: On The Road Again !
12th June 2013
sounds a little romantic, doesn’t it?
me at the bandstand."
when John and I arrived, Bryan had eyes
not for us but something else.
he was, gazing longingly at Greggies.
he lusting after a meat pie?
was he deep in thought about Tony's lust
for a meat pie?
didn’t pursue the matter but set off down
the road towards Stramongate.
and the pies
was to be a locally based outing as I had a meeting
to attend in Kendal in the late afternoon.
make a detour via Kendal Castle" suggested Bryan,
so we did. Along Aynam Road and up Sunnyside we
strolled, stopping to put on waterproofs as rain was
from the castle
is a surprisingly fast route up to the moat and the
castle itself. Strangely (I thought) neither Bryan
nor John seemed particularly interested in looking round
what is left of the castle. They were keen to
drop back down to the Sedbergh Road from whence we progressed
to the delightfully named Fowl Ing Lane. There
was a purpose to this. My mower had conked out
yet again due to having struck a root or something and
I needed to pay my repair bill at the very helpful Westmorland
carried on up the lane past the hanging cow then branched
off to cross under the railway and through the wood
to the town’s original reservoir. This is a strange
area. The outlet side has been covered in long
grass on previous visits but today it was all freshly
mown. Just why and by whom was impossible to judge.
travelled along the length of the reservoir, we were
on the road again, Paddy Lane this time.
we had a decision to make. Our objective was Benson
Knott but the only legitimate access is from the main
road to Appleby. There are two other possibilities.
One is from the south, from the old Sedbergh Road,
where it is believed that the farmer is not averse to
unofficial access. The other is from the west,
the race route from long ago.
ruled out the farm route, fearing danger from cows with
ruled out the race route as it hasn’t been
run for about thirty years and Bryan was
no longer sure just where it went.
we opted for what we thought would be the
safe route, from the Appleby road, starting
just beyond the old Toll House.
reaching the access point there are actually
two ways up. We had planned to take
the easterly one and return via the westerly.
However, on the other side of the
gate was a posse of frisky young bullocks.
Were we going to be brave or what?
old Toll House
was at that point that my phone rang. It was Margaret
and it was very clear from what she told me that it
was important that I return home in reasonable condition.
Consequently we opted for the westerly, direct route.
clag was down and we couldn’t see the top (or tops as
Benson Knott is twin peaked). We were not
sure in which direction to go to cross a wall. Bryan
and John went one way, I went the other. I was
the lucky one who found the gate but the others were
out of sight and out of shouting distance. What
to do? I took out something that I have carried
throughout our BOOTboys
adventures but have never had to use previously. What
is that? My Acme Thunderer A quick toot-te-toot
and they came running.
nearing the summits, we challenged John to decide which
is the higher.
the first, cairned, top he was sure it was the other,
trigpointed, top. At the trig point, he favoured
pressed for a decision he opted for the less logical,
cairned top. He was right. By two metres.
Not bad judgment when swirling mist complicated
the issue. We celebrated with lunch out of the
wind in the dip between the two.
we dropped back down to the Appleby Road again, this
time turning down toward Meal Bank but taking in the
loop out east, fighting through the jungle then back
through masses of wild flowers above the River Mint
before reaching this former mill hamlet.
in the jungle
from the jungle
emerging from the jungle
a woodland short cut we were on the road
yet again, this time the minor Meal Bank
Road to the A685 which we crossed.
we could look back to a now clear Benson
route led through a small disused quarry
that none of us had previously visited.
merits further investigation but on a day
not so wet underfoot so that grip is not
again, our path was bovinely blocked, this time rather
more dangerously by cows with very young calves.
on if you think you're hard enough!
gave them as wide a berth as we could but were subjected
to some threatening glares and stampings. However,
worse was to follow. In the final field the farmer
was putting on his after-shave. Or to put it another
way, he was muck spreading and thoroughly enjoying it,
particularly as it gave him the opportunity to spray
within spitting distance of us. No actual aerial
bombardment but it certainly mucked up the boots.
a quick wash of the boots in a stream we were out of
the country and crossing the intriguing Spital Park.
is a circle of houses around a green where
it appears that there is no common ownership
but that each house owns the segment directly
opposite its frontage.
some were well tended, some roughly cut,
some unkempt and one, probably illegitimately,
being used as a car park.
here, it was a short walk, once more on
the road, to the centre of Kendal where
I arrived in good time to change out of
my smellies for my meeting.
I got home, it was celebration time.
Park as seen by Google Earth
I didn’t tell you what the telephone call from Margaret
was all about. She had rung to tell me that, after
nearly two and a half years of frustration, there was
a letter from the DVLA.
medical team had approved my application.
had my driving licence back.
am on the road again!
12th June 2013
a serious note, I want to thank those many kind folk
who, over the last two years and more, have supported
Margaret and me throughout the period of my illness
and inability to drive. Your support by way of
encouragement, lifts and friendship has been greatly
and the Vulcan
Alan has this comment to make on Tony's Vulcan
Vulcan appears to be an early version, perhaps a B1.
I think this because it does not have the black fibreglass
undernose section which carried radar and anti-radar
equipment. When I worked at Hawker Siddeley Dynamics
in the 1960s and was associated with the Vulcan and
the Blue Steel missile, my office was next to the RAF
pilots office and we often chatted. They told a tale
(and swore it was true) of how a squadron of B2’s flew
over to America and once there requested permission
to land. The Americans, being very welcoming, said "Of
course, let us know when you are here". Biggles
and his chums replied that they were there and proceeded
to circle lower and lower until they could be seen.
The Americans were then in a complete flap because their
radar wasn’t working and our boys got a rocket up their
exhausts and had to apologise for having ‘"forgotten"
to switch off their anti-radar. As if !
bomber and Blue Steel missile
Copyright James Nicol and licensed for reuse under this Creative Commons Licence
goes on to say that he could tell us more about the
Vulcan and the Blue Steel missile, but then he did sign
the Official Secrets Act. However, I remember
him coming home from work and telling me how he and
his pals would ride on the nose of the Blue Steel missiles
as if they were on a bucking bronco at a fairground.
Hope that breach of security doesn't get him into
too much trouble!
12th June 2013
climbed in feet:
(Memory Map / OS)
Bryan, Don, John H
routes are put online in gpx format which
should work with most mapping software. You can follow
our route in detail by downloading bb1321
discover which Wainwright top was visited on which BB outing
For the latest totals of the mileages and heights see: BB Log.
have been gleaned from many sources although mostly
from me! Likewise written comment. Unless stated
otherwise, please feel free to download the material
if you wish.
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would be appreciated but not essential.
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