Saturday, 31 August 2013


North Sands, Hartlepool → Seaham

tern.png Distance: 13.53 miles
Ascent: 367 metres
Duration: 4 hours 43 minutes

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Today we walked nearly an entire county's coastline. (The north border is just a mile or two from where we stopped.)

crimdon.pngAfter taking a poorly marked path across a golf course, we soon reached the southern end of the Durham Coast Path.

The Coast Path is well waymarked, with frequent informative boards and interesting sculptures. Most of the path is across scrub land, with former colliery villages just inland. Sadly there's no immediately obvious evidence to support our growing suspicion that we were walking across land that just thirty years ago would've been teeming with working coal mines.

castle-eden-dene.pngThis really is a missed opportunity. We knew bits of the stories of the Easington and Blackhall Colliery villages, but it would have been wonderful to have some scene-setting here on the cliff tops. There was one board that appeared to discuss the mines, but it had long since faded beyond the point of legibility. It was as if all evidence of the coal industry has been systematically eradicated, with only films such as Billy Elliot (whose fictional setting of Everington was based on Easington Colliery) left to point the way.

Instead of discussing the rich industrial heritage we walked on thinking about the words we could see - those on our map - and considered the local topographical vocabulary of gill, dene and hive.

Posted by pab at 18:59 | Comments will be back one day. Please email me instead!