SITUATED astride the A675 on the road to Bolton from Blackburn, Belmont, although rightly regarded as an industrial village, is nevertheless an attractive spot.

Until the cotton industry developed Belmont was, as its name implies, a "beautiful hill" surrounded by lots of farms.

Belmont in the 19th century made its living from the bleaching and dyeing of cotton fibres.

At first it had plenty of clean water available from the many hillside streams, but later Belmont Reservoir was built to keep pace with development.

This was built in 1827 and is now used by Bolton Sailing Club.

For those who fancy a brew and a butty or even a meal prior to or following a stroll, will find the Black Dog a welcoming spot.

The demand for houses to provide living space for the factories stimulated the growth of an extensive network of quarries. Until 1804 what is now the village of Belmont was just a tiny hamlet called Hordern. The present day area still has regions called Hordern Stoors and Hordern Pasture.

One name which has sadly gone out of use is the Potato Pie Path. This originated in the 19th century when local people dug peat from the moors and wanted to carry it down to the village by the most direct route.

The local landowner refused to allow them and so the villagers sat on the path in protest and supporters provided them potato pies to sustain them until the landowner gave in!

This path is off the road to Rivington not far from the church and I enjoyed the views from this old route.

The Church of St Peter was built in the 1850s on land given by Squire Wright, on the Belmont Road towards Bolton the Wright's Arms hostelry and keeps the family name alive.

The stroll around Belmont is one of my favourite winter walks with the reservoirs in the area very popular with wildfowl.

Winter walking can indeed be wonderful.