We always find leaving the Dales difficult, in the past we have been known to suddenly extend our stay by a few days. But this time around we need to be heading south so reluctantly pack up.
Whilst we have been staying in Settle there has been a wonderful display of flowerpot characters. We have encountered similar events elsewhere over the years and they are usually limited to variations on the Flowerpot Men theme. The good people of Settle have really gone to town and our favourites are a horse and a dalek.
Our next stop on this tour is a couple of nights in Kinoulton, south of Nottingham. This is an area we do not know so we are taking a look to see if it is somewhere we should explore in more detail next year.
A soon as we are pitched on our site, which has recently changed its name to The Good Grub Company and is located on Grove’s Farm, we pop into the farm shop and get supplies. Then it is time for a wander. We are told that we can walk along the farm tracks to join local footpaths, so we head off passing the farm shop to follow the broad track between fields of ripe barley with power lines dominating the skyline.
At a corner of a field we take the option to go left and within a few minutes we meet a junction of paths and turn right to follow a hedge on our right. At the end of the field we cross a ditch and turn right alongside the edge of another field and then at a fork in the path take the left option. We follow the path as it skirts around the field to Kinoulton Grange.
Passing the farm buildings we emerge on the towpath of Grantham Canal at Clarke’s Bridge. The information board here tells us that the canal runs from Grantham to the River Trent, a distance of 33 miles and it was constructed in 1797.
It carried coal, coke and lime to Grantham and agricultural produce in the opposite direction to Nottingham. Clarke’s Bridge has a turf surface to allow the cattle to cross, its main purpose was to connect fields and it is thought to have been part of a condition in allowing the canal to cross this land. The bridge is Grade II listed and major restoration work was carried out in 2006. It is in fine condition now.
We follow along the towpath and encounter the local fire brigade trying to rescue some very young ducklings, they have the full crew out. I am sure that this is admirable, they manage to complete the rescue, however, the statistics for survival of these creatures is low so lets hope that they don’t perish too soon.
We reach the Hickling Basin on the canal, across the road is The Plough pub, I have read good reviews, but earlier in the day I suffered a migraine and Lynnie suggests a couple of pints won’t help my headache so it is a right turn to follow the road back to the Unicorn for a cup of tea!
7th July 2015
[To follow this walk you will need Ordnance Survey Explorer Map 260 – Nottingham, Vale of Belvoir]
© Two Dogs and an Awning (2015)