Wednesday 17 June 2015

Peter's Birthday Walk at Kelso

As this was Peter's Birthday walk deferred from earlier in the year he decided to take us to what I think is one of the nicest Border towns, Kelso with its lovely Town Hall. Of all the Border towns this must be the best Market Square with loads of room for people to park and many good shops. 
After a short delay due to discovering we could only park for 2 hours in the square we moved the cars and set off on our walk along the river Teviot which is a tributary of the Tweed. Note our war wounded walker Ken on the right at the back. More about his accident later in the blog.
The first place of interest was Roxburgh Castle and Peter had planned to take us up this small hill to see the ruins. Unfortunately the route was deep in Nettles and our brave leader led the way but most of us eventually decided it was not for us and headed back the way we had come. Poor Tom was wearing shorts and had many Nettle stings before he too gave up. 
The view from the top just before we turned back at the site of Roxburgh Castle was stunning with Floors Castle in the distance.
Having walked the right bank of the River Teviot we stopped for a lunch break near where 2 railway lines met. One line was to Kelso and the other one was to Jedburgh. The second half of the walk was along the now disused Kelso railway line.
This was the road just down from our lunch stop with 2 old bridges that would have taken the 2 separate lines over the road. 
Tom giving his stung legs a rest with Elizabeth keeping him company
This is the old curved viaduct that crosses the river Teviot. Upstream of the viaduct is the village of Roxburgh and the Roxburgh Hotel and Golf Course
There are many new houses in the village and they look a bit out of place here and not very attractive, although very expensive.
The band of walkers all giving their views on the houses in the village. 
The walk was 8 miles and we finished up having a lovely lunch in the Cobbles. Ken is sporting a  black eye and cut on his head which was the result of a fall while out walking earlier in the week. At least that is his story and he is sticking to it. In a weeks time we will be heading for Cromer in Norfolk where we have booked a large house and will walk stretches of the North Norfolk Coastal Trail and the Pedars Way. 

Wednesday 10 June 2015

Hadrian's Wall - Newtown to Carlisle

We decided today to continue from where we left off 2 weeks ago and walk from Newtown to Carlisle along Hadrian's Wall. The weather was glorious and we left 1 car in Rickerby Park at the end of the walk and started at Newtown.  
Much of the walk was along these lanes which Tom and I argued over. I said we were walking on the old wall as we were told by a local that much of this part of the wall was only an earth embankment but Tom disputed this and to be honest I don't know who was right or wrong. It was an enjoyable argument as all are with Tom with loads of humour and banter. 
This cottage was built in 1652 and it was the present owner who told us that the wall in this area was mostly an earth embankment. 
This is a great idea and we spent £5 on drinks and snacks 
This part of the walk must have been the raised embankment with the Vallum on either side. 
An enjoyable pint in the Stag Inn at Low Crosby
Next to the River Eden we walked through a newly cut field of Haylage and the smell was wonderful.
A short stop at Linstock for a drink and a snack 
This Folly in a field at Linstock was built by a man called George Head. His house was nearby and the gatehouse has a coat of arms showing "Study Quiet".

Wednesday 3 June 2015

Kirkandrews-on-Esk Walk

It was just Tom and I on todays Wednesday walk so we decided to park at Kirkandrews-on-Esk and walk to Longtown on one side of the river and return from Longtown on the other bank. This was tom prove rather difficult as I will explain later. This is the lovely church at Kirkandrews-on-Esk. 
One of the many Peel Towers in the Borders area
There are 2 bridges side by side here. One is the old railway bridge and the other is the A7. Most people will never see this lovely stream as they cross the bridge on the A7.
This is an old water pumping station which used to provide water to the munitions factory at Gretna
We reached Longtown without any hassle apart from a herd of cattle that decided to follow us for about a mile. It is many years since we walked along the other bank of the Esk and we found our way barred so had to use the road to Netherby to get back onto the river bank. Walking along a road is not really as nice as beside a river. 
The big house at Netherby which used to be a Graham family stronghold but has now changed hands and is in the process of being renovated. 
This is the lovely suspension bridge over the Esk at Kirkandrews. It has recently been renovated and is looking very nice now. If only Tom and I could get renovated life would be much better. 

Monday 1 June 2015

A Family Visit

Fiona and the kids arrived a week ago to spend mid term in Langholm. What fun we have had with Hannah & Leo as Gaye and I looked after them for a good bit of the time to let Fiona work. 
A visit to Julie Dumbarton's new studio for Spring Fling was one of the highlights of Sunday.
And also a visit to Cut the Mustard new studio with Hannah's friend Solstice who came with them for a couple of days. 
This is the UK section of our team to walk from Langholm to Borculo in the Netherlands in aid of NETA the charity that Fiona is a trustee of in the North East. We raised over £300 and walked 587 miles with the assistance of their Dutch Grandparents Han & Jo. 
Leo enjoyed his walk to the monument
No visit to Langholm is complete without a visit to our friends Jean & Wattie Rutherford at Winterhope. Hannah renews her friendship with Quackers the Calling Duck.
And she handles some Newts for the first time. 
While Leo would rather play on the garden swing
Hannah loves dogs just like her Mum but Leo is very frightened of them. This Border Collie made a great fuss of Hannah.
Feeding the ducks is another regular pastime while Grumpy the Heron that thinks its a duck stands watching what is going on.
On Wednesday Fiona joined the Last of the Summer Wine walkers on an 8 mile walk from Brampton to Lanercost and then along part of the Roman wall trail. 
Leo takes Tom the Dinosaur to the Buccleuch Centre. 
Hannah helps me to top up the Moorland Bird Feeders on Saturday morning before heading back to Newcastle.

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