Friday, 21 September 2007



Last saturday Bill and I decided to go out for the day. I had last seen Wycoller when it was a ruined ghost village in the early 70's, since then it has been restored and inhabited again, in fact Penelope Keith bought a house there for a while.

We caught the Burnley to Trawden bus, then walked up past the field where I camped for the Pendle Witchcamp 2 years ago, then on the public footpath to Wycoller. Its actually a tarmacked road, so there was no concern over hubby getting his pants mucky, or shoes even if he minded horse droppings. Once we were appraoching the country park, we left the raod and went on a parallel footpath, which is a good idea as the road is so narrow. Its just over a miles walk from Trawden, so it didnt take very long. On entering the village on the left was a tourist information place cum cafe, cum art gallery. We decided to eat first then explore later. After we had had an excellent lunch at reasonable prices, we set off to see the village. The sky was darkening though it wasnt too cold and at least it was fine. Soon we came upon the old hall, sadly now a ruin, there was a show place where we could see old pics of the hall in the late 1890's. Some old vicar had sold all the roof tiles and a lot of the timbers and much of the stone work for a mill in Trawden. He should have got an ASBO for that!!!! An old barn dating back to the middle ages has been restored and many artifacts kept in it such as a key to the old hall. In the village itself are 2 ancient bridges, one an old clapper bridge, then further up the valley is an even more ancient bridge.Near to the duck pond an archealogical dig was going on, they had found an old wall, then more walls, so up till now there is no info on what exactly they were digging up. As I dont have a camera, I will update more photos from the net soon.

Panopticons have built one of there sculptures on a hillside nearby, so off we went over the fields. Luckily it was dry underfoot, yet still hubby complained about not having a road to walk over. I cannot understand fellas, grass is so much softer to walk over. G

oing up the hillside was well marked with eye posts, ancient way markings with holes in them, till we came to an old drovers track, backed with an old vaccary wall on each side. These date vack to the middle ages. Eventually we got to the top of the hill and the Atom was there. You can go inside the sculpture. Actually I think it is quite ugly, but it has these holes in it you can view the landscape from, so in a way it is inkeeping with the eye posts.An official guy asked us about our visit, think I was the first person to mention a connection tween the old and the new. After a rest there, a cup of tea from our flask we back tracked down to the village, then walked back to Trawden.

Wednesday, 18 July 2007


Hubby and I set off on sunday morning to Crown Point, one of the highest hill in the Pennines above Burnley. This was the first time for me to have seen the sculpture. On the way up, which took an hours walking, we encountered quite a few places of fly tipping, fridges, vacuums etc, there is no need for this, we do have a council rubbish dump. However, on a brighter note, the raspberries were abundant at the bottom of Woodplumpton Road, as were orchids part way up adjacent to the golf course. It was a dull morning yet warm, tied my cardi round my waist. One thing I did notice was an absence of skylarks and curlews. After an hour and 15 we eventually got to the singing ringing tree. It is constructed out of metal tubing and it is supposed to make sounds. It didnt!!! Not unless you put your ear up to one of the tubes. I must say though that it looks far better than the old brick radio transmittor station that was on the spot previously. By then it had begun a heavy drizzle, and looking down the Calder Valley to Tod, it was obvious where the bad weather was coming from. Do all bad things come out of Yorkshire? Dont bother answering that one. Studley Pike was barely visible, so we set off home. By the time we got to Healey Heights the rain had begun properly, but we were home in time to not get soaked.

Thursday, 12 July 2007


A neighbour gave me poppy plants to put out this year, they began fine and all was well till the rains began, and then, the slugs came out. Built like anacondas they snaked their way across my garden until the reached the poppies, and the begonias and everything else they encountered. Crunch, crunch crunch, till all was no more. I am now left with sweet peas dangling from a hanging basket and lobelia. Plus campanula which is now like a weed growing from every crack it can find. Was shifting a plant pot in my back yard and got stung with a nettle which is prolifically growing, couldnt see it for all the goddam weeds.

Does anyone know a fine weather spell? The only weather spells I know are rain ones and we've had far too much of that.

The Weather

Oak before the ash, you'll only feel a splash!!! Ha ha ha. That theory has been well and truly knocked on the head this year. All we have had for the past 6 weeks or so is rain, rain, and yet MORE bloody rain. How bad did it have to get before Noah built his ark? Come to think of it, where the hell did he get all his wood from? Thought they lived in a desert area. I digress. If anyone mentions global warming to me I will not be responsible for my actions!!! I spent all winter in pants and looked forward to airing my legs in shorts and summer skirts. I am still wearing jeans. And socks. And cardis and jumpers. My youngest lad has had the right idea and gone off to Malta for a week with his lady friend. Has anyone out there got about a grand they can send me? If so, all contributions will be very gratefully recieved, and I will go off to Malta to join them.

Thursday, 29 March 2007

2 days ago

2 evenings ago, my daughters fella, Gareth, came in and asked if I had seen a strange bird on the front street. Looking from a window I saw what looked to be a small white bird, I said it wasnt a native british bird, but went out to have a closer look at it. It was up on a drain pipe and was a canary, tweeting away cheerily. By then others had come outside to have a look at it. A lady called Emma said it was hers that had escaped, so Marie got a bird cage to try to entice it to come down with some bird seed, but no chance. Eventually Emma brought the birds mate and put it in the cage. After much ado the little canary flew down to look at her hubby, Marie put a blanket over her and got her into the cage. I was so relieved as last year my white cat Spot caught and ate someones put budgie. Thankfully I never found out who it belonged to. My starlings who nest every year had also come out to have a gander at what was going on. Dont know if they kill canaries but this time they missed out. Finches are beautiful little birds but I am not sure if I approve of them being captive, to me they should be free to fly as they please.

