Midge Walkers

Walk  No. 125

Higher Penwortham/ Howick Walk

The last walk of 2018 took place on Sunday 9th December and was attended by 8 burley guys and 1 lady.

Meeting at the primary school on Crookings Lane, we set off at 1.50pm on a bright but somewhat cool day. It was immediately noticeable that the anticlockwise route was somewhat different to the reconnoitre which had taken place, being in a clockwise direction. Was this going to prove beneficial or a total disaster? Passing along the road we turned into Stanley Grove, until branching right into Blashaw Lane which led us through a kissing gate to skirt a field. Due to the recent spell of wet weather, the ground was somewhat muddy and we continuing into a wooded area gingerly descending a short slope to cross a footbridge andvscrambled up the other side, to be met with a stile which partly due to the slippery state of its steps and the height of the cross members, made it awkward to negotiate.

Crossing another field brought us to a double stile, but we were able to miss the first part by squeezing through between the wire netting which was quite loose. The next field ended at a muddy gate way. Some of us chose to use an adjacent stile to exit, whilst others chose the more tortuous route and opened the gate. This led us through a farmyard and down a track to join Howick Cross Lane where we turned right. The expansive electricity switching station was passed on our left and an ancient cottage (Toms Cottage) with a plaque over the door, telling who had originally occupied it back in 1700A.D.

Following the road on to a track, ultimately brought us to the bank of the River Ribble, where we turned right. Mingling with a flock of sheep that were grazing, we continued back towards Preston. We were shown a building on the right which formed part of the storm drain system designed to protect the town from flooding. The docklands area was across to our left on the other side of the river which had been the subject of a previous walk. Penwortham Golf course was to our right and after a short distance we stopped for our coffee break, resting against a gate and fence.

Resuming, we continued along the muddy pathway, erroneously called Holme Rd, until tracking the golf course perimeter, we turned right through a wooded area which brought us past the Club House on to Blundell Lane. Continuing to Kensington Ave, brought us to the gates of King Georges Playing Field, after which we returned to our starting point.

There is no doubt, we were pleased to have wrapped up to protect us from the declining temperature, albeit we had been blessed with a dry day, and finished in daylight. The distance covered was recorded as a mere 4 miles, which was clearly a miracle, as when the reconnoitre had been carried out in the opposite direction it was 7.6 miles. Obviously, the decision made at the start had proved beneficial after all.

Thanks to those who attended and to the organiser for another good walk in good company.

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