Stream and Steam Trail
|Submitted by:||David Whipp|
||Letcliffe Park, Manchester Road, Barnoldswick BB18 5HE
Barnoldswick's Stream and Steam trail takes you on a walk through the town and through time.
(Download the FREE guide in the link above)
You can follow in the footsteps of handloom weavers, cotton mill workers, engineers who developed the jet engine and the high tech turbine makers of today. Experience the living history of Barnoldswick!
The route is signed with finger posts. There are interpretation boards at points of interest. A free Stream and Steam leaflet is available at the Council Shop, Rainhall Centre and other outlets.
Beginning at the magnificent viewpoint of Letcliffe Park, the trail takes you past handloom weaver's cottages at Gillians and the working steam engine museum at Bancroft Mill before descending the sett paved path of Forty Steps.
As ever in quirky Barnoldswick, all is not what it seems! Count the steps; how many do you find?
At the foot of the steps, the walk joins the stream whose valley you follow through the town. In Ouseldale, you can see the weir, silted dams and industrial ruins which helped make the dale a powerhouse during Barnoldswick's water powered era.
After the stream pours into a culvert and before you emerge onto Walmsgate, the stone flagged path crosses the point where a massive waterwheel once powered the mill.
On Walmsgate, the inspiring facade of the Independent Methodist Chapel (the 'New Ship') faces the original site of the oldest Baptist Chapel in Yorkshire. Both buildings are a testament to the non-comformist religous fervour in Barnoldswick's past.
Pressing on, the trail takes you by the town's old mortuary and model weaver's lodgings before you enter Valley Gardens and find a surviving mill race fed from a weir on Stocks Beck. The mill race fed a dam (at Dam Head...) which powered the corn mill beyond.
Entering Victory Park, Crownest Mill, with its surviving mill chimney, is seen on the opposite bank of the stream.
The Bankfield site of Rolls-Royce produces cutting edge fan blades for the company's world famous jet engines. During the second world war, Sir Frank Whittle and Rolls-Royce developed the jet engine and manufactured the first production engines in the former cotton mill.
At the end of the route, walkers can take in even more industrial heritage by returning via the summit stretch of the Leeds and Liverpool Canal.
The route takes in four of Barnoldswick's play areas and three of its parks; the walk is very family friendly!
The trail can be followed in as little as an hour, but you are better lingering along the route and thoroughly exploring the rich heritage of Barnoldswick.
Parking is available at both Letcliffe and Victory Parks. There are public toilets at Letcliffe and Victory Parks with toilets for disabled people accesible with a Radar key.
Refreshments are available at many town centre establishments, Bancroft Mill on Saturdays and steaming Sundays and, seasonally, from Lock Stop for walkers returning by the canal.