Posted in Fitness challenges, Walks

Preston Guild Wheel: Part 2


It was raining, my friend was too ill to join me on my Preston Guild Wheel walk, I was alone and wondering if I would get bored and then…

I saw a deer (pictured below). Of course, with my rather average camera phone, it doesn’t look like one unless you enlarge it and then you might see a little blob. But it really was a deer and I saw it with my own eyes. ThisΒ part of the walk is suburbia but a path leads onto a large open space of green that has been left for people and dogs to enjoy, and wildlife to live. The Woodland Trust looks after part of it.


This curiosity (below), and others like it, can be found in the parkland. I think it’s an ‘insect hotel’ for bees etc to live.



The Guild Wheel took me through both a natural and industrial landscape.

Sometimes it was a path with railings on either side, hiding behind were factories and offices.

Other times it took me on a detour of beautiful greenery – despite a motorway just minutes away.

Along the way, I entered the exterior of Preston Crematorium, a peaceful place, and continued along a tree-lined path which took me to Brockholes Nature Reserve.

But first I encountered the now disused site of Courtaulds, a manufacturer of rayon. Built in 1939 and closed in 1979, it was the largest site in Britain to produce rayon (according to Wikipedia). At its peak, 4,000 people were employed there and when it closed in 1979, 2,800 jobs were lost (Keith Johnson, Cherished Memories of Old Mansion and Rise of Industry, ).

There also used to be an old mansion in this area but alas, it is no more.

It always surprises me how brown belt land often seems to be reclaimed by nature.



The trail continues towards Boilton Wood, neighboured by Nab, Redcar and Tunbrook Woodlands. Boilton Wood is a site of special scientific interest and forms part of the biggest stretch of ancient woodland in Lancashire (information from Visit Preston website).

When I reached Brockholes Nature Reserve, I spotted this delightful fellow.


And another colourful resident can be seen here…



Brockholes is a fabulous and unusual 250-acre nature reserve, owned by the Wildlife Trust. It’s such a peaceful natural haven that you wouldn’t think it is so near to the M6 but it is. The former gravel quarry actually supplied materials to build the motorway and only opened in 2011, after being bought by the trust in 2007.

‘Village in the Reeds’ Photograph by Jim Beattie. Courtesy of The Lancashire Wildlife Trust.

It’s located on a flood plain of the River Ribble so has a unique floating visitor village!


After a delightful and filling leek and potato soup at the cafe, I continued the last mile along the River Ribble to the Tickled Trout Hotel in Samlesbury. I was lucky enough to have a lovely pastoral river view from the room window, and was able to watch the cows munching the grass alongside the River Ribble.

I was glad I embarked on this journey after all!



Part 3 coming soon..

(For more information about Brockholes, visit



Interested in environmental issues, wildlife, spirituality, gardening, self-sufficiency and mini-adventures. There are two blogs, one is and the other, more recent one, is - ☺️

23 thoughts on “Preston Guild Wheel: Part 2

    1. It was very special to see the deer, I wasn’t expecting to see one so near to housing so it was a surprise to see it. It would have been lovely to have been nearer, but even from where I was, it was a wonderful sight to see. πŸ™‚

      Liked by 1 person

    1. It’s part of the ‘visitor village’ which floats. There’s a lovely view of the lake from the cafe. Although you don’t feel like you’re floating on it, that would be a weird sensation! They designed it specifically like that because it’s on a flood plain. The buildings stand on a pontoon just above the water surface. πŸ™‚

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      1. I think doing something by ourselves gives us more confidence. I was certain I would get lost, but the fact I was able to follow the signs and the map and didn’t lose my way made me feel more confident. πŸ™‚

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    1. Thank you Linda πŸ™‚ It was lovely to see the deer, an unexpected highlight. I think the grass is lush because of the rain! Although, saying that, the rain just makes my garden muddy but it must have been better soil along the Guild Wheel. πŸ™‚

      Liked by 1 person

  1. A great pair of posts Clare – l read one and two together. you were lucky to see the deer, l love watching deer. On occasion we have a herd wander through Bluebell wood up on the fields here. I used to see them all the time in Lincolnshire when horse riding including a couple of the albino ones.

    Loved seeing the wildlife in your images and the bee hotels are awesome.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you Rory, glad you enjoyed reading it. I was very happy to see the bee hotels, the more help given to bees and other insects – well, wildlife in general, really – the better. I’m pleased that the butterflies stayed still for me to take photos, usually they fly away! The deer was an unexpected and special surprise. I’ve never seen an albino deer, that would be a very special sight indeed. πŸ™‚

      Liked by 1 person

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