A lovely walk in an uncelebrated part of our uncelebrated county.
Distance: 6 ½ miles 10k
Time: 3 - 4 hours
Map: OS Explorer 296 Lancaster, Morecambe & Fleetwood.
turn right towards Lancaster. After passing a new housing estate turn right onto a bridleway called Willy Lane.
Follow this for half a mile to a cluster of buildings marked Uptown.
After the lane bends left towards Uptown take a green track on the right accessed by a
wooden gate. Follow the grassy track to its end and then go through a metal gate.
Bear left towards and electricity pylon. Just beyond it go through a gate
and follow the path as it crosses
two large arable fields skirting high ground to the left and then gently drops to a wooden footbridge.
Go straight across the next field and after a stile in a fence
cross the next field to a second footbridge. After this turn left following the line of woodland on the right. After a pair of metal gates
look for a stile on the right to enter the woods. Keeping to the path 150yds later exit the woods.
Now in a large pasture climb a small slope and cross to hedgerow on the far side. Turn left. After a metal gate
look for a stile on the right. Cross this turning left to pick up a farm track
leading to Cock Hall Woods. Follow the track through a neck of woodland and onto Cock Hall Farm.
After 250yds turn left over a stile in the hedge. Following the hedgerow on the left keep ahead to a corner on the left leading to
a renovated house and drive. Follow the drive as it leads to a large farm complex. Keep ahead
through the yard to reach the A588 Lancaster Road. Turn right (and keep right as there is no pavement on this sometimes busy road). In a little over 200yds
turn left onto a footpath accessed by a stile on the drive of a property. Keeping to the hedgerow on the left
keep ahead for over half a mile negotiating stiles and footbridges at field corners. After a track appears on the left continue for another 100yds into an open field and then turn left to climb the gentle slope of Thursland Hill. There is no obvious direction sign to let you know you are on a right of way but at the next hedge join the track
leading to the top. For purists the trig point is to the right beyond a quarry pond.
To my mind this little hill is one of - yes you've guessed it - the finest viewpoints in the county. On a clear day the wide sweep of Morecambe Bay is to the west, the Lakeland hills to the north and the Bowland Fells to the east are all on magnificent display and you are just 75ft above sea level. Continue on the farm track to Norbreck Farm.
When you reach the farm drive turn left onto a path close to the farmhouse
and then immediately right over a stile. Resuming a southerly direction cross a pasture to a stile in a fence
and then continue over a double stile in a hedge. In the next field aim slightly left of the large barn at Hillam Farm. After a gate go through the yard
to reach Hillam Lane.
at the entrance to Norbreck Farm. After crossing a cattle grid the way meets a junction
with a handsome memorial seat. Here follow the left fork towards Patty's Barn.
As you near the farm complex take a footpath on the left. At the stile follow the waymark pointing right. This leads to a stile in trees.
Over this cross a footbridge and the following the fence line on the right keep ahead across the runway of the Black Knights Parachute centre keep ahead. After two wooden footbridges
an enclosed path will lead to the A588. Cross the road turn left and walk 250yds along the pavement. At a white picket gate
turn right onto a footpath leading towards a church. Just before the church take a footpath on the left
which leads to its drive and back to the village hall.