Longton Coastal Walk
Following a very wet Saturday, the forecast for Sunday 27th January was cold with gusty winds. So, it was that 8 adults and a very energetic Jack, wearing his best wellies, met at the Longton Brick Croft at 1.30 p.m. and suitably wrapped up, set off to cross the Liverpool Rd and enter Hall Rd, which was almost directly opposite.
Continuing we passed the remnants of an old rail bridge, long since demolished, until arriving at a track between two hedges, we turned right, walking parallel to Oak Gardens. We soon encountered our first stile, closely followed by a footbridge and another stile. The pathway was exceedingly muddy, as a result of the previous day’s weather, and skirted us around the perimeter of a field to reach another stile leading us into open fields. Here we felt the force of the gusty winds, which due to their direction, met us head on.
Passing over a series of fields interlinked with stiles (5), led us to exit onto Hall Carr Lane, where we turned right, passing Pear Tree Farm and then left into Marsh Lane which duly brought us to the Dolphin Inn, at one time known as The Flying Fish, where a very good smell of cooked food met us. Turning left at a house with the name of Two Rivers, referring to the proximity of the Ribble and Douglas, took us down a path, past a couple of horses to pass through a gate onto a raised bank through the marsh area.
Having turned away from the prevailing wind, which now met us from the side, making progress a little easier, we crossed a river inlet known as the Tara Carr Gutter and crossed another couple of stiles, leading us alongside some fairly newly planted trees and in due course arrived at a swing gate, which the more portly amongst us, had difficulty passing through. Immediately after, a stile took us onto a grassy track which led us, in due course, to a large metal gate, giving access to Station Rd. Here we turned left, so that the wind was now behind us, passing Lower Marsh Farm and the Manor House with a date plaque of 1692. A little further along we stopped in a gateway for our coffee break and Betty produced a bag of chocolate coated biscuits which was most acceptable.
Resuming our route, we soon turned left down a farm track and veered right to cross a footbridge taking us along the side of a very wet field. Various muddy obstacles were negotiated, until we eventually arrived at a metal gate, which due to it being padlocked shut, tested our climbing abilities to negotiate. Here we turned right along Hall Carr Lane until arriving at a footpath sign, turned left to enter a field via a gate. Further along passing through 2 kissing gates we were told that this had at one time been the site of a rail level crossing.
More muddy fields were crossed, until arriving back at Hall Lane we turned right to return to our starting point. Along the lane, our leader had set a test to guess the make of a suitably concealed car. While the rest of us made wild guess’s, Sue instantly said “Pontiac”. Suitably flabbergasted, our leader asked how on earth she knew that? Sues answer floored him, when she said the name was on the front, proving that her eyesight is probably better than the rest of us.
This walk had covered just under the standard 4½ miles and despite the chill factor had been enjoyed by all. Doubtless the thought of a good hot evening meal spurred us on, and I am sure we all couldn’t wait to get home to wash our muddy boots.
Take a look back on previous walks - click on this link - www.midgewalkers.co.uk