Signing the Lancashire Way
My next task is to sign the whole of the Lancashire Way with way markers – all 291 miles, which should keep me busy for the next year or so. But it is another great excuse to walk it all again!
Last week I started by signing the whole of Stage 33 – all 19 miles from Abbeystead to Hornby taking in the second highest point in Lancashire – Ward’s Stone. It is a good Stage on which to start this process as the paths are not always distinct being largely new concessionary routes over the peat bogs and heather that typify the Bowland Fells. They will hopefully give you some assurance in bad weather and poor visibility.
The way markers are not the traditional arrowed round versions that you see with most footpath signs. They are rectangular and have no arrow. Where possible they have been located next to the traditional yellow arrows and so complement the existing signage. They are really there to give you assurance that you are still on the correct route.
Also be aware that on some sections you can go a mile or three without seeing one of the way markers. For instance on the three miles from Harterbeck near High Salter down into the village of Wray there is not one as there is no need.
You may even think that they are too discrete but I did not want them to detract from the landscape. I have seen some marker posts adorned with tens of way markers, which can be confusing and an eyesore. Really the maps and the descriptions of the Stages should be sufficient.
Please do let me have your comments on the way markers or any aspect of the Lancashire Way – both good and bad!
UPDATE AUGUST 2018
I am pleased to say that almost all of the Southern Loop and the Northern Loop have now been fully signed. The first exception is part of the Leeds Liverpool canal from Red Rock near Haigh Hall to Adlington but this should not be an issue as the route just follows the canal. The second part is a three mile section of Stage 34 from Hornby to Melling. I hope to do this as soon as I can.
I have started the Central Loop with the Stages 17 to 20 completed. That leaves just 70 miles or so left!!
Having now put up so many signs I have developed a “methodology “, which I am hoping is consistent. With the need to gain permission I have almost only fixed the signs to footpath signs and markers and around stiles where existing footpath markers are present. Thus at times there can be periods when you may not see signs for sometime so I need to emphasise again that the way markers are very much subsidiary to the OS Maps on this site and the directions. Also if you find a way marker attached to a signpost it does not necessarily mean that you should follow the direction of the footpath sign. This is particularly the case when a path routes off the Lancashire Way – I am using the signpost to fix the Lancashire Way Marker to confirm that you are still following the correct route and not to come off the route. This is particularly the case when following a road or track. Also when passing through villages and towns there are few places to attach a way marker so again there may be an absence until you are back in the countryside.
Finally as a result some of the signs are perhaps a little hidden – it can be a little like the children’s books called “Where’s Wally” or perhaps in this case “Where’s Lanky”! I hope some make you chuckle but generally give you that assurance that you are reading the maps correctly.