Monday, March 17, 2014

Thorne, Stainforth, Kirk Bramwith, and South Bramwith.

Another easy local walk today; I've got a couple of busy days ahead and didn't want to end up being too stiff and sore.

It was an early start and so most of the shops in Thorne town centre weren't open yet as I looked for somewhere to buy something to eat. I found a baker's shop though, and bought the longest sausage roll I've ever seen - well over a foot long.

I then walked down to the town lock and crossed over the bridge to reach the towpath on the other side.

The walking was easy and I made a good pace, stopping occasionally to take photographs though - this one shows one of the marinas I passed.



Just beyond the marina I noticed something floating in the water, which  I seriously thought was a dead body for a few seconds; I think it was actually a mouldy sleeping bag.

A few minutes later the canal passes under the motorway bridge; I noticed what looked like some rather bizarre graffiti as I lingered - no doubt it will have some significance to some people though.



I arrived at Stainforth and popped into a café for a chip butty; it wasn't very nice though, but no-one can truly mangle or destroy a serving of chips slung at a barmcake...so I ate it all.

I crossed over the hump backed bridge and then walked along the northern bank of the canal until I reached Bramwith Swing Bridge where I left the canal and walked down the road to Kirk Bramwith, a village where I could see more sheds than houses...I only entered the outskirts of the village though..



I continued along the road until I reached  another swing bridge over a canal; a different canal though this time - the New Junction Canal [I had previously been walking along the towpath of the Stainforth and Keadby Canal]. I was quite disappointed because I was expecting this to be a lift bridge, a much rarer and more spectacular structure on the canals; the lift bridge was the next bridge to the north, about half a mile away. I considered visiting it, but it would have added an extra mile to my walk, and anyhow I had a decent view of it from where I was standing...and I could see the next lift bridge too.

I turned left onto the towpath and approached the Don Aqueduct, the highlight of today's walk.





I don't drive, and probably wouldn't be allowed to drive if I applied for a licence, because of my Asperger's syndrome and my eyesight problem. However I have piloted an eighty ton barge across this aqueduct on several occasions - it was one of the perks that I enjoyed when I was doing one of my periods of workfare, for a waterways charity based in Thorne.

I crossed over the River Don, using the walkway, and then climbed up and over the canal footbridge  to reach the other side.









It was only a short walk across some scrubland until I reached Kirk Bramwith Lock.


The photograph shows the gangway on the lock gates that I used to get a good position for some photographs, which unfortunately didn't turn out too well because of the cloudy conditions. The gangway was creaking and moving all the time, even when I wasn't walking across it.

I then walked along the towpath back to Bramwith Swing Bridge, pausing to have a chat with one of the boat owners whose barge was moored just beyond the lock.

When I reached the road I crossed over the bridge and entered South Bramwith, just a collection of farm buildings and a few houses...and one house, probably the largest in the village, that was totally covered in ivy and was almost invisible.



The next section of the walk, across fields where broccoli was growing  was probably the most difficult. It appeared that hardly anyone had used this path, despite it being clearly marked with signposts. The plants were about a foot tall and I had to trample them down in places.

I reached the road that leads to Barmby Dun and noticed a bus-stop. Since it was nearly half an hour for the next bus back into town I continued along the road until I found a lane which led to Stainforth, where I only had a few minutes to wait for the bus.