Hurst Green
In the quiet churchyard of St. John the Evangelist, Hurst Green there is a striking obelisk memorial dedicated to one Ikaturo Sugi, a "Japanese Subject" who died in October 1905 at the age of 30.  He was an "assistant commissioner in the Chinese Imperial Maritime Customs”.  It is thought he had some connection with Stonyhurst College. A corner of an English field that shall be forever Japan. 

Start. Hurst Green Village Hall BB7 9QB

Distance: 5 miles 8k

Time: 2½ - 3½ hours

Grade: Moderate. Mainly easy walking but with two sustained ascents.

Map: OS Explorer 287 West Pennine Moors


 Map by kind permission of Johnston Press


1. From the village Hall turn left onto Avenue Road towards the Bayley Arms and then bear right onto the Dene


a lane that dips into a dell and climbs up to meet Shire Lane. At the junction turn left into a lane leading to the rear of St John's Church.


As you follow the path to the front you pass Sugi's memorial on the right.


After paying your respects leave the churchyard by the lych gate entrance and turn left onto Longridge Road. This dips into the dell an then climbs back to the village. Cross to the Shireburn Arms


and then turn right towards its car park. Bear left to a wooden gate -


go through it and begin a long descent to the River Ribble. Keep to the right of the field and as the path crosses more open bear right across a gully


and continue to a strip of woodland.


After a stile and duckboards the path edges along a field to a second stile.


Follow a much more obvious path left through woods and then after a bridge


and a stile reach the riverside meadows of the Ribble. With the river to your right walk upstream past the aqueduct bridge


and then a fishing hut into the next field.


Cross it to metal gates and then turn left in front of them following the hedgerow to another metal gate close to a large boulder.


Through this turn right onto a track that leads uphill


to large farm complex of Cross Gills.


Keep ahead through the yard


to reach a drive leading to Whalley Road.


2. Cross Whalley Road to the drive of Fairfield House.


As you near the house (the one on the left of two properties) meditate and pause that it was here far from his native land that Ikaturo Sugi died of TB in 1905 aged 30. The way is right where a grassy track leads to a gate accessing Stonyhurst College.


A more substantial track leads along the edge of playing fields with a fine pavilion to a junction. Here turn left on a lane that takes you alongside the college itself - passing first the observatory


and then the chapel and then finally the impressive main buildings.


Keep ahead to reach a lane.


Turn left. There now follows just under half a mile of road walking. After passing Stockbridge Cottages


on the left and a small barn on the right the road climbs a rise. Just here turn left onto the farm drive of Higher Deer House.


3. After passing between properties keep ahead on a long farm track to reach Higher Deer House. As you approach the farm do not go through the yard but bear left to cross a stile by an outbuilding.

Over this keep ahead over a field to a stile in the fence. From here descend steeply into a wooded valley to cross Dean Brook by a wooden bridge.


The path climbs steeply up the far side to a stile in a fence. From here bear right to a ladder stile and soon after reach a broad farm track. (From here it is worth taking a short diversion to the right to view one of great historical buildings of Lancashire - Green Gore


which was built as a Royal Hunting Lodge) Turn left. When the farm road bends right keep ahead on an enclosed path leading into woodland and back to Dean Brook.


Cross a wide stone bridge and turn right. This path soon brings you back to Hurst Green.