Walk Diary 18 November 2018 Weather. 10°C. Sunny
Blore Pastures Depart 10.02 a.m. 8 ¾ miles Leader: David D.
No. on walk 23
I am truly humbled by the number of people who turned up to walk with me today. It is also rewarding to know that the work put in, planning etc., is appreciated as evidenced by the after-walk comments. Thank you all.
The sun was with us all day long, but it was a bit low, so for the most part we always seemed to be shading our eyes to see where the next stile mark was. Another, small thing, it seemed, all the places I had pre-selected for breaks, now had the cold breeze blowing into us, if you wanted to sit in the sunshine, still I mustn’t complain too much, as it was such a glorious day. The route included plenty of hills and at times we were over two hundred feet above the height of Thorpe Cloud, as you may see in one of James’ excellent pictures.
We set off from the car park and picnic site, first crossing the road to walk southwest and then to round Hazelton Clump climbing to the deserted farmstead of Upper Musden, all the time looking back over our shoulders at the magnificent views over Ilam and the surrounding hills. Such views of the eastern side of the Manifold Valley were with us for much of the morning. We descended into Rushley, a great deal of agricultural mud here, compounded by the recent rain and cattle movements. It was quite dry when I pre-walked it, honest!
As soon as we got down into the small hamlet of Rushley, then it was time to climb back out again, a sharp ascent to the west, toward Rushley Barn, it was here we settled for our first break, where a good view of Castern Hall was to be had. We followed the contours of the hilltops all the way to Throwley Old Hall, now just a pre-served ruin. The hall, built in 1603 is located on the site of a previous medieval manor house and was at one time occupied by the great grandson of Thomas Cromwell. We note from the information boards that the roof was removed in 1921, presumably for safety or tax reasons.
From the old hall we took a steep path to the south and after passing by a well pre-served lime kiln, stopped for our lunch break next to Slade House, once a former farm, but now a collection of luxury holiday properties. With lunch over it was time for a lovely steady descent, along a sheltered Holloway, into the village of Calton. Once through the village, we headed south again, passing by Daisy Bank Farm on our way to join the A523. Many of the stiles on this section were stone squeezes, which were quite narrow and took a little time to monuver through. We walked the main road, using the good wide verges, passing the A52 junction to take a path on the right above Forest Farm. Cattle all over the place here, even in a ploughed field. Once we had found our way around the ploughed field, crossing under barbed wire and over a small brook we headed back up to the main road, crossing it to take the path east of Common End farm. We followed this path all the way to St. Bartholomew’s church in Blore, this included a long descent and a very step climb, just before the church.
A short walk along the road passing by Blore Hall brought us back to the car park by just on three o’clock. Several of us made our way, after the walk, to have a cuppa in the busy café at the National Trust centre in Ilam Hall.