This issue we will be doing a circular walk from Hipperholme, taking in Norwood Green, Lightcliffe and Hove Edge before completing the loop. The total distance is just over 5 miles (8 km) and takes in up to 5 pubs. The start and end involve visits to a couple of the best real ale pubs in the area, and inbetween a couple of establishments which also do good food, with an optional stop off before the last pub.

The routes takes in the Travellers Inn, Old White Beare (at 3.2km), Sun Inn (5km), an optional visit to the Dusty Miller (7km), finishing at the excellent brew tap at the Cock of the North (8km).  Navigation is easy with most being on named roads with a short section of footpath and the route meanders up and down, with a total height climbed being 180m overall.

Starting your walk is a cracking pub which sits in the growing Ossett Brewery estate.  The Travellers Inn, previously known as the Travellers Rest before the refurbishment in 2007 after a couple of years of this breweries ownership.  The space stretches the full length of the building and is split into 4 rooms, including a snug at the far end.  A large bar area allows a wide variety of real ales to be sold, and at the time of writing included 4 own brand beers and 4 guests including Riverhead and Fullers products.   Add into this the provision of newspapers and a family friendly landlord and you have a great pub.   It is a classic pub style inside with wooden floors, good provision of stools to prop up the bar with, and plenty of seating around numerous tables to cater for even the busiest night.  Recommendations here are the Silver King, Pale King and Excelsior.

Upon leaving the Travellers Inn, head up the hill behind the pet store and turn right onto the A58, following this until you reach the crossroads.  Take a left and you will head uphill towards the Grammar School, just after which you will find the Hare and Hounds pub on your right.  200 metres past this is Northedge Lane to your right.  This road is the longest stretch of a single road and goes on for just under 2.5km.  Heading down this road you pass a short stretch of housing, before facing a very pleasant period of walking through mainly tree and field lined lanes.   After about 500m you will come across a road to your right followed by one to your left 100m later. Ignore these roads and keep on the main road you are following, which will bend round to your left 500m further on.  When you reach this point, ignore the track to the left and continue to the right onto Shutts Lane.  After a few hundred metres you will enter Norwood village where the road bends left, right, left in quick succession.  To get to the Old White Beare just stay on this road as it tends to the right before straightening up, where after 150m you will find the pub on the left.

The Old White Beare is the main eatery on this walk, but caters well for the real ale drinkers within the establishment. The regular beers being Timothy Taylors’ Golden Best and Landlord, with other guest beers visiting, a Cask Marque award is also held.  The pub features outside areas to the front and rear (overlooking the edge of Norland Woods).  A main bar area splits out to several dining areas, with the best in my opinion being the double heighted barn conversion.  Food is on the more refined side (this definitely falls under the term Gastropub), and the prices reflect the menu, with starters from £5 and mains from £13 typically.  All rooms are cosy and welcoming, but spacious and very traditional with acres of wood on show and open fires.  Be warned that the place can get very busy on Sunday lunchtime however.

Leaving the Old White Beare turn left and proceed to the junction 300m down the road. Take Rookes Lane to the right, which will lead you back to the A58 after 500m.  Across the road just to your right is a lane signed as a dead end, which bears the same name as the road you have just left.  Heading down this lane will take you under railway line. and into another tree lined kilometre of very pleasant walking.  The track meanders to the left and right before taking a straight route and becoming Till Carr Lane and emerging opposite the Sun Inn.

The Sun Inn is another eatery, however the prices are lower here for food, with starters from £3 and mains from £8, and the food being typical for what you would expect for a pub of this kind, including Pie, Chilli, Grills and Hot Pots.  The resident beers are again from a mainstream ale brewer, Timothy Taylor, with 2 of their offerings currently on pump.  The U shapes bar leads off to several dining areas and has a very comfortable bar area surrounding it.  The pub has been around for over 100 years when it was converted from a farm to a coaching inn to cater for the new turnpike road, and despite a refurbishment, retains a lot of original features.

Things now take a slightly more urban twist.  As you leave the pub, exit through the car park to the rear and take a right to join Stoney Lane.  This road is lined with houses to your right and the Hipperholme school complex on your left.  This road continues for about 700m, at which point you take a right turn followed by another immediately onto Catherine Slack towards Crow Nest Golf Club.  Continue on this road for another 700m before you reach a left hand bend where the road becomes Lower Finkil Street.  At the crossroads turn right onto Green Lane and after 400m, take a left onto Spout House Lane, followed by a right when you reach the T junctions at the end of the road. A short walk will now see you on the Brighouse – Hipperholme road.  If you take a right turn, you will be at the Dusty Miller.

This is the optional stop off on this walk, as it gives a convenient break en route to the Cock of the North if you feel you need one at this point.  The pub was refurbished relatively recently, and now has Timothy Taylor providing the house ale, along with two guest beers.  At the time of writing they were serving Golden Best and a pair of Caledonian (who are regular guests) brews, Flying Dutchman and Over The Bar.  The bar area takes up most of the ground floor and is open plan, again in a traditional finish.

To get to the final pub, just turn right out of the pub (or past it if you choose not to visit), heading up towards Hipperholme on the main A644.  The walk is about 700m or ½ mile, and on the way you will pass Marshalls, the Crosslee factory and the two red brick depots housing a garage and fabrication plant.  After the second of these buildings you will see a red portacabin, which is the end of this walk.

On the face of it, the Cock of The North looks like a workers canteen with a pub sign on it.  But the building is a bit of a tardis.  Within the footprint of 3 cabins it houses a brewery which produces at least 10 beers at any time which are served from the bars 12 pumps in the fairly spacious public area.  The landlord and staff cannot be faulted for the service, and I have yet to have a poor beer there in my many years of visiting.  Board games are provided as well if you want some mental stimulation to go with your beer.  Typically the bar serves 5 pale / golden beers, at least one of their three ginger flavoured beers and 4 of the darker brews at any time.  Personally my favourites here are Gingivitus and Lilly Fogg, although recently a new ginger addition has been added called ‘Ginger Love’ which I look forward to trying.  If you have a non drinker with you, the “blood orange” cordial is well recommended.

From here you can go into the main village centre and visit the Whitehall, which normally serves a couple of real ales, including Golden Pippin on my last visit.  You can also return to the Travellers, or if heading home pop into the excellent specialist off license on the main road for some post pub refreshments.

Websites

http://www.oldwhitebeare.com/
http://www.suninnlightcliffe.co.uk/
http://www.halifax-steam.co.uk/ (Cock of the North)

Public Transport

Halifax – Services 548, 549
Brighouse – Services 570, 571