Where the wild garlick grows

There are two debated origins for the name of Ramsbottom, a small town nestling at the foot of the Rossendale valley. The first suggests that the derivation is from the pre-7th century Olde English word ‘hramsa’ meaning garlic and ‘bopm’, which strictly speaking means land at the bottom of a valley suitable for agriculture. I reckon the weather fifteen hundred years ago must have been much warmer for garlic to grow so far north.

01The second suggestion is the rather more mundane “Valley with some rams in it”, although it occurs to me there is a third possibility, that perhaps it got its name from someone comparing the place to a sheep’s arse.

In fact, it is an attractive town with an old-fashioned feel, some fascinating shops, and a steam railway. Also, it has a well-stocked craft and art supplies shop, which is where I was really going when I tacked on this #wander.

As you enter Rammy (as the locals call it), you cross the level-crossing and can see the station on the left.02


0504 The station is beautifully looked after, and takes me right back into Nostalgia Land. Even the adverts hark back to a simpler time.



Across the road from the station is the Station Garage, (on the left there near the pub) which also has a Fifties feel.07

Round the corner is the road bridge over the Irwell.08

09The signal box by the level crossing is full of big old wheels and levers. I tried to photograph them, but kept getting a boring reflection of a wombat.



A railway buffer that has seen quite a bit of wear and tear.10 

Here’s the railway footbridge, with Holcombe Hill in the background. That’s Peel Tower on the top there – great views from up there on a sunny day.12


A couple of shots from the walk up into town – see the church behind the police station? Lovely place, and of course I neglected to take any close shots of it to show you. I did, however, snap the Garden of Rememberance:





Not far from the church, is a shop that I believe @captain_doodle would appreciate – the sign on the right says “Sweets – Ice Cream – Teddy Bears”






And I couldn’t leave the environs of the church without taking this photograph, which I shall call “New Life and Death”. See what I did there? 






The market square features this urn thingy which, when it is working, pours water continuously onto the ground.18

Here can be found The Chocolate Café, which serves dishes such as Steak & Vegetables Cooked In Chocolate Beer, and Roasted Brioche with Melted Chocolate.19

Finally, a shot back down the hill…20


About wombat37

A Yorkshireman in the green hills of Lancashire, UK Not a real wombat, obviously, or typing would become an issue. I do have short legs and a hairy nose, however. Oh, & a distinctive smell.

Posted on May 5, 2010, in A brisk walk, Lancashire, Railway, Ramsbottom, Wander. Bookmark the permalink. 1 Comment.

  1. Hey Wombat, the train station looks amazing; you know I've got a soft spot for old stations. The pub, next door, may also have been a hotel, or inn for weary travellers, so it's got a definite 'Dark Fall' feel. I'll be sure to pop over to Ramsbottom next time I'm up that way, camera in hand. It'll be a treat. Jonathan.


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