Tuesday, 14 February 2017

Xoдитb  с Россиянами 
  I have a few Russian friends who live in the north east. Occasionally we have a walk out, Russians and English. On Sunday February 12th we decided to walk round Hulne Park, part of the Duke of Northumberland's estate in Alnwick. It's a beautiful area, woodland, farmland, rivers, ruins and it's just past his grace's castle. You can park on the side of the road approaching the park, but you must park parallel and not at an angle like Americans, or the man in the cottage gets upset. AND YOU MUST NOT TAKE YOUR CAR OR DOG INSIDE.
Find the website and there is a map of the park with walks marked on it, or use OS Explorer 332, Alnwick and Amble. On the official park map there are three colour coded walks, yellow, blue and red, we chose the blue, approximately 6.5 miles.
There were nine of us, some qualifying as gadgies or gadgettes but only me from the regular team.

                    The entrance to Hulne Park. Drive through Alnwick, turn left at the castle gate and then left after the Duchess School.
Initially the three walks coincide and we strode out in the cold heading north east on the road. Near the track to the Park Farm we noticed the Red route was temporarily closed.
                    A fine example of a hemel, semi open barn.
After a couple of miles there is a track on the left that leads up to the Brizlee Tower, a folly built by one of the Dukes in 1781. I believe it was once possible to climb to the top, but no longer, H and S at least. We opted to give it a miss and continue on the blue walk west then north before turning east at the East Brizlee bridge and walking along Palmstrother Drive.
Soon we were at the foot of the hill on which sits Hulne Abbey, used in Robin Hood, Prince of  Thieves as  maid Marion's home. We climbed the low hill to the abbey but unfortunately disaster struck and one of our number became quite ill. But fortunately we had a doctor with us who took control of the situation, advised lying down, a little drink and some sugar. The doctor then volunteered to run to the entrance, get a car and drive round to pick up the sickly individual. On the way out of the park the car was stopped and although a good reason was given for disobeying the no car rule was given the guy on the gate was very rude.

                                            Hulne Abbey. There is a cottage inside, lights and TV on but no response to our request for help with the sickly one.

Now we were seven. We walked on past Lady's Well and alongside the River Aln.
On the opposite bank are the remains of Alnwick Abbey. Very big into abbeys in the north.
Eventually we wound our way back through woods with some impressive trees until we were back at the gate.
Unlike the gadgie walks, the Russian walks end with a meal in a pub, we drove to, guess where, the Anglers Arms at Weldon Bridge. The large fish and chips were superb.
Unfortunately one of the team suffered a heavy nose bleed. The doctor had gone. With ice cubes from the water jug and lots of help from the staff at the pub we managed to stop it.
This really is a terrific walk at any time of the year, easy and interesting. Suitable for a family walk.
I suspect the man in The Times has covered it, if not he should.

                   Two distant bviews of Brizlee Tower

Contains OS Data Copyright. Crown copyright and database right 2017