It’s been a good few years since I’ve got on a bike, never mind atempted to ride one, so when our friends suggested a family friendly cycle route between Lancaster and Morecambe, I was a little apprehensive to say the least. But after borrowing one of Wil’s bike helmets, my sister’s bike ( Thanks Sis! ) and my 7 year old niece, I was good to go. 🙂
We began our cycling adventure in Lancaster, parking on a small pay and display car park , not far from the Millenium Bridge. The route , which was mostly flat ( hurrah ! ) and part of the Lancashire Cycleway took us along an impressive expanse of car free cycle paths. It meandered through woodland, clung to canal side, dodged the crowds on Morecambe Sea Front and followed and crossed the River Lune , before arriving back at our beginnings 20km later.
The kids were nothing short of impressive on this bike ride. 🙂 It’s perfect for families though, with only a couple of roads to cross and various refreshment stops. My friend Jo and I decided we would have to invest in some padded cycling shorts for our next outing! Boy am I sore today. Ouch!
I didn’t manage to take as many photos as I would have liked, due to my rather precarious bicycle balance. So a few of these pics were taken by Jo and Fi. The one of Lune Aqueduct, I pinched off Pinterest.
We all really enjoyed our bike trip. Any recommendations for fairly easy … and flat routes, in the North West , let me know. 🙂
I wondered if I would manage to complete this months challenge in time. I’m still on holiday in the Lake District and recently realised I had better get snapping away ! Apart from 3 photos, most of these pictures were taken on my camera phone , over the past few days.
1. Shut ~ This butterfly’s wings stayed resolutely shut when I took this photo at The Butterfly House in Williamson Park, Lancaster.
2. Copper ~ There’s a copper tinge to the days here in the Lake District at the moment. Autumn has arrived! This picture was taken on the banks of Wast Water a couple of days ago. The bracken is copper coloured, the foilage is changing from green to reds and golds.
3. Wrist ~ I would have loved to have worn a pretty bracelet for this prompt, but as I don’t have one here with me, here are my Wristbands from a visit to Muncaster Castle.
4. Quarter ~ At Quarter past six yesterday I was contemplating tucking into this bad boy! Needless to say , I only made a small dent in it, even with my humongous appetite!
5. It starts with a C ~ Here are Hugo and I outside Muncaster Castle , which is a short drive from where we are staying. The castle is supposedly haunted by the spirits of a White Lady, a crying baby and a mischievous fool. Jeepers!
6. Foam ~ Sorry this prompt was a bit of a disaster for me! I’m trying to convince you here, that the green moss on the rocks in Ravenglass, feels like Foam when you touch it. A-hem!
7. Scarf ~ You can just about see I am wearing my Autumn coloured Scarf , which I bought in Fat Face last September. I am looking for an abandoned Japanese Garden in woodland near Eskdale Green. It was so abandoned, it took ages to find it!
8. Line ~ Yesterday I bagged my first Wainwright! This is the view of Wastwater from the top of Buckbarrow. The skyline is dominated by the Western Fells. It was wonderful up there, but I don’t think I will become addicted to climbing mountains!
9. Nostalgic ~ The Art Deco Midland Hotel in Morecambe adds a touch of Nostalgia to the Lancashire Coast. I quite fancy staying here one day. 🙂
10. My own Choice ~ Love this piccie of my nephew and niece eating their lunch in the back of our car, but can you see who is eyeing up their sarnies. 🙂
Thanks to Hawthorn for arranging the Scavenger Hunt. X
On Friday we bobbed over the road for lunch ,to the recently opened Bowland Food Hall in Holmes Mill , a popular new eating, drinking & leisure destination, in my home town of Clitheroe. The mill is already home to Britain’s longest continuous bar, in its spacious Beer Hall , an attractive cafe , gelateria and of course the Bowland Brewery. Also set to open in the next few months are the Spinning Block Hotel, Bar & Grill and The Weaving Shed Gym, Pool & Spa. Phew! Thats alot to take in !
BowlandFood Hall is on a mission , to showcase the best of Bowland and Lancashire’s local produce. It’s a great space to wander round and ooooh and ahh at all the lovely goodies. There’s honey from Stonyhurst, cheese from Garstang, pies from Chatburn, meringues from Whalley, Bowland brewed ales, cordials from Rawtenstall etc etc etc. Of course it’s not only Lancs that gets a look in, but the emphasis is firmly on locally sorced food and drink. 🧀🍠
We did buy ourselves a few treats! A wedge of Nicky Nook Blue Cheese, A Lancashire Cheese Bomb and a small bottle of Whinberry Gin, also handcrafted in Lancashire. And not to forget Hugo! He has a packet of homebaked biscuits from Millie & Ruby’s Bakery for Dogs . 🙂 We are currently holidaying in The Lakes and are all enjoying our purchases , immensely! Reminding us of home. 🙂
So what is the dining experience like in the Food Hall? I think Holmes Mill have got the right idea, in keeping things simple. Bowland Boards are the order of the day. £8.50 for a Cheese Board, Fish Board , Meat Board, Vegetarian Board or Lancashire Board. Food is prepared in front of you , whilst you enjoy a coffee, tea, soft drink or maybe a glass or two of wine. You are seated round a raised slate top counter and the service is friendly and efficient. Wil is a big cheese fan and loved his cheese platter, all the cheeses are produced in where else, but Lancashire. 😉 . My Lancashire Board contained Roy Porters Pork Pie, Heritage Piccalilli, Lancashire Cheese Quiche and Lancashire Crisps. Mmmmmm delicious! If you have enough room for dessert, the patisserie menu looks very tempting too.
