Ribble Valley is the perfect place for you to escape the frantic pace of every day, whatever the time of year. Forget those diaries and deadlines and head straight to your perfect getaway that's waiting to be discovered.
See for yourself how a visit to Ribble Valley can revitalise your senses with its spectacular commanding fells and lush green valleys revealing your love of the great outdoors. Walk in the footsteps of Romans, Normans and literary masterminds who once set foot in this historic landscape. Explore quaint market towns such as Clitheroe and Longridge and picturesque villages brimming with individual shops, historic treasures and tales.
Savour the fresh flavours of tempting treats and feasts for food lovers as Clitheroe develops as Lancashire's Food Town and Ribble Valley is fast becoming known for our local culinary delights and first class hospitality. Try the Ribble Valley Food Trail or perhaps come and sample the Clitheroe Food Festival in August.
As you journey through this website you'll unearth everything there is to know about planning your perfect holiday or short break in rural heaven.
- Bashall Eaves - Beautiful Bashall Eaves sits in the heart of this Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty, four miles west of Clitheroe town centre. Children will love the nearby Fairy Bridge, where local legend states it was built one night by fairies to help an old woodcutter who was being pursued by witches. Must visit places include the […]
- Bolton-By-Bowland - Magnificent church of St Peter and Paul and the remains of the 13th Century market cross and stocks are two spots to see in this pretty village. The Open Gardens Weekend is a highlight of the summer when many interesting gardens within the parish attract visitors from around the area. Places Nearby: Holden Clough […]
- Chaigley - Home to the Higher Hodder Bridge, Chaigley is a starting point for many explorations into the stunning Forest of Bowland. The riverside footpath between the lower and higher Hodder bridges is particularly beautiful. Let the kids paddle in the shallow reaches of the river in summer, a honeypot for family picnics and relaxation. Places Nearby: […]
- Chatburn - Chatburn is situated in a hollow between the two ridges, which slope towards the River Ribble just off the A59 Clitheroe to Skipton road on the outskirts of Clitheroe. It is thought that the village derived its name from St Ceatt or Chad. The stately spire of the Parish Church dominates the building, which was […]
- Chipping - Flowers adorn this regular winner of North West in Bloom competitions, and the ﬂorals displays complement what is already a very picturesque village. A popular destination for cyclists and walkers, Chipping is set amongst the hills with the stunning Longridge Fell dominating the view to the south of the village. Home to two cheese makers, […]
- Downham - The ﬁlm Whistle Down the Wind was ﬁlmed in this picture-perfect village crowned by Downham Hall. Three miles east of Clitheroe, this beautiful spot oozes charm and even has its own squire in Lord Clitheroe. Places Nearby: Assheton Arms
- Dunsop Bridge - Surprisingly, a number of places claim to be located at the centre of the United Kingdom using various methods of deduction. But according to Ordnance Survey the centre is actually four miles north west of Dunsop Bridge on Brennard Farm. This truly beautiful village is the perfect starting and ﬁnishing spot for fell walkers and […]
- Gisburn - On the verge of the Lancashire and Yorkshire borderline you’ll find a unique village that straddles the A59 between Clitheroe and Skipton. This is Gisburn, where a walk along the cobblestones of the wide main street will take you towards the historic parish church. Gaze in amazement at the stunning original Norman stained glass windows […]
- Grindleton - Perched on a hillside, commanding extensive views of the picturesque Ribble Valley, stands Grindleton. With the River Ribble in its sights it’s only a short trip out of Clitheroe. This small rural community once relied heavily on weaving and spinning. Set amidst rolling pastures the church of St. Ambrose once served a population of hand-weavers; […]
