Thursday, 5 July 2018

A walk from Gargrave

This was a walk I had intended to do for a long time, finally achieved in the company of a couple of friends. We set off from Gargrave, which is a sizeable village about 30 minutes drive from Saltaire, up the Aire valley, past Skipton. Both the River Aire, the Leeds-Liverpool Canal and the Pennine Way footpath pass through the village. It is chiefly notable as a bottle-neck on the main A65 road from Leeds up to the Lake District. A long-running campaign for a by-pass has so far not been successful.

There has been a settlement here since Roman times and in the early 1800s cotton was manufactured here, taking advantage of the river and canal. The parish church of St Andrew dates back to 1521 and was restored in 1852, though there is evidence for a church on the site well before that. The village has a few shops and cafés catering for walkers, cyclists and passing travellers.

Many of the houses look quite old and have some nice detailing.

Our walk began along the towpath of the canal, at the Gargrave locks. We lost count but I believe we passed eleven locks on the stretch we walked.


  1. Many years ago a most tragic accident took place in the lock chamber shown here. A boatful of paraplegics in charge of an experienced team were locking through when the boat instead of rising became jammed at one end. The boat rapidly filled with water and sank. Many paraplegics drowned where they sat in the boat. Nowadays a steel ladder has been fitted to each chamber wall and baffles fitted to deflect the water inflow of the upper gate paddles, a direct result of this catastrophe.

  2. Loved seeing a map of your walk...which gives me a sense of how many spaces in England have been developed, and so many remain natural...well, at least not paved!

  3. I like seeing the map too, Jenny! This looks like a great walk!

  4. The canal lock is not too different from ours.

  5. The detailing on the house is something I wish more houses had. The character it creates enhances the environment.
    Good photos of you lovely walk

  6. Eleven locks is quite a few …

    All the best Jan


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