Harrogate & District Walks
Follifoot and the Crimple Valley
Date: 9th June 2012
Distance: 7.0 miles
Ascent: 475 feet
Time: 2 hours 55 minutes
With: On my own
Start Grid Ref: SE312529
An interesting ramble to the village of Follifoot with plenty of interest for rail enthusiasts.
Route Summary: Fulwith Mill Lane - Crimple Beck - Follifoot Ridge - Follifoot Lane Haggs Lane - Old Railway Line - Follifoot - Rudding Lane - Crimple Lane - Harrogate Ringway - Fulwith Mill Lane
1. Crimple Viaduct
2. Crossing over the Leeds - Harrogate line
3. Field on Follifoot Ridge
4. The path along the site of the old Harrogate - Church Fenton line
6. The old cross and Rudding Arch in Follifoot
7. The church of St Joseph and St James in Follifoot
8. The disused Crimple Valley Viaduct
9. Crimple Beck
10. Crimple Viaduct
Walk Detail: The latest in a series of recent walks in and around my hometown of Harrogate this was an interesting little ramble with a definite railway theme to it.
Starting off from Fulwith Mill Lane on the south side of town I took the bridleway over Crimple Beck before crossing a disused railway line (almost invisible in the undergrowth) and then across the very much still active Harrogate - Leeds line. The highlight of this stretch were good views of the magnificent 570m long Crimple Viaduct with its 31 arches.
After continuing along the bridleway over Follifoot Ridge I then followed Follifoot Lane, an old road abandoned when the Harrogate bypass was built, to Haggs Lane from where I took another bridleway to a second disused railway line. This was the former Harrogate - Church Fenton and was one of the many victims of the Beeching cuts. This stretch of the line has recently been turned into a public right of way, and a very nice stretch of walking it was too.
Eventually I left the line of the old railway to follow a footpath alongside fields of wheat and rapeseed to Follifoot itself. The main points of interest in this attractive village were some old stocks, the village cross, Rudding Arch and the small church.
Leaving Follifoot I very bravely (for me) crossed a field containing some cows. For once they were very placid and barely even looked at me. After walking along the edge of the huge Rudding Park golf course and then a bit of road walking I next joined the route of the Harrogate Ringway which I followed all the way back to the start. On this final stretch I got a good look at the Crimple Valley Viaduct (now disused) as well as getting some more excellent views of the Crimple Viaduct which I'd seen from a different angle at the start of the walk. All in all a very enjoyable walk.