Tramping through the leaves at Avenham and Miller Parks, Preston

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Last Sunday we ducked the throngs of people on crazy Christmas shopping missions and headed down to the park. It was just the remedy for a busy week. There isn’t much that beats tramping along leaf strewn paths, hiding under stone grottos whilst telling stories on the way.

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I remember visiting Avenham Park and Miller Park as a kid, playing pirates in the caves and burning off the energy in a way that no games console can. Sunday was no different.

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We ran down the hill into Avenham Park, journeyed across to the more formal Miller Park, explored the stone hidey holes and headed down next to the River Ribble. Water always calms my frazzled nerves, whether I’m in it or near it, I find it so relaxing. We climed the fifty or so steps up towards the bridge, threw pennies into the water and made a wish.

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We carried along the disused railway, now a cycle and walking path, through Preston Junction Nature Reserve. My son is determined to go on adventures further afield one day, we chatted about where we would like to visit; for him base camp at Mount Kilimanjaro and to cycle the Tour de France and for me to walk the pilgrimage to Santiago de Compostela. In the meantime we decided to have as many adventures as we could close to home.

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Not a single car could be heard as we strolled through the woods and across to Penwortham, bliss. We decided to carry on our journey back along the river and down to the play area at the foot of Frenchwood, the one with the humungous sky scraping climbing frame. You know, one that makes your feet tingle as your child climbs to the top and waves.

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Darkness threw her cloak over the park early that day. We stomped up the stone steps and out, back through town and past the frazzled shoppers, away from the talk of a red truck that was coming to town and home for chicken, veg and gravy. What a lovely day.

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