Consulting Structural & Civil Engineers in Marple Bridge

Author Topic: A Brabyns Park Stroll : 21 Stopping Places  (Read 957 times)

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Re: A Brabyns Park Stroll : 21 Stopping Places
« Reply #2 on: June 14, 2020, 06:36:09 PM »
That's really interesting.  I'll keep a lookout for those stones.


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A Brabyns Park Stroll : 21 Stopping Places
« Reply #1 on: June 13, 2020, 04:46:41 PM »


A generation ago, two enterprising teachers developed an Interest Trail for second year pupils at Marple Ridge High School. Mrs J Harker and Miss R L Niven (unfortunately we have no record of their first names) were trying to encourage an interest in the natural world and local history by creating a marked trail around Brabyns Park. 21 stopping places were identified and features of interest described, though it would appear that two of these stops were afterthoughts as the numbers go from 1 to 19 with extra points inserted as 14a and 17a. They obviously intended this to have a permanent appeal because 21 marker stones, each engraved with the appropriate number, were installed around the trail. These were quite substantial and attractive stones, rough cut in a rectangular shape, approximately 11 to 14 inches wide, six or seven inches deep and usually buried so that they had an apparent height of 15 to 18 inches.

In 2009 the Iron Bridge Restoration Project used this trail as a foundation for part of their own efforts to raise interest, not just in the Iron Bridge but in Brabyns Park as well. It was particularly aimed at children but there was plenty to interest adults as well. Regrettably there was no room for the attractive drawings produced as an integral part of the first leaflet but this was compensated by colour pictures for identifying birds and trees and flowers. Some of the observations made about the original trail were no longer apposite so descriptions were changed and some of the marker stones bypassed.

And now, in the spring of 2020, after much water has flowed along the Goyt, both of these trails are obsolete as nature has changed but the marker stones still survive. There is still much to see by following the trail in terms of both history and the natural environment but there is now an added interest; how many of the original marker stones are still in place? It says much for the workmanship of their original installation that so many are still there but some appear to have disappeared.

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