Not the Waterfalls Walk

5 April 2009
Leaders - Olwyn and Keith Bolger
 North Craven 
 Heritage Trust 

A sunny afternoon ensured a pleasant walk from Ingleton Community Centre (site of the former Midland Railway station, axed by Beeching) down to The Bottoms, part of the old village, under the 1861 railway viaduct, and along to the bridge, where we looked at the site of a large mill, twice burnt down. Only the millowner’s house remains, now a Bed and Breakfast establishment. We continued past the swimming pool, left at the church, and to the top of the lane where we had a good view of the former Mealbank Quarry with its Hoffmann-type kiln that produced quantities of first-class lime used in the chemical industry, glass and soap making. As we climbed to the Chapel-le-Dale road we passed a succession of disused quarries. These started off producing agricultural lime (there is an old-style lime kiln just beside the road) but were extended for the production of crushed stone for road building. The now abandoned quarries continued up Storrs Common to the left of Fell Lane. Here we looked down at the spread of fields and farms and were reminded of the origin of the village’s name, Ingeltun, O.E. for ‘the farm near the peak hill’ and also of the legacy of the Norsemen who farmed on the fells, giving us words like Storr - plantation, and ber - hill. We could also see the lay-out of the so-called New Village, built for the influx of workers to the now-defunct colliery. From Fell Lane we turned right over to Slatenber Farm and Jarlsber, the earl’s hill. The old route for the Keighley-Kendal turnpike road brought us down to High Street and Back Gate and to where we started. ( The late Muriel Humphries’ research into nineteenth century industry in the Wenning and Greta Valleys has been edited by John Wilson and published as Quarries, Coal, Clay and Cloth. I found it fascinating - Olwyn.)

Editors' note

It is sad to record that Keith died on 30th April 2010 aged 78. Keith and Olwyn together led many delightful walks for Trust members, always providing entertaining information on historical and botanical matters. A picture of him can be seen in the 2006 Journal, page 30.