A visit to Lockerbie…..

A nice warm spring day welcomed us today, a fairly stiff breeze at times but in the sheltered places lovely and warm. Today we headed into Lockerbie, I guess out of morbid curiosity really, even though it host’s Scotland’s largest lamb marketmost of us just know of it because of the wreckage, after the horrific terrorist bomb attack on Pan Am flight 103 on 21st December 1988, landing across the town. This tragic moment resulted in the loss of life of all 259 on board the flight and 11 residents of Lockerbie as debris scattered far and wide.

From the centre of town we followed the Annandale Way, a walking route following the river Annan for 56 miles from Moffat to the sea at Annan. The footpath took us through woodland and open farmland.

We passed and called in at Lockerbie cemetery to visit the memorial garden and pay our respects to all those families, whose lives will never fully recover.

We stopped in at the visitor centre to learn about the disaster and how the community pulled together in its wake and admire this wonderful quilt titled ‘lest we forget’. With 259 leaves on the tree depicting those on Flight 103, 11 pebbles – the residents lost and the tree underpinned by a strong root system, depicting the community pulling together and getting on with their lives – beautiful.Also the pretty tree lined avenue, each tree commemorating a life lost too soon, just bursting into new life, before continuing on our way.

A thought provoking 6.5 mile walk.

Two thoughts of the day:

As above really.

The north end of Ullswater and Pooley Bridge….

No more snow during the night, so after yesterday’s thaw all that remains is snow on the higher peaks and a rather grey day for us. As it is our last day here (and in England!) I had a few bits to do so we didn’t venture far. We found parking in Pooley Bridge, a buzzy little village at the top of Ullswater, plenty of pubs, hotels and a few shops and walked along the lakeside footpath.

For a mile or so the footpath was lakeside, with plenty of space for Poppydog to run and splash around but then the footpath ended and we joined an adjacent lane slightly away from the shore to continue our walk. We arrived at Sharrow Bay and enjoyed a play on the little stone beach.

This was to be our turning point for our 5.5 mile walk today and followed the lanes through farmland scattered with some pretty huge campsites (not the place to be at the height of the season, for sure!) and of course lots of sheep, back to Pooley Bridge.

Two thoughts of the day:

Nodded off when we got back on site, so all the little jobs I had planned? Tomorrow’s another day!

Very excited for the next stage in our journey – Scotland 🏴󠁧󠁢󠁳󠁣󠁴󠁿

Snow overnight and a trip to Appleby….

Today we awoke to a slight covering of snow – not a white out by any means but you know snow!

Now today we have planned a trip with a difference – we are off to Appleby-in-Westmorland to see if we can find the farm that Dad spent many a childhood holiday on, as well as a short spell as an evacuee!

A quaint market town, probably most famous for the annual Horse Fair that takes place in June. We wandered around for a while, taking a glimpse of the castle.

Before taking the footbridge across the River Eden.

And heading out of town, once we had gone under the A66, we really were out in the open countryside with lots of snow.

Just sheep and snow really – how beautiful?

After a couple of miles, we found our farm, we didn’t call in because if it is still family owned, it is way to distant for a casual knock on the door – but what a fab place to live and or holiday!

A different but very enjoyable 6 mile walk.

Two thoughts of the day:

When I set off on this adventure I didn’t imagine that I would get the chance to seek out significant places from my past – what a bonus!

Snow and a bit of a sunset – how beautiful!

A walk along Haweswater..

Well it rained and rained overnight but luckily it was all rained out by the time we got up for our morning walkies and stayed mostly sunny, with a couple of sleety showers through the rest of the day. Today we are bound for Haweswater, a large reservoir supplying 25% of the North West’s water. It was originally a natural lake, until the valley was dammed and flooded in 1929, controversially submerging two little farming villages.

We parked up at the top of the lake by the dam with the intention of joining the lakeside footpath as soon as possible, however the footpath turned out to be ‘temporarily closed for safety reasons’ Hah looking at what was left of the footpath over the wall I’d say ‘temporarily’ was a myth!

Still not to worry the lane only leads to the car park at the bottom of the lake and we were passed by maybe five cars in the 3.5 hours walk! The weather swirled in on us a couple of times with a fair splattering of sleet.

And then back out into brilliant, warm sunshine – April showers!

About half way along is Tower Pier, where every one in four cups of tea drunk in the North West starts from.

Beneath the wonderful snowy peaks of High Street, which kept disappearing behind cloud. Towards the end of the lake we found a spot high on the grassy bank to sit for a while in the sunshine and just take in the beauty – not a sound apart from birdsong and not another soul to be seen.

To walk all the way around would be too ambitious for me, so we wandered back the way we came, enjoying every bit of this 6 mile walk.

Two thoughts of the day:

Seeing the weather roll in so quickly must be terrifying when you are up on the peaks. Quite happy to watch it from down below though!

Especially from the warmth and comfort of our little home on wheels!

Back to the coast to enjoy Silloth and Skinburness….

Quite a grey day for us today and fairly chilly in the breeze, but as it looked like showers for the rest of the week, we decided to make a dash for the coast. Now when I say dash – let’s say it was a Sat Nav excursion!

Looking at the map there was no obvious route so I left the car Sat Nav to its own devices – off we went and sure enough, two fords and lots of unnamed single track roads later, we arrived at Silloth-on-Solway.

An ugly wide concrete promenade above the stony beach and gently lapping rather brown seawater greeted us with beautiful moody views across the Solway to Scotland.

Walking along the promenade we soon left the village behind, as we ventured further along the Solway to the little village of Skinburness, where the receding tide was exposing sandbanks beyond the stone beach.

We clambered over the sea defences to enjoy this deserted beach.

I just want to say – beautiful, peaceful, tranquil!

We returned to Silloth and took a quick peek at the more sandy West Beach. This beach runs all the way to Allonby Bay and is mostly dune backed – a beach we would have liked to have walked but road closures make this impractical for this trip!this is probably also the most northerly beach (that is on the sea rather than estuary) in North West England.Two thoughts of the day:

This will be our last play on an English beach for probably two and a half years (with the exception of our lovely Cornish sojourn at Christmastime) – how exciting!

Today we sat on the beach almost exactly due south of where we will be staying on our first Scottish site.