: Not Just Jericho and the Compression Vest
years ago, the BBC program Jericho
inspired us to learn more about the hard
lives of the men who built the huge
railway viaduct and lived in the temporary
townships. Coincidentally we climbed
Ingleborough on the same outing, BB1615.
a suggestion from Bryan inspired us to revisit
the scene. This time we would visit
the site of one of the townships on Blea
Moor Common. Coincidentally we would
climb Ingleborough on the same outing only
this time reversing the direction of rotation.
information board suggested that these townships
for men working on the viaduct and the Blea
Moor tunnel must have been a bit like the
Wild West with their wooden shacks, muddy
lanes and Saturday night brawling.
Road led us south to some cottages, past
an old quarry and up onto Park Fell. It
was quite steep but nowhere near as bad
as the climb involved on the reverse route.
the trig point there is a great view
of the curved viaduct, the product of the
thousands of labourers. To its left,
the Whernside range.
the other side of the hill, Pen-y-Ghent.
path skirts the edge with a precipitous
drop if you were to stray too far off the
path. Eventually we reached the point
at which BB1615's fearsome climb reaches
here, the route to the Ingleborough summit
is largely flagged with quite a steep climb
in parts. On the plateau, which is mostly
loose chippings, we were surprised to find
sheep grazing on what must be very meagre
also found a very good shelter where to
tackle our rations. Just half of them
as it was not yet noon.
retraced our steps until we reached the
junction with last time's steep ascent.
Except that today it was to be the steep
descent. Which is worse? The
descent, partly because you are facing outwards
so the steepness is emphasised and partly
because the knees are having to act as shock
absorbers and brakes.
the torture is short and soon the flagged
path leads over Humphrey's Soggy Bottom
to the even more strangely named Braithwaite
Wife Hole. A little further on we
ate the rest of our butties then emerged
onto the Low Sleights Road, very close to
the Old Hill Inn- the start point
of BB1615 but closed today. Looking
back, Ingleborough loomed menacingly.
pleasant wander around lanes and one particular
path abundant with wild flowers led us to
and under the viaduct, through which Ingleborough
on Blea Moor Common a was an Ice Cream
van parked conveniently next to the cars.
Of course we did!
stop, the Hare & Hounds
at Levens to meet with Tony
who unkindly took one look at
Mike and asked if he was
wearing a compression vest.
subsequently sent this picture
of what he would look like if
Wednesday 9th June 2021
Comitibus: Don, Martin,