- Hurst Green - This village marks the start of The Tolkien Trail – where writer J.R.R.Tolkien was inspired by the local landscape. The trail starts and ﬁnishes at the Shireburn Arms named after Richard Shireburn who founded Stonyhurst Hall in 1592. It was after the manor house was built that the hamlet of Hurst Green began to develop. […]
- Mellor - Situated on a high ridge overlooking the low-lying area of the Fylde. Mellor Moor was the site of a Roman encampment, an outpost of the one at Ribchester. St. Mary’s church was built 1829 and is of particular interest and possesses a very fine peal of Guildford Chimes. The internal woodwork is of English oak […]
- Mitton - The Aspinall Arms is a beauty spot and stop-off for walkers, cyclists and anglers as it sits on the banks of the River Ribble and overlooks the marvellous medieval All Hallows Church. With terraced and landscaped gardens outside, and ﬂagged ﬂoors and open ﬁres inside, the Aspinall offers a sizeable menu including a good choice […]
- Newton-in-Bowland - The journey to this attractive spot over Waddington Fell provides views of breathtaking beauty. John Bright the Quaker spent two years of his early life here in the heart of the Hodder Valley. The Friends Meeting House dates from 1767. Places Nearby: Parkers Arms
- Ribchester - The village is a signiﬁcant Roman site having been the location of a Roman cavalry fort called Bremetennacum. The famous ‘Ribchester Hoard’ was discovered in 1796 by a boy of 13, John Walton, who lived with his family in a house near the river. While digging in the garden he unearthed a collection of items, […]
- Sabden - Don’t miss out Sabden on your travels. It stands alone in a beautiful unspoiled valley, sheltered by Pendle Hill and crisscrossed by dozens of public footpaths. Stop at the Nick of Pendle roadside to enjoy a 360 degree view of the Bowland Fells, Yorkshire Dales, Pennines and Lancashire’s ﬂat plain to the coast. It was […]
- Sawley - Whether walking through the village or viewing the river and scenery through the stunning views at the Spread Eagle pub, this village is a lovely spot for lunch or dinner. The village boasts the ruins of Sawley Abbey, founded in 1147 by William de Percy. Places Nearby: The Spread Eagle
- Slaidburn - Slaidburn is a picturesque grey stone village set on the banks of the Hodder in the moorland region of the Forest of Bowland. The 10th century ‘Angel Stone’ carving can be seen at Slaidburn Heritage Centre. The centre provides tourist information and houses displays, artifacts and an audio-visual presentation about the village’s heritage and the […]
- Tosside - On the edge of the Forest of Bowland, half in Lancashire and half in Yorkshire, Tosside may be some way from the main visitor centre, but is nevertheless well worth a visit. The Gisburn Forest features cycle trails and good footpaths to suit every ability. United Utilities have recently opened a footpath circling the Stocks […]
- Waddington - A regular winner of Lancashire’s Best Kept Village Award, this pretty village with a babbling brook and Coronation Gardens, perches on the outskirts of Clitheroe. With a number of great places to eat and lovely walks, this exquisite spot is home to just over 1,000 residents. The 7th century Waddow Hall is now under the […]
- Whitewell - Known locally as ‘Little Switzerland’, where the river Hodder winds its way along the wooded valley. A church, an Inn and a few cottages grace this very attractive spot. Cave dwellers lived here around 1000 BC and Middle Bronze Age relics were found in the ‘Fairy Holes’ cave a few years ago. Roman remains have […]
- Wiswell - A small village on the edge of Whalley and home to another popular inn, Wiswell is said to have taken its name from Old Molly’s Well, later known as the wise woman’s well. The first record of Wiswell is in a charter of 1193, in the reign of Richard the First. The village’s most famous […]
- Worston - A village seemingly far removed from the nearby A59. Worston is a peaceful place with one street and a welcoming hostelry and many links to the past. A pre-historic burial ground was found on Worsaw Hill. In 1778, workmen widening the road to Chatburn found 1,000 Roman silver Denarii. Fragments of the ancient Sawley Abbey […]
PlacesLove Ribble Valley
Clitheroe is a pretty market town with a bustling high street and characterful cobbled side roads revealing independent shops, galleries and eateries.
