2021_07_24 Barnard Castle to Cotherstone

Leader:  Paul Newton         Distance:  8 miles



A good turnout for Paul’s debut walk as a leader today.  Included in the total 16 walkers, was Janette who joined our club last month and also Paul’s twins’.  All three were on their first official walk with the club today.

The pretty market town of Barnard Castle has been a popular and well known walking spot for our club for many years.  These days it’s also bustling with activity from pilgrims travelling far and wide to have their eyes tested. Known to locals as “Barney” the fabulous castle is set on a high rock above the river Tees and takes its name from its 12 century founder Bernard de Balliol.

Previous famous people was stayed in Barney, included Charles Dickens who travelled there with his illustrator Hablot Browne on 2nd February 1838 whilst researching his 3rd novel, Nicholas Nickleby.  They stayed at the King’s Head Inn (later renamed the Charles Dickens) and visited Shaw’s Academy in Bowes, a very harsh boarding school academy, providing inspiration for his novel.

Paul’s route followed the river Tees through the woods down to the outskirts of Cotherstone. Stops for elevenses and lunch had been carefully chosen by the river.  Weather conditions were perfect.

Lovely to see Ian Nelson who joined us for a post walk drink near to the Market Cross.   Paul and Janette had stumbled across Old Well Inn on a previous visit.  With it’s warm welcome the atmospheric 12th century Inn was a firm favourite today.

Many thanks to Paul for a great 1st walk. .