Thursday, January 29, 2015

W&WPL #4 Thornton and Bus back.

Our 4.3713 miles (7.0349 km) Meander, that we did on our fourth "Walk and Wednesday Pub-Lunch" (W&WPL), is available at...  

It starts and finishes in the car park behind Costa in Maghull.
The linear  walk, we caught the bus back, included the target pub, the Nags Head in Thornton

You can see how it rated in my Maghull Foodie Blog at...
The initial part of the Wednesday walk followed the same route as our last W&WPL...
Setting off from the car park we headed along Westway towards the A5147 (Liverpool Road North). Crossing Westway we cut through the small coppice and down to the Zebra crossing.
Turning right, once we'd crossed, we then turned left across the Leeds, Liverpool Canal and then right along the tow-path. 
At Green Lane Swing Bridge, we turned left along Green Lane, until we got to a sharp left hand bend. Here we turn right along a signposted track (just before a farm)
This brings you to the Cheshire Lines where it crosses Maghull Brook.
Turning right, onto the Cheshire lines, we continued along until we reached another path off to the left.
This path took us past a pylon and a pond on our right with snowdrops...

...telling us Spring is on the way, and across fields towards the River Alt.
Climbing the steps we crossed the River Alt and continued straight ahead.
Now our route changed as we continued straight ahead following the clearly marked (Yellow Arrows on posts) path with woodland on our right...

... we followed another sign, just after crossing a small wooden bridge...

...into the woods, the path emerging, eventually onto Moss Lane where we turned left and continued to a crossroads with Lunt Road
Crossing Lunt Road we continued along Back Lane until we reach a partial barrier across the road...

We crossed the barrier and continued along Back Lane, with reeds and teasels on both sides of the road...,

,,,until we reached the roadworks for the New Bypass.
Here we had no option but to turn right and to walk parallel to the Roadworks barriers until we reached a pedestrian crossing that took us into Holgate.
At the Junction with Green Lane we reached the destination for our Wednesday Pub Lunch...

...the Nags Head (on the left).
We went in for our WPL ensuring we had time to walk to the bus stop to catch the bus back to Maghull Square.
At the time of writing this blog, the buses leave at 11 min past the hour.
The Bus stop...

...was reached by turning right along Green Lane to the traffic lights where we crossed the A5665 and turned right; the bus stop being just a few yards along the road.
It was nice that we didn't have to walk back as the bitterly cold wind hadn't eased at all. The bus...

...was warm and before long we were back at the square with a short walk back to the start.
An enjoyable W&WPL which we may redo when we visit The Grapes, also on Green Lane. Watch this space.

Sunday, January 25, 2015

Wigan: Hall Lane Loop

Sunday's 25th January 2015s 5.4202 miles (8.723 km) Meander is available at...

The weather forecast wasn't that wonderful but, it was warmer, and it didn't rain. In fact it was an enjoyable walk.
However the planned route changed for the initial part as the disused railway was more of a river than a path.
Our starting point was the bridge over the disused railway line in Hall Lane. If you are driving out of Wigan, on the A49, you need to look out for, and turn right down, Leyland Mill Lane.
Cross the bridge over the River Douglas, at the mini-roundabout take the second exit and head up hill along Hall Lane.
Taking the small track on the right, on the Wigan side of the bridge, we planned to go down into the railway cutting. we delayed this, as explained earlier...

...until we reached the first "green" bridge.
Railway Cutting looking back at the Green Bridge.
The route is fairly obvious as, we headed towards Whelly, Hindley and Platt Bridge, and there were lots of signs of spring, in the form of catkins (lambs' tails).

We eventually reached the Leeds Liverpool Canal.

Turning left along the tow path we headed up past the flight of locks. These were currently being worked on...

...and therefore not in use.
Above the top lock we saw an excited fisherman who had just landed an impressive catch...

The tow path then turned left and we continued past swans...
...fairly tame moor-hens...

...more signs of spring...

...Haigh Hall (and the golf course)...

