Churn Milk Joan. Disappointing.

So let me just say, the bench wasn’t disappointing. I had no expectations that there would even be a bench here, so I suppose in that sense it was a pleasant surprise.


What was disappointing, was Churn Milk Joan…

For a long time, I had heard rumour of Churn Milk Joan as being a worthwhile place to walk to, while having no idea what he/she/it was. I then found out it was a standing stone out on the moors, so I decided to head over there and take a look. The standing stone is at the confluence of 6 or 7 footpaths, and is so called because a milk maid called Joan got lost in a storm and perished sheltering underneath it, a couple of hundred years ago or so. Grim.

The stone itself is pretty unremarkable. Here it is. Not on the horizon, very close. Just small.


The bench is close by. It’s sturdy in construction, albeit crude and simply made, with two stones at either end almost echoing nearby Churn Milk Joan.

There’s a plaque on it which says ‘Rest a while on Cranleigh’s seat’, with no further explanation of who Cranleigh might be… Although maybe if I knew local history better I would know!


The bench is littered underneath with stones, and in places was high enough for me to swing my feet a little, which is always a treat. The view is pretty good, if you’re into that kind of thing (moors)


I, however, was cold, windswept, and underwhelmed, so I went home.

Comfort of bench: 7/10
Capacity of bench: 4 (maybe 5 at a squeeze)
View from bench: 7/10, moorland, with views down into the valley near Mytholmroyd.
Accessibility of bench: Pretty much a nope on that front. Fairly rugged footpaths for some way around. 1/10
Adventure level: Pretty adventurous, for me, although still probably less than 30 mins walk from the nearest village (Mytholmroyd), maybe an hour’s walk from Hebden Bridge. Up pretty steep hills and out onto moorland, no roads particularly close. 7/10


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