Monday, 21 September 2020

Cornholme. Stanally and Rake Farms

 Fred and Rich J constructed some stone steps, cleared steps, cut back and hacked through a gorse jungle.Pictures loaded in reverse.

Funded by Todmorden Town Council


 Stella, Ginny and Mo removed the rotten slats on the two bridges and replaced them with new wood. They also cleared the vegetation off the wooden steps and widened part of the path that had become very narrow, with a steep drop next to it. 

Stella at bridge number one. The sides of the bridge were loose but attempts to tighten them had only limited success. 

Mo and Stella tackling several rotten slats on bridge number two. 



Ah now you can see the steps leading down to the weir. Ginny, Mo and Stella worked hard on these and hopefully they will last a bit longer with all the vegetation removed from them. The steps at the beginning of the path are now so much easier to negotiate. 

The path was also cleared of balsam (a bit late unfortunately)

Friday, 18 September 2020


 Todmorden and district.

Frank H out today with Mick on an Upper Calder Valley safari. On a beautiful autumn day with stunning views across both sides of the valley a series of minor tasks were 'ticked off' the list. 

The morning jobs involved sorting out signage on the Calderdale Way above Mankinholes. This was followed by drainage work above the canal near Woodhouse Road before a move to Knott Wood (Lydgate) to re-instate a markerpost. 

In the afternoon, on the Todmorden Centenary Way to the west of Great Rock, Mick enthusiastically 'rod-ed' the exit pipe from a stone trough in an attempt to reduce the amount of water spilling towards the path. A significant length of rod disappeared, with ease, down the pipe but in a direction that seemed at odds with both gravity and basic laws of fluid flow! The outcome was inconclusive - at least 5 m of the pipe was totally clear ... but not leading anywhere useful. Solving the overflow problem may need significant excavation and drainage work - not a viable task, in these Covid-threatened times, for our 'working-in-pairs' system. 

Installation of two more marker posts followed. Textbook stuff - a deep enough hole, heavy-duty ramming of stone and soil by Frank, delicate wielding of the spirit-level by Mick, then further ramming before top soil and turf. End result - a rock-solid set of posts.

No photographs were taken due to the camera being left in the car! Instead, here is an 'abecedarian' in praise of Autumn which definitely begins with the equinox next Tuesday.

(An 'abecedarian' is a 26 word piece of prose or verse with the words in alphabetical order. They can be quite tricky to create, especially when x, y and z are reached ... but you've got to think of something while digging a hole!)


Apple bough curling down,

Encircling fruit's golden harvest,

Invokes joyful karma.

Looming mist nudges orchard pathways.

Quiet rain soaks the unbound

Vetch's wandering, xylemless,

Yawing zigzag.

Fortunately there are only four seasons!

Today's work was funded by Todmorden Town Council.

Blackshaw Head

Ken and Frank S were at Hippins Bridge on the path that leads upstream to a little footbridge. There were seven broken or rotting slats that needed to be replaced. Work funded by individual donations to CROWS.

Here's the work in progress,

and finally the end result - good for a few more years.


Then back to Hippins Bridge where we cleared the stile by the road and the lovely old causey stones just upstream. Here's the view looking back towards Hippins Bridge.

And finally we cleared some of the drains, ready to keep down the mud during the winter. Here's an example.

Wednesday, 16 September 2020


Ian, Paul, Graham R and Rich worked on a delightful path that runs between Mount Olivet Chapel on the Pennine Way to Beverley Bridge in Jumble Hole Clough.

Before we started Rich and Graham cut back the Wainwright Pennine Way Route and way-marked the path going off..

New waymark post installed

All four then started on the path highlighted on the map.

The whole path needed some cutting back and some sections needed leveling and widening.

One of many sections leveled and widened

 In addition we had to deal with four trees across the path (one we had to leave - it defeated us).

Pretty tricky to get over

All clear

We also had to deal with a landslide across the path.

Rockfall making path very narrow

All cleared

Work funded by individual donations to CROWS

We need to return to deal with an awkward slope and some scouring of the path by the bridge.


 Lynda and Eleanor returned to the path below Great Greave House to finish cutting back the vegetation at the bottom of the path and to waymark the path at Far Slack Farm. There is a lot of rubble under the grass at the top end of the path which makes walking that section challenging. As we started working the very cheerful landowner from the farm on  one side of the path approached us to say that she cleared out the drainage channel on one side of the path annually and would be happy to strim the top end to expose the rubble , which would enable us to return and level off the path properly. She told us that there had been a lot more walkers coming down the path recently which made it feel worthwhile improving this lovely but neglected path.

Afterwards we waymarked and cut back an overgrown path running from Hob Lane to Royd Lane which forms part of a network of paths near Soyland Town. 

before ......


 and after ...