Sizergh Castle

Sizergh Castle

Route: Sizergh Castle

Area: Southern Lake District

Date of walk: 26th September 2019

Walkers: Andrew and Gilly

Distance: 3.4 miles (this includes the walk and also the meander around the gardens)

Ascent: 400 feet

Weather: Mixed sunshine and clouds and a couple of showers

Sizergh Castle and Garden is a stately home and garden at Helsington, about 4 miles south of Kendal. The castle, a grade I listed building, is in the care of the National Trust along with its garden and estate. It has been the home of the Strickland family for over 760 years. The 1,600 acre estate includes limestone pasture, orchards and woodland. We’ve not been here for many years and were keen to revisit the gardens, in particular the famous limestone rock garden 

We spent an hour or two wandering around the formal area of the gardens (I’ve not shown this on the route map, as there’s no point following a fixed route here). The herbaceous borders were still showing well and the kitchen garden looked superb. The star of the show, as we’d hoped, was the limestone rock garden, where a variety of acers were coming into their full autumn colour and were a wonderful sight

It had poured with rain during the journey to the castle, and we were doubtful as to whether we’d be able to include a walk. By a stroke of good fortune the conditions improved on our arrival and we decided to set off on one of the walks illustrated in a leaflet which is available at the entrance. We left the castle and set off along a waymarked track through the fields heading gently uphill and passing by Holeslack Farm. This brought us to Helsington Church, otherwise known as St John’s Church. The church is set in an elevated position on Church Fell, with huge views over the Lyth Valley to Morecambe Bay looking one way and to the Lake District fells looking the other. Low cloud and haze restricted the views today, but they were good nevertheless

We retraced our steps for a short distance and then followed a path through the fields which took us back to Sizergh Castle to end a day well spent

Click on the icon below for the route map (subscribers to OS Maps can view detailed maps of the route, visualise it in aerial 3D, and download the GPX file. Non-subscribers will see a base map)

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