by Lawrence Bland
Three hikers caught the 11.08 train from Lancaster to Oxenholme, a damp misty day with light drizzle at times. We were promised two castles and five pubs. We walked about two miles from the station, passed Kendal Park farm and Spindle Wood towards Castle Green along footpaths, sticky in parts, but it could have been worse! The first of the Good Beer Guide entries for Kendal , Alexanders, modernised from former stables and a barn, adjacent to the Best Western Hotel. We sampled the Bowness Swan and Cumberland Corby Fox. Continuing our walk, passing the main Kendal Castle and crossing the dry canal and River Kent, and the Parish Church to our next port of call, the Ring O’Bells, where we picked up four more hikers, who had come by bus, we tried the Cumberland Corby Noir and Hawkshead Bitter. Then along Highgate and Gillingate, then steep steps up to Castle Howe, and along to the Rifleman’s Arms in Greenside (our second GBG entry),most of the party tried the Jarrow Bitter. Down the steep All Hallows Lane to the Wetherspoons, the Miles Thompson, a conversion from council offices and former public baths and swimming pool, where most of the party snacked and sampled the Cumberland Corby Ale. Unfortunately the Burgundy’s Wine Bar, home of the Kendal Brewery was closed, they open latter on Sundays. We called in the Riverside Hotel, by the river on Wildman Street, and a Hawkshead Brodie’s Pride. The bus party then returned home, the train group finished the day drinking at the Castle Inn, Hawkshead Bitter and Loweswater Gold. Then the 1818 train from Kendal Town to Oxenholme and Lancaster.