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There is some great 'wild' walking on Mallerstang Common. Its quite hard going at times, especially right below several limestone scars and the Nab of Wild Boar Fell, but a lovely return to Aisgill.

The walk does not involve well-defined footpaths.

We stayed at the very good Tranna Hill B&B in Newbiggin-on-Lune

* Doc Brown's Science Website biology chemistry physics *

Aisgill walking on Mallerstang Common, Cumbria, England

 

Looking down the B6259 towards Aisgill and Mallerstang Dale from near Cotegill Bridge over the Settle-Carlisle railway line Aisgill walking on Mallerstang Common, Cumbria, England

Looking down the B6259 towards Aisgill and Mallerstang Dale from near Cotegill Bridge over the Settle-Carlisle railway line.

There is car parking available in two place near Cotegill Bridge on the B6259.

 

Aisgill railway viaduct Aisgill farm walking on Mallerstang Common, Cumbria, England

You walk north down the road to Aisgill Farm. On the left you can find a way up onto open moorland from under Aisgill railway viaduct.

 

Looking east across the Dale from Mallerstang Common Aisgill walking on Mallerstang Common, Cumbria, England

Looking east across the Dale from Mallerstang Common

 

Looking to the southern end of Mallerstang Dale Aisgill walking on Mallerstang Common, Cumbria, England

Looking to the southern end of Mallerstang Dale

 

Looking up to the Nab from Mallerstang Common Aisgill walking on Mallerstang Common, Cumbria, England

Looking up to the Nab from Mallerstang Common after walking beneath Low White Scar, High White Scar, Yodecomb Scar and Blackbed Scar

 

Limestone pavement on Mallerstang Common Aisgill walking on Mallerstang Common, Cumbria, England

Limestone pavement on Mallerstang Common.

 

An old limestone wall enclosure for sheep on Mallerstang Common Aisgill walking on Mallerstang Common, Cumbria, England

An old limestone wall enclosure for sheep on Mallerstang Common.

 

Limestone walling on Mallerstang Common Aisgill walking on Mallerstang Common, Cumbria, England

Limestone walling on Mallerstang Common.

 

Aisgill walking on Mallerstang Common, Cumbria, England

Molly takes a break !

 

Weathered limestone walling - better than most art installations Aisgill walking on Mallerstang Common, Cumbria, England

Weathered limestone walling - better than most art installations !

 

Aisgill walking on Mallerstang Common Cumbria, England

A broad view of Mallerstang Dale from Mallerstang Common.

 

Aisgill walking on Mallerstang Common, Cumbria, England

The cairn where we headed back along the wall running north to south on the edge of Mallerstang Common.

 

Aisgill walking on Mallerstang Common, Cumbria, England

The Nab on Wild Boar Fell

 

Aisgill walking on Mallerstang Common, Cumbria, England

The cairns on High White Scar.

 

Aisgill walking on Mallerstang Common, Cumbria, England

The curve of the Carlisle-Settle line as it winds its way down into Aisgill.

curve of the Carlisle-Settle line as it winds its way down into Aisgill by Aisgill Farm walking on Mallerstang Common, Cumbria, England

You walk back down to Aisgill viaduct and back onto the road up to Cotegill Bridge - distant top-right.


"Phil Brown's docspics take on walking on Mallerstang Common"


Notes from Wikipedia

NOTES ON AISGILL

Aisgill is the southernmost of the hamlets that comprise the parish of Mallerstang in the English county of Cumbria. It is on the B6259 road, at the head of Mallerstang dale, just before the boundary between Cumbria and North Yorkshire.

The highest waterfall on the River Eden, Hellgill Force, with a drop of about 9.75 metres (according to recent measurements) is just to the north, at grid reference SD779966. The river itself rises (at first as Red Gill beck, later becoming Hell Gill beck) below Hugh Seat in the peat bogs above here. It finally becomes the river Eden after merging with the Ais Gill beck, which flows down from Wild Boar Fell.

Aisgill is at both a county and a natural geographical boundary. It is at the watershed (sometimes called "the watershed of England") from which the Eden flows north towards the Irish Sea via the Solway Firth, while the River Ure flows south towards Wensleydale, and eventually into the North Sea.