...and we left the tow-path at bridge 62...

Turning left down Pendlebury Lane, we came across the "Sad" element of our walk; a dead fox, lying on the other side of a hedge.
Poor Mr/Mrs Fox!
After passing the new housing Pendlebury Lane becomes Wingates Road and the River Douglas can be seen on our right.
Eventually we reach the junction, mini-roundabout, with Leyland Mill Lane and Hall Lane.
Here we crossed the road and took the narrow cobbled footpath leading uphill (cutting off the sharp corner. 
Turing right, once we reach Hall Lane, we continued back to our starting point.
A very enjoyable walk which, if you get the chance, is well worth doing!

Thursday, January 22, 2015

W&WPL - The Punchbowl Loop #3/52

The 5.6077 mile (9.0248 km) Meander that we did on our third "Walk and Wednesday Pub-Lunch" (W&WPL), is available at... 

As with our last W&WPL, it starts and ends in the car park behind Costa in Maghull.
The loop walk included a target pub, the Punchbowl in Sefton Village

You can see how it rated in my Maghull Foodie Blog at...
Setting off from the car park we headed along Westway towards the A5147 (Liverpool Road North). Crossing Westway we cut through the small coppice and down to the Zebra crossing.
Turning right, once we'd crossed, we then turned left across the Leeds, Liverpool Canal and then right along the tow-path. 
At Green Lane Swing Bridge, we turned left along Green Lane, until we got to a sharp left hand bend. Here we turn right along a signposted track (just before a farm)

This brings you to the Cheshire Lines where it crosses Maghull Brook.

Turning right, onto the Cheshire lines, we continued along until we reached another path off to the left.
Signs of spring were evident in the form of catkins (Lambs tails)

This path took us past a pylon and a pond on our right and across fields with views to Sefton Village Church on the horizon.

Climbing steps, we crossed the River Alt and continued straight ahead.

First left took us to the perimeter path around the woodland where we turned right and continued around to the main entrance.
Here we turned right and walked parallel to St Helen's Gutter and out onto Lunt Road.
On the opposite side of the road was St Helen's Well...

Turning left we headed for our Wednesday Pub lunch at the Punchbowl.

See the link near the top of this post for a review of what we experienced.
After lunch, we continued past St Helen's Church and then left onto the B5422 (Bridges Lane).
Just after re-crossing the River Alt, we crossed Bridges Lane and entered part of the Mersey Forest
Taking the first parth on the left we skirted the woodland, bearing right to walk parallel to Dover's Brook and then second left, over Melling Brook.
This took us along a path between Maghull High School's playing fields and Whinney Brook.
More signs of spring with Pussy willow...

Emerging onto Ormonde Drive, we turned right then left onto Liverpool Road South, crossing the Zebra crossing and into King George V Playing Fields.
Here we saw the very first daffodils of 2015!

Heading past Maghull Town Hall / Library / Meadows Sports Centre we went up steps and left along the A59 (Northway). Just before the A59 crosses the canal we decended steps down onto the canal tow-path, turning left and back to Shop Lane Swing Bridge
We then retraced our steps back to the carpark.
One highlight, of this Meander, apart from lunch at the Punchbowl, was seeing 5 herons...


Wednesday, January 14, 2015

Wednesday Meanders - New Years Resolution

Chris and I decided that this year, 2015, we would, weather permitting, combine a walk with a pub lunch - every Wednesday! 
You can keep up with the meal side of things at
Last week the weather wasn't that great so we went, via Maghull Square, to the Frank Hornby.
Today we visited two pubs, on our Wednesday Meander, as the first one didn't do lunchtime food.
We walked from home but, to have a starting point everyone can access the walk starts and ends in the car park behind Costa. (that way if the pubs don't do lunchtime food - Plan B -, you can have a meal at Costa)
Today's 6.4193 miles (10.331 km) meander is available at...

