Morland is an attractive village to the east of the Lake District, its walks seldom done except by locals in the know. It has a good example of a Saxon church.
So that gives you an opportunity to get away from the crowds to explore some countryside that has remained little changed for generations.
Starting by the Crown Inn in Morland, hard by the pretty gushing Morland Beck, which we followed into the Glenton Vale, a valley that seems untouched by modern times. There is a very pretty cottage with no road access at all, the kind of home that looks as though it has stepped out of a story by AE Coppard or HE Bates. It must have a story, though I don’t know what it is.
Climbing up out of the vale we swung north eastwards past Winter House farm, before descending down to Crossrigg Hall.
We were now rambling along the tracks of a Victorian estate, for the house was built only in the 1850s to a design by Anthony Salvin.
As you descend to the River Lyvennet which circles its grounds it stands amidst its trees, on this dull winter’s day, like a painting by Atkinson Grimshaw, or like something out of a ghost story by MR James.
Many Victorian landowners closed their public footpaths and bridleways. The owners of Crossrigg did not, several paths traversing the estate and all in fine condition.
Our bridleway forded the swift-flowing river, but fortunately the owners don’t mind people using a delightful bridge nearby.
Immediately after the bridge we turned right by the river and followed its course for a couple of hundred yards to a footbridge, which we crossed.
This led to a footpath through some of the estate’s shooting coverts (Hagg Wood), where we saw an occasional pheasant, and then following footpaths past the Victorian Morland Hall and back to the village of Morland itself.
A modest ramble of but a few miles, but worth it to see the workings of two Victorian estates.