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Blanchland, Northumberland
Blanchland, Northumberland from the bridge over the River Derwent at the southern edge of the village

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Route No. 640 - Saturday 24 September 2016
Blanchland, Baybridge, Allenshields, Bridge End,
River Derwent, B6306 circuit - 6km
Northumberland . . .

Route map from Ordnance Survey Open Space service.

Map: OS Explorer 307 Consett & Derwent Reservoir


Leaving the Blanchland car park at the start of our walk
Leaving the Blanchland car park at the start of our walk

Going left along the lane from the car park
Going left along the lane from the car park

Turning off the lane onto the access road to Cote House Farm
Turning off the lane onto the access road to Cote House Farm

The village is named after the white robes worn by the monks of the original priory there, founded in 1165. We parked in the large public car park at map ref. NY 964 505 at the northern edge of the village. From the car park entrance we turned left and walked along the lane away from the village for about 100m. There we turned left off the lane to follow the farm access road towards Cote House Farm.

Today my wife & I drove to Blanchland in Northumberland, just over the county border from County Durham. Blanchland is an unspoilt village based on properties originally part of Blanchland Abbey and the village generally dates from the 1600's, all very picturesque.

Leaving Blanchland along the lane from the car park
Leaving Blanchland along the lane from the car park

Sign at Cote House Farm access road

Turning left off the access road to Cote House farn onto a path across the fields
Turning left off the access road to Cote House farm onto a path across the fields

Crossing the fields towards Baybridge
Crossing the fields towards Baybridge

Following the road into Batbridge
Following the road into Baybridge

At the road we turned right and walked along the road into Baybridge. At the road junction in Baybridge we turned left and followed the road across the bridge over the River Derwent, leaving Northumberland and entering County Durham.

After about 300m the farm access road turns sharp right to the farm. At this bend in the road we turned left onto a path across the fields. We followed the path down the hillside for about 350m to a ladder stile onto the road.

Nearing the ladder stile to the road at Baybridge
Nearing the ladder stile to the road at Baybridge

Heading into Co. Durham from Baybridge
Heading into Co. Durham from Baybridge

Road bridge over the River Derwent at Baybridge
Road bridge over the River Derwent at Baybridge

The River Derwent from the road bridge at Baybridge
The River Derwent from the road bridge at Baybridge

Start of the woodland path on the Pennine Journey route at Baybridge
Start of the woodland path

Gate into pasture land at the top edge of the woodland
Gate into pasture land at the top edge of the woodland

We crossed the narrow field to the fence and walked up the slope with the fence on our left, There was a small group of cows with part grown calves in the field and they kept a close eye on us from the low side of the field. At the top of the field we turned left through a field gate onto a farm track.

About 20m beyond the bridge over the River Derwent we turned left off the road and followed a path into the woods above the River Derwent. About 50m into the wood we turned right along a public footpath climbing up the valley side. After about 100m the path emerged from the wood into pasture land.

Turning off the road into the woodland on the Pennine Journey route at Baybridge
Turning off the road into the woodland

Turning right off the main path to climb up the hillside path
Turning right off the main path to climb up the hillside path

Following the path up the edge of the field
Following the path up the edge of the field

Gate onto a farm access track at the top of the field leading to Allenshields farm
Gate onto a farm access track at the top of the field leading to Allenshields farm

From here our path follows the wall straight up to the road
From here our path follows the wall straight up to the road . . .

At the road the route turned left and follows the road past the farm. At the first field boundary beyond the farm there is a small outbuilding with a rusty corrugated iron roof. Next to this building there is a sign post by a pedestrian gate to a public footpath down the edge of the field.

We walked along the track towards Allenshields farm for about 50m then the farm access track turns right and then bends left to the farm yard & buildings. I believe that the public footpath used to follow this track through the farmyard. Now the path turned right off the farm track and follows the field boundary directly out to the road at map ref. NY 962 493.

the farm access track continues to Allenshields farm
. . . and the farm access track continues to Allenshields farm

Looking across the River Derwent valley from the road near Allenshields farm
Looking across the River Derwent valley from the road near Allenshields farm

Flock of Rough Fell sheep by the ladder stile
Flock of Rough Fell sheep by the ladder stile

Heading across the fields to Rope Barn farm
Heading across the fields to Rope Barn farm

We crossed another ladder stile in the corner of the field, then crossed the next field with a fence on our left until we reached the road at Rope Barn farm.

