Settle walk

Settle walk

Settle walk

First published in Walks in Lancashire Lancashire Telegraph: Photograph of the Author by

The area around Settle has always been one of my very favourite winter walks because it is easy to reach from East Lancashire is always a place full of bustle, interest, good eating and shopping.

Start at the Golden Lion Inn, which was built in about 1640.

Settle is full of lovely old coaching inns, most of which have retained their Dickensian atmosphere; this is why I enjoy this walk in winter.

Turn right from the Golden Lion to reach The Shambles.

This takes its name from the fact that this was where the butchers had their shops and there was always a shambles around the slaughterhouses.

Cross the parking area of The Shambles and look out for a plaque on the wall of the NatWest Bank.

This was once the surgery of Dr Buck, who was also a musician. He was friend of the composer Edward Elgar, who spent a lot of time walking around Settle.

Follow a steep route up Constitution Hill and turn left between dry stone walls and through a belt of trees. Pass through a gate.

Turn right and follow a footpath sign indicating Malham. Keep climbing steeply but if you are my age take your time.

Veer left and keep going uphill with Blua Craggs to the right.

Go through a wide gate to see caves in some crags to the left.

Go left and cross a ladder stile. This is a chance to get your breath back and then continue to follow the Malham footpath.

As you meet at a junction of paths now ignore the right fork to Malham to reach another ladder stile to the right.

Cross to the right and then go right to approach the foot of Attermire Scar.

The track manders and after passing through a gate approach Victoria Cave.

There is an Information Board nearby and this really is an historic place.

The cave was discovered in 1838 as Victoria was being crowned Queen and hence the name.

Lots of artefacts and bones have been discovered, including those of reindeer, rhinoceros, hippopotomus, hyena and wild ox.

There are also signs of Neolithic people and later residents, including the Romano-British, and coins and jewellery have been found.

Follow the track to the left and along the track before swinging right, left and right again alongside a wood, which is a good place to enjoy a winter birdwatch.

At a road go left and pass through a gate and a sign indicating that Settle is just over a mile away.

The track now descends and passes through a number of gates.

This route is obvious and leads back to the starting point.

Winter days should never be wasted and, as I have made an early start on a bright morning, I had lunch and then enjoyed a second walk around Giggleswick.

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