Friday, December 14, 2018


Four volunteers worked to build steps on either side of a bridge on a footpath leading from a new estate at the top of Key Syke Lane.  The bridge needed scraping, but the frost was too heavy to attempt this today.

The slope on the other side may not look steep, but was much easier to climb when Frank S and Tristan had built several steps, though more may be needed.

Fewer steps were needed on the other side, but Peter and Ginny needed to collect a lot of stone to fill the gap under the bridge.

The path leads up through Longfield wood and we then resited a fallen waymark post at the top.

A lovely sunny day, but no sun on this side of the valley to melt the frost!

Work funded by donations from Hebden Bridge Beer Festival

Wednesday, December 12, 2018


Two teams out today working in the Gaddings Dam area above Todmorden.

The 'lowlands' team of Bernard, Dick, Gerald, RJ and Stuart worked enthusiastically on revetments, path repair and drainage along the path below Jail Hole. So keen were they on the task in hand that they forgot to take any photos!

The 'highlands' team of Frank H, Fred, Ray and Stella did a heavy carry of timber and tools up (and up . . . and up . . . ) to the breach area just beyond Gaddings Dam. The work was to further improve the path by installing steps.

Shortly after starting work, the area looked like this:

Stella (working with Ray) contemplating angles, elevation and direction.

Slightly further up the slope, the section that Frank and Fred
will be tackling (with risers placed approximately).

The day was cloudy. The sun threatened to break out but never quite made it as mist rolled in and out across Langfield Edge. The chill wind encouraged vigorous work in this bleak, but curiously attractive, landscape.

'Oh, the lonely moors, the breezy moors
And the stormy hills so free.
Oh the wild, wild moors; the wild, wild moors,
The sweet wild moors for me!'

{Edwin Waugh (the Lancashire Poet:- 1817-90); Poems and Songs} 

However, some hours later, we have this:

Steps in place . . . and yes, the perspective is
 deceptive . . .  the tops of the risers are exactly horizontal!
and this:

Fred runs a critical eye over the day's work:-
surely it merits a 'pass' mark . . . at least!

Next week there is more to do in this area:- some path widening, a marker-post to re-site, steps to construct and an awkward, path-blocking boulder to sort out. Nothing the 'dream team' (Stella's description) can't handle!

The Gaddings work is funded by Crook Wind Farm Community Fund and Calderdale Small Grants.

Monday, December 10, 2018


Working on a delightful bridleway that follows Shaw's Clough.

 Lynda leading a work party of Bernard, Alistair, Ginny and Rich.

First job was to deal with the slippery (lethal) plank bridge .

Bernard giving the bridge a good wash
 The main problem was that the path was very narrow, being overgrown with bilberries and some over hanging branches.

Path before

Path before
 Cutting back the vegetation and scraping the path, we revealed a semi paved surface - very satisfying.
A widened section

Widened path above bridge
We didn't finish the whole length of the path so we will organise another work party to put in a new bridge and finish the path widening.
Having cleaned the bridge and walking across it a few times,  we have decided it won't last long

This work was funded by Ripponden Ward Forum

Wednesday, December 5, 2018


A day of steady rain saw two groups in action; the dry gang (aka Bernard, Frank H, Paul and Stuart) and the wet gang (aka Fred, Gerald, Ray and RJ)!

The dry gang worked at the base in Mytholmroyd and, from the sheltered safety of a workbench, occasionally commented on the persistence of South Pennine rain. However they did make an effort:

Bernard cleaned, sharpened and repaired all the slashers, shears and loppers.

Small hand-tools 'corner':- all now clean, sharp and in working order.

Paul and Stuart produced a supply of marker posts and a stile 'kit'.

Paul and Stuart in action and focused on the task.

Supply of marker-posts with shaped tops.

Stuart marking out a stile upright. Safety point: the
 power mitre-saw is not being used so it is unplugged.

Frank H concentrated on cutting a supply of stobs and risers.

Stob, riser and other oddment 'corner'!
After lunch Bernard and Frank cleaned and sharpened all the azads and most of the spades before leaving the base swept out and tidy.

Larger hand-tool storage area.

As a final offering from the dry gang we have:

Cautionary Haiku for CROWS
Part 5.   Working safely

Bow-saw goes back and forth'
No glove on the other hand?
. . . the gash is quite deep!

Hard work using shears?
Blades have notches on the edge!
Did I sharpen them?

Working on a slope?
Be careful with your footing.
Life is just too short!

Meanwhile the wet gang were up above Todmorden on the path leading to Gaddings Dam. Now you know why they are the wet gang! Report may follow after a drying-out process!

Monday, December 3, 2018


Two teams today on the first of four experimental Monday work parties.

Ginny, Lynda and Gerald worked at Slater Bank on the outskirts of Hebden Bridge on the path from Heptonstall Road to Eaves.

Rich and Bernard worked on paths off Mytholm Steeps. Lovely paths but very badly waymarked and obstructed by trees needing to be cut back.

Path encroached by holly and not waymarked

New post put in and holly all cut back

One of the two waymark posts at the bottom of the path
All the work today was funded by the proceeds from Calderdale Beer festival held in Hebden Bridge