Thursday, 17 December 2009

A-Walking: Piercebridge Perambulations

This week's Sunday expedition took us to the Piercebridge area of County Durham. From this location {NZ 210 158} we made a circular trek over the river into North Yorkshire and then visited Eppleby, Stanwick-St-John, Aldbough St John, Barton and Manfield before returning to our starting location.

We set off from our drop-off point (see the picture below) at about 10.00 am. There were 7 people in the group: PB, KF, CH, MH, LM WM and SR. WM led the walk.

From the village we headed south along the B6275 road and crossed the River Tees using the road bridge at {NZ 211 156}. Just after the bridge we took a public footpath on our right {NZ 211 155} which took us in a southerly direction along the edge of Kathleen Wood and over Betty Watson's Hill. We continued on our southerly bearing across open land until we reached a style at {NZ 210 148}. We turned right here and followed a good track in a westerly direction. We passed Cliffe Hall and the entrance to Home Farm as we made our way to Low Field {NZ 191 153}.

Continuing on our westerly trek we passed through Chapel House (where we met a very amiable farmer and his wife). We continued onwards pass the farm in order to reach a path junction in a field corner at {NZ 182 157}. Here we turned left onto a southerly bearing. We maintained this bearing across the fields until we reached Lower Chapel House {NZ 179 148}. From here we followed Curtain Lane until it met a minor road at {NZ 177 143}. Here we turned right and followed the road for about 260 yards to find a footpath on our left at {NZ 175 143}. We followed this in a southerly direction across the fields to reach the small village of Eppleby{NZ 178 132}.

We left Eppleby on a southerly bearing using a footpath that took us over Forcett Beck and the old dismantled railway line. This led us to a minor road at Forcett - near the site of Stanwick Camp {NZ 179 124} (see here). We decided to have our lunch stop here - sitting amongst the Iron Age fortifications.

After lunch we followed the Carlton road in an easterly direction for about 240 yards and then took a path on our right. This led us in a south easterly direction across the fields to the church at Kirkbridge. From here we followed the route of Mary Wild Beck to meet a minor road at {NZ 192 117}. After crossing this, we made our way across the fields in an easterly direction towards Aldbrough St John {NZ 202 113}. As we approached the village we saw a lovely bridge over Aldbrough Beck (see below).

Aldbrough St John
We departed from the village on a south-easterly trek and made our way to Crossbury House and Micklow Hill {NZ 210 101} and onwards to the B6275 road near Hangbank Bridge {NZ 215 092}. From here we followed the course of Little Beck in an easterly direction towards the A1(M) motorway. We crossed this at {NZ 224 089} by means of a bridge. We then made our way in a south-easterly direction to the village of Barton where we had a short tea stop sitting at the foot of the village cross {NZ 229 088}.

Leaving the village on a north-westerly bearing, we crossed the A1(M) motorway (again) using the road bridge at {MZ 227 092} - this time going in the opposite direction to our previous crossing. We made our way to {NZ 224 094} (near Little Beck Bridge) where we turned right and headed north along a good track to reach Brettanby Manor {NZ 225 098} and, subsequently, Brettanby Farm {NZ 228 104}. At the farm we turned left and held a westerly bearing for about 400 yards before turning back onto a northerly heading. Now making our way north again, we passed Grunton {NZ 223 115} and then continued along Cottagers Lane (passing Manor Farm {NZ 221 131} on our right) in order to reach the village of Manfield {NZ 220 135}.

We navigated our way through the village in order to locate a north-north-easterly path that took us in the direction of the River Tees at {NZ 223 145}. Now taking a north-westerly bearing we made our way to Holme House {NZ 221 150}. Continuing our westerly trek we arrived at the B6275 road. Turning right, we followed this in a northerly direction, passing The George Hotel on our right, and then crossed the River Tees using the road bridge at {NZ 211 156} (see the picture below).

River Tees at Piercebridge
After crossing the river we took a footpath (on the east side of the village) that took us north to {NZ 211 159} where our coach was waiting to take us home.

Many thanks to WM for organising such an interesting and exciting adventure for us today. We had a really great time. Use the buttons below to see where we went, how we did and some of the sights we saw.




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