2010 - Week Two
w/e 10 October 2010
All this week's pictures were taken
with a Kodak DX6490
The three walks enjoyed during the second week of
the Festival started with the "Breadsall Round" followed
by "Church Wilne Towers & Lake" both in Erewash
and concluded with the "Holbrook, Horsley & Castle Walk"
in Amber Valley. Covering about seventeen miles in total, the
selection of images below from the three walks can only give
a flavour of the varying countryside and landscapes of the area
but show how easy it is to get away from the urban sprawl of
the major cities and towns.
Leaving Breadsall Village the first part of
the "Breadsall Round" followed the route of the former
railway line and passed through a cutting that is now a Site
of Special Scientific Interest (SSSI). It then took us through
some arable farmland and across ploughed fields (left) to reach
Morley where some penned sheep took an interest in all the walkers
as they passed (right).
After Morley Church, I was surprised
to find that the path ran diagonally through the middle of another
ploughed field (left) as it approached Morley School and the
Three Horse Shoes (right) where several of the walkers could
easily have been tempted to enjoy a liquid lunch but instead
we continued to a field at the rear of the Almshouses for our
lunch break in the open air (above).
morning walk had been across fields, the return to Breadsall
after lunch was mainly along country lanes, much of it by the
Breadsall Priory Golf Course. To the left, an entrance to the
course presented views of a manicured parkland while to the right
there were views across a more open landscape. Some of the golfers
though (above) were travelling in style as they made their way
The next walk from Breaston to Church Wilne along the Coffin
Walk returning via Draycott turned into more of a nature ramble
with a variety of animals all the way starting with a selection
of geese and fowls, goats and horses in the fields at the edge
of the village.
We had completed the Coffin Walk several
times previously in both directions and the last time we were
at Church Wilne, I actually climbed the church tower (right).
That opportunity was again available but this time we chose to
extend the walk and undertake a twenty minute circumnavigation
of St Chad's Water, again something we had done previously but
not since 2004 - click here. On route to Church Wilne we had
crossed the long distance footpath called the Midshires Way (left).
As we waited for the group to reassemble as some had gone around
St Chad's Water while others visited the church, I wandered into
the churchyard and spotted a butterfly on a headstone soaking
up the sun. After a longer than anticipated stop at Wilne, the
group headed back via Draycott where another break to call in
at a MacMillan Coffee Morning effectively ended the walk for
about half the group. The rest headed back to Breaston on the
Sustrans path but after tasting the cake and drinking the coffee,
we made our way back via a more direct route.
Another day and another walk and this
time about forty of us (excluding the babe in arms) gathered
in Holbrook, seen here in the distance, for a fairly strenuous
six miles. We began by descending a steep hill to cross a main
road (left) before climbing up the other side of the valley to
Horsley. There are a number of "fountains" (right)
in Horsley that were donated in 1824 by Reverend Sitwell.
One of the
main reasons I wanted to do this walk was to visit the ruins
of Horsley Castle, somewhere I had never been before but little
remains of the castle and it would be easy to miss if you didn't
know what you were
looking for. Our climb up to the castle had been through two
fields of friendly horses (left) who followed us until a gate
barred their path and after leaving the castle we descended into
Coxbench where a couple of ponies peered over the wall at the
side of the pavement for a pat. The animal theme continued as
we passed the Fox and Hounds pub (right) before we turned off
the road for another climb up to the ridge that would eventually
take us back to Holbrook.
To reach the
high point of the ridge we first walked through the old Coxbench
Quarry (left) and then up through a wooded area before crossing
more fields where more of our four legged friends eyed us with
a "What are you doing in my field?" look. From Coxbench
onwards a light drizzle meant donning waterproofs and even the
horse took shelter under a tree.
Although horses and other animals had figured largely in all
of the walks this week, we were also reminded near the end of
the Holbrrok walk that farming was an important activity and
that crops were ready for harvesting. I was hoping to take part
in at least one more walk before the Festival ended but other
commitments prevented this - but I can still look forward to
next year's Autumn Footprints which is already being planned
for the 10th to the 25th September 2011.