Distance: 2.4 km/1½ miles
Time: 40 minutes
Start: Bollington Rangers Office
Map: OS Explorer 268
Terrain: Easy. The canal tow-path can be muddy
Toilets: Available 364 days a year between 9.30am and 4.30pm at the Start and End of the route.The first in a series of circular walks around Bollington (the Happy Valley) and Kerridge starting from the Rangers Office, Adlington Road. The routes vary in length highlighting points of interest and provide pleasant views of the countryside. This walk is brief but pretty and is ideal at any time of the year.
An early feature of the walk is Bollington Aqueduct. Local man Charles Nicol, constructed the 60ft (18m) high embankment and the stone aqueduct. To prevent potential slippage caused by the river below, he simply diverted the river.
You will follow the Macclesfield Canal, which was opened in 1831. In its heyday the canal carried coals from Poynton by horse drawn barges; raw cotton to Bollington; silk from Macclesfield and gritstone from Kerridge. It also carried some unusual cargoes. In the 1850’s manure from Manchester
Corporation stables and ‘night soil’ from cesspits was transported to be sold to farmers as fertilizer!
Clarence Mill, which you will pass along the way, was built by local entrepreneurs, Joseph Brook and the Swindells, as a cotton mill between 1824 and 1845. A swing bridge across the canal carried skips loaded with boiler ash from the mill, which was tipped over the bank. The mill stopped spinning cotton in 1970. It was then used for light industry until 2001 when it was converted into offices and apartments.
Further along the route, you will enjoy a distant view of White Nancy. A member of the Gaskell family of Ingersley, sometime between 1815 and 1818 erected this folly, probably to commemorate the Battle of Waterloo. For a closer view pick up Bollington Circular Walk no.3. That walk takes in both White Nancy and Kerridge Hill with spectacular views across the Cheshire Plain.
Full Address: Bollington Rangers Office , Adlington Road , Bollington , Cheshire , SK10 5JT