The Angry Corrie 24: Sep-Oct 1995
Eight to leave till late
Fantasy Superquarry, Gruesome Grinds... You all seem to have hills you love to hate. Now
TAC stands accused of racial prejudice, having included no English hills in its list of Gruesome Marilyns (TAC21, pp8-9). Being an Englishperson, I am proud to declare that Albion has summits which equal or even exceed the gruesomest Scotland and Wales have to offer. Here are eight more ghastly goodies:
1 Hensbarrow Beacon (312m, Section 40)
Pray for mist here, otherwise you'll be dismayed to find the view completely obscured by slag heaps from the china clay mines. This has to be the number one frustrating Marilyn for those (most of us?) who feel that the top of a hill should be higher than everything else in the vicinity.
2 Hail Storm Hill (477m, Section 36)
The trig point is beautifully situated overlooking Rossendale and reached by a pleasant dry path. Unfortunately the summit lies more than a mile further west in the midst of a totally flat trackless morass and competes with The Cheviot for the title of Britain's boggiest hill.
3 Staple Hill (315m, Section 41)
Hunt the trig point. It's there, honest. And I'm not giving any clues: you can all wander around in the trees until you bump into it like I did.
4 Rogan's Seat (672m, Section 35A)
Well documented as being the most boring, brain-numbing hill of all. It even says so in Blanco's book, so you don't need me to detail its definite deficiency of delight.
5 View Edge (321m, Section 38A)
What's in a name? Not a lot in this case. It's a pudding-shaped lump, well guarded by barbed wire, and the summit gives a 360° close-up panorama of trees.
6 Billinge Hill (179m, Section 36)
I have to be careful not to tread on any Scousian toes here, but it's difficult to whip up much enthusiasm for a hill when one side of it is completely taken over by the local rubbish tip.
7 St Boniface Down (240m, Section 42)
Our preantepenultimate English Marilyn, the "summit" of the Isle of Wight where the wind should blow wild and free but instead whistles through wires of the military-style fence barring walkers from its highest inches.
8 Mochrum Fell (317m, Section 27C)
This isn't actually in England, but its location is irrelevant since the climber can never see further than the next tree. The trig point is number 7*77. Anyone wanting to prove they have been to the top must supply the missing digit. (Hey, the Xmas quiz isn't until next issue! - Ed.) This offers a 1 in 10 chance of getting it right without going to the effort of finding it (ie about four million times better odds than winning the lottery). Unfortunately it also offers a 9 in 10 chance of being proved a complete fraud so that nobody will believe you've climbed any Marilyns at all!
Ed. - Ann has also reopened the search for Britain's strangest OS gridsquare (last discussed in TAC20). She now offers two weirdos from OS106: SE8027 and SE8322, and also wonders whether these are the only black-and-white squares in existence...?