The Ribble Catchment is more than just a river network, it’s a wonderful area filled with contrasts. The Ribble starts its journey in the Yorkshire Dales National Park, close to the legendary Ribblehead Viaduct, where it travels through the stunning rural farmland and green fields of the Dales.
The river then enters Lancashire between the villages of Nappa and Newsholme, where it continues to flow through largely agricultural land (and straight past the Ribble Rivers Trust’s Clitheroe office!), before meeting two of its main tributaries, the Hodder and the Calder.
The river then passes the Roman town of Ribchester and the brilliant Brockholes Nature Reserve, before entering its most urban stretch within the City of Preston. Finally, the Ribble meets its journeys end at the Ribble estuary and enters the Irish Sea.
With over 570 square miles of beautiful catchment there are opportunities for everyone to get outdoors and enjoy their local river.
There are many benefits to engaging with the outdoors; it provides a range of physical and mental health benefits, an opportunity to exercise, and a chance to explore your local area and learn more about nature. Plus, most activities are free and getting outdoors keeps the whole family busy!
As part of Ribble Life Together we’re developing a range of activities to help people get outdoors and engage with nature and heritage. These include our circular walks, a multitude of which will be produced, with the Ribble Estuary and Lytham, Calder and Brun, and Rivers and Bridges walks already completed and in print.
We’re also creating photo geocaches across the catchment. Geocaches involve hunting for hidden caches, which are labelled containers containing log books and, in many cases, greetings and information from fellow geocachers. Our geocaches are still in development (although they’ll be ready very soon!) and there are hundreds already in existence within the Ribble catchment, so you can start geocaching now by visiting the Geocaching Association of Great Britain’s (GAGB) website.
Another activity that the Trust, and many of their partners, take part in is public engagement at shows and events. You can often find us with our stand at agricultural shows across the catchment. Here we like to speak to the people that live, work, and enjoy the catchment, and to tell them more about our work, and how wonderful we think rivers are!
But our activities aren’t the only ways to get outdoors and enjoy your river. The possibilities are endless, with camping trips, treks in the Dales, bike rides around the Trough of Bowland, or a simply a day on the beach. There’s something for everyone, just don’t forget your picnic, and remember the countryside code!
For more information visit our Ribble Life Together partners websites: Yorkshire Dales National Park, Yorkshire Dales Millennium Trust, Forest of Bowland AONB, Lancashire Wildlife Trust, Yorkshire Wildlife Trust.