A Circuit from Sedbergh.

Start. Sedbergh (Howgill Lane).

Route. Sedbergh (Howgill Lane) - Main Street - Vicarage Lane - Millthrop Bridge - Akay - Birks House - Birks - Brigflatts - A683 - Haverain Beck - The Oaks - River Lune - The Oaks - A683 - Ingmire Back Lane - Ingmire Hall - A684 - Slacks Lane - Underwinder - Howgill Lane - Sedbergh.

Notes. Welcome to a quiet corner of the Yorkshire Dales, the delightful market town of Sedbergh, with old world charm in abundance. Developed at the confluence of four rivers where ancient trade routes met. It’s one of these rivers we’ll be rambling along today, so come along let field paths, bridleways and sunken lanes guide us around the Rawthey Valley.

The Rawthay rises somewhere on the slopes of West Baugh Fell, we joined it at Millthrop Bridge after picking our way through the streets of Sedbergh, via Howgill Lane then Main Street to join the Dales Way. With this long distance footpath under foot we wandered down Vicarage Lane, when the lane swung sharp left we passed through a metal kissing gate allowing access to green fields, the narrow trod guided us passed Settlebeck School then down to the River Rawthey. With the Dales Way to guide us, the tree lined banks of the Rawthey for company we wandered west. First through a couple of fields then into some amazing woodland, all around rising into the blue sky fine specimen trees, scattered around the ruins of a number of buildings, a section of mosaic floor and a fantastic sunken path leading to the river, his place was worth exploring, we spent some time wandering around.

This was the site of Akay Lodge of Georgian design built in 1824, by 1883 the building was known as Mansion House with lands, gardens and various adornments. In 1901 it was replaced by a much bigger building twice the size, 1936 saw the house and grounds purchased by Sedbergh School, in 1939 Akay burned to the ground.

We continued into the field next to the ruins, standing atop a small knoll overlooking the river a building known as The Pepperpot. It is believed locally this was built as an isolation house for Ann Taylor daughter of the owner of Akay Lodge who developed Tuberculosis at the age of 18, she died age just 21, the Pepperpot then fell into ruin, it was restored in 2001 for the use of the community.

From The Pepperpot we continued following the river as it meandered it’s way through the valley, passed the scattering of fine old buildings at Birks, an old mill complex followed by a not so old and not so noticeable sewage works. Before reaching the remains of the Ingleton Branch Line we passed the confluence of the rivers Rawthey and Dee, here we stopped for lunch purchased earlier at The Three Hares Cafe in Sedbergh. Lunch over we crossed the defunct railway line, wandered passed the Quaker Meeting House at Brigflatts to be unceremoniously ejected onto the busy A683, the main road linking Sedbergh to Kirkby Lonsdale, we where now in the Lune Valley.

Following advice from a number of warning signs we walked along the grass verge, passed Hebbethwaites to be met by a finger-post inviting us to The Oaks, this path we followed. Through sheep pastures over Haverah Beck to access a green lane leading to The Oaks. At The Oaks a lovely little hamlet we left the Dales Way, field paths guided us over the hill to Killington Bridge and the banks of the River Lune.

This is a spectacular stretch of the Lune, unfortunately you can’t get any photos for the vegetation lining it’s banks, we tried (not very hard) but failed. The path guided us up stream before swinging away from the river, through another field we walked to join a sunken green lane leading back to The Oaks, we then re-traced our steps to the main road where we joined another ancient track passing Ingmire Hall, Ingmire Back Lane, this was a stunning old route possibly once the main road through the valley, it deposited us on the main road linking Sedbergh to Kendal.

Taking great care we wandered west, no grass verge just high hedge rows shielding us from the oncoming traffic, I was glad when we reached Slacks Lane. From this narrow lane we joined the drive leading to Underwinder, from the cluster of converted farm buildings field paths guided us up steep ground to access Howgill Lane, we turned right. Between high hedge rows with the occasional stolen view over the Lune and Rawthey valleys we wandered, down hill all the way back to the parked car, with one stop I’d well recommend. Lockbank Farm the first farm on the left produces and sells on the premises Howgill Fellside Ice Cream, you can sit and cool down whilst enjoying quality ice cream and stunning views over Rawtheydale.

view route map.


The sleepy streets of Sedbergh.

Nestled under the steep slopes of Winder the market town of Sedbergh.

Rambling through wild flower meadows on the descent to the banks of the Rawthey.

Echoes of a grand passed, what remains of the kitchen garden of Akay Lodge.

Mosaic tiled floor of the conservatory slowly vanishing under vegetation.

The sunken walkway that once lead from the lodge to the river.

The Pepperpot restored in 2001 for the use of the local community.

One of the delectable heights of the Howgill's, Winder.

The River Rawthey near Birks.

Unbridled the River Rawthey near it's confluence with the River Dee.

Viewed from the redundant Ingleton Branch Line, across sheep pastures to the right Brigflatts.

Rawthey Bridge once carried the Ingleton Branch Line, opened in 1861 closed 1966, what a shame you can't cross it today.

Above Ingmire Hall, Fell Head seen from the grass verge of the busy A683.

Dappled light on the grassy slopes of Winder.

It's easy to forget you're walking through a working landscape, someone's office.

The massive bulk of Baugh Fell as seen from field paths near The Oaks.

A green lane guides us to the delightful scattering of converted farm buildings and historic architecture of The Oaks.

Looking over The Oaks to Holme Knotts the northern extent of Middleton Fell.

Above The Oaks soaking up awesome views to the Howgill Fells.

Heading down to the banks of the River Lune viewing the pastures and woodland on Kirkbank with Fell Head to the right.

A wonderful route of old, and it's got a name, Ingmire Back Lane.

Above Underwinder, viewing the wind turbines on Lambrigg Fell with the shadowed slopes of Firbank Fell rising out of shot to the right.

Gain a little more height and the views over the Lune valley just get better.

In Howgill Lane watching shadows dance across the Frostrow Fells.

After a long hot ramble you can't beat sitting in the garden, at Lockbank Farm the sun beating down, eating Howgill Fellside Ice Cream with this stunning view for company.

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