Friday, 12 August 2022

TODMORDEN: Gauxholme

Today Mick and Neil M. returned to the path just above Bacup Road (Todmorden 111) to complete the waymarking (see 29 July). We dug in three posts that we had left in situ on our previous visit, and also a post we brought up today, and finally an old one we found on the ground off the route! 

The start of the uphill slog.

It's worth noting that although the path looks innocent enough in the photo, you soon find yourself crossing a very rough and very wet stream bed (this in the middle of a drought!). Now that we have festooned the route with new waymarks it may be worth considering what we can do to make this portion more walker-friendly. The rest of it, although steep and rough in places, shouldn't be beyond seasoned Calder Valley walkers. Every post is now visible from its neighbours (if you know where to look) and some have direction signs to make sure you can't go wrong.

Past the junction with 112 we went to look at the stile & gate approaching Dean Farm, and found all in order. For variety we returned at the higher level, attaching a few more direction signs as we went, and descended by Naze Road, a well-made packhorse trail where Fieldens once transported their cotton between their mill and the dealers in Manchester.

Back at the starting point - Mick contemplates a job well done.

This work funded by individual donations to CROWS - thanks to all donors.

TODMORDEN - Mankinhole Tops

 Ian and Rich went to rebuild a second stile on Tod 177

Both side-posts had completely rotted and needed replacing.

This stile clearly has had a long history!

We found both the original post holes; so just had to dig them out.

A recalcitrant post that refused to come out


Should have brought the shuvholers

Both new posts erected and cross rails re-attached. The farmer is coming back to sort the temporary side section to make it stock proof.

The whole stretch of path was then waymarked. 

We were a bit worried by the heat, but we were revived by a wash in the troughs at Mankinholes and some refreshment at Top Brink.

Work funded by Todmorden Town Council.


Following a report from a Founder member of the CROWS who now nests on the East Coast that some local paths there needed surveying as they were in significant danger of falling into the sea , Lynda, Trish and Eleanor set out to see what could be done.


They set off along the beach at Cayton Bay to inspect coastal erosion. After some consideration we decided it was too big a job for CROWS and rather 'Out of Area' It was a glorious day and lovely to spend the day with Barbara, formally of Mytholmroyd She sends warmest greetings to all those CROWS who remember her. A great catch up with an old friend.

Wednesday, 10 August 2022

MYTHOLMROYD: Bell House Moor

Bell House Moor: Part 1 of the boardwalk project completed!

Ian S, Nick, Paul, Stella and Frank H worked in very warm conditions on the magnificent S.S.S.I. which is Bell House Moor.

1.Before: Boggy area to be bridged.
Start of session:

This section of the path is dry at the moment (unsurprisingly!) but in winter conditions is an unstable and treacherous bog.

Today's task was to start at the older boardwalk that is just visible in top mid-picture and add extra sections of boardwalk to fill the gap towards the front left of picture to meet another section of older boardwalk.

We estimated two brand new sections of boardwalk and one re-cycled older section would cover most of the gap with two stepping stones completing the job.

The conditions became even warmer and water-breaks were essential!

2. Work in progress: Stella & Paul have
already fitted a 'take-off' stone at the
very start of all the boardwalks and have
removed an old boardwalk. They are
now restoring the site of the old boardwalk. 

3. Ian S and Nick have already installed two brand
new sections of boardwalk. The ground-level
platform for the re-cycled section is now being

End of session:

4. Gap bridged by two new sections
of boardwalk, one recycled section
and two stepping stones.
5. Site landscaped and tidied. Spare
 items stacked ready for moving
on to part 2 of the project.

Part 1 of the boardwalk project is now finished. The whole project is being funded by: 

  • The Southall Trust.

  • Calderdale Highways. 

  • Relatives of the late Julie Gray. 

  • Friends of Calderdale Countryside. 

  • Ben Myers (author of The Gallows Pole).

  • Calderdale Long Distance Walkers Association.

Many thanks.

Part 2 starts with 'Big Carry 2' on Sat 20th August. Details of this and how to get involved are on the CROWS website.

Monday, 8 August 2022

MYTHOLMROYD: Bell House Moor

 Bell House Moor: another sunny day!

i) In the depot

The day started at the depot with Rich, Ken and Frank H unloading a CALVAG delivery. Rich then departed for the Cat Steps at Mytholm while Ken and Frank cut a batch of timber to make bearers, cross-treads, kickboards and stobs etc for part 2 of the Bell House/Erringden Moor boardwalk project. More cutting still to do!

ii) On the Moor

Ken and Frank then drove up to Bell House (well done Ken's van!) and walked-in to the worksite.

1. Nothing wrong with a short
break on a hot steamy day.
The day's tasks were a follow-on from the excellent work Ian V and Rich did on Friday.

In a "it took longer than expected" session, we: 

*Realign one of the bearers.
*Fitted kickboards to any stepped sections.
*Anchored sections of boardwalk (with stobs on both sides).
*Pinned the stringers to the bearers.
*Packed stone at intervals to give extra support under the boardwalk.
*Landscaped the sides of the boardwalk.
*Tidied the site.

2. Before: sides of boardwalk unpinned.

3. After: Sections of boardwalk
pinned and packed.

Wednesday's task will be to bridge a gap between two existing sections of boardwalk.This should be relatively straightforward . . . Mmm! We've said that before! In preparation, we offered-up sections of pre-constructed broadwalk to the gap and decided on the best combination of steps and angles for adjoining sections. Marker pegs were hammered-in as memory joggers! 
There will also be a stone slab to put in place to reduce erosion when stepping onto and off the boardwalk. It'll be another day of perspiration!