Sunday, 25 March 2007

Pic of me.

For any of my readers who ever wondered just what I look like, well, here I am in glorious technicolour!!!! The pic was taken on Midgely Moor last november at the trig point. The second photo is of a standing stone somewhere nearby.

Thursday, 22 March 2007


Well, for me, spring began during the last week of January this year, rather than the traditional Celtic Feb 2nd. What brought me to this conclusion? The air smelled different, but dont ask me just how, it just did. A fuchsia in my backyard which I had thought dead suddenly sprouted a new shoot and buds, however, once we got a sudden sharp frost the second week in Feb it killed it off again. Just hope it recovers.

The plum trees at the bottom of the Slug Path came into bloom the third week in Feb instead of mid march, and a nearby hawthorn tree now has all its leaves on. My daffs are now beginning to get past their best but the bluebells are getting bigger by the day. Quite a few of my summer bedding our plants have never died back during the winter, neither has my spearmint.

Some forecasters say we will be having yet another hot summer, lets hope their predictions are correct. Am looking foreward to poking round for arrow heads in reservoir bottoms if there is a drought. Went to an exhibition at Huddersfield museum on tuesday, it showed ancient artefacts found in Widdop reservoir which I went on a hike to last october. I have a stone axe head which I found in the 1960's, only trouble is I've now forgot just where I found it!!! lol.

Monday, 26 February 2007

Extwistle Hall


I recently told Angela the tale of Squire Parker of Extwistle Hall, and of how he went out shooting, got soaking wet, left his coat to dry before the fire forgetting about the gunpowder in his pocket. In consequence, he blew himself up, 2 of his daughters, and a child as well. The Parker family departed Extwistle Hall after that incident and it began to decay. Part of the hall was inhabited until 1985 so I am told. I remember as a school kid in the mid 60's on one of my rambles going past the hall and stopping to look at the architecture. An old woman, actually she was probably in her early 50's, came out and shouted at me for snooping at her home. As she was brandishing a broom, I did not dare argue with her and beat a hasty retreat further up the road and thence on to Briercliffe. The last time I went past the house would be in 1968, this time the old woman, as I called her, was in a field opposite to the Hall, she was gathering thistle heads, which I thought a bit odd. Since then I have found out that thistle heads are used for cattle fodder. This time she didnt shout at me, just silently watched me until I faded into the distance. For some reason that image of her standing as I became smaller up the farm track has always stayed with me. Who was she? A tenant farmer yes, but who else was she? Maybe some person out there has knowledge of her.


Anyway, to get back to the story. Angela expressed curiousness about the Hall and suggested we had a walk there oneday. I somehow got the feeling I would not be able to lounge around on sunday, so had a double helping of mueslli. Sure enough, the little love arrived and said " lets got for a walk mummy". Prepared a quick flask of tea, she bought the butties, then off we went. Quickly down to the town cente, up onto the canal bank then off to Heasandford. Could see the old street where we used to live and our old house quite clearly, looked absolutely awful. To think how a once lovely street could become such a scruffy one in about 15 years. The only folk to blame for this are the landlords who bought property cheap when old folk died, then rented them off to rubbish people. By this I mean drug addicts, alcoholics, prossies, and other dregs of society as we know it. The asians who lived on the street when we lived there were the oneswho had the poshest houses. We all got on so well together, went to each others weddings, christenings etc, gave gifts at christmas and eid. Now I reckon all is left is very little of the old way it was.

Feeling rather despondent we marched along, to the end of the straight mile of the canal, through Thompsons Park, , under the road bridge, then onto Heasandford. Its amazing how the place looks in winter compared to the summer. In the latter its one sea of weeds, like a jungle almost. In the former, one can see between hedgerows, underneath fences. On along the track we were encounted by 2 great big dogs, I thought we were going to be bitten but they were quite friendly, just got mud on my clothes from where they jumped up. We turned left up towards Netherfield farm, through their stables, then up a track marked on the OS map. It is not a track as such, just a way across a field. And, what a boggy route it was, squelch squelch squelch. I had proper footgear on, Angie was in trainers. Halfway along the route I could hear, Mum. I am going to get trenchfoot!!! The poor girl wasnt used to sheep and thought they might attack her!!! God, I must have brought her up all wrong!!! I demonstrated how to shoo sheep away then she was ok.
At the foot of the hill we walked through a copse and were then in sight of Extwistle Hall. My God, how it had deteriorated from my last sighting of the building. All but one of the huge chimneys had gone, all the windows and doors were boarded up, all the roof on one wing was open to the elements. It was sad to see a builiding of such archictectural splendour reduced to almost rubble.
We ate our lunch on a slab of stone where the Burnley way crosses the farm track. For the time of year it was so mild, we didnt even need our gloves on. From there we made it to the main road and decided to go the Worsthorne instead of Briercliffe. At Roggerham we decided to go into the Roggerham Gate Inn for a coffeee and a toilet stop. At the door they had a hedgehog foot scraper, to get all the mud off out boots. After our coffee we set off for Worsthone, only to find out when we got there we had missed the bus by 5 mins and would have another hour to wait. So, once again we traversed on, another 4 miles added onto he walk.
Once in Fulledge we encountered the empty site where the school all my kids used to go to was. How anyone could sanction the demolition of such a wonderful place I willl never know. Feeling heavy in heart we returned to our house. At the canal bridge a skein of geese was passing over, about 100 in total, possibly travelling over to Martin Mere.