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" A Frost Lorton Valley "

Date & start time:    Thursday 31st January, 2019.

Location of Start :   By the red phone box, Loweswater, Cumbria, Uk. ( NY 143 211 )

Places visited :         To Cockermouth, Southwaite Bridge, Lorton and Scale Hill and back.

Walk details :             20 mile round trip (drive).

Highest point :          The views !

With :                            Myself and the camera.

Weather :                    Sunshine and blue skies.  Cold.

© Crown copyright. All rights reserved. Licence number PU 100034184.


 A trip into Cockermouth for an appointment is no excuse to miss a lovely day. 

With the camera bag on the passenger seat I can still enjoy the frosty valley in all its wintery mantle.

Heavy overnight frost has chilled the valley which only serves to complement the snowy Lakeland peaks above.

Brambles and logs by the roadside.

The low lying fields of the valley gather the cold overnight air and consequently there's a heavy frost on the meadows.

The fells at the far end of the valley are Mellbreak and Hen Comb.    Everything is bathed in this cold blue light.

Low Fell almost hidden by the woods on Redhow Crags opposite.

Further down the valley . . . the lower roadside hedge affords a clearer view. 

- - - o o o - - -

Time passes . . . and after some mild manipulation for my back . . . I'm on the return leg ( or should that be the returning leg ?).

The north western fells as seen from the Cockermouth to Egremont road, the more coastal route home.

Across the way there's some low cloud about which confuses the outline of the higher fells.

" Road Closed "

Southwaite Bridge has been closed for a few weeks as the council contractors resurface, re-point and generally repair the structure.

Still . . . it doesn't stop anyone travelling down to see the work in progress.

[ Permission was asked before I took the photos in case a trouser seam split while I pressed the shutter.]

Back-tracking slightly, I crossed the Cocker using the Low Lorton Bridge.

Southwaite suffered in the floods of recent years . . . Lorton was washed away completely in 2009 and was rebuilt in 2010

Both houses on the opposite bank of the river have been nicely re-modeled in the last few years.

I divert a second time from the route home, this time into Lorton Village.

The triangular verge at the junction has an artistic arrangement of stones on it to discourage people driving over the grass.

In the background is the Lorton Millennial Yew.

It was planted in the year 2000 and is a direct cutting from the famous Lorton Yew

that a certain Mr William Wordsworth (1770-1850) referred to in one of his poems.

The view of snow covered Whinlatter fells seen across the field in the centre of High Lorton.

Behind the Yew Tree Hall is the famous Yew itself.

Following the road around the village, this was the view back across the field to Low Fell and Fellbarrow.

The woodland opposite sits on the side of Broadmoor Hill and Lorton Shop is on the extreme right of the picture.

The School House seen across Lorton Park.

Beyond Lorton Hall is these rather picturesque houses and the separate, circular round tower belonging to the Hall itself.

Turning for home, I retrace my steps back through the village.

The smoke emanating from house alongside Corner Cottage caught the eye.

Looking behind the cottage you can see Whiteside's Dodd Fell

and what looks like spindrift catching the sunlight on the top of the Whiteside ridge.

Parking by the shop I change lenses to capture what looks like a cold, almost arctic scene up there.

A repeat view of the village.

It turns out that the Corner Cottage was the original Brewery House, the Yew Tree Hall on the right being the maltings or similar building.

When the business expanded the original brewery was subsequently divided into the three (middle) cottages

" Corner Cottage, Nutshell and Yan Yak " that we see today.

The family business didn't move far. The present Jennings Brewery is located next to the river in the centre of Cockermouth, just four miles away.

- - - o o o - - -

Driving back home . . . the valley is now flooded in sunshine.

The picture encompasses the five Wainwright summits of the Loweswater Fells,  Mellbreak, Hen Comb, Gavel, Blake and Burnbank.

The seemingly largest one, Carling Knott, is mentioned but sadly not given it's own chapter in the Wainwright guides.

A final view with Scale Hill Hotel . . . now a delightful self catering location if you fancy a local holiday.

- - - o o o - - -


Ahh .... Memories of Yester year

How different things now look from when I played in the Cocker stream bed, and the new housing on the old Lorton hall Garden, from which sweet juicy apples were thrown to those at the stream edge below the bridge "fishing" for tidlers in the small seepage branch by Mr Allison the gardener.

The view up Whinlatter to where we used to climb to a spur on it side and view the valley. And what have they done to our old climbing tree reaching over the Boon Beck place making it look lop-sided.

Then going to the travelling cinema at Yew Tree hall of for the occasional jumble sale for some local charity
The confusing road map to Cockermouth from Lorton, with its A66 motor way crossing the valley near to where we halt to have a break when walking from Cockermouth to Lorton on a hot English summers day.

(I remember) going to Leslie's shop for an Iced lolly and Kendal Mint cake to eat on the way to Scale hill and passing the 'aad Skule' and hearing the ringing laughter of children in the play ground. Wondering as the time got close to the evening meal what we would have on the way back from the long walk that had called at Crummock to view the lake.

Memories of a Lorton that has moved on but will always remain, as this was my home, my Native Land, forever England.

Thank you for the trip down Memories Lane in a good Auld English winter.

Lloyd (Invercagill, New Zealand)


- - - o o o - - -

Technical note: Pictures taken with either Ann's Panasonic Lumix TZ60, or my Panasonic Lumix Gx8 Camera.

Resized in Photoshop, and built up on a Dreamweaver web builder.

This site best viewed with . . . somewhere warm to defrost.

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A previous time up here - 20th October 2013 - Local History in 20 Objects

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