Walking tour shows off the wonders of the valley

Councillors assisting Treeresponsibility members plant trees at the start of the Steanor Bottom, Walsden, project
Councillors assisting Treeresponsibility members plant trees at the start of the Steanor Bottom, Walsden, project

THE upper Calder Valley is a walker’s paradise, well known for its beautiful surroundings and intricate network of footpaths.

Now a new walk has been established by Treesponsibility, the local group who combine reforestation and ecological restoration with awareness-raising about climate change.

The new walk tours around many sites Treesponsibility have planted in the upper valley over the last 13 years.

At 10am on Sunday, September 25, Treesponsibility members and supporters will be setting off along the route as part of the South Pennine Walk and Ride Festival, aiming to raise money to help fund the group’s tree-planting work at a time of financial uncertainty.

Anyone wanting to come and join in will be most welcome to do so. People who want to participate in the fund-raising effort are invited to get sponsorship or donate on the day.

The first tree ever planted by Treesponsibility is in the playground of Riverside Junior School in Holme Street, Hebden Bridge, and this is where the walk begins.

It then proceeds up the canal towpath for a short way, before taking in planting sites around Knott Wood, Height Gate, Mankinholes and Longfield.

Then, after a brief rest in Todmorden, the route strikes out over Todmorden Moor, visiting treesponsibility’s highly successful land restoration and planting of Midgleden Wood – the hub of the group’s newly launched SOURCE project.

Finally come their two largest and most impressive sites at White Slack and Steanor Bottom, Walsden, by which time the Summit pub, which signifies the end of the walk, should be a welcome sight.

Participants don’t have to walk the whole 16 or so miles. The first stage is approximately two miles, ending in Knott Wood, and is suitable for occasional walkers and those with children. The second stage is about seven miles in total and ends in Todmorden. People can also join just for the third stage, leaving from Bear Wholefoods in Rochdale Road, Todmorden at approximately 2pm.

You can download a guide for the walk from the Treesponsibility website www.treesponsibility.com, and there is a copy of the official sponsor form available to download there too.