Bellingham (pronounced Belling-jum) is in the North Tyne valley, close to the A68 and Kielder Resevoir, about 30 miles north-west of Newcastle.
A National Trust wooded river walk to a waterfall. There is a free NT carpark in Bellingham village. The village has small shops, cafes and pubs.
A walk of about 1 hour, over rough paths which involves quite a bit of climbing up steps. Easy enough for a reasonably fit person, but not suitable for wheelchairs or buggies.
Do not try to use Google to find this walk as it directs you to a rough, private track. The post code for the NT car park is NE48 2BZ.
Head for the A68, which runs between Corbridge and Jedburgh. There is no easy route from the east. From the Alnwick area, go Rothbury to Otterburn then turn left just after the shop in Otterburn village. This will bring you to the A68 where you cross over for Bellingham. From Morpeth take the Scotsgap road past Wallington Hall, cross the A696 at Kirkharle and turn right when you reach the A68.
If you are travelling north up the A68 from Newcastle, turn left at the Sweethope Lough crossroad, signposted 'Redesmouth, Bellingham' and follow this road for 5 miles through Redesmouth into Bellingham village. As you approach the village centre, you will see a garage on your left. Turn right here up a short road and you will find the National Trust car park on the left.
If you are travelling south down the A68, turn right on the B6320. at the crossroads about 2 miles south of the A68 / A696 junction. Follow this road right down into Bellingham village, then turn left in the village centre, signposted 'Heritage Centre'. After about 50 yards you will see the garage on your right, turn left here and go up to the car park.
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Follow the pathway up from the car park and through 2 gates After a short distance, the pathway drops down to a grassy picnic area. The path now climbs up some steps and continues above the burn.
This part of the path is lined with flat stones, which keeps you out of the mud, but can be tricky to walk on, Now you cross a small bridge, then continue on until you reach the first of the 6 bridges over Hareshaw burn.
The walk above the first bridge is a bit wilder, and runs past a small waterfall, but this is not the Linn, so carry on
until you reach the second bridge. This bridge was damaged by floods and the path was closed here for a while, but the bridge was repaired and is as good as new now.
Keep on going, over 3 more bridges, maybe stopping at times for your dog to play in the water. Carry on up some steep steps, until you eventually reach bridge 6. Now the stream runs through a short, deep gorge, full of large rocks. The path drops down into the gorge on rocky steps, then ends in a rocky bay below the waterfall.
The name Hareshaw Linn is Anglo-Saxon in origin and means 'Grey-Wood waterfall'. It is hard to imagine that this was once the site of an iron works as you walk along the stream. Hareshaw Iron Works was founded in the 17th century and only lasted for 10 years. Iron ore, coal and limestone were mined from the surrounding area, and used to make pig iron, which was then carted down to Hexham for refining. At its peak, the Iron work employed 500 people in 70 coke ovens.
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