Madeley Walk Number Four:

Madeley Walks: One Way or Another.
Walk 4: The Road to Ruin: Baldwin’s Gate & Old Madeley Manor
The options are: 1. A main red walk of 9¼ miles.
2. Part of the purple walk can be added to take in the ruins of Old Madeley Manor: 10½ miles.
3. A separate stand-alone circular purple walk to take in the ruins of Old Madeley Manor – 4 miles.
All distances are approximate. Start at The Madeley Centre, New Road, Madeley CW3 9DN (Grid Ref: 773451). Tel: 01782-751808. The Madeley Centre has car parking, catering & toilet facilities. Please enjoy a walk in the country, but if you can, support our local businesses, Listed under The Adverts – but check opening times beforehand!
Explorer Maps: 257 Crewe & Nantwich & 258 Stoke on Trent & Newcastle under Lyme

The Adverts:
• Croft at The Centre Cafe & Restaurant at The Madeley Centre: 01782-751808.
• One Stop Grocery & Convenience Store, Greyhound Corner: 01782-750373.
• Shepleys Butchers, Greyhound Corner: 01782-751775.
• Tang Dynasty Chinese Takeaway, Greyhound Court: 01782-752288.
• Village Shop & Newsagent, Greyhound Court: 01782-750525
• In 2 Wine Off Licence, Greyhound Court: 01782-751708.
• Raj Indian Takeaway, Greyhound Corner: 01782-752000.
• Homers Cafe, Greyhound Corner: 01782-751800.
• Madeley Spice Restaurant & Take Away, Greyhound Corner: 01782-750088.
• Poolside Fish Bar: 01782-750242.
• The Offley Arms, Poolside: 01782-750242.
• The Stables Restaurant at The Old Hall: 01782-750209.
• The Old Hall B&B, Wedding & Conference Centre: 01782-752543.
• The Sheet Anchor, Baldwin’s Gate: 01782-680804.
• Station Stores & Post Office, Baldwin’s Gate: 01782-680426 / 0857 22 33 44
• Absolutely Fabulous Hat Studio, Aston: 01630-647672 / 07860 333950
• Unreal Paintball, Manor Road, Madeley: 01782-6360936476- Mobile: 07860 333950 01630 647672 – Mobile: 07860

BP = Bridle Path
CP = Car Park
FB = Foot Bridge
FP = Footpath
KG = Kissing Gate
L = Left
MC = Madeley Centre
R = Right
TP = Telegraph Pole

Stile Counsel:
Red Route: 26 stiles.
Purple Route (as part of Red Walk): 21 stiles
Purple Route (as stand-alone walk): 32 Stiles

