Monday 9th October 2023
Second Circular Walk on the West Pennine Way
On a misty autumnal morning ten walkers set off from Turton Tower to complete the next section of the West Pennine Way (WPW). We began by turning right out of the car park, and following the way markers along a wide track, as far as the first kissing gate on our left. Once through the gate we began the steady climb, through the mist, to the summit of Cheetham Close, only to be greeted at the trig point with more mist. The last time we were here was on a sunny Friday evening, when we enjoyed the glorious views across the Pennies, not so today.
After making our way down the hill, we joined a track which passes Dimple Hall that has just undergone a major restoration exercise, not for the first time in its history. The hall was built in 1668, during the reign of King Charles II and upgraded during the Georgian period. In 1966 the owner divided the house into two homes.
The route then crosses Cox Green Road and heads through an attractive valley into the village of Edgerton, where we crossed Blackburn Road and walked through the fields to Walmsley Unitarian Chapel, our usual stopping point for morning coffee. After coffee we continued along the route, crossing Longworth Road and turning right at Higher Critchley Farm, where we descended into Longworth Clough Valley. Once in the valley we turned right and followed the Eagley Brook, which was in full flow due to the recent heavy rain, up to Belmont, which was the end of this section of the WPW.
After making use of the wall around the San Marino restaurant to eat our lunch we started our return journey by walking towards Bolton along Belmont Road as far as Springs Reservoir, where we turned left headed back down into Longworth Clough. Once across the footbridge, over Eagley Brook we climbed out of the valley back up to Longworth Road.
We then crossed the road and made our way through Longworth Hall Plantation, following the path into Dimple, where we joined Cox Green Road and headed up to Turton Golf Course. Once over the golf course it was just a short walk to Turton Tower, and the end of this circular walk having covered 10 misty miles.