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Lake District Top 10 Literary Walks
Lake District Top 10 Literary Walks
In the Lake District Top 10 Series this attractive and cleverly structured guide gives walkers ten of the finest walks through the literary landscapes of the Lake District National Park in a popular pocketable format.
With clear information, an overview and introduction for each walk, large scale Ordnance Survey maps, superb eye-grabbing panoramic photographs, and interpretation of points of interest along the way, these guides set a new standard in clarity and ease-of-use. Featured walks include: Wordsworth's birthplace; School days; Golden daffodils; Favourite valley; Wordsworth country; Beatrix's beginnings; Summer inspiration; Newland connections; Sheep farming days; Beatrix Potter country.
Paperback; 150 x 108mm
full colour, panoramic photographs
Book review by Steve Matthews of Bookends.
Literary Walks in the Lake District by Steve Goodier. Northern Eye Books. £5.99
William Wordsworth, who later disliked the hordes of tourists - he should see the fifteen million we get today - streaming into the Lake District, felt it was a place for everybody provided they came properly equipped: "The Lake District is a sort of national property in which every man has a right and interest who has an eye to see and a heart to enjoy."
So, if you are well prepared with that perceiving eye and receptive heart, Steve Goodier will show you the way.
Begin where Wordsworth began, in Cockermouth, at Wordsworth House. His father was Sir James Lowther's land agent and the infant poet lived in this grand town house for the first years of his life until his mother's death when he moved to Penrith. The gentle stroll along "the fairest of rivers" and through the town takes in Jennings Brewery, which began life in Lorton sixty years after Wordsworth, and Harris Park, where Canon Rawnsley placed a statue of Dorothy and William. The statue was stolen, retrieved from a Keswick garden and returned to Cockermouth where it now stands in front of Wordsworth House.
Your next walk might be in Hawkshead following the poet from the grammar school to Ann Tyson's lodging house and then climbing steeply past the church to the top of Latterbarrow.
Then it's time to go in search of daffodils along the shores of Ullswater. Dorothy and William were entranced by the sight of the host of flowers along the shore when they walked back to Grasmere after staying with a friend at Pooley Bridge. Dorothy "never saw daffodils so beautiful, they grew among the mossy stones, about and above them; some rested their heads on these stones as on a pillow for weariness; and the rest tossed, and reeled, and danced, and seemed as if they verily laughed with the wind that blew upon them over the lake."
Steve suggests two further places where you might stretch your legs where Wordsworth walked, along the Duddon Valley following the still gliding stream, and a four mile stroll around Wordsworth's home at Rydal Mount.
You might also choose to tread in the busy footsteps of Mrs Tiggy-Winkle. Beatrix Potter's famous story was set in a real place. She'd taken her pet hedgehog on holiday and she knew a Scottish washerwoman called Kitty Macdonald. Put these together with the landscape of Catbells above Little Town farm and the genius of Beatrix Potter and you have one of the great stories of children's literature. You begin at Little Town, climb Yewthwaite Combe, cross Yewthwaite Gill at the old mine workings and walk under the western side of Catbells before dropping down to Skelgill farm. And if you see that scurrying hedgehog it will be like walking through the book itself.
You might also walk along the shores of Windermere by Wray Castle where the young Beatrix first fell in love with the Lake District or stroll through the woods at Lingholm on Derwentwater where she went for her childhood holidays.
She spent her later years at Troutbeck Farm breeding sheep - there's an attractive mountain walk here. And you have to visit Hill Top Farm and walk around the tarns and Claif Heights.
Altogether, with that perceiving eye and receptive heart and a strong pair of legs, you might avoid most of those fifteen million other people, and find a little literary inspiration in the Lakes.
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