Louth - Keddington - Ticklepenny Lock - Alvingham

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A linear route with one way by bus, this is a very easy walk along the old Louth Navigation. Take a picnic lunch and enjoy it. At the end of your walk in the beautiful setting of Alvingham's 'Two Churches'.

The best way to do this walk is to park in Alvingham and then catch the bus back to Louth. You can then take your time and have a look around this charming Georgian market town before setting out from the Canal Head.

From here, the walk is pretty much a canal-bank walk along the Louth Navigation (technically Louth Navigation is a canal; it was purpose-built in 1770 and only later was the River Lud diverted along it). Louth Navigation has quite a rich history. Opened in 1770 at a cost of £28,000 (100% over budget!), it was built to allow Louth to trade with the Humber ports and West Yorkshire. It was extremely successful, allowing Louth a larger fish market than Grimsby's. However, competition from the Great Northern Railway (from 1847) took its toll. WW1 shipping restrictions in the Humber, followed by major flooding in 1920, finally led to the closure of the waterway in 1924.

We follow the bank all the way to the village of Alvingham, diverting only briefly into the pretty little village of Keddington before rejoining the canal at Ticklepenny Lock. This is one of eight locks on the canal (six of these we pass on our walk) which give the canal's total 20m rise. The canal's locks are unusual, principally because of their construction with concave lock walls - an attempt to add strength in holding back the earth embankments. They were also built slightly larger to accommodate sea-going vessels; this was to save on the cost of transferring cargo to canal barges.

We leave the canal beside the remains of Alvingham Priory (built in 1154 and now little more than earthworks) and enter the churchyard of the Two Churches. The reason for there being two churches here goes back to the 12th Century when Alvingham Priory was founded. St Mary’s (the smaller of the two) was built as the priory chapel and was given to the nearby village of North Cockerington, because their church was derelict. The 13th Century St Adelwold's, which stands on the site of a 10th Century Saxon chapel, was always Alvingham's and no other English church is dedicated to the Saxon St Adelwold (Bishop of Lindisfarne).

On leaving the churchyard, we encounter the beautiful Alvingham Mill, an old water mill (now a private residence) dating from the 16th Century, but occupying the site of an older mill dating from the 12th Century. Optionally, a walk back through Alvingham also reveals the village stocks on the right.

Dog-owners, please note the possible presence of cattle and a couple of awkward stiles.

England - East England - Lincolnshire - Canal Walk


Ancient Monument, Birds, Butterflies, Cafe, Church, Food Shop, Gift Shop, Good for Kids, Good for Wheelchairs, Industrial Archaeology, Mostly Flat, Pub, Public Transport, Restaurant, Wildlife