered Crich Chase which is an ancient woodland. The path slowly descended through the chase to the Cromford Canal where we had a coffee break.
We walked along the canal tow path and came across a family of ducks with ducklings. Further along the canal we found a bench and ate lunch. Crossing the canal bridge, we joined a broad track which climbed steeply for a short distance and then completed the walk by climbing up approx. 100 stone steps to the summit of Benthill and back down into Crich village.
It was perfect walking weather and the walk was enjoyed by all.
Judith and Nigel Singleton (walk leaders)
25th April 2019 – Bluebell Walk
Todwick Church – Station Hotel, Kiveton – Spring Wood
Although not part of the club’s walk programme, on Thursday, 25 April 2019, Helena, Brenda and Audrey met at Todwick Church to walk down the canal to Hawk and Spring woods to look at the bluebells and invited anyone who wished to join them be at Todwick Church car park ready to start walking at 10.00 am. Alternatively, to meet Audrey at The Station Hotel, Kiveton at 10.15 am to join the walk.
The walk from Todwick and return is approx. 7 miles, so refreshments were essential.
Despite the rain showers, and forecast for thunder and hail, a total of 8 members joined the walk at various points. All agreed that it was worth the effort as the bluebells were fully out and looked delightful. A lunch stop was taken at Thorpe, interrupted by a sharp shower which resulted in shelter being taken under the bridge.
Return was by the canal tow path, just getting to Todwick before a heavy rain and hail shower.
22nd April 2019
Youlgreave – Moor Lane car park – Cales Dale – Lathkilldale – Alport – Bradford Dale – Lomberdale Hall – Youlgreave
On a beautiful clear day twelve lucky ramblers set out from the Moor Lane car park a mile west of Youlgreave. The sky was blue and the temperature just right for walking. Initially our path crossed a newly harrowed meadow, fortunately there had been no rain to turn it into a sea of mud. We climbed over a stile into a field in which were a number of English White Cattle much to the consternation of Carolyn. Close by was a bull who seemed to take some interest in us but when he got near us only wanted to scratch his chin on the dry stone wall. Continuing in a westerly direction over lush meadows we rounded a farm into another field of cattle where Carolyn disappeared into the distance at breakneck speed. When we caught her up, we descended steeply down steps into Cales Dale where we turned north into Lathkilldale. We crossed the bridge to the north bank of the stream where we had a coffee stop. Luckily the river was flowing, often it dries up disappearing underground emerging well down the dale. Our route then went east down the length of Lathkilldale.
In the 19th-century Lathkilldale was the scene of a great deal of industrial activity and evidence of this still exists in the form of weirs, dams, mine workings and the remnants of an old viaduct. Fortunately, nature has taken back control and restored one of the most beautiful dales in the Peak. We were not alone in the dale with many other walkers out taking advantage of both the surroundings and the weather. As the end of the dale is approached it begins to open out into green meadows and it was here we stopped for our lunch. The weather had also attracted many picnickers enjoying both the sun and the cool waters of the river.
At Alport we crossed the road to Youlgreave into the entrance to Bradford Dale. Here we followed the river soon encountering a “Beware of the Bull” sign which Matt tried to hide from Carolyn without success. The Bull nor its mates were in the slightest bit interested in us and we were rewarded for our bravery with the sight of an ice cream van which we could not pass without sampling its delights. Continuing, we walked up the green steep-sided valley of Bradford Dale, the sides closing gently in on us as we moved westward. Again, the dale showed signs of man’s industry now fortunately reclaimed by nature’s gentle touch.
The debt of sampling these delights had now to be paid. At the end of the dale we had to climb its steep sides up to Lomberdale Hall and ever upwards through green meadows to our start point. My claim that this is one of the best walks in the area was not disputed by the weary but happy wanderers.
27th March 2019
Friden – Limestone Way – Midshires Way – Brick Works – South of Parsely Hay – Tissington Trail – Hartington – Biggin Village – Midshires Way – Friden
Our walk began at the car park in Friden adjacent to the Limestone Way which now appears on later maps as the Midshires way. The weather was dry, overcast and quite breezy but remained dry for the whole of the walk. Ten Ramblers set off North along the well-maintained disused railway line immediately passing the Brick Works. The Brick Works has been functioning for many years and is still in business today. There is an interesting series of illustrations on the works’ wall showing its history.
The trail took us through a number of cuttings and over embankments to just South of Parsely Hay where we joined the Tissington trail heading South towards Hartington. A coffee break was taken adjacent to an old railway hut before carrying on our way through the beautiful Derbyshire countryside.
We left the Tissington Trail as we neared the village of Biggin where we had to follow a country road Eastwards for about half a mile. Our route then continued east into the fields and up a small hill where we stopped for lunch. Continuing East we dropped down onto the Midshires way which took us North back to our starting point. Despite the walk being 8 miles it was very easy walking, and everyone returned in good spirits ready for the next expedition.
20th February 2019
A walk in and around Shireoaks village
An excellent turnout of 23 people met at the back of Shireoaks Marina for this walk, including two new walkers and a dog. After introductions we crossed Marina Drive and entered Woodlands Country Park, formerly Shireoaks pit. There is a fitness trail, but no-one seemed interested in tackling that, so we took the gentler route up to the top. We paused to look out from the viewpoint and read the various plaques informing about the colliery that had been on the site, then it was downhill to join the canal towpath and walk back towards Shireoaks village.
A footpath took us alongside a field and around the back of Shireoaks Hall, two pleasant surprises here, a large spread of aconites under a tree, then in the ornamental canal we spotted a lesser egret. Back into the village we stopped in the village gardens for a coffee break, seating for some and pleasant views of the river. We then continued along the lane, past the cricket ground and fishing lakes to re-join the canal, here we could see the canal trust boat negotiating the lock. Members of the Trust gave all who were interested up to date visitor guides to the canal. From there we walked up to Turnerwood, then across the railway line and down to Brancliffe Grange, back to the canal where we stopped for lunch. This time the entertainment was watching some of the canal trust members clearing a fallen tree from the canal. It was then an easy walk along the towpath back to the Marina.
This was a pleasant, varied walk of just over 5 miles, mostly on good surfaced paths, which everyone enjoyed.
Marion Brassington, walk leader
10th February 2019
Harthill – Thorpe Salvin – Kiveton Park – Todwick
Despite the early morning rain, 14 members caught the X54 bus to our walk start in Harthill. Fortunately, on leaving the bus the rain had stopped and the sky was beginning to clear.
Starting with a short climb up Serlby Lane we soon joined the Rotherham Ring Route through a field of Belted Galloway cattle, fenced off from the footpath to the relief of a number of our walkers.
Continuing on a number of field paths we crossed Common Road and Packman Lane to arrive at our coffee stop at the end of Slaypit Lane.
Fully refreshed we continued until reaching Southwards Lane which took us into Thorpe Salvin.
Dropping down fields we soon reached the canal; however we immediately turned into Hawks Wood soon to stop for our lunch break looking across at the ruins of Thorpe Salvin Hall.
Once again refreshed, we continued down to the canal towpath which we followed to Kiveton Park station and then across the field to return to Todwick.
A walk of 7 miles but all easy walking which was enjoyed by all.