Distance: 2.2 miles
About: 2 hours
Terrain: Ascent 278ft descent 348ft
Plenty on Rowlands Road.

Public Transport:
472, 474 - Bury / Ramsbottom
473, 482, 483, 484 - Bury /Burnley, Bacup via Ramsbottom.
X35 - Burnley to Manchester.
487 - Bury to Nangreaves (known locally as the Nanny Flyer).

Falshaws Café on Rowlands Road.
Lord Raglan, Nangreaves
Park Farm Garden Centre.

No public toilet.
All paths fully waymarked.
    WALK 1 - 2
Hawkshaw - Holcombe
    WALK 3 - 4
Holcombe - Ramsbottom - Park Farm
    WALK 5 - 6
Park Farm - Nangreaves - Rowlands Road
    WALK 7 - 8
Rowlands Road - Greenmount
    WALK 9 - 10
Greenmount - Walshaw
    WALK 11 - 12
Walshaw - Ainsworth
    WALK 13 - 14
Ainsworth - Affetside - Hawkshaw

Public Transport:
472, 474 - Bury / Ramsbottom
473,482,483,484 - Bury / Burnley, Bacup via Ramsbottom.
X35 - Burnley to Manchester.
487 - Bury to Nangreaves (known locally as the Nanny Flyer).

Café in the Park Farm Garden Centre & Cafe.
Lord Raglan, Nangreaves.
Falshaws Ice Cream Parlour,
Rowlands Road.

Click to download walk
From Rowlands Road go straight over Walmersley Road, the A56, and take the signposted path by the 5 barred gate, across the field and into the woods beyond. On the far side of the woods, go through the stile and straight on uphill alongside the broken down dry stone wall. Approaching the phone mast’s compound at the top of the field, go to the right around the perimetre of the compound and up the wooden motorway boundary fence above, follow the fence to its junction with Walmersley Old Road.
Cross the stile turning left up the stone cobbled road to the village of Mount Pleasant.
This was the old turnpike road between Bury and Burnley, in 1790 it was improved by the famous road builder John Metcalf of Knaresborough who was known as “Blind Jack” due to losing his sight as a child from smallpox. A wax effigy of him can be seen in the museum of Knaresborough, which states that he was a smuggler before he became a road builder.

Mount Pleasant is a good example of a ‘factory’ village that started life when John Hall bought the land from Richard Nangreaves in 1819 to open a new mill. In 1820 his core business was the manufacture of quilts. The new mill provided the warp and weft for home- based handloom weavers. At one time as many as 1,300 were.

employed from as far afield as Bolton and Leigh. However, with the ever increasing mechanisation of the textile industry, more of the weaving was done within the mill than outside and the last of handloom weaving was in 1888. The village expanded to accommodate the additional spinners and weavers employed in the mill. This, together with the remoteness of Nangreaves, combined to make Mount Pleasant a largely self-contained mill village that became a conservation area in 1973.
The mill eventually closed in the 1980’s and was partially demolished. The stone used to build additional cottages changed the village into a wholly residential community.

Refreshments are available at the Lord Raglan, a cosy, 19th century family-run pub and micro-brewery just on the way out of the village.
Leaving Mount Pleasant behind, keep following Bury Old Road north.
Note the bench on the right dedicated to the late Mr & Mrs Sellers which invites the weary walker to put their feet up have a sandwich and enjoy the views of Holcombe, Winter Hill and beyond

Pass Butcher Acre, a large house on the right, and turn next left through Bent House Farm.

The path goes across the front of the house, through the side garden and emerges via a stone stile into a large meadow. Head straight across the meadow to Hoof House, its roof is just visible beyond the hedge on the far side of the meadow.

Cross the stile in the fence on the far side of the meadow and turn right up a short and often overgrown path onto the access road to Hoof House.

Turn left and almost immediately bear right down the track behind the farmhouse. Negotiate the narrow stone stile to the left of the large pair of iron gates. Turn immediately right over a second stile and head up the field to the broken down dry stone wall at the top. Bear left along the disused cart track that runs below the wall around the hill and the remains of Grant’s Tower appear up ahead.

The grassy bank in front of the tower is an ideal spot for a picnic, with wonderful views from the Pennines on the left across the Cheshire Plain to the distant mountain peaks of North Wales on the right.

This tower was much more ornate and built 24 years before Holcombe Tower, in1828 by William and David Grant (said to be the model for the philanthropic Cheeryble brothers in Dickens’ 1838 novel Nicolas Nickleby) as a memorial to their father William.

It was built on the Top o’ th’ Hoof, because many years earlier when the whole family had walked from Scotland, having fallen upon hard times and hoping to find work in Manchester, they had stopped there to rest their weary bones. Their father had looked down into the valley and said the landscape was the closest they had seen to one they had left behind in the Highlands and if they could ever afford it they would return one day. Well, they did return as wealthy men and in time built the biggest, most modern calico bleaching and finishing works in Europe, Square Mill. Within ten years the firm of William Grant and Brothers became one of the most famous in Lancashire. Ramsbottom was transformed as a result.

Edwin Waugh, the famed Lancastrian poet, whilst convalescing in a room in the tower, wrote “Lie thi’ doon laddie”. But perhaps the most famous resident of all was Steeple Jack and his family. Steeple Jack’s real name was James Wright, who came down from Dundee to Ramsbottom to repair one of Grant’s factory chimneys and took up residence in the Tower, living there for many years. In time he became known to all as Steeple Jack, which later on became the nickname/ job title of anyone working on church steeples or mill chimneys. In 1943, when the Tower had fallen into disrepair, Ramsbottom Council offered to buy it but sadly, before the sale went through, the tower collapsed on the 21st September 1944 in a violent storm.
Leave the remains of the tower via the wooden stile in the fence on the north side beneath the radio mast. Go down the path into Pike Farm’s yard and turn right out along the farm track.

Turn sharp left down the footpath off the farm track at the end of the wood, down the footpath, just before the junction with Bury Old Road.

Follow the old and disused cart track downhill (take the alternative path on the right to avoid sections which can be boggy in parts after heavy rain) all the way through the upper paddock and storage yard and the lower yard of Park Wood Farm to emerge on Walmersley Road (A56). Opposite is the start of Village Link Walk No 4 to Holcombe via Ramsbottom.

Turn right for the Park Farm Garden Centre & Café around one hundred metres down the road.

Walk 1 - 2 Walk 13 - 14 Walk 11 - 12 Walk 9 - 10 Walk 7 - 8 Walk 6 - 7 Walk 3 - 4