River Darwen Ravine at Hoghton Bottoms
OS grid ref:- SD 628263
The River Darwen Gorge at Hoghton, accessed via the A675 at Hoghton, is a particularly attractive area.
Trails cross rich open farmland passing an impressive weir, and boast views of the historic fortified manor house of Hoghton Tower, the ancestral home of the de Hoghton family, who have owned the estate since at least the twelfth century.The present house was built for Thomas de Hoghton in around 1560–65 and replaced an earlier house which occupied the site. One of the first visitors was the young playwright, William Shakespeare. He stayed with the family as a member of a troup of theatrical players and whilst there he was a tutor to the children.
Higher Mill, a restored eighteenth century house and mill, was powered by water from the River Darwen, the channel that guided water from the river to the cloth mill can still be seen.
The three arches of Hoghton Viaduct, a Grade II listed building situated near the weir and dating to 1826, tower 116 feet above the rocky bed of the river Darwen.
Animal life in the wooded vallley includes sika and roe deer, fox and mink. Wildflowers are also abundant, himalayan balsam, flag iris and foxgloves form colourful displays in spring and summer.