Crowning the town from an elevated position is Clitheroe castle, with its ancient Norman keep and modern family-friendly museum, set in 16 acres of surrounding grounds providing a panoramic view of the valley.
Whether you’re a culture vulture, history fan, foodie, theatre buff or just love to shop until you drop (followed by a cocktail or two), then Clitheroe is most deﬁnitely a place for your ‘must visit’ list.
You Will Love
Clitheroe excels in providing a high-quality, super- stylish and truly independent shopping experience.
If it is fashion, shoes and accessories you are looking for, the town hosts a range of boutiques selling designer brands for men, women and children.
There is also an extensive selection of countrywear labels available. Independent shops galore showcase some exquisite items for the home such as locally made candles and hand-woven throws.
Clitheroe is most definitely a place for your 'must visit' list.
Wine and Dine
One place not to miss is The Atrium located beside the castle offering a range of delicious food, a must whilst exploring the castle.
There is an array of bars serving ﬁne wines, locally brewed beers and deliciously cool cocktails.
One of the most exciting venues is Holmes Mill, a food, drink and leisure hub which has transformed a former textile mill. Home to Bowland Beer Hall and one of the longests bars in Britain, the venue incorporates a pub, brewery, gelato parlour and patisserie café with an in-house bakery serving sit-in or takeaway cakes.
For a great family food venue you will ﬁnd the nearby Emporium situated across three ﬂoors.
Housed in an old Methodist Chapel and lavishly converted to create three huge ﬂoors of eating, drinking and shopping - Parisian café culture meets relaxed dining, and an elegant shopping experience.
Clitheroe has an eatery to tempt every taste bud from ﬁne dining to authentic Italian & traditional American.
The Guardian - "A gastronomic hotspot" - 2017
Heritage and Attractions
Clitheroe is home to an early medieval castle which has been lovingly preserved. The site has been developed into a fabulous family hub of history with an interactive museum and all-year-round events.
You’ll also ﬁnd a creative outdoor play zone for children, and Lancashire’s only labyrinth, which is set within the castle’s splendid surrounding grounds.
One of the major events of the summer is the Clitheroe Food Festival, a free family day which showcases the ﬁnest of Lancashire’s food producers and operators.
And for music fans The Ribble Valley Jazz and Blues Festival is another superb date for your diary, now one of Lancashire's best-established musical
If a picnic is your thing, Edisford Bridge boasts one of the prettiest riverside spots in the area.
With tables, a miniature steam railway (Ribble Valley Live Steamers), children’s swings and slides, an ice cream van and plenty of clear, freshwater to paddle in, there is something to keep everyone happy.
And for a marvellous mix of live entertainment and the arts, take a look at The Grand. Since opening its doors early in 2008, the venue has gradually become one of the North West's best loved mid-sized live music and arts venues.
Art and Galleries
Ribble Valley is home to some extraordinary artistic talent. You will ﬁnd much of their work showcased in the town’s many galleries, which include:
The Platform Gallery – also Clitheroe’s Visitor Centre – has a craft shop featuring work by local and national designer-makers. The emphasis is on handmade, quality items of original design.
The Keep is a boutique gallery for the 21st Century. With a relaxed atmosphere and something to suit every pocket, it’s the perfect place to ﬁnd anything from a large, original contemporary artwork to a small handmade gift. And since much of the work can’t be bought anywhere else, you’re sure to ﬁnd something completely unique for your home.
For ﬁne art Knowle Top Studios is located in the heart of the town and is home to the works of photographers Irene Amiet and Duncan Phillips. Here you will ﬁnd collectors’ prints, gifts, fabrics and décor, all uniquely printed with Duncan and Irene’s photography.
ClitheroeLove Ribble Valley
Whalley is a village steeped in history and full of surprises, from the Grade II character cottages to its thriving retail and café culture.
