THIS walk is inspired by the the ancient tradition of beating the bounds.
The custom has taken place in Britain in a variety of forms for 2,000 years, with parishioners taking a formal perambulation or walk around the boundaries to check that no one had moved any of the marker stones or laid claim to the land.
We follow the parish boundaries of Foulridge where the earliest surviving map is dated 1580/81.
The walk is courtesy of Pendle Borough Council and for more walks in the area, go to the website, visitpendle.com
Step by step
1. Cross the road in front of the church and turn hard right up the signposted footpath.
2. Carry on around the front of the school, and follow the signed footpath, behind a hedge at the entrance to the school car park, running into a ginnel behind Lakeview Children’s Nursery. Upon reaching a high wall, turn left to the stile in the middle of the field. Bear right and cross the duckboard with Foulridge Upper Reservoir on the right. At Broach Flat turn right into a field, following the hedge on the right until a stile is reached at the bottom. Turn right into the lane and cross the reservoir, taking the first stile on the left to pick up the footpath running along the southern bank.
3. On reaching Lower Clough, cross the drive and follow the path, keeping the garden wall to the left, and still keeping left, over a stile and cross the stone bridge over Moss Houses Beck. On the far side take the path to the right which runs beside a stream. Cross the footbridge and continue through three fields diagonally (over two stiles and then through two walls), making for Moss Houses on your right.
4. Enter the farmyard area at Moss Houses. Look for a signposted footpath ahead between the buildings and bear right onto the lane. On the left is a stone stile, opposite Little Moss Farm. Go over stile and continue straight on uphill through two further fields to reach Noyna Road. Cross over the road over the gap in the wall/stile, climbing uphill and along the left side of the field to the two five-bar gates at the top. Take the right-hand gate through the farmyard and bear right until you reach a flight of small steps immediately below the driveway of Noyna End House. This section can be very boggy in wet weather. An alternative route is via the roadway from Moss Houses to join up with Noyna Road.
5. Cross the road and enter the signposted field on the right over a cattle grid and through a gate. Continue through the field towards Throstle Nest. At Throstle Nest go through the gate and into the garden, keeping the house on the right. Continue up the driveway, bearing left.
6. Cross the road into the sunken lane opposite. At the gate bear right across the field and walk towards the line of trees. Cross the lane over the stiles, past Oxenards and down to the bridge over Lancashire Ghyll. Turn left through a gate and follow the stream, keeping above it on the high bank. Go through the gated stile and continue to the road. Turn right along the road past the small group of buildings taking the footpath to the left down to the main Skipton New Road.
7. Cross the road taking the footpath through Great Hague Farm, which takes you to the right. Turn left at the end of the farmyard and go through the large gate. Follow the enclosed track downhill, crossing the old railway line. Go through the new iron gate and diagonally over the field, bearing right, to cross a concealed footbridge. Continue across the field, bearing left, to reach Mill Hill Bridge on the Leeds & Liverpool Canal.
8. Go over the canal bridge, and up the lane to the right, heading for County Brook Mill. Bearing right through two gates and once at the mill bear left leaving the mill complex via the road. When the tarmac road bends to the left, bear right down to the stream. Rejoin the lane and take the first stile on the left. Proceed straight across fields, bearing right. Cross a gate and three stiles to the right of Hullit Hall. Follow the hedge on the right to the stile. Go over the stile and turn left and proceed through three stiles. Turn right to a stile beside a metal gate, then right again, following the field around the edge to a gate beside the cattle grid. At Hey Fold turn left onto the road to Mount Pleasant Chapel.
9. Just before the chapel turn left through a stile. Cross the field and follow the track for 300m to the junction with the road at Hill Top. Turn right onto the road and, after 50m, take the stile on the left going over the field, bearing right and through a series of two gates around Long Hill Farm.
10. Follow the path on the right-hand side of the wall and bearing left to a enclosed track downhill, past the back of Ball House.
11. At the bottom of the track cross the tarmac lane to a stile to the right of Sand Hall. Follow the path along the eastern bank of Slipper Hill Reservoir. At the end of the reservoir descend the path and cross the stile. Continue through the field and turn left into Slipper Hill Lane. Take the second opening on the left through a signed wooden gate. This combined footpath/cycleway comes out onto Reedymoor Lane close to the Ford at Ball Bridge.
12. Cross the road and turn right into the sailing club car park and bear left up past the clubhouse. Follow the path around the northern bank of Foulridge Lower Reservoir until you reach the main road back at the church.
Start: Outside St Michael and All Angels’ Church, Foulridge
Distance: Eight miles (12 kilometres)
Time: Four hours
Grade: Moderate, with level and steep walking
OS Map: Landranger 103