RED WALK: The Road to Baldwin’s Gate (9¼ Miles):
[1] From The MC turn R & take the crossing by The One Stop & Shepleys Butchers, over to Homers Café, Raj Takeaway & Madeley Spice. Turn R, keeping The Pool over to the R & passing Madeley Fish Bar, The Offley Arms, The Stables Restaurant & Old Hall Country House Hotel [Grade II listed building: Late C16 with later C19 and C20 additions and alterations. Timber framed on dressed sandstone plinth. The inscription “16 WALLK KNAVE. WHAT LOOK EST AT 47 I B” may be some kind of warning. The house is said to have had recusant connections in the late C16/C17.]. Where A525 curves to R, carry straight on up The Holborn. After 300 yds, at the top, go straight ahead down a hedge & walled pathway, for 200 yds, over a stile, another stile immediately to L & then half R across well-trod path to a stile & into Netherset Hey Lane.
[2] Turn R & walk down this lane for ¾ mile, passing Netherset Industrial Estate, over 4 cattle grids, & then R into a track way, after a red brick farm house with yew hedging, for 50 yds. Then round to L for 400 yds, over a small bridge, & 100 yds before reach woodland, cross stile on R into a field. Keep field boundary for two sides on L& go down to the main West Coast Rail Line. Turn L under the railway bridge.
[3] Cross stile to L & follow field for 400 yds, keeping wire & hedge line to R. Cross next stile & head in same direction for 400 yds – ignore galvanised steel gate to R & carry on into a section of field which narrows & cross stile next to double set of gates & turn R into trackway. Follow trackway for ¾ mile, then thru Snapehall Farm yard, keeping to L, thru gates & turn R into Snape Hall Road; passing Granary Cottage, Wood Crest, Greenacre, Birch Tree Lane, Lyndhurst, Hawkesmoor, Ravens Wood, Birch Wood, Heather Hills, The Levels, Three Coins & Heath House – 100 yds after here, the road splits; follow Snape Hall Road round to the R, passing Petrus Farm View, Snape Hall Close, Maer Vista, Gaylords, then reaching the busy A53 (20 yds to L is Whitmore Village Hall, whose CP can be used as a base for walks in this area.).
[4] Turn R, & walk alongside A53, passing The Sheet Anchor & Station Stores / Stevensons Newsagents, General Stores & Post Office & cross over the railway bridge
[5] Turn R past the blue plaqued Whitmore Station Booking Office [Station opened in 1837 on The Grand Junction Line. On the 29th June 1937 the Coronation Scot engine created a World record of 115 mph while travelling through Whitmore station. Station closed in 1952.]. Down this lane, keep the railway to R & cottages to L, where cottages end, go past garage units into a walkway with railway fencing to R & residential housing to L. Cross 2 stiles to reach hedge boundary, turn L up-field for 250 yds & cross stile on R. Walk in same direction over 2 stiles & then to stile to R of crumbling brick wall, half L across field, over stile, turn L & head uphill to stile in top L corner of field & 20 yds over farm track & another stile.
[6] Pass Parkwood Drive Waste Water Pumping Station; continue upbank round to R on gravel track; 20 yards before gate, sharp L on well-trod path to reach stile on R & into woodland. Follow well-trod path up thru woods & then over to R & thru gate in fence panels. Sharp L & follow fence line on L & then R onto concrete pathway & follow this, cross a driveway, R & then L up the concrete pathway again, but where it goes R, look for waymarkers on wooden fence panelling, follow these panels to the R; up & then down & to a ladder stile thru trees. Cross over & follow fence line on R, & when fence panels on both sides, go thru, respectfully, on to private driveway & thru gates of Hybury House. Follow driveway up & L & on to Manor Road (Manor Road is the quickest way back to Madeley but the road is used as a rat run & is dangerous to drive on, let alone walk on!).
[7] Turn R, walk up Manor Road with care for 200 yds, passing Fairview Cottage, The Pines, The Brackens, Parkwood, The Woodlands, Brackenwood, Silver Lea, Birchwood, Westbridge.
[8] At crest of hill, where Parkwood Drive is on R; go L down a hedged wagon way (L of a Whitmore & District Parish Walks Noticeboard) for 200 yds & cross a stile. Keep same direction as stile to hedge corner: just to L of wooden TP. Head up field towards Radwood Hall Farm. Cross stile next to water trough (FOR THE LONGER WALK SKIP ON DOWN TO 14) & keep hedge on R to next stile, down a few steps, turn R for 50 yds & over double set of stiles on L. Follow field round, keeping barbed wire fencing to the R to another double set of stiles over a farm trackway. Keep field boundary to R again & cross stile – now walk parallel with hedge on R, but move 50 yards in-field & on far side of field go thru waymarked gateposts & trackway to Lunt’s Farm. Turn L in front of farm buildings & follow track down, curving right then left, then straight on, over a cattle grid
[9] R at the junction to Aston down Holloway Lane, passing Hillside Cottage & Wyndhams Cottage.
[10] Turn R at junction & 20 yds past The Oaks turn R into Red Lane (Red Lane was a wagon route between Madeley & Aston & got its name from the red clay along the way), next to Aston Farm, signed to ‘Absolutely Fabulous Hat Studio’, & follow this for ¾ mile, passing Aston Cottage, Lea Cottage, The Lea.
[11] Where the lane goes R to a gated farm drive, go thru the KG on L & follow down & slightly R to go under a brickwork bridge [once part of the track of The North Staffordshire Railway, nicknamed the ‘The Knotty Line’ after its logo. The line to Market Drayton opened in 1870. The NSR was formed in 1845 but in 1923 became part of the London, Midland and Scottish Railway Company], keep the hedge to the L & round & down to a pair of BP gates over a stream FB. Slightly L to next BP gate & thru hedge-lined pathway up to a house on R. Keep on in same direction for 400 yds down a farm lane, where it goes sharp R, go thru BP gate to left of gate into field. This is the first of five BP gates on Red Lane that go thru two fields, a hedge-lined lane, another field & then another hedge-lined lane for 1 mile (Unreal Paintball’s Fort can sometimes be seen in the trees on the R).
[12] Cross Bar Hill Road with care, turn R, passing Mallard Close & Manor Road. 50 yds after crossing over the railway bridge, turn L into Moss Lane & walk to its end, passing school playing fields, Bower End Lane, The Bridle Path, Moss Lane Surgery, Morningside, Charles Cotton Drive, River Lea Mews. At the bottom turn L, passing Shepleys Butchers, One Stop, Furnace Lane & then turn L into The MC.

