Monday, 8th June, getting somewhere, Diggle to Rowarth, in a Horsebox. Approximately 16 miles.
This day is a departure from the norm to be sure. I could have risked it, gone against local wisdom and ventured into unknown territory but my gut was telling me not to do it so I had to go with that. It is our third day of failing to open any viable channel for transport so I decide to throw money at it and with little change from £100, I manage to secure a commercial horse transporter to get us to our next destination.
What a relief to be on our way again and over this particular hurdle. On the way we pass what looks like a new track. Could this be part of the new construction for the PB. My next host, Terry, tells me later he has cycled down it only to discover that it comes to an abrupt dead-end. Could this be another fatality of spending cuts?
We arrive at our remote destination at Kings Clough Head Farm located in a stunning valley, just off the PB, our transporters wondering if they will get the horse box up the narrow lane. Tommy is galvanised into galloped around his new field calling to the horses across the valley. It is a delight to see how fit and energetic he looks as he postulates and prances around. After I am settled, I go out to see how he has settled and he gallops up to the gate to greet me. I think he is missing his sheep. What a little beauty.
Can’t wait for tomorrow and to be back on the trail again. In the evening, I walk down the track to the village pub for a ‘pint and a pie’, in my case chicken and tarragon washed down with a glass of Pinot. Some of the village houses of Rowarth are built with a blonder coloured stone which I am guessing is limestone and which is a relief to the eye after all the dark stone houses of places like Todmorden. And we come across a little plaque on the side of this (dark stone) house which fits with the name of the road leading to Kings Clough Head Farm, the Monk’s Road.
The landscape around here feels more gentle and lush compared to the wilds of the North from where we have come. But we have a very wild and woolly moorland to cross tomorrow. Can’t wait. Look what I found in my room in the way of reading material,
and hanging on the wall.