This is an excellent circular walk across the West Pennine Moors giving us intimate visual links with our urban landscape, yet allowing us extensive views across rural Lancashire.
We first visit Jubilee Tower on Darwen Hill, built in 1898 to celebrate Queen Victoria’s Jubilee. In our pilgrimage to climb this hill, we should remember the tower was paid for by local people, it represents the victory of an 18 year long legal battle where local people re-established their ancients rights of access to the moor. We should celebrate their unselfish act and give thanks to their foresight in democracy.
Visitors can enjoy wonderful views from the top of the tower after climbing the stone spiral staircase as well as a freedom to roam this sometimes wild and desolate place.
We then visit the summit of Cartridge Hill, the highest ground in the area, it’s designated a HuMP (Hundred Metre Prominence), one of nearly 3000 HuMP’s in Britain. It has fantastic views across the South Lancashire Plain.
After our excursion to the summit of Cartridge Hill, we visit the site of the former Manor House Hollinshead Hall before returning through beautiful woodland to our starting point at the Roddleworth Information Centre.
The only remaining building at Hollinsworth Hall is the Well House where a spring feeds two stone troughs, the stone carving and sculpture gives us an insight into the Manor House that was here. Significantly re-modelled during the 18th century, the Hall fell into disrepair & was demolished by Liverpool Corporation waterworks who purchased the surrounding land for water catchment. The earliest record of the Hall is 1311, there is some suggestion Hollinshead is not a family name, but a derivation of ‘Holy Head’, in turn derived from an unknown saxon place featuring a spring fed Holy Well.
This is a superb walk across wild country on the doorstep of a post-industrial urban landscape.