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The County Tops of the British Isles

AuthorPaddy Dillon
PublisherGastons West Col (out of print)
ISBNNo ISBN
Price£8.95
Snowdon is the highest mountain in the county of Gwynedd and the whole of Wales.

Snowdon is the highest mountain in the county of Gwynedd and the whole of Wales.

Paddy Dillon on the Isle of Man, with Snaefell beyond, the highest point on the island.

Paddy Dillon on the Isle of Man, with Snaefell beyond, the highest point on the island.

High on Ben Macdhui, the highest point in the Grampian region of Scotland.

High on Ben Macdhui, the highest point in the Grampian region of Scotland.

Some things seem like a good idea at the time, such as climbing to the highest point in every county in England, Scotland, Wales and Ireland. The research for this guidebook was achieved by hitch-hiking to the foot of almost every one of these heights, then walking to their summits.

The hitch-hiking alone involved 512 separate lifts and covered in excess of 22,500 kilometres (14,000 miles), completed in a series of short trips spread over nine months. A total of 95 County Tops were visited, based on the post-1974 arrangement of counties, regions and islands areas in the United Kingdom, plus all the counties in the Republic of Ireland.

The research trips were covered in the following order: South West England, North West England, North East England, Southern Scotland, Peak District, Isle of Man, Eastern Scotland, Ben Nevis, East Anglia, North Wales, South Wales, Scottish Highlands, South of Ireland, Northern Ireland, Irish Midlands, and Scottish Islands.

Over the years the county structure has changed again and again, so the list is basically academic, though the routes remain valid. It was a good excuse to travel around and explore the rich and varied countryside of the British Isles. In a review in High magazine the book was described by Chris Townsend as "daft enough to be popular."

The County Tops

Avon SE of Pitt Farm
Bedfordshire Dunstable Downs
Berkshire Walbury Hill
Borders Broad Law
Buckinghamshire Wendover Woods
Cambridgeshire The Hall Great Chishill
Carlow Mount Leinster
Cavan Cuilcagh
Central Ben More
Cheshire Shining Tor
Clare Glennagalliagh
Cleveland Guisborough Moor
Clwyd Moel Sych
Cork Knockboy
Cornwall Brown Willy
Cumbria Scafell Pike
Derbyshire Kinder Scout
Devon High Willhays
Donegal Errigal
Dorset Pilsdon Pen
Dublin Kippure
Dumfries & Galloway Merrick
Durham Mickle Fell
Dyfed Fan Foel
East Sussex Ditchling Beacon
Essex Chishall Common
Fife West Lomond
Galway Benbaun
Gloucestershire Cleeve Common
Grampian Ben Macdhui
Greater London Waylands
Greater Manchester Featherbed Moss
Gwent Chwarel y Fan
Gwynedd Yr Wyddfa
Hampshire Pilot Hill
Hereford & Worcester Black Mountain
Hertfordshire West of Hastoe
Highland Ben Nevis
Humberside Garrowby Hill
Isle of Man Snaefell
Isle of Wight St Boniface Down
Isles of Scilly Telegraph Hill
Kent Betsom's Hill
Kerry Carrauntoohil
Kildare Cupidstownhill
Kilkenny Brandon Hill
Lancashire Gragareth
Laois Arderin
Leicestershire Bardon Hill
Leitrim SE of Truskmore
Limerick Galtymore
Lincolnshire N of Normanby le Wold
Longford Cornhill
Lothian Blackhope Scar
Louth Slieve Foye
Mayo Mweelrea
Meath Carnbane East
Merseyside Billinge Hill
Mid Glamorgan Carn Foesen
Monaghan E of Slieve Beagh
Norfolk The Roman Camp
Northamptonshire Arbury Hill
Northern Ireland Slieve Donard
Northumberland The Cheviot
North Yorkshire Whernside
Nottinghamshire Herrod's Hill
Offaly Arderin
Orkney Ward Hill
Oxfordshire Whitehorse Hill
Powys Pen-y-Fan
Roscommon SE of Seltannasaggart
Shetland Ronas Hill
Shropshire Brown Clee Hill
Sligo Truskmore
Somerset Dunkery Beacon
South Glamorgan E of Pant-glas
South Yorkshire Margery Hill
Staffordshire Oliver Hill
Strathclyde Ben Cruachan
Suffolk SE of Elms Farm
Surrey Leith Hill
Tayside Ben Lawers
Tipperary Galtymore
Tyne & Wear Currock Hill
Warwickshire Ilmington Downs
Waterford Knockmealdown
Western Isles Clisham
West Glamorgan Cefnffordd
Westmeath Mullaghmeen
West Midlands Turner's Hill
West Sussex Black Down
West Yorkshire Black Hill
Wexford Mount Leinster
Wicklow Lugnaquillia
Wiltshire Tan Hill and Milk Hill