Longridge

 

This walk gives you the best of both worlds – superb views across the Vale of Chipping towards the Bowland Fells and then after a climb superb views across the Ribble Valley.

 

Fact file
 

Start. Clitheroe Old Road a short distance beyond the entrance of Beacon Fell Caravan Park PR3 2TF GR SD618383

Distance: 5 ½ miles 9k
 

Time: 2 - 2 ½ hours

Summary. Mainly easy with a steep climb over the fell after Giles Farm.

Map: OS Explorer 287 West Pennine Moors OS OL41 Forest of Bowland

 

 Map by kind permission of Johnston Press

Directions:

1. Continue along the lane away from Longridge and cross a stile on the left. Cross two fields

 

to arrive on Forty Acre Lane. Turn right and almost immediately left onto a footpath heading downhill with a wall on the right.

 

After 100yds cross a stile to the right

 

and continue downhill now with the wall to the left. At Birks Brow turn right.

 

Keep ahead for 250yds to arraive at Higher Birks on the left. 


 

2. Opposite the farm turn right onto a footpath accessed by a small gate.  Keep ahead, cross a footbridge and bear right to reach an almost obscure stile in the corner of the field.  

 

After crossing the next field pass through yard of White Fold Barn

 

to the right of the property. The right of way will quickly bring you to Bradley's Farm. Walk towards the farmhouse to locate, opposite, a small gate

 

leading into a field. Through it turn right and continue to a wooden bridge. Keep ahead at a second bridge. Now approaching the edge of a conifer plantation, with a property down to the left, go through a metal gate onto a grassy track.  After a second metal gate keep ahead with fence on right. Part way along cross a wooden stile

 

and enter plantation, now walking with fence on left. Leave the plantation by another stile

 

and keep ahead across pasture to reach a wooden gate.

 

Once through it bear right walking up to Dale House.  

 

Pass through a wooden gate on left before entrance to yard and with Dale House on right

 

walk across a field to a stile. After the next field a useful line of telegraph poles will lead down to a metal gate just before Giles.

 


3. Thus far the route has run roughly parallel with line of the ridge. Now it has to be crossed. Walk towards the farm complex and in front on the house

 

turn right up an almost hidden set of stone steps

 

leading into an orchard. Bear slightly right aiming for the corner of the enclosure where a pair of stiles leads onto the open fellside. There is no clear path - the way  zig zags up but aiming to the top edge of a conifer plantation to take you over the escarpment. Once on top the wireless mast makes a good reference point to aim for.

 

This will bring you to a corner and a metal gate. Once across the gate turn right into Forty Acre Lane.

 

Walk along the lane for 700yds with Longridge Golf Course on your right. 500yds after Forty Acre Farm take a footpath on left.  

 

Heading downhill, with views of the Ribble Valley before you, cross two fields to reach Clitheroe Old Road. Cross the lane to enter a field by a stile.

 

Now diagonally traverse this large field to its far right corner. Here cross an awkward stile

 

by a metal gate (or if you prefer go through the gate) and continue along a grassy track with a hedge to your right. On reaching a more substantial farm track turn right and follow it

 

as it brings you to the exceptionally tidy Cottom House Farm.

 

Passing through the yard keep ahead and in a few minutes you will come to the much celebrated "Written Stone" with the farm to the right.Turn into the yard and walk past the handsome farmhouse.

 

 Keep ahead, go through a gate onto a grassy track and then another to enter a field with a wall on your right. After crossing a stile in the corner of the field.

 

Bear diagonally left. This line will bring you to a gate

 

leading onto Knowle Green Road.  


4.

 

Turn right and walk past reservoir on right. The Corporation Arms is soon reached on the junction of Blackburn Road. 300yds after the inn, turn right onto a bridleway  leading up past the west end of the reservoir. As the way becomes steeper, the track narrows and becomes more enclosed. As the track reaches tarmac turn left and then take a path that enters fields with fine views across the Valley.

 

Follow the path as it edges round the field to enter the lower section of Beacon Caravan Park.

 

Go up and slightly right to allow you to turn right in front of the toilet block. (Do not follow the footpath signs below the toilet block. Now look ahead for a flight of steps. Climb up the steps and left along the fence line to arrive at the road at the starting point

POI  "Ralffe Radcliffe laid this stone to lye for ever AD 1655" runs the intriguing inscription on the stone.

 

The monument has given rise to all sorts of fanciful legends featuring ghosts and ghoulies and things that keep you awake at night. The truth is probably more prosaic, though sad, in that it was placed here after the deaths of several family members in a short space of time.