Nestling at the foot of Whalley Nab, under the watchful eye of a 14th century Abbey, this exquisite village snakes alongside the River Calder.
Scattered along the high street and side lanes is a remarkable range of restaurants and bistros, jewellers, hair and beauty salons, specialist wine merchants, delightful delis and designer clothing boutiques.
Whalley is a haven for independent trading and attracts visitors from across the United Kingdom for its unique shopping, dining and historical attractions.
You Will Love
Whalley plays host to a whole raft of independent retail outlets, ranging from high quality jewellers, designer shoe shops and women's and men's wear.
At outdoor clothing and footwear specialists, Whalley Warm & Dry, you will ﬁnd trained ﬁtters who will measure, analyse and adapt walking boots for optimum comfort. The multi award-winning company is so highly regarded that medical professionals including doctors, physiotherapists and chiropodists regularly refer patients to see them.
At Maureen Cookson, you will ﬁnd a variety of gorgeous designer goods and an extensive range of outdoor gear. The clothing, bag and shoe boutique runs over two ﬂoors and adjoins B's Deli and Benedicts Cafe Bar and gift shop.
Wine and Dine
Whalley offers some of the ﬁnest dining in Ribble Valley with a remarkable range of food on offer for a village. From afternoon tea, authentic Italian restaurants to Benedicts, an award-winning bistro, Indian dining and home cooked dishes using local produce, takeaways and pubs, there is so much on offer here.
At Benedicts Café Bar delicious dishes are served from morning to night with the signature breakfast Eggs Benedict a ﬁrm favourite with locals and tourists alike.
Whalley is a village steeped in history and full of surprises.
There are plenty of places to enjoy a drink and great music in Whalley...all offering a wide choice of draught beer, cocktails and ﬁne wines.
History and Heritage
One of the most popular destination spots in Whalley is the abbey, a former monastery of the 14th century Cistercian monks. The original building was demolished and a country house was built on the site. Today, the stone walls surround a stunning retreat and conference house with a coffee shop, exhibition centre and access to the extensive grounds, offering four-star accommodation.
St Mary and All Saints Parish Church dates back to 628AD, and if you stroll through the pretty churchyard, you will see three Saxon crosses.
Another attraction is Ribble Valley's iconic viaduct. Constructed in 1850, it is the longest in Lancashire, built to carry the railway over the River Calder. It can be seen from miles around and is a key feature of Whalley's distinctive character.
WhalleyLove Ribble Valley
Longridge, a former cotton mill town, is the perfect gateway to the Forest of Bowland.
The pretty town is made up of houses and buildings from locally quarried sandstone and remains largely unchanged in appearance since the 1800s.
Longridge is an excellent base for those wanting to explore the fell or take a stroll along the history-steeped heritage trails.
You Will Love
Longridge has a wide variety of charmingly unique shops selling art, crafts, homeware, jewellery, gifts, designer clothing, shoes and accessories.
History and Heritage
For a comprehensive guide to the area, visit the Heritage and Visitor Centre.
The Old Station, Berry Lane, Longridge PR3 3JP Telephone: 01772 437958 www.lhctrust.org.uk
It is situated in the centre of Longridge by the old Preston and Longridge Railway line.
The former station has been carefully converted to house the Heritage and Visitor Centre, along with a café and meeting rooms for hire.
Here you can ﬁnd out about Longridge's fascinating history, browse the old photographs on the town archive, or view one of their regularly changing exhibitions.
Arts, Cinema and Theatre
Longridge is lucky enough to have the Palace, a superb independent cinema which also puts on live shows.
There are art galleries galore and each year the town plays host to an annual art event called ‘Create Longridge’ which invites artists to capture local life on one day.
Artists produce landscapes, street scenes and abstracts.
For more information visit: www.createlongridge.co.uk
Wine and Dining
If you have a taste for eating out, ﬁne wine and great ale, then Longridge is the place for you.