Starting from the car park, we headed round the front of the shops, turning left and walking parallel to the A59 towards Ormskirk.
We crossed the A59 and along Dodd's Lane, bearing left when we reached Northway School.
Straight across Kenyons Lane and along Millbank Lane turning left onto Butchers Lane.
Almost immediately bear right, into Brookfield Lane.
At the second Footpath sign, we turned right...
First sign
...passing the fishing pond and horses, 

...before crossing the railway line.

Keeping to the left edge of the field, the footpath does a left, through a gate, and immediately right, following the right edge of the next field.
The leads you to Mikering Lane where we turned left.
Before reaching the railway bridge over Mickering Lane, turn right along a track, and then left through a playground.
Along the track there was lots of "Old Man's Beard".

Follow the road to the right passing through the estate gates onto Middlewood Road.
The road passes Town Green Station, and, when you reach Town Green Lane turn left, over the Railway bridge.
The Cockbeck Tavern is on the right (No lunchtime food available).
No lunchtime food available

Looking back at the Cockbeck Tavern
Just past the pub, turn right down Winifred Lane.
Just at the end of the park/public area, turn left along a signposted path; keeping to the right-hand edge of the fields.
In the corner of the field cross the footbridge,

...heading up the field then, when about half-way across the field turn left; the path is well walked and quite clear.
The path takes you through a narrow woodland and along a path with barbed-wire fencing one side and a hedge the other.
This brings you out onto Church Lane, opposite St Michael's Church.
The Stanley Arms can be seen to your right.

Here they do lunchtime food which is reviewed in the Maghull Foodie Blog.
Continuing along St Michael Road, there is a footpath sign taking you into a yard and through a gate at the other side. Continue straight along the left edge of the field and, just before reaching the building, cut into the adjacent field and on to the style in the hedge on your right.
This is the A59 which we walk along until we reach the Miller & Carter Pub (used to be The Swan).
Cut through the car park and onto Springfield Road.
When you rejoin the A59 continue until you reach Maghull Square again and the Meander is complete.
A very enjoyable walk which we may well do again.

Tuesday, January 13, 2015

Gathurst Station Loop

Sunday was, to say the least, windy and the request, from my better half was, 
"...find a walk that's sheltered!"
Hence revisiting Dean Wood which, although I knew it was muddy near the River Douglas end, was very sheltered and we hadn't been there for some time.
Our 3.7625 miles (6.0552 km) route, starting and ending at Gathurst Station, is available at...
Today's Meander (11th January 2015)
From the carpark, we started by heading East along Ackhurst Lane then right across the railway line.
At the junction at the top of the hill, we stayed on  Ackhurst Lane until we reached the B5206. Here we turned left and passed St John Rigby College, The Vale Royal Country Lodge and the entrance to Vale Royal Golf Course.
Just past the entrance to the golf course we joined a footpath that ran parallel to the M6.
Emerging onto Spring Road we turned right, heading uphill to rejoin the B5206.
Crossing the B5206 at the appropriate crossing, we took the first right across the fields to Dean Wood.

This was probably the windiest section of our walk.
 Down into the Dean Brook Valley, we followed the clear footpaths to the "expected Muddy end" of Dean Wood.
Spot the two bridges (either side of the fallen tree)
The high winds, as you can see, has brought down lots of trees but, as always, Dean Wood is quite magical.
The sounds of Dean Brook...
Dean Brook it flows over rapids

...waterfalls and fallen trees, 

...along with sightings of fungi,
Large beautiful coloured Fungi

Ear-shaped fungi again!
...birds and grey squirrels.
Having negotiated the muddy end of Dean Wood, we emerged onto a welcome track that runs parallel to the River Douglas, then, after passing under the M6, the railway embankment.
Left when we reached Gathurst Road and immediately right, once we had passed under the railway.
On our left were youngsters having riding lessons as we passed their mums waiting to pick them up later.
Back to the car but, sadly a little early to try out the Station Public House.
If you don't mind the mud at the end of the walk, it is well worth following our steps. Dean Wood is a lovely environment.