Overshadowed by the Yorkshire Dales to the north and the Peak District to the south, the moors and valleys of the south Pennines have suffered undue neglect. Yet this is an area of stark beauty, rich in history and literature, and fine walking country. Gladys Sellers, one of the best known guidebook writers in the north, has compiled a guide which includes every aspect of this fascinating countryside. There are over 128 walks to delight the connoisseur. The south Pennine landscape is one of hills and mills, sometimes more mills than hills. Both are interwoven in a mesh that is the very essence of this landscape, unique in the British Isles. Its strength lies in the contrast between the mill towns (though no longer satanic and under a pall of smoke) and their surrounding green valleys, where many an ancient hamlet lies, seamed by deep-cut wooded cloughs and topped by the ever present moors. Its lack of stately homes and parklands is off-set by the many fine yeoman farmers' and clothiers' houses, and often enough by the very mills themselves. Some of them are old enough to seem picturesque and many have real architectural merit. This fascinating landscape, fashioned more by the hand of man than nature, has evolved over the last seven or eight centuries from the hunting forest of the Norman barons - the rise and fall of the textile industry just set the final stamp upon it. It offers a vast amount of varied and interesting walking to the moderate walker.
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