Bowland Food Hall is definitely worth a visit, to pick up a few treats or just indulge in a Lancashire Lunch fix.
On saturday we decided to leave the car at home and set off on a walk around the places where I grew up. Before I moved to the great Metropolis that is Clitheroe, I lived in the shadow of Pendle Hill on a hill farm called Little Mearley. Nope I never did move to far away…or make my fortune! Not to worry. 😉
Our walk took in a few country lanes, a bridle path/farm track and some farm land. I think we walked about 8 miles or so, so not too shabby. I imagine Hugo our labrador covered even more milage, as he definitely runs circles around me….
We started off by walking through the fields toward Standen Hall and then crossed the busy A59 and headed for the pretty village of Pendleton.
An Egg Wreath.
The folks of Pendleton have decorative Imaginations! I’m not sure about the Egg Wreath ,but I do like the Flower Pot Bees. 🙂
We walked through Pendleton and crossed the Sabden Road , then ambled along a bridle path through the tiny hamlet of Mearley. This eventually turns into a farm track and passes the farm where I grew up.
It felt strange walking past the old place. Little Mearley dates back to 1590. My bedroom growing up, was the mullioned bay window room. The glass has names of past residents etched into it. I might have shared my ivory tower with their ghosts , but I was happily oblivious! Pendle Hill with it’s legendary associations with witchcraft fades into the mist behind.
We then cut through some fields and passed Angram Green Farm & Campsite and walked into the beautiful village of Downham, where my sister and I went to primary school. I didn’t take many photos here, but If you would like to see more, here is a post I did a while back called Downham delights. 🙂
We had lunch in Downham , sat outside a former collegues cute little ice cream shop, that also sells brews, sandwiches, baked goodies and other bits and pieces.
Inside Michelle’s shop on Hare Green.
Hugo eyes up lunch.
We decided to look for an alternative route back , which would take us through fields ,so Hugo could have a lot more off lead time. There is a footpath just over the road from the Ice cream shop that took us through some meadows and past the bottom of Worsaw Hill.
Even for a non- hill climber like me, Worsaw Hill, which reminds me of a mini volcano, looked far too tempting not to climb. At 725ft it’s tiny compared to Pendle, but offers gorgeous views of the surrounding countryside.
After scrambling down the hill ,we continue through fields toward the village of Worston. As a teenager I was a saturday girl at the local pub ,The Calf’s Head. On the way we pass a farm with a movie connection!
Have you ever watched the 1961 film Whistle Down The Wind ? It tells the tale of three farm children who discover a fugitive hiding in their barn, and mistake him for , well, Jesus! Worsaw End Farm is the farm. Local children from Downham and nearby Chatburn starred alongside such acting luminaries as Hayley Mills and Alan Bates.
Once in Worston we take refreshment in the Calf’s Head Beer garden before crossing back over the A59 and heading home.
Thanks for accompanying me on a bit of a journey through my past….
ps It’s Hugo’s 3rd Birthday today. Time is certainly flying by. He will be celebrating later with a bottle of doggy beer from Millie & Ruby’s Dog Bakery. 🙂
The merest hint of sunshine and dry weather, and we headed for the coast. I had done a little research into Lancashire beaches, the ones where you can walk your dog all year round, and Bispham beach came up as an option. Set between Blackpool North Shore and Cleveleys, there are no dog restrictions on this quiet stretch of sand. However, we somehow ended up parking at the Rossall Beach side of Cleveleys instead, which turned out fine, as there were plenty of dog walkers there too!
Once you arrive at the shiny new promenade at Cleveleys, pop your dog on a lead. There are the usual dog walking beach restrictions here between May and September, but the sea front is definitely worth a look. A children’s story book called ‘The Sea Swallow’ has been brought to life by several interesting sculptures. Look out for a giant curved shell on the shore , an ogre on the beach and the ogre’s giant paddle on the prom. Apparently the book is based on local coastal myth and legend.
Memorial to ships wrecked off the Fylde Coast.
It seemed a good idea to continue walking to Blackpool. After all distant views of Blackpool Tower beckoned! Unfortunately ( or fortunately) there is a lot of work being done on the areas sea defences at the moment, so much of our walk was along the promenade. At Bispham the famous Blackpool Illuminations start, so I couldn’t help but join this Mad Hatter’s Tea Party. 🙂 Feeling peckish we bought Fish and Chips and continued with our journey. The walk between Cleveleys and Blackpool North Shore is a bracing 4 miles.
As the oldest of Blackpool’s three Victorian piers loomed in front of us, so did Blackpool Tower, which was first opened to the public in 1894 and at 518 feet , is the 120th tallest freestanding tower in the world. In front of the tower is the remarkable Comedy Carpet , a wonderful homage to the work of over 1000 comedians and comedy writers, all of whom have performed in Blackpool. A great place for a stick of rock and a chuckle. 🙂
We took a walk along the North Pier . Crumbling and gentile, there’s life on the old pier yet. A children’s miniature train, a vintage carousel, old fashioned sweets and Dirty Dancing playing in the theatre.
As it started to drizzle, we decided to catch the Fleetwood Ferry Tram back to Cleveleys. The trams are a quick and inexpensive way to get around. Once there we enjoyed coffee and cake sat outside a local cafe, before walking back along Rossall Beach to the car.
It was a nice experience exploring a bit of coastline that we have never ventured to before. Have you ever been to Cleveleys? Are you a fan of Blackpool? Where do you go for some Sea Air?
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