Walkshire through the eyes of an 8 year old

Here is a blog by our youngest contributor, so far, Eden. He was asked to write about his three favourite walks where he lives as part of his school assignment this year and got in touch to ask if it could be part of our Walkshire campaign. How could we refuse?

We hope you enjoy Walkshire through the eyes of an 8 year old, we certainly did at Welcome to Yorkshire.

My favourite three local walks by Eden, aged 8.

Hello, my name is Eden and I am from Cullingworth in West ‘Walkshire’. I am very lucky to have lots of nice walks around where I live. As part of my schoolwork this term I’m writing about three of my favourite walks and I wanted to share them with you.

The Viaduct (The Great Northern Trail)

This walk starts at Cullingworth Village Primary school, on the site of the old train station. You can see the old station sign in front of the school.

Following the path opposite the school you will walk onto the first viaduct. This crosses over a lot of houses so make sure you wave to people sat out in their back gardens. The viaduct is nice and wide so if you have a dog or want to cycle it’s a great place to go. The path then continues following the route of the old railway line between Keighley, Cullingworth and Queensbury on the outskirts of Bradford. The path is more or less flat because it used to be a railway track and needed to be level for the trains.

After about 10 mins there is a lovely tunnel that you can stand underneath to shout and listen to the echo or you can take a short cut over the top of the tunnel on the right hand side. The route continues for another 15 minutes until you reach the splendid, amazing, wonderful and cool Hewenden viaduct.

Built in the 1880’s, taking 3 years to complete, it was finished in 1883 making it 138 years old. That is very old!!! It has 17 arches and curves to the right. The views of the countryside from on top are stunning, splendid and special especially of the reservoir below. I like to imagine going back in time and travelling on the train on this railway.

At the other end of the viaduct is a hidden station and if you look closely you can see the old platforms and station house.

I love this walk because of its history and the hard work that went into building the amazing viaduct.

Goit Stock Waterfall

Goit stock is a beautiful, amazing and splendid waterfall in Cullingworth and we are lucky to live near it. The waterfall has been formed over hundreds of thousands of years and is lovely natural beauty spot. It is a short walk from where I live so we go and see it regularly. In normal times I love to take my friends to see it when they come to stay with us.

The things I like about the waterfall are the sound it makes especially after heavy rainfall. It can sound like an angry roar from a lion and is very loud. When it is quiet, I like playing in the shallow water with my friends and stone skimming. It is the perfect place to skim and I love doing that with my daddy.

After we’ve finished playing, we walk down the beck towards Harden passing through a mystical woodland full of dear, badgers and singing birds. I love checking out the various plant species with my mummy who knows the names of them all. She is so clever like that.

We then like to rest our legs at the Malt pub in Harden where they have a lovely space to play football and excellent ice cream!

Cow House Beck/Emma’s Badger Sett

My favourite place for a walk and a picnic is Cow House Beck that has thousands of flowers in the meadow making it beautiful, splendid and peaceful. I love to play in the stream here with my friends and family. In the summer I had lots of fun here running around in the field in the open air.

In the summer last year, we found an abandoned badger cub very close by. It was surprise to see it out in the daylight and it was the first time I had ever seen one. My mummy is a brilliant ecologist and was able to rescue the young cub with the help of the RSPCA. This cub was then named Emma, in honour of my mummy, but I wanted to call it Gonzo after the character in the Muppets. Thankfully, Emma was looked after and then released into a safe spot somewhere else the country.

Therefore, because of this special experience and the lovely setting of Cow House Beck this is one of my favourite places to walk too as it brings me happy thoughts every time I visit.

Welcome to Walkshire

Welcome to Walkshire, the year long campaign from Welcome to Yorkshire to make the county the home of walking in the UK. You might ask yourself what is Walkshire? What does it mean for me and hopefully, how can I get involved?

We are blessed with some of the most iconic locations in the country to stretch those legs and get outdoors, however, Walkshire isn’t just about celebrating the countryside and our many beautiful sites across the region. Just as walking is accessible to all, Walkshire is accessible to all. We will be focussing across the year on urban walks, walks on your doorstep, walks with friends and walks that discover the history and heritage of our fine county.

Whilst we will be covering walks all over the region it is really important to make sure that you follow the countryside code at the latest Covid restrictions at all times. We’d want you enjoy Yorkshire but respect the people and places of our unique part of the world

There will be a walk a day published across all our website and social media channels. This will help you build up a library of walks to choose from when you have time to get out and about. These will be themed seasonally ranging from a mental health focus in January, child focussed walks in the school holidays and spooky ghost walks at Halloween. We’re also collating many of our walks on our handy Walkshire map so that you can find them easily and check out different types to try out when you’re ready.

Walking is also a fabulous way to support some of our communities and local businesses. That cup of coffee, the ice cream for the kids or the quick snack to refuel will make a big difference to some of the businesses that have had a hard time in the last year. They want to see you, and Walkshire provides that great excuse to see them.

We’re also working with some famous faces from the region who will share their experiences and favourite places for a stroll, as well as some of the region’s finest bloggers who will talk about the thing that they are passionate about, walking. We know that you will be engaged and inspired by their stories as they talk with passion about the places that they love. They are all different people with different approaches but united by a love for the region and benefits of walking. You’ll get to meet people (and the odd dog) that you’ll want to learn more about, and from, in the coming weeks and months.

We will also be working with Yorkshire Cancer Research and helping them raise much needed funds to continue their good work in the battle against cancer and it’s impact on people and families. The benefits of walking and being healthier reduce your chances of developing cancer and you’ll have opportunities to get involved with fundraising during the month of May when we hold our ‘Tour De Walkshire’. We’re proud to be supporting such a great local cause.

You also hear from great organisations such as The Yorkshire Wildlife Trust, Sustrans and the Canal & River Trust, and with three National Parks in the county you truly are spoilt for choice on where to roam. All of these maintain great and unique walking routes across Yorkshire and we hope you’ll enjoy their stories and routes over the year.

So what is Walkshire and how can you get involved?

Simply, Walkshire is for everyone. We’ll show you over the course of the year that Yorkshire has every type of walk that you could possibly imagine in every location the region has to offer. You can get involved by getting out and about, sharing your experiences of Walkshire on social media and this website.

A final request from us here at Welcome to Yorkshire as you enjoy Walkshire, please make sure you respect local Covid guidelines, always follow the countryside code and be sure to check the weather before setting out on a walk. Yorkshire is the most beautiful place and let’s make sure we keep it that way.

Enjoy 2021, the year of Walkshire.