Saturday, April 22, 2006

14 Mile Walk

This week is supposed to be consolodation, but it was such a nice day here I decided to do a longer walk. I planned a 12.5 Mile walk, but what with a few twists and turns and some little sidetracks to investigate landmarks it ended up being 14.

One of my sidetracks was to see the site of some castle remains. Unfortunately I couldn't find them. I can only have just missed them, but apparently there's not much to see anyway. A couple of walls and an excavated well.

I did a quick google to see what I missed : (It is on the bottom left of the map. You can see from the GPS how I took a detor north and then back again)

Heighley Castle and Heighley Castle Farm. The castle (only just visible, top centre (apparently?!?!)) was seat of the Lord Audley’s. It was begun by Henry de Audley in 1233. His descendant was the Lord Audley who was killed at the Battle of Blore Heath in 1459 during The Wars of the Roses. In 1644, a Parliamentary Committee in Stafford ordered its destruction to prevent it being garrisoned by Royalists (another version is that it was destroyed by the Royalist Audley family to prevent it falling into Parliamentary Roundhead hands!). It is now a Scheduled Ancient Monument. It is on private land now owned by Lord O’Neill. Tradition has it that a Roman road connecting The Wrekin in Shropshire to Congleton in Chesire, ran past the castle. However, it is more likely to have been a pack horse trail, due to winding nature of the roads that now exist leading to and from this area. Heighley is Anglo-Saxon for High Lea, or a high clearing, and in the Doomsday Book, it had land for one plough and was held by Alward.

Anyway, enough of the local history lesson. That was the furthest i've ever walked. I was tired towards the end, but not spent. I'll take it easy tomorrow with a shorter run.

Bye for now.

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