Sunday November 1st.  6.5miles.   Longridge.

Hurricane Zeta is chasing Storm Aiden across the British Isles this weekend. I get out this morning for a couple of hour’s exercise between the two.

My last post predicted or prayed for another lockdown, well Boris appeared on TV last night and announced one. I’m not getting into a debate about the why’s, when’s and how’s of our country’s attempt to deal with the virus. There will be plenty of time for that.

No, my walk today is probably going to be a regular one as we are told to stay home – but get exercise, no mention of distance travelled from home for said exercise, another fuzzy rule. So I walk from my doorstep. The diggers are having a Sunday rest on the latest building site coming to Longridge. Down past more new housing, then the cricket pitch and I’m in the countryside. Unusually ‘Mile Lane’ is empty of pedestrians, last lockdown it was busy most of the days with the good folk of Longridge taking their daily perambulation.

A delightful little lane along the track of the old quarry railway leads through bushes to the park. I have a painting of it on a sunny day by a local artist hanging upstairs.

The park is a magnet for dog walkers. There seems to have been an increase in canine ownership during the pandemic, unless I’m imagining it.

From Higher Road a track goes around the back of the old Quarryman’s Arms……and then through the quarries and down past the reservoirs, more new housing to the right, onto Lower Lane. Along here I spend time chatting, at a distance, to friends I haven’t seen for a while. I walk past one of my former homes, can’t believe it was so large. For the record…

Down by the church, a rather flooded Happy Alley, and round more reservoirs I come to Pinfold Lane. A pinfold was an enclosure for cattle or sheep that had strayed. The animals would be restrained in the pinfold until the owner redeemed them – normally by paying a small fine. Pinfolds were found in towns and villages from, at least, the Middle Ages onwards. I don’t know the site of this pinfold but it may have been at the end of the lane, here there is a benchmark and a substantial ancient cross base.

I stopped to put on my waterproofs as the first drops of rain were felt, but I was home before it became heavy. There was no temptation to save thousands buying a new house.

So in the coming lockdown weeks this little excursion, or variations on it, will probably be my go-to walk. Is ‘go-to’ an American expression? I don’t really like it and should have changed it to ‘regular’. I will no doubt come across other interesting Longridge titbits as time goes on.



  1. Caroline

    This is a very familiar and well-loved route for me – almost identical to a lot of the walks I’ve taken around Longridge in the last few months. I’d always been curious about the origin of the name Pinfold – it seems to show up a lot on maps!


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