The Cleveland Way

Buy any Ordnance Survey 1:25,000 map nowadays and you’ll find it criss-crossed by lines of green diamonds — the symbol for a National Trail or Long Distance Path.

In 1965, the first such trail was launched, The Pennine Way, and the second was our very own Cleveland Way, opened four years later on this day, 24th May, in 19691National Trails. (2021). Cleveland Way – National Trails. [online] Available at: https://www.nationaltrail.co.uk/en_GB/trails/cleveland-way/ [Accessed 24 May 2022]..

The route of course takes in Highcliff Nab, top left, following the wall on the right.

In the foreground is a small clump of cotton-grass, Eriophorum angustifolium. This moorland sedge can cover large areas, but prefers boggy depressions. It would be tempting to assume the long silky seed–heads would make a good cloth, but the hairs become brittle when dry, and have no twist in them unlike the proper cotton plant. They have however been used for stuffing pillows and to dress wounds during World War One.

Cottongrass is edible and has been used by Native American peoples. Medicinally it has been used in the treatment of diarrhoea2Plantlife. (2022). Cottongrass (Common). [online] Available at: https://www.plantlife.org.uk/uk/discover-wild-plants-nature/plant-fungi-species/cotton-grass-common [Accessed 24 May 2022]..

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