Starting where I joined the Aire Navigation last month (and wandered into Leeds) I set forth for Castleford. It’s a crisp morning, and when the sun is out quite warm in the late autumn light. The walk is also easy, having decided to follow the navigation and Aire on this stage I haven’t got much map reading to do. Which is just as well as I forgot to download my route.
As the walking is easy my mind wanders to the nature of primes. Well you have to think of something. They occur in every base , which is quite wondrous really. I’m following a path which wends its way between the Aire on my right and the Aire and Calder Navigation on my left.
There are also some interesting flora….
The canal is still in use, and the locks are equipped with modern traffic control systems (traffic lights on the canal infront of the locks), which indicates that it is still used for freight. Coal used to be transported along this route, though nowadays it is mostly petroleum and gravel.
Though the water looks clean and there were several anglers along the route and plenty of barges, including a very large one at the Calder end (unfortunately a high fence meant I couldn’t get any photos of it.)
I left the canal, and started following the river near Castleford, and soon had to veer off that route as I approached the Calder (a large river in itself, and no crossing point until you are near the town.) Castleford’s origins are Roman, a camp having been here , and it is not surprising as both the Aire and Calder are large rivers, and the confluence is a sensible spot to build an outpost. The Calder is crossed by a bridge and then you come into the main town.
Modern Castelford boasts famous citizens such as Henry Moore (celbrated on the town signs and with a museum) and Viv Nicholson (not celebrated anywhere), Lord Raglan himself once owned a brewery here, although this is the only evidence I can find of it, Google shows me nothing
It’s also the home of Castleford Tigers, which could continue my Eddie Waring buzz I got in Workington. However, the town itself is a little run down and sorry for itself, a modern bus station, and a shadow of a railway station (only one of two platforms in use, and the train I want to get back cancelled)
A measly 10 miles covered today, but it was a much more enjoyable walk than the last two, only on a river can you get to consider the nature of Primes.