Derwent Walk Country Park

The Derwent Walk Country Park is a mixture of woodlands, meadows, wetlands, riverside and reclaimed industrial sites all linked by the Derwent Walk.

The Derwent Walk is the track-bed of the old Derwent Valley Railway which is 11 miles (18 km) long and follows the Derwent Valley between Swalwell in the north and Consett in the south. It is also part of National Cycle Network 14.

The Derwent Walk Country Park is the stretch between Swalwell and Rowlands Gill and is owned by Gateshead County Council. Further south between Rowlands Gill and Consett the Derwent Walk is owned by Durham County Council. This page concentrates solely on The Derwent Walk Country Park part of the walk.

9th July 2013

Hexham Road Entrance, Swalwell.

Dam Head.

Lockhaugh Railway Viaduct (9 Arches Viaduct).
One of the major engineering feats of the Derwent Railway (SMR 1019). It is 500 ft long and was built because the Earl of Strathmore would not allow the railway to be built through the Gibside Estate. Local List entry - 500’ long railway viaduct. It is built from local sandstone with narrow uprights and gently rounded segmental arches. The stone in the uprights is in large blocks with a neatly dressed spring course, whereas that between the arches and parapet is narrower, rusticated stonework. The parapet is, again, of substantial ashlar blocks with a protruding string course and rounded coping stones. MATERIALS Sandstone DATES 1867 STATEMENT OF SIGNIFICANCE At the time of its construction this viaduct represented a major engineering achievement. Its sheer size, and dramatic visual setting in the context of a broad valley make a huge impact on the landscape. Despite its size, however, it achieves a grace and elegance arising from the slenderness of the uprights and the contrast in the stonework between different elements of the structure. It is an impressive landmark and speaks of the huge role that railways have played in the history of the area. Source: Sitelines.

Far Pasture Ponds and Bird Hide.

Old Hollinside Manor House.
When first built, perhaps in the 13th century, the house was an oblong, 16.15 x 6.65 metres externally, with walls 0.90 metres thick, with 2 rooms (hall and chamber) on each of 2 floors, and a probable garderobe turret at the south-west angle. Later a 2-storey wing was added to the east wall on each side of the entrance, and finally a wall, with arch above to support a tower, was built between the wings. It became a possession of the Bowes c.1730. In 1889 it was used as a cattle shed, but it was then decided to keep the ruins in good order. There has been some vandalism to the site in recent years, however. Scheduled Ancient Monument and Grade 1 Listed. Source: Sitelines.

General Views.

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