The Furness Way

A new year, a new route to follow.  

This time it's the so-called Furness Way although it spends the majority of its time in old Westmorland or Cumberland rather than Furness. But then, by incoporating a part of Furness into its route, this Way combines with the Westmorland and Cumberland Ways to make a giant Cumbria triangle.

Starting in Arnside, the Furness Way will eventually reach Ravenglass.  Officially, it is 75 miles but that is if it is completed continuously.  

Welcome to the Furness Way!

Our plan is to tackle it in easy stages over a much more relaxed time frame, inevitably meaning rather longer mileage in total.



FW01: Arnside to Milnthorpe

Wednesday 19th January 2011

Something strange has been happening to my body lately. There are shivers, hot flushes, cold flushes and brief mental confusion bordering on hallucination. Then, after less than a minute, all is well again.  After various blood tests, the doctor put it down to a virus and it seemed to disappear.  However, it returned a few days ago and led to me having to pull out of our normal BOOTboys walk.  Would it interfere with the softer option of a new set of walks with Margaret- the Furness Way?  Only one way to find out.

The temperature was only just above freezing when we left Margaret's car at Milnthorpe and made our way over to Arnside, parking on the promenade, close to the pier.  There was a bit of cloud about but basically a lovely winter's day.

The view from Arnside Pier

The Furness Way climbs up through the village, as if heading south, before leaving the main road by the Catholic church and heading east to cross the railway then continuing across the fields to Hazelslack.  

From  Arnside to Storth and beyond

Crossing the railway.....

.... and the fields

Here the Furness Way briefly meets up with the Westmorland Way before turning north, past the Tower (although I think we went slightly wrong) and through the wood-surrounded fields.  

Eventually, we reached the back road from Storth to Beetham and a strange roadside marker stating  SJDC (or possibly SUDC) 1870 No. 2.  Any one got any ideas what this means? [See Afternote at end of report]

Hazelslack Tower

No. 2 what?????

To haerbrack and Dallam Tower estate

After the summit, a path emerged on the left passing Wray Cott (with its Buddha) and then Haverbrack before emerging in the Dallam Tower estate.

Wray Cott Buddha

Haverbrack yard ripe for development!

Dallam Tower

Dallam Tower looked splendid as we paraded across its Deer Park, emerging onto the road just outside Milnthorpe.  The Furness Way cuts up to the west of the village, climbing to a fine vantage point to look both backwards and forwards from Park Hill.

The Knott and Arnside from Park Hill

Heversham and the Lake District from Park Hill

Here we left the Way as I had a different agenda henceforth!  But first we had to head down into Milnthorpe, past the Folly and the chicken plots.

Milnthorpe's Folly

Milnthorpe checken plots!

When my father was 17 or thereabouts, he had a nervous breakdown and was sent from Stockport to Milnthorpe to convalesce.  Over the years, he would talk about his stay at the house with the brass knocker which was on the road from the railway station but we were never able to identify which house it might have been.  Nothing seemed to fit.  Then one day I was talking to a friend who asked which railway station did I mean?  I replied- the one that used to be by Libby's on the road to Crooklands.  My friend then asked if I was sure that it hadn't been the halt at Heversham?  That had never occurred to me; the line is discontinued and I hadn't known there had been a halt but suddenly it all made sense.  We had been on the wrong road; we should have looked on Church Street.

So, today, we did just that and found four possibilities.  Of course, what had a brass knocker in 1924 could well not now but at least I am confident about the row of houses involved and, who knows, I maight be able to find out more from the 1911 census data.

Another discovery in Minthorpe was an artists' shop behind the Cross Keys public house. Amazing what you find when you walk rather than drive.  We then returned to the car and to Arnside for a well earned hot drink and cake in one of the shops on the front, just round the corner from my old flat.

The Albion and my old flat, far right

All in all, it was good start to the new venture and, I am pleased to report, that whilst the problems described in the opening paragraph remained present, they did not prevent our enjoyment of the day.

Don, 19th January 2011


Afternote:  Nine years after writing the report, out of the blue came an email from a lady called Pam Davies of Silverdale.  She wrote to remind me that my report had posed the question "a strange roadside marker stating  SJDC (or possibly SUDC) 1870 No. 2.  Any one got any ideas what this means?"

Pam had found this website while trying to solve a mystery, and kindly wrote to tell me:

The same question was raised recently to the Mourholme Local History Society, and the answer is apparently SJDC= St James Diocese of Carlisle - ie the parish of Arnside.

So, 9 years on, we have the answer.  I would never have guessed that!

Thanks Pam.


Distance in miles:


Height climbed in feet:



E-mail addresses on this web site are protected by

 Spam Trawlers will be further frustrated by
Spam Blocker: help fight spam e-mail!  


Click on the photos
for an enlargement or related large picture.





Arnside to

Heversham to

Levens Bridge to

Helsington to

 Crosthwaite to

Witherslack to

Cartmel to
Low Wood

Low Wood to
Lowick Bridge

Lowick Bridge to
Low Parkamoor

Low Parkamoor to

Coniston to

Boot to


BOOT boys

Home Page