Swarth Fell frames the western side of the head of Mallerstang dale, and from Aisgill there is a view along the steep, narrow valley, with Mallerstang Edge and High Seat framing the eastern side. But the view at Aisgill is dominated by the great table-top bulk of Wild Boar Fell, to the south-west.

The Settle-Carlisle Railway reaches its highest point at "Aisgill Summit" 356 m (1,168 ft); and there is a small viaduct where the line crosses Ais Gill beck. There have been three notable rail accidents nearby: the Hawes Junction rail crash in 1910, one in 1913 and most recently in 1995.

NOTES ON MALLERSTANG

Mallerstang is a civil parish in the extreme east of Cumbria, and, geographically, a dale at the head of the upper Eden Valley. Originally part of Westmorland, it lies about 6 miles (9.7 km) south of the nearest town, Kirkby Stephen. Its eastern edge, at Aisgill, borders on North Yorkshire; and since August 2016 it has been within the Yorkshire Dales National Park.

At the 2011 census data for Wharton was included with Mallerstang, giving a total population of 173.

This narrow valley at the head of the River Eden is bounded by Wild Boar Fell and Swarth Fell to the west and Mallerstang Edge to the east.

The highest point of Mallerstang Edge is the summit of High Seat; at 709 metres (2,326 ft) this is a metre or so higher than the more prominent Wild Boar Fell. The other main high points on the eastern side of the dale are the curiously named Gregory Chapel, south of High Seat, and Hugh Seat to the south-east.

The river Eden rises as Red Gill Beck in Black Moss, the peat bogs below Hugh Seat. A little further downstream it becomes Hellgill Beck; and it traditionally takes the name 'Eden' below the waterfall Hell Gill Force, after it has been joined by Aisgill Beck, which flows down from Wild Boar Fell. The Ordnance Survey places the name change further upstream, beyond the diffluence of the Eden Sike which flows into Eden Sike Cave, one of a number of caves in the area.

Mallerstang, like many other Pennine dales, reflects the pattern set a thousand years ago by its Norse settlers (whose language is still evident in the names of many of its geographical features).[4] Its small community is scattered along 6 miles (10 km) of the dale in a series of isolated houses and small hamlets, with no village. The largest of the hamlets, Outhgill, provides a central point for the community—but after the closure of the village hall (the Travers Institute)[5] in the 1960s, and the final closure of the post office in the 1990s, only the parish church remains. St Mary's still has a small but loyal and enthusiastic congregation, and services are held weekly.

Some notable historical people and events

The dale is closely associated with Lady Anne Clifford, and the ancient road to the east of the river is known as "Lady Anne's Highway" in memory of the indomitable Countess of Pembroke, who often travelled along this track while moving between her many castles. It is, however, much older than this and was used by the Romans as a route between Wensleydale and their forts along what is now the A66. A local shepherd found a hoard of Roman coins on Mallerstang Edge near the Highway in 1927. (The "Mallerstang hoard"[6] is now in the Tully House Museum in Carlisle.) But the Romans were using a track that had existed at least since the Bronze Age, and there is evidence for even earlier use in recent finds[6] of flint tools nearby.
St Mary's Church, Outhgill

St Mary's Church in Outhgill was founded in the early 14th century by another powerful patroness, Lady Idonea de Veteripont – but, having fallen into disrepair, was restored by Lady Anne in 1663 (as a plaque over the door records).

Pendragon Castle, was also restored (in fact more or less rebuilt) by Lady Anne in 1660. According to legend it is supposed to have been built by Uther Pendragon, father of King Arthur. Whether there is any substance to these old legends will probably never be settled, and there is no evidence from the limited archaeological investigations for any building here before the Norman castle built in the reign of King William Rufus. The castle was one of Lady Anne Clifford's favourite places. But her heir, the Earl of Thanet, abandoned it; and over the next three centuries it gradually deteriorated.

