Wombleton (Plough Inn).
Thursday 28th March 2019
Route Fadmoor, Waingate Farm, Intake Plantation, Aumery Park, Sleightholme Dale Lodge, Mell Bank Wood, Brockhill Hagg, Hold Caldron, Hodge Beck, St. Gregory’s Minster, Lane, Stony Cross, Wombleton (Plough Inn), Welburn, Tilehouse Bridge, Kirkdale Cave, Robin Hood’s Howl, Hagg Farm, Starfits Lane, Fadmoor (11 miles).
Members Paul, Chris and Col
And then there were three! Just Chris & Paul from Hull and Col from Driffield were out flying the FAC flag today. But I’m certain those that couldn’t make it today for various reasons wished they’d have been where we were instead of where they were. With chief photographers Keith & Sherlock missing it fell to Paul to be designated official happy snapper of the day. Still ringing in his ears was Keith’s implicit instructions…”Make sure you clean the bloody lens and don’t take endless pictures of people walking”. It’s a bit like telling a sports photographer not to take pictures of people kicking footballs.
Chris was showing off in his (nearly) new Skoda as he put it through it’s paces on our way to pick up Col in Wetwang. As ever Col was ready and waiting but it had been spotted that his bush hat was sat proudly on the roof of his car. As is the long and honourable FAC tradition neither Paul nor Chris sought to mention this fact until Col was seated and belted with Chris ready to move off. Paul then casually mentioned that it looked like it would be sunny up on the moors and that a hat would be advantageous which was quickly followed by Col almost falling out of the car in a mad scramble to retrieve his hat. As Chris commented “There’s the first paragraph written already”.
We made decent time on our journey north to Fadmoor arriving on the stroke of nine. It was a lovely sunny spring morning although at Fadmoor’s elevated position the breeze had a chilly edge to it. Without much ado we were soon ready for the off heading generally westwards towards Sleightholme Dale. There were innumerable stiles to negotiate as we crossed farmland before dropping down into the dale via the thickly wooded Intake Plantation.
At the farm at Aumery Park we turned due south passing Sleightholme Dale Lodge who’s grounds were awash with daffodils reflecting the bright spring sunshine. We left the lane just south of the lodge and followed the track through Mell Bank Wood. Spring had certainly sprung with numerous early spring flowers in evidence such as celandine, dog mercury, dog violet, primrose, wood anemone, stitch wort and wild garlic. Of course all of these, apart from the garlic, were identified by Chris as Paul’s knowledge of such things could be written in crayon on the back of a seed packet.
We found a lovely sunny spot close to Hodge Beck to enjoy a butty and a brew. We probably could have stayed there all day but there was walking to be done so we headed off towards Hold Caldron and St. Gregory’s Minster. From there we walked along the lane for a short distance then followed the footpath to Stony Cross. That was the plan anyway but it soon became apparent that the path had been diverted although there was no mention of this attached to the finger post as is the accepted method of alerting walkers to such things.
But despite this anomaly we still found our way to Stony Cross finding that the signpost at that end of the footpath clearly stated that the path had been diverted. From here it was but a short stroll into the village of Wombleton, home of the Wimbles (allegedly). As we approached The Plough we were alarmed to see contractors vehicles close to the pub and hoped it wouldn’t be electricity contractors who could conceivably have switched off the power to the pub! We needn’t have worried though as they turned out to be some guys revitalising the village footpaths.
We’ve used The Plough in Wombleton on many occasions over the years and have always found a friendly welcome there with today being no exception. Mind you the landlord showed some initial concern as we strode in sporting our blue boot coverings as he though he was being raided by the crime scene investigation unit. He was relieved to find we weren’t carrying any chalk as the one thing guaranteed to frighten the customers away is the outline of a dead body drawn on his nice carpet.
Paul was pleased to see they had Birra Moretti on draught and likewise Col was glad to find a decent pint of Black Sheep while Chris had to be content with a pot of tea, such is the lot of the designated driver. We had a very enjoyable hour (at least) in The Plough although as we were thinking about leaving Paul realised he’d not asked to have his flask re-filled with boiling water. Not wishing to ask for water without purchasing anything he felt obliged to buy some more drinks for himself and Col. After all we are the FAC and we have a long and proud history of walking and drinking although not necessarily in that order.
We finally dragged ourselves outside into the warm spring sunshine and headed east towards Welburn and beyond to the infamous Robin Hood’s Howl. Col has never been to this notorious stretch of woodland before so we built it up a bit until Col probably thought he’d be taking his life in his hands instead of out enjoying a walk in the sunshine. However before entering this long and twisting woodland route we finished off the last of our grub and then girded up our loins for the trek ahead.
In all honesty the path was in as good a condition as we’d ever seen it but we’ve used this thickly wooded route on less forgiving days usually in late autumn when the mud claws at your feet and the wet clinging undergrowth grabs at your legs as the gloom closes in and only then do you realise it is so very aptly named Robin Hood’s Howl. Of course it was decided there and then that we’d have to do this walk again on some dark and dismal autumnal day so Col could fully appreciate the full Robin Hood’s Howl experience.
Once back out into the sunshine we passed Hagg Farm with it’s numerous holiday cottages then along the lane back to Fadmoor and walks end. It was a brilliant day to be out and it was just a pity that the other lads weren’t here to enjoy it too. Maybe next time…see ya then!
ON THIS DAY
26th March 2009 – Pockley to Harome.
Chris, Keith, Col Hutch, Paul Craggs, Bob, Ray & Stu.
Bob boasts about his new car and is hitherto known as Bobbo OneJag. He was later seen walking in circles muttering to himself looking for his rucksack which was actually on his back. Stu became a member of the Road Kill Association after dispatching a peacock with the front end of his car while Craggsy upset the landlord of The Star after re-arranging the menus on the bar.
29th March 1994 – 2nd part of the Humber Bridge Link (North Lincolnshire section)
Bob, Barry, Chris, Paul, Jacko, Brian Fant, Ray & Dudley.
A windy day which nevertheless provided a joke about Barry, The Humber Bridge and high sided vehicles.
22nd March 1979 – Burdale to Fridaythorpe
Bob, Jacko, Chris, Alf & Barry.
A snowy day on the Wolds with Alf breaking the land speed record after sledging down a steep slope at Wharram Percy on a large plastic bag. The pub at Thixendale was closed so the FAC carried on to Fridaythorpe where they gained refreshment at the Cross Keys.