Herb Courses

2019 Herb Courses with Sarah:

Healing herbs from the hedgerow - with Sarah Atkinson Medical Herbalist 

6 sessions starting on Wednesday 12th September 7 pm - 9 pm - alternate Wednesdays 26th September, 10th October and 24th October. 

2 further sessions 17th April 2019 and 1st May 2019.

Exploring the healing power of plants including herb walks, harvesting herbs, , tincture making, fixed oils and herbal teas and syrups. Also including stories and observations from my 25 years in practice.

All materials required will be supplied .

Herb Walks

2019 Herb Walks with Sarah:
All walks start at 10.00 am
  • Bank holiday 6th May - walking festival walk - herb walk along the towpath of the canal towards the sea and back start 10.00 am
  • Saturday 11th May - Foxfield mosses, 10.00 am Start
  • Wednesday 22nd May - Frith Hall, 10.00 am Start
  • Saturday 1st June - Birkrigg common, 10.00 am Start

£5 per person

Please book in advance - 01229 716023

Accompanied children free.

Saturday 11th May - Foxfield mosses, 10.00 am Start
2. Foxfield mosses - 3 1/2 miles, fairly flat easy going, Starting at the level crossing to Skelly Crag we cross over the railway line and walk towards Kirkby taking a short detour along the board walk to look at bog loving plants and herbs from a safe distance. There is the possibility of being able to pause at The Ship Inn in Kirkby before returning to Foxfield via a network of footpaths some of which take us along areas that can be flooded by high tides where we can see herbs that able to grow in brackish conditions. There are stunning views of the fells and out to sea.

Wednesday 22nd May - Frith Hall, 10.00 am Start
3. Frith Hall - starting and ending at Ulpha Bridge. About 3 miles of rough terrain looking at herbs which enjoy growing in damp, peaty chilly conditions. Once we have passed Frith Hall - the ruin of an ancient hunting lodge or stopping place for travelers on an old pack horse route - we drop down onto the Corney fell road making our return journey through Beck Foot; via a wooded track which provides the opportunity to see herbs that enjoy growing in milder, warmer conditions. At the site of the old bobbin mill we turn right and return to Ulpha bridge.

Saturday 1st June - Birkrigg, 10.00 am Start
5. Birkrigg - Walking Festival - Herb walk from The Bardsea Church in Bardsea to Birkrigg and back Meet 10.00 am, approx 2 hours - easy walk with only a couple of inclines. £2

All the walks will take between 3 - 4 hours depending on the herbs. The walks are undertaken at your own risk - it's important to wear appropriate foot wear and clothing ( it will be possible to get wet on all these walks) as well as bringing along a drink and something to snack on. Children must be accompanied by an adult.The walks will be cancelled if its wet but might be OK if it's only drizzling - check with me if you are unsure 07870 250182

There is a small charge of £5 per adult, children are welcome as long as they bring an adult with them, dogs are optional - I will have George with me.

Booking Essential
01229 716023/580222.

Herb Walks are an opportunity to go for a walk, usually in the South Lakes area, with a local herbalist. Booking is essential because I like to keep the numbers to about 10, any more than this and it becomes difficult for everyone to see and hear what's going on. Wear walking boots and bring wet weather gear plus a drink and sandwiches. Sometimes we will be able to sample some of the plants as we walk - bring some bead and butter for this purpose. (or similar).

Always phone a couple of hours before the start of the walk if you are unsure about the weather, I will walk in a light drizzle but nothing heavier than this - you just can't see the herbs in driving rain. Obviously all walks are undertaken at your own risk. I've been guiding herb walks for over 5 years and I haven't lost anyone yet, but you need to be realistic about the level of walking you can manage.

For example there was a lot of interest in the Hamps Fell walk from Mothers and Toddlers as well as older walkers, what I've done is to offer an alternative walk to the younger people. If you have an area local to you that you would like to know more about from a plant perspective I am happy to come out and walk with you.

I usually make a small charge of £10 per person to cover my travelling costs. I normally do any arranged walk 2 or 3 times before the event to ensure that I am familiar with the plants as well as the route, getting lost is only exciting for the first five minutes.

These walks range from the limestone hills of Hamps Fell - an interesting spring walk with a large variety of wild plants especially in a meadow which has never been cultivated or artificially fertilized. This is a 2 - 3 hour walk with an initial steep climb and uneven terrain over limestone pavements for some of the route.

Beacon Tarn and Fell - 3 - 3.5 hours, quite a different walk over boggy peaty ground with some gentle climbing involved. The plants on this walk all enjoy acid conditions, there is an impressive display of bog bean in some of the pools around the tarn. This is a good walk for a hot day, the fells usually find a breeze from some where and a swim in the tarn will also help to cool you off - it's not as cold as you might think.


Current Walks:

Walney Island

A walk along the shore and through the nature reserve with fantastic views out across the Irish sea. (More...)

Length: 5 miles
Time taken: Half a day


A glimpse of the steam railway the Ratty and a walk through the village of Boot before the real walk begins. (More...)

Length:5.5 miles
Time taken: 3-4 hours


A relatively level walk as far as walks go in Cumbria with a variety of scenery. (More...)

Length: 6 miles
Time taken: 2.5 - 3.5 hours

Beacon Tarn & Fell

A walk over boggy peaty ground with some gentle climbing involved. (More...)

Length: 5 miles
Time taken: 3 - 3.5 hours

Hamps Fell

An interesting Spring walk with a large variety of wild plants. (More...)

Length: 4 miles
Time taken: 2 - 3 hours


Sarah Atkinson MNIMH dip. phyt.

Owner & Medical herbalist

Tel: 01229 580222 / 716023
Email: sarah.atkinson4941@ live.co.uk

I've been a practicing medical herbalist for over twenty five years. The idea for the Medicine Garden has gradually germinated over this time.

During the process I've found that the emphasis of my consultation has changed, from focusing totally on the herbs to looking very much at what people eat and drink. This, combined with listening to peoples life stories has made my approach to dis-ease much more holistic, which benefits my patients by giving them more control over their health.