Blanchland Moor - 2019
It was a sunny and bright morning as the 20 walkers for today (plus 3 well behaved dogs) met in the delightful medieval village of Blanchland. Mark introduced himself and gave a brief description of the nature of the walk.
Our route initially followed the river to the tiny hamlet of Baybridge and then a gentle climb through farmland on to Bulbeck Common where we joined the old “pack horse trail”. Mark gave a brief history of Blanchland and the monastery and pointed out a “hush” (from early lead mining activity). Despite the bright weather there was still a chill breeze and a coffee break in a shooting lodge was welcomed by all.
The well defined path traversed the open moors and lovely views of Hexham Race Course and in the far distance Simonside and the Cheviots were enjoyed. Our lunch stop was in Slaley forest where there was shelter from the cold wind. As we began to head back over Blanchland moor the sun came out, the temperature rose giving glorious views of the Derwent reservoir and the surrounding moors.
We stopped at the impressive Shildon Engine House – another relic from the region’s lead mining industrial past – and Mark talked about a miner’s hard and perilous life in the 18th and 19th centuries. As we were almost back to our starting point, Mark thanked everyone and wished them a safe journey home.
Mark 15 April 2019
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