A quick one day visit to the East Riding of Yorkshire. I am quite excited about this section as it will see me achieve a number of firsts and milestones. I would be leaving Yorkshire and crossing over into Lincolnshire, as well as walking through Hull, a place I had never visited before. Perhaps the highlight would be the walk over the Humber Bridge, a bridge that I had never crossed over before this day.
I set off early and made excellent time to Barton-on-Humber, which sits just below the Humber Bridge on the Lincolnshire side. It is a sleepy little town and I was able to park close to the railway station. I caught the “Fast cat” #350 bus into Hull. The bus seemed to take an age as we had to keep on waiting to keep on time with the published timetable. I got off at Hull railway station, which is also where the main bus station is. I caught the #77 bus towards Withernsea, and sat on the front seats of a double-decker, something I had not done for years. I got off at the village of Thorngumbald and popped into the local Spar shop for a few supplies. I had to start at Thorngumbald because I was prevented from continuing along the seawall on my previous trip because of ongoing works. I picked up the quiet road to the village of Paull.
Close to Paull Holme Nature Reserve I passed a number of newly constructed gas installations, I could also see the work on the sea wall that had caused my diversion to Thorngumbald. The footpaths marked on my OS map have long since disappeared amid the high security fencing of the gas processing plants. Soon after I left the road and I headed down a track which took me onto the seawall. I passed around the historic Fort Paull, the historic Napoleonic battery fortress which is now a museum and houses a huge Blackburn Beverley Aircraft (a former heavy-duty transport plane used by the RAF). I could see the huge tail fins of the aircraft, but nothing of the rest of the museum which was hidden by trees. I entered the small village of Paull and was surprised to see at least three pubs, very close to each other. I left the village and got onto the sea wall again. I met a dog walker and struck up a conversation with him, he was the former mayor of Hedon and he gave me a brief history of the area.
I reached the outer industrial area of Hull and began the long straight walk along the very busy A1033. I was separated from the dual carriageway, which had no verge and continued along the dual cycle/footpath. I passed a number of cream telephone kiosks which are a throwback from when Hull or should I say Kingston had its own independent municipal telephone network (now privatised). I started to count roundabouts, as this was the only clue to know where I am and where I needed to get back to the Humber shore. Shortly after passing HMP Hull I headed across the dual carriageway and onto a new shore side housing development, now on the site of former Victoria docks. I passed around a very striking building, similar to the prow of a large ship, this was the Deep a large aquatic centre. I passed through the old part of Hull, with its cobbled street and continued onto the Albert Dock.
I had to look carefully for a footpath that would take me onto the Albert Dock, which I managed to find. After crossing a lock gate I followed high palisade fencing that guided me through the docks and onto a high gantry where I was able to look down at the ships and quays. This was really great because most of the time I pass around docks I have had to keep to industrial roads, here I was able to walk through on high. I kept on the path which was sandwiched between the docks and the estaury. The Albert Dock gave way to the St Andrews Quay, which is now a huge out-of-town retail park alongside the A63.
The footpath became very overgrown with grass and ran alongside the A63 into the village of Hessle. I pick up the start of the Wolds Way and pass underneath the Humber Bridge. It was very busy in this area, with a small beach and the Humber Bridge Country Park. I had to climb quite steeply up through tree-lined paths to get onto the bridge itself. The sun which had been hidden behind clouds for most of the day now made an appearance. It seems the eastern footpath of the bridge was closed so I was confined to the western footpath. The bridge itself is a outstanding achievement in engineering and an impressive sight. The bridge was very busy with walkers and cyclist alike, admiring the brilliant views. I reached the far side and entered Barton-on-Humber in Lincolnshire. A great days walk with the passage through the docks and the crossing of the Humber the two main highlights.
Distance today = 20 miles
Total distance = 3,887 miles