After about 250m there is a ladder stile over the wall on the right. We turned right and crossed the ladder stile, continuing across the next field with the field wall on our right.

Ladder stile over the wall on our right
Ladder stile over the wall on our right

Heading across the fields to Rope Barn farm
Heading across the fields to Rope Barn farm

Rope Barn farm where we turned left along the road
Rope Barn farm where we turned left along the road

Passing Rope Barn farm along the road
Passing Rope Barn farm along the road

Heading towards Blanchland along the B6306
Heading towards Blanchland along the B6306

We turned left at the road junction and followed the B6306 down to the bridge over the River Derwent on the southern edge of Blanchland village and re-entered Northumberland.

At the road we turned left and walked down the road past Rope Barn farm and down the hill to the road junction at map ref. NY 967 502.

Nearing the junction with the B6306 where we turned left
Nearing the junction with the B6306 where we turned left

Crossing back into Northumberland at the River Derwent
Crossing back into Northumberland at the River Derwent

Blanchland seen from the B6306 bridge over the River Derwent
Blanchland seen from the B6306 bridge over the River Derwent

Doubling back alongside the bridge to the river bank
Doubling back alongside the bridge to the river bank

Pretty wooded path beside the River Derwent
Pretty wooded path beside the River Derwent

Pretty wooded path beside the River Derwent
Pretty wooded path beside the River Derwent

It was a lovely wooded path along the riverbank but a bit awkward underfoot in places. After almost 1km the woodland ended and the path continued though tall grasses for another 200m or so to map ref. NY 976 504. Here the path turned left away from the river and followed a bridleway along a grassy track.

We crossed the road bridge over the river and immediately turned right along a path doubling back alongside the bridge to the river bank. At the riverbank we turned left following a footpath heading downstream beside the river.

Looking back to the road bridge over the River Derwent
Looking back to the road bridge over the River Derwent

Pretty wooded path beside the River Derwent
Pretty wooded path beside the River Derwent

Path left the woodland and continued through tall grass
Path left the woodland and continued through tall grass

Here the path turned left away from the river following a grassy track
Here the path turned left away from the river following a grassy track

Grassy track leading away from the river
Grassy track leading away from the river

Grassy track heading towards the B6306
Grassy track heading towards the B6306

My wife waiting for me to catch up
My wife waiting for me to catch up

We continued along this track to the B6306 at map ref. NY 969 505 and then walked along the road towards Blanchland. After a few metres there is a raised footway on the right hand side of the road to keep clear of the traffic.

We walked along this pleasant track for about 300m then the track turned left with sheep grazing the pasture land on our left and a steep hillside rising up on our right.

Grassy track leading away from the river
Grassy track leading away from the river

Grassy track heading towards the B6306
Grassy track heading towards the B6306

The track led us to the B6306
The track led us to the B6306 where we turned left

Start of the raised footway on the right hand side of the B6306
Start of the raised footway on the right hand side of the B6306


St Mary's church on the way into Blanchland

The village shop in the centre of Blanchland
The village shop in the centre of Blanchland

The whole route was almost 6km and it took us nearly three hours to walk including as usual stops for far too many photographs. After our walk we went to see some of my wife's relatives who live nearby.

As we approached Blanchland we passed the site of Blanchland Abbey next to the Parish Church of St. Mary the Virgin. We had a look at the pretty assembly of cottages and larger buildings before making our way back to the car park and the end of our walk.

Nearing the crossroads in the centre of Blanchland
Nearing the crossroads in the centre of Blanchland

The road from the centre of Blanchland towards the car park
The road from the centre of Blanchland towards the car park

Turning off the road into the car park at the end of our walk
Turning off the road into the car park at the end of our walk

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