Stage 1: Hurst Green to Higher Hodder
starts at the gate in the car park of the Shireburn Arms. Go straight
downhill following the ditch; after 300 yd cross the ditch and
continue to the wood. Go over the stile across the beck and down
to the Ribble. The Ribble Way hugs the river all the way to the
farm adjacent to Winkley Hall. The path zigzags through the farm
yard and leads to the farm road going uphill. As the road bends
to the left, a Ribble Way sign is seen on the right next to a small
metal gate. Aim towards St. Mary's Hall, go through a second gate
and follow the edge of the wood. The path ends at the road near
a stone bus shelter. Turn right and walk to the Lower Hodder Bridge.
The path continues
along the side of the Hodder and starts to climb into Hodder Woods
just after Hodder Place. (The area alongside the Hodder here is a SSSI on account of its geological importance; see the map and read more here
).Wooden flights of steps lead to the top of the
high escarpment overlooking the river. The path then descends again
by a series of wooden flights of steps and footbridges to the Hodder
bank, and continues to Higher Hodder Bridge.
path from the Bridge and find the return path to the right
just after crossing the second footbridge. The narrow path goes
uphill and follows the wire fence to its end. Turn right and descend to
go over a plank footbridge and stile. Bear right up the field to
the next stile. Follow the wire fence on the left, go by Ryddings
farm and continue along the roadway. 100 yd before the next house
(seen on the right) turn left through a metal gate into the field
and walk uphill to the road (Birdy Brow).
At the roadside
a FP sign points the way following the line of mature trees. Aim
to the right of the wood ahead. The path crosses the stream to
the right of a large black pipe and ascends towards an old narrow
metal gate. The path is not well defined after this point. Bear
right over the field and follow the wire fence downhill to the
stile at its end. Over the stile follow the hedge on the left to
the next stile. Cut across the top of the field and follow the
hedge on the right for 30 yd to the next stile. Go through the
wide metal gate seen on the left and carry on over the field to
the final stile found in the corner of the field. Continue in the
same direction over the field to the road.
along the road and then left into the grounds of Stonyhurst College.
The route goes in front of the College and past the church. A FP
sign is seen on the right. Go through the old metal gate into the
field and follow the edge of the wood and then the hedge. The path
passes through three metal swing gates and leads into Smithy Row in Hurst Green.