I went to Conisbrough today, walking along Balby Road as I left town. This old Methodist church on Balby Road has recently been saved from demolition.
Fortunately he parish churches at Balby and Warmsworth aren't likely to be destroyed anytime yet though.
I passed through the old part of Warmsworth.
I turned down Edlington Lane and then along the route of the old railway line at Warmsworth Halt. I continued to Edlington Community Woodland and then Martinwells Lake.
There was a well-used, but unmarked on the map, footpath through an area of scrubland and then across the fields to Stringer's Garden Centre on the edge of Conisbrough.
I entered Conisbrough from the southeast and I attempted to take a shortcut through a housing estate and ended up turning down three dead-ends and adding a few hundred yards to my mileage for the day.
Surprisingly, the church was open; I'd just set foot inside the building when someone rushed over to me and insisted I needed to use the hand sanitiser. I declined his offer, turned around and left...I want no part of this 'New Normal' that's being forced on us.
No hand sanitiser was required to enter the grounds of Conisbrough Castle though.
I found a short footpath which went down into a wooded ravine - much better than walking the road. I still needed to pass part of a housing development though to reach the bridleway that goes down into the Don Gorge.
As I headed home, walking downstream through the gorge I was searching for tunnels; I know there are several pedestrian tunnels going under the railway, most are blocked off now, but a couple aren't. Additionally there are some other short tunnels...I don't know what they were used for though. There were so many of them I lost count.
I needed to walk through the final two.
When I returned to the main path after seeking out one of the tunnels I got talking to one of the locals. For the second time in only a few minutes a loud sound came from one of the nearby quarries; I commented that it didn't sound like the blasting I heard last week and he told me it was gunfire - South Yorkshire Police have a firearms training range in one of the old disused quarries.
After walking through the last of the tunnels I wasn't sure where the path went, but after only a few yards I was walking in the streets of Hexthorpe, a part of the area unfamiliar to me, but only a couple of miles from home.