1st December -- Ramsbottom, Lancashire

The A walk followed the river Irwell northwards to Stubbins before turning west through woods and up on to open moorland on Beetle Hill. From here we headed down to the Pilgrims Cross then turning right which took us under Peel Tower, on to Summerseat and along the East Lancs Railway to Nuttall Park and back into Ramsbottom.
Woods near Stubbins
Pilgrims Cross
Fat ponies at Woodhey
Back to the Irwell

The Bs headed uphill east along Bridge Street to Grants Wood and made a clockwise circuit of Ramsbottom round to an early lunch in Nuttall Park. Then on to join the Irwell Sculpture Trail going close to Ramsbottom to Strongstry and Lumb Grange. Here the thirstiest half of us crossed under the railway and headed back guided by Sue to Ramsbottom via the old rail track, the western edge of Stubbins and Ox Hey Wood. The enthusiastic group did an extra mile and a half, continuing along the Irwell and Ogden rivers, crossing the Ogden and turning back near Raven Shore and joining the old rail track followed in Sue's footsteps back to Ramsbottom.
Climbing up to Grants Wood
View south down Irwell Valley Emmanuel Church, Holcombe
Woods near Woodhey
Broad Hey Wood
River Irwell Nuttall Park
The Irwell with Essity paper mill beyond
The group divides
Railway viaduct near Raven Shore
Manchester on the skyline

The C walk started along the Irwell Valley Sculpture trail to Stronstry, then behind Stubbins across to the Rose and Crown. The walk then followed the village link trail uphill to Holcombe and down to the Hare and Hounds. Passing Woodhey and following the East Lancs railway to Nuttall Park.
Frosty start
Grants Wood
Victorian Postbox

And finally...

Photos by Phil Cunningham, John Hodgson, Liz Hodgson and David Whitehurst