Autumn Footprints 2018 - Week One
w/e 23 September 2018
All of this week's pictures were taken with a Kodak DX6490

Storage Depot

Of the guided walks available in the first week of the Festival, I joined the groups for five of them beginning with a seven mile route on Monday around West Hallam and Stanley through countryside like that shown above. The walk was led by the Heanor Local History Society and facts were related at various points on the route. For example the old buildings seen here at the West Hallam Storage Depot were used during World War II and they are still in use today although there are also more modern buildings on the huge site.

As we climbed to the highest point in the walk near the Cat and Fiddle Windmill the walkers in front appeared in silhouette against the sky. The conditions varied throughout the walk but much of it was conducted under skies like this - typical autumn weather that is usually guaranteed for the annual Festival.
Route Map
Wheatsheaf Lane

History was a theme of several of the walks during the week not least among them a gentle wander around Crich with the Amber Valley Walking For Health group on Tuesday. The route took us up Bown's Hill and Cromford Road with several stops along the way to point out many of the historical buildings. George Stephenson, the "Father of Railways", built a mineral railway in Crich and entertained his guests in the Wheatsheaf pub. This was just one of the stops on the way.
St Mary's Church

National Tramway MuseumHoly WellAnother pause in the walk was at St Mary's Church where again there were many interesting features and items pointed out inside. From there we continued up to the National Tramway Museum (left) built in a former quarry before returning to the village centre across the fields. It was here that a stone slab where the surrounding vegetation had been cleared was identified as Holy Well (right).
Route Map

On Wednesday I joined a party of walkers from the Horsley Woodhouse Walking for Health group for a three mile walk at Horsley Woodhouse and Horsley. This signpost in Horsley opposite the Coach and Horses pub shows the roads to nearby villages (and Derby) but most of this walk was on footpaths over open countryside.
Golf Course

Field FootpathWildflower AreaWe had reached Horsley mainly on footpaths (left) and our return to Horsley Woodhouse included a section across the Horsley Lodge Golf Course where signs of autumn were apparent in the trees. This was a very similar route to last year's Autumn Footprints walk about the same time but the season seems more advanced this year. Compare the same wildflower area (right) with this photo from last year.
Route Map

It's not only history that featured large in my itinerary for this first week of the Festival but also Walking for Health groups as it was another one I joined on Friday for the Sandiacre Strollers' "Sandiacre and Stanton Gate Loop". Although mainly a waterside walk it did include crossing this long graffiti covered footbridge over the railway into Stapleford and showed another aspect of the sights to be seen in the Festival.
No. 401728

Canal Bridge from the southCanal Bridge from the northThe route had begun at Sandiacre Library and continued along the Erewash Canal as far as a bridge over it (left) before turning off to cross the railway bridge. It returned from the north to the same bridge (right) and retraced the route back to the library. In between it was mainly road walking but the route did pass through a field full of cattle including ear tagged no. 401728 standing by the River Erewash.
Route Map
Wharcliffe Road

It was back to the history walks on Saturday when a higher than expected number braved the elements for a "Step Through Time in Ilkeston" led by volunteers from the Erewash Museum. Again frequent stops were made in the one and a half mile route to discover the history of some of the buildings. Here on Wharncliffe Road, three buildings - the United Reformed Church (1905), the Red House (1899) and Croft House (1926) - were all designed by Ilkeston architect Harry Tatham Sudbury.

Another stop on the walk was the "Carnegie Free Library" which was opened by the Duke of Rutland in 1904. With the rain still pouring down more buildings in the town centre were visited including Rutland Mills, St Mary's Church and the Town Hall but it's fair to say not as many people concluded the walk back to the Erewash Museum than started from there.
Route Map

On Saturday evening something I cannot remember ever happening before took place. Due to the weather forecast, Sunday's walks were cancelled with one of them being rescheduled for the following week. As it turned out Sunday wasn't bad at all but at least there was the chance to dry out and prepare to week two of the Festival.

Forward to Autumn Footprints 2018 - Week Two

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