Friday, August 10, 2018


Three teams out today

Frank H and Rich went back to Stoodley Glen, Eastwood to finish the work on the stepping stones and to complete other nearby jobs.
The approach to the stepping stones was cleared and revetment added to inhibit down-wash from the banking. The stream was diverted and further pointing of the stepping stones to the bedrock was carried out.

Cows had churned up the approach to the stepping stones

Diverting the water to enable pointing to be finished.

Later in the day; revetment in place and the stream back to its normal course.
We then went up the track to improve a bad section of the bridleway surface and to cut back any encroaching vegetation.

The bridleway is in poor condition and almost impossible for horses to negotiate.

The bridleway (looking down towards the stream) fully cut-back both at the sides and overhead!

Two new stone 'steps' put in near the top of this section.of the bridleway.
The bridleway needs a lot more work but restoring it would be a very expensive project. The cost of today's work on the bridleway was absorbed by CROWS.

The final task of the day was to sort out a loose 'Todmorden Centenary Way' finger-post.

Wonky finger-post

Finger-post re-bedded to be secure and vertical!
Overall, an energetic day during which we were rinsed by the occasional shower (stoically ignored) but refreshed by the provision of tea and biscuits (gratefully received) courtesy of a kindly resident.

The quick-setting mortar used for the stepping stones and bridleway 'steps' should have 'gone-off' sufficiently to withstand the brief showers . . . but water channelling down steep South Pennine ravines can often be a problem!!

Team 2 of Ian and Nigel were working on a footpath up to Knowlwood Road in Shade, Todmorden.

A long step down from this stile at the top of the path

Nigel demonstrating the problem

A new step was formed to make it easier to get down from the stile - unfortunately we forgot to take an 'after' photo!

Further down the path there was a need for an additional step 

Another step has now been added

After getting a little wet from the showers the last tasks of the day were to add some anti-slip staples to the steps on the stiles at the top and bottom of the path - again, apologies but no photos!

Meanwhile, Team 3 were in action:

Gerald and Eleanor worked on a couple of paths off the Bacup Road. The entrance to this path was obscured by vegetation, so ......

Looking better! Then Mick asked us to look at a broken step and replace a couple of stobs

Still needs another stob on the left and nailing together! Mick said he'd return to finish off

An 'after' shot on an overgrown set of steps.

And finally a headless Gerald scrapes the path to reveal a hard surface and somewhere underneath the leaf mould leading to that hole in the wall must be a turn-by.

There it is!

Wednesday, August 8, 2018


Dick, Gerald, RJ and Ginny worked on two paths leading off Broadstone St. in Todmorden.

Both were very overgrown and the fearsome four (someone's got to take the picture) strimmed and cut back

to make a four lane highway.

We then moved to a path (adjacent to Cross Stone Church) which was buried in overgrowth

and hope that people will now start to use it.

Meanwhile . . . in the depths of Hardcastle Crags, the labours of Fred, Stuart, Paul and Frank H ensured the step-work from last week advanced remorselessly upwards!

Paul and Frank carried out consolidation work on the existing steps. Just as a reminder:-

Area before some steps were constructed

Now we have:

Steps in place and tread areas consolidated with hardcore and gravel.

Side-banking and landscaping in progress

Further up the slope, we had a section that Fred and Frank cleared last week in preparation for Fred and Stuart's efforts this week..

The slope before any work started.

Same area cleared and step-work in progress.

Flight of seven steps in place with revetment and tread consolidation in progress.
Beyond this set of steps, the ground levels out. Paul and Frank cut-back and cleared the remaining 100 m of path to where it meets the main track.

One session next week should finish this interesting task which was requested and supported by the National Trust.

Friday, August 3, 2018


Three teams today

Rich and Bernard went over to Luddenden Dean to work on the Calderdale Way.
The task was cutting back and removing a collapsed gate.

Dryclough Lane choked with vegetation

Overhanging trees and Himalayan Balsam

Strimmed and cut back

Easy to get past
 Then . . . on to Jerusalem Farm to put in a waymark post.

A formerly confusing choice of paths
 Both of these jobs on the Calderdale Way were funded by Calderdale Long Distance footpath Association.

Then . . . on to Dean House Lane to fix a stile.

All the posts had rotted off:- very unstable
New post (thanks to Dean House Farm), new treadboard and 'feet'.
Meanwhile back at the base Ken, Ian, Gerald and Peter cut up timber and started painting the posts to go on the path to Gaddings Dam.

Undercoat done
After a morning indoors ...

Ken and Gerald  went to Hurst Road, above Hebden Bridge, to work on a path that needed cutting back and to uncover a set of causey stones.

Path at Hurst Rd before cutting back and uncovering the causey stones

Path after work done

Ian, Nigel and Peter went to Midgehole to put in two Calderdale Way waymark posts (see separate post).


Today, after a morning at base painting post tops and cutting stubs, Ian, Nigel and Peter replaced two posts on the CW between Heptonstall and Midgehole. This work was supported by the Long Distance Walkers Association and a plaque was attached to one of the posts,

Wednesday, August 1, 2018



Bernard, Dick, Gerald, Paul, RJ and Stuart made their 3rd and final visit to "The Jungle".
First there was ditching:

Ditch 'before'

. . . . some time later . . . .

Ditch 'after'.

Then there was cutting back.This was done by hand to avoid any damage to residents' water supply

Area 'before'.

. . . . some time later . . . .

Area 'after'

And also, for most of the day, the two strimmers were in action:

Is this a path or a jungle?

It's a path now!

Well done everyone.

Meanwhile, in Hardcastle Crags, Fred and Frank H were continuing the step construction from last week.
Mmm! If Plan A fails, it's always useful to have a Plan B . . . or in our case a Plan C swiftly followed by a Plan D!

Plan A was to continue the line from the highest two steps that were carefully put in place last week. A few strikes of the bar to make stob holes revealed a large rock slab exactly where the riser needed to be! Abandon Plan A.
Plan B was to shift the line of the steps to take advantage of a minor crack in the rock slab. Attempts to enlarge the crack failed, although the earth (i.e. the whole planet) did seem to move slightly! Abandon Plan B.
Plan C was to drill the rock slab and pin the riser with metal rods. Unfortunately the gritstone slab was particularly uncooperative even when threatened with a brand new masonry bit fitted to a hammer drill on full power! Abandon Plan C.

Hence, Plan D. . . . . Knock out the two steps from last week and re-align the whole sequence. Happily, this worked. Hooray! So we have:

Area where steps need to be.

Some time later . . . . five steps in place:

Work in progress!
Towards the end of the day:

Six steps in place and natural timber used as revetment.

Next week we need to: fill and consolidate the tread areas of these steps; do a minor amount of landscaping and start on the final flight of about seven steps that will go up the last section of slope. That's Plan A . . . but . . . !! Watch this space!