With dozens of eateries offering a range of food from Thai and Indian to gourmet pub grub, you certainly won’t go hungry!
Do you love a leisurely walk or are you an adrenaline junkie? Indulge your passion for outdoor activities in and around Longridge, with its unspoiled landscapes.
LongridgeLove Ribble Valley
Forest of Bowland
Designated as an Outstanding Area of Natural Beauty the Forest of Bowland is a unique and magical place in the Ribble Valley. The distinctive character and natural beauty of the area form some of the most distinctive and important landscapes in the United Kingdom. Every season brings into this area its own colours and atmosphere and it becomes possible to escape into the peace and tranquillity of these truly beautiful places year round.
The Forest of Bowland was designated as an AONB in 1964 and covers over 312 square miles of rural landscape. It is home to a wide range of flora and wildlife plus contains numerous historical and cultural associations. Much of the area is important for the breeding of upland birds and notable wildflower meadows and woodlands are present.
The role of people in the Forest of Bowland is also an important and attractive aspect for the area. The Living landscape has been formed over centuries due to the close relationship between human activity and the land, from dry-stoned walls, hedgerows and barns, to open moors and grazed fields. The local food and drink produce is important for supporting the many farmers who manage the beautiful landscape and supporting the local economy.
The main importance for the Forest of Bowland, as a source of support for people’s livelihoods and enjoyment, and as a unique and protected landscape, is to remain a place to enjoy and keep social.
A full list of events can be found in the Festival Bowland programme.
Forest of BowlandLove Ribble Valley
- a view with the 'wow' factor!
Just 52 metres short of being classed as a mountain, the majestic Pendle Hill towers
over the picturesque towns and villages of East Lancashire and Ribble Valley...with
views spanning as far as Wales.
Astonishingly, on a clear day and just off the summit, you can see Blackpool Tower and the sea. Regular climbers of Pendle Hill report that for around eight clear days of the year you can also spot the Welsh landmark of Penmaenmawr. And from the 557 metre summit you can see two of Yorkshire’s famous three peaks - Ingleborough and Whernside – as well as Pendle’s other two peaks of Weets and Boulsworth.
With several routes to the summit, one of the most popular walks starts in the pretty village of Downham where you will also ﬁnd a great pub (Assheton Arms) if ‘fuelling up’ for the jaunt.
Pendle Hill’s relative isolation on the edge of the Pennines and the Bowland Fells makes it appear very dominant in the landscape.
Acting as a weather vane for locals the old English dialect phrase still stands today: “Wen yer can si Pendle Hill, it's bahn ter rain. An w'en yer cahn't, it is.”
Translated this means, “If you can see Pendle Hill then it is about to rain, if you cannot, then it is.”
A multi-million pound Heritage Lottery award has set in motion an exciting scheme of improvement to create greater access to the hill with interactive digital display points and maintenance of both routes and wildlife.
Pendle Hill rises above an ancient hunting ground, once the home of wolves and wild boar, a rugged and mysterious place.
Beneath the hill lie pretty villages which tell a story of intrigue and witchcraft nearly 400 years old. Many novels have been written about the world famous Pendle Witches, but reality in this case turns out to be stranger than ﬁction. All of the accused witches lived in the area around Pendle Hill.
The hill is not only famous worldwide for its association to the ‘witches’, but also with the Quaker movement. In his autobiography the founding father George Fox revealed it was here that he was inspired to start the religious organisation.
Fox wrote: “As we travelled, we came near a very great hill, called Pendle Hill, and I was moved of the Lord to go up to the top of it; which I did with difﬁculty, it was so very steep and high. When I was come to the top, I saw the sea bordering upon Lancashire. From the top of this hill the Lord let me see in what places he had a great people to be gathered.”
Today Pendle remains strongly linked to the Quakers, giving its name to one of their centres for religious and spiritual study and contemplation near Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, in the United States.