Hesket Newmarket

Ask a local the name of an ash tree and he will tell you it is a ‘hesh’. Hesket means the place of the ash tree. It is a pleasant village that invites travellers to rest, featuring a medieval stone stall that was used until the late 1900s to tether bulls for the local cattle market. There is a well-stocked village shop, a post office, a couple of guest houses and the Old Crown Inn with its increasingly well-known microbrewery. You are in the Eastern Fells of the Lake District National Park, an untouched corner of England that proved a magnet for St Mungo in the 6th century, when he came, saw and converted. Many local churches are dedicated to him, usually under his real name: Kentigern (Mungo is a nickname meaning “dear friend”). You are about to tackle the toughest bit of the ride with some challenging up-and-down and majestic views. To the south west you will see the Lake District opening up, with great views of Skiddaw and the Uldale Fells.