One of the other notable Lords of the Manor was Sir Hugh de Morville, Lord of Westmorland. He was one of the four knights who murdered St Thomas Beckett in Canterbury cathedral, and legend says that he took refuge here afterwards before being banished to France. (Hugh Seat is named after him, and Wild Boar Fell, as seen from beyond the castle to the north, is said to have haunted him because in certain lights its profile strongly suggests a face and mitre: the recumbent St Thomas.)

On 24 February 1537 ten men from Mallerstang were hanged in the dale for taking part in the Pilgrimage of Grace. The local protesters had gathered at Lammerside Castle, just north of Mallerstang, and joined the 6000 men who marched through Westmorland towards Carlisle. This uprising against King Henry VIII was put down by a military force commanded by Thomas Howard, 3rd Duke of Norfolk, aided by Sir Thomas Wharton, 1st Baron Wharton (whose seat, Wharton Hall, lies just to the north of the parish). From the many prisoners taken, 74 were picked out to be executed in their own villages.

The tradition of dissent was still alive in the 17th century when ten or more families in the dale became Quakers – at a time when all non-conformists suffered considerable persecution. The grandson of one of these Quaker families, George Birkbeck, set up the "Mechanics Institute" in London, which later became Birkbeck College of the University of London. The Quakers' strong influence in the area continued until the Wesleyans largely replaced it in the 19th century.

Two brothers from Clapham, Yorkshire, moved to the area in the late 18th century. Richard Faraday became a notable businessman in Kirkby Stephen, where a road is named after him. His younger brother, James, set up as a blacksmith in Outhgill (in the house now called Faraday Cottage). As he moved to London a year before their third child was born, the area narrowly missed being able to claim the great scientist Michael Faraday as a Mallerstang man.


Aisgill Viaduct, Mallerstang. on the Settle–Carlisle line

The most conspicuous structure in the dale is the Settle–Carlisle Railway, built between 1869 and 1876, and one of the last great engineering works in Britain to be built almost entirely by muscle power. It was constructed at great cost not only of money but also of human life. Twenty-five of those who died during the construction of this section of the line (both builders and members of their families) are buried in unmarked graves in the churchyard of St. Mary's. A memorial to them was erected there in 1997.

The people of the Dale

From the time of its Norse settlers until the mid-20th century, farming was the main occupation in the dale. There are also the inconspicuous remains of some small-scale coal and lead mining, but this was never very profitable and did not survive beyond the 19th century. Historically the population varied between about 250 and 350.

During the 20th century, as the small farms merged, and as machinery reduced the need for manpower, the population gradually declined. By mid-century it reached a low point of about 50; but since the late 1970s the remaining farming families have been joined by many "off-comers", attracted by the scenery to make their homes here, and the population doubled again from its lowest point.  Even though it is remote from most 21st-century amenities, Mallerstang has survived as a community, with many of its ancient traditions intact.
Mallerstang Parish Meeting

The population, with 101 on the electoral register (March 2011), is too small to entitle Mallerstang to have a Parish Council, and it has no representation by elected councillors in the nearest town, Kirkby Stephen. Constitutionally, the civil parish has the status of a parish meeting, the lowest tier of Local Government in England. (A civil parish is quite separate from the Church of England's parochial organisation.) Three Officers are elected annually by those on the electoral register: the Parish Chair, a vice-Chair, and the Parish Clerk (who serves as both secretary and treasurer). Parish Meetings are held at least three times a year: in March, June and November (with a provision for extra meetings, if called for). The meetings are open to all residents, and those who are on the electoral register for Mallerstang may speak and vote on all matters.

The budget for the coming year and a 'parish precept' (an amount added to the Council Tax specifically for Mallerstang) are agreed at the November meeting. Parish officers are elected at the Annual Parish Meeting, held on the Thursday nearest to 25 March. (By tradition, past residents, especially those who have died during the year, are commemorated at this meeting.) At the June meeting the annual parish accounts are presented; this meeting also includes an annual report on the historic Mallerstang Charities. Among its other activities, the Parish Meeting has a Village Green Committee, and a Red Squirrel Committee, a group who are doing their best to conserve and protect the dale's small but thriving population of native red squirrels.


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