A walk round Charlton Brook and Thorncliffe Pond

Distance: 2.5 miles
Time: Allow 1.5 hours

An easy, pleasant stroll, mostly on surfaced paths and roads but some slopes and grassy paths on the far side of the brook. No stiles but there are some steps in places (which can be slippery) as well as a few steep sections. There are seats, children’s play areas, a BMX track and places to picnic along Charlton Brook. Boots or stout shoes advisable when wet.

Accessible route: Points 3-2-4-1-5. Avoid points 6-7.

Walking from Charlton Brook to Thorncliffe Pond
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The Route Points of interest are shown in bold
  1. From the Barrel Inn turn left onto Blackburn drive. At the top of the grassy slope turn right on a path down across the grass and join a wider path leading straight on through bushes by the side of the trees overlooking Charlton Brook below you to the right. In spring the hawthorn bushes, covered in white blossom and the spring flowers make the walk along Charlton Brook particularly attractive.
  2. Continue straight on. Eventually the path turns right and sloped down some shallow steps to Charlton Brook Dam. Go along the path between the dam wall and the stone bridge on the right to join the surfaced path of the Trans Pennine Trail. Turn left and follow this path to the road at the end of the park (Hollow Gate) passing the dam on your left.
  3. Go through the gate at the end of the park and turn left to visit the Bridge Inn, otherwise turn and retrace your steps back down the trail
  4. Keep straight on past the dam on your right passing the children’s play areas and BMX track. The path returns to School Road. Turn right to reach the Barrel Inn. From the Barrel Inn go right at Lane End and turn down Bridge Inn Road. Where this road bends right carry straight on down a track marked Trans Pennine Trail to a green metal gate with an A-frame gate beside.
  5. Go through and turn right over a metal bridge beside Thorncliffe pond
  6. Follow the path across another bridge up some shallow steps and keeping the railway on your left continue to follow the path round to a metal railway bridge. At the bridge take the path up to the right up onto Mafeking Road and continue to the end of the road. Lound Hall is on your right with Lound Junior School beside.
  7. Cross (with care!) and turn up Housley Park at the side of St. John's Church. (A possible short extension to the walk to see Housley Hall - Continue to the end of Housley Park following it round left at the end Housely hall is a short distance along on your left).

    Immediately at the end of St. John's Church turn right down the public footpath. Follow the path along the back of the former church until you reach a lane (Ribble Croft). Turn left and continue round on the path to reach Sherburn Gate. Turn right and follow Sherburn Gate to reach Blackburn Drive. Turn right at Blackburn Drive and right again at School Road to return to the Barrel Inn.

Map: Ordnance Survey Explorer 278 Sheffield and Barnsley

Start: Barrel Inn, Lane End, Chapeltown, S35 2UL

Public Transport: For information on public transport ring the South Yorkshire Traveline on 01709 515151 or visit www.travelsouthyorkshire.com

Car Parking: Limited street parking near Barrel Inn, more parking round the corner on Blackburn Drive.

Public Toilets: None on route

Refreshments: Barrel Inn, Lane End. Bridge Inn, Hollow Gate.

Points of Interest
Charlton Brook

The wet, marshy ground near the brook may have given this area its name. In 1453, it was recorded as ‘Cherking brooke’. ‘Chirkin’ is a medieval word meaning ‘squeaking’ or ‘squelching’.

Charlton Brook Dam

The dam was created by Newton chambers and Co Ltd. in 1870 to provide water for Thorncliffe iron works. Amy Jones lived at Charlton Brooke when she was a child. She remembered people coming from all around to swim in the dam in summer and skate on the thick ice in winter. (From Jay and M Jones 2004, Picturing the past)

Charlton Brook Hamlet

In the mid 1950s there were about 50 houses, two shops, a farm and a pub here. It was a small, close-knit community, with some families having lived there for several generations. Some of the houses in the hamlet were demolished when new housing was built.

Charlton Brooke Foundry

An iron foundry also operated near here until 1990, making cast iron manhole covers and grates. It is thought that Stanley Road was built around 1880 by Jabez Stanley, the co-owner of the Iron Works. Nothing now remains of the works.

Housley Hall

A house on the site of the present hall is recorded to have existed as early as 1436. The present building dates from the c17th. At one time the hall was owned by the Earl of Wharncliffe but in 1837 became the home of the Chambers family. Since then the hall has been used as a boy’s boarding school and as a farm. After some years of neglect it has now been restored as a private house.

St. John’s Church

The church dates from 1860. It was closed in 2000 because of structural problems but has been restored and turned into offices

Thorncliffe Pond

The pond, fed from Charlton Brook, is thought to have been constructed to store water for Chapel Furnace, which operated in the c16th and c17th. The furnace was situated off Station Road. The water was used to turn a water wheel to work the bellows to keep the furnace burning at a high temperature for iron smelting. It is thought that some of the iron was used to make cannon balls for Cromwell’s army in the English Civil War (1642-1651). In later years Chapel Furnace and the pond became part of Newton Chambers’ Ironworks. A pump house was constructed near the pond (remains of pipework can still be seen) to provide water for cooling the furnaces.

Lound National School

The building on the corner, now restored and a home, was originally a school. The first Lound School was built with an endowment from Anne Sylvester in 1711. It was replaced in 1845 by the present building which became Lound National School. It later became the Sunday School for St. John’s Church and Lound Board School was built on the neighbouring site.

Mount Pleasant Methodist Church

Mount Pleasant Methodist Church stands next to St. John’s Church. It was built in 1866 to replace an earlier church. Thomas Newton, a founder of Thorncliffe Ironworks and a staunch Methodist, laid the foundation stone. The building has now been converted into living accommodation.