Saturday, 13 June 2009


Today my good friend Trousers and I went walking. I picked him up from the station and drove to the Staffordshire/ Cheshire border. We parked the car in Cheshire walked over Danebridge back into Staffordshire

We went through the woods towards Gradbach then turning off towards the Hanging Stone.

Trousers was being braver than me, by climbing the top of the stone. I just get convinced that if I get up it, I won't be able to get down.

We came to Lud's Church, these are just three of the amazing pics I took in there.

Lud's Church is a natural crevice in the gritstone rock found in this part of the world. It is surrounded by very old oak woods.
It has two legends attached to it.
The first relates to Sir Gawain, one of the Knights of the Round Table in King Arthurs court. According to the medieval poem, called Sir Gawain and the Green Knight this is where Sir Gawain came to keep his bargain with the Green Knight to let the Knight behead him. This if you were lucky enough to see it was featured on a programme on BBC 4 last week, as the poet Simon Armitage has translated the poem from Middle English, and he went on the journey from Tintagel in Cornwall up to Lud's Church telling the story as he went.

The other legend features Little John, who was one of Robin Hood's Merry Men. He is thought to be buried nearby, as Lud's Church was a place used by the Knights Templar for sanctuary on their return from the Crusades. At that time the forest stretched from Sherwood in Nottinghamshire all the way across to the Cheshire plain. And there are severallocal stories that bring Robin Hood to this part of England.

Whatever the truth of these legends it doesn't matter as the place has an eerieness all of it's own. The temperature drops by several degrees when you enter it. And once in, apart from any bird song above you, there is no other sound at all. It has a quality of peace and tranquility not found too often nowadays.

It is a very special place to me,and I love going there. Today's round walk was 8 miles, and I'm more than happy to do it again and again.

Leaving this ancient and sacred place we continued our walk on top of the moors you can see the Roaches in the distance, in the bottom photograph and back past the Hanging Stone and to the pub in Wincle, Cheshire, for a very well deserved drink.


trousers said...

Fabulous day as usual, thank you! Really enjoyable, and the weather was ideal.

I'm pleased that you can't tell that I'm scared on the photo :)


Paula said...

it seems like a all around fabulous and inspiring day to me. Funny that both of us had Kinghts in our mind today ;-) just for different meanings. Looked for butterflies, not a lot, but THOUGHT OF YOU.

Merry ME said...

What a lovely place. If it weren't for the 8 miles you mentioned I might put the hike on my list of places to see. When you walk in a place that is that quiet and serene is it hard to walk out?

trousers said...

Merry ME, I think my own post about today's walk might answer your question, at least to an extent :)

Ronjazz said...

Firebyrd, you are rapidly becoming one of my favorite photographers as well as bloggers. Your eye for composition is so full and wonderfully warm. These pics are wonderful!

Sorrow said...

that looks like a place well worth the traveling...
thanks for taking us along on your stroll.
less wear and tear on my boots!

Gin said...

Beautiful pictures and I love the legend behind them! Thanks for sharing!

miss*R said...

If I get to your part of the world when I visit the UK, can you take me there? i know that place.. never been there, but I know it.

Indigo said...

We live with such adorable landscapes, scenery to blow away the cobwebs and re-fill our goodness after a day taking in these fantastic sights. I love this country, alas it's run by a bunch of idiots, but perfection doesn't really exist does it?

Pam said...

Magical places. I love them. Thanks for sharing Byrd -what a great day!

Mel said...

Oh what a sanctuary.

Eight miles would be a moot point.

*happy sigh*

It woulda taken a crow bar to pry me loose from that spot.
Thank you for taking us with you.

trousers said...

Oh, and spot the similarity between this and one of your photos.

Or am I getting a bit grandiose?


Absolute Vanilla (and Atyllah) said...

Wow, what a fascinating place - just the sort to inspire stories! Sounds like a great day out - LOVED the pictures!

Val said...

i love this place!!! altho i have never been. thank you for taking us there with you xx

karen said...

Lud's church sounds like just exactly the sort of place I'd love to visit.. one day, when we are not rushing around like maniacs! Beautiful!

I enjoyed the butterfly post earlier, too.. x

Cait O'Connor said...

That sounds like a perfect day to me.

Linda - Gold Coast said...

What a wonderful walk to do and great photos. Leek Daily Photo has a photograph of Lud's Church today if you have time to check it out.

Rambling - I was born in Manchester and left when I was 12 years old but I remember my Dad would cut out "rambling routes" from the Manchester Evening News. We would catch a bus and toddle off, many times to Glossop and the Peak District. I must admit being out in the countryside wasn't my idea of fun (at that time) but looking back we had quality family time spent together in the fresh air away from the smoke filled air of Manchester. My Dad had foresight and later on we eventually moved to Glossop. Your walks with Trousers have reminded me so much of those happy days. Thank you Fire Byrd and Trousers for sharing your walks. Linda xx

Angela said...

Such a beautiful place! Did you know that Gradbach is the German name for a straight brook? I would have loved to have joined you on that walk. What is eight miles if you encounter such magic places?