PURPLE WALK: A Walk in The Park: Ruins of Old Madeley Manor (2 MILES):
[There are no car parks that can be used for this as a stand-alone walk; the best option is to park in Parkwood Drive (Grid Ref: 781414), off Manor Road. As this is a public road, please take care not to block any entrances. If you start & end here, the walk is 4 miles.]
[13] From Parkwood Drive, cross Manor Road & go down a hedged wagon way (L of a Whitmore & District Parish Walks Noticeboard) for 200 yds & cross a stile. Turn half R & go to the hedge corner which juts out into the field from the R, keep hedge on R & head up field towards Radwood Hall Farm. Cross stile next to water trough
[14] Turn R after 5 yds, over a stile, down a track to a stile, into a rough paddock, over another stile into a field, hedge on R, over stile, across double concrete slabbed trackway, over stile into field & same direction over stile to R of oak tree in middle of field, then another stile to R of oak tree & trough; look at wooded copse ahead & aim 20 yds in from R to cross FB & up to another stile.
[15] Head diagonally across to field corner & over two stiles over bridge of disused railway. Head down field 200 yds, keeping hedge on R & join a red clay farm track. Walk on this track & see all that remains of Old Madeley Manor to L. [Remains of a Manor house: medieval probably C15 or early C16. Coursed red sandstone. Only a fragment of walling survives to a maximum height of just over 3m. This contains part of the springing of an external round-headed doorway with portcullis groove and chamfered arch; to the south a window at ground level (perhaps formerly lighting a cellar) and remains of a large fireplace with knife sharpening grooves to one side. Several blocks of dressed masonry lie nearby. Impressive fishponds or moats lie to the north and west, and in the adjoining fields are further extensive earthworks, which (to the north-east) may have been associated with the garden of the house. The house itself, of which there is an engraving in Plots History of Staffordshire was partly timber framed. Scheduled Ancient Monument. Site of Lord Stafford’s Hunting Lodge at The Great Deer Park at Madeley; after The Battle of Hastings, Robert de Tosny, or Tonei, was granted land in Staffordshire, including Madeley, by William the Conqueror. Tosny was based at Stafford where his name became Robert de Stafford and then, Lord Stafford. Baldwin’s Gate would have been a gate to the deer park & the parker would have been Baldwin! Lord Stafford after a series of marriages added the Duke of Buckingham to his titles, but fell foul of Henry VIII & was executed, his estates forfeited & eventually his holdings in Madeley bought by Thomas Offley in 1547: he was knighted & Lord Mayor of London in 1556, he was succeeded by his son Henry, then by Sir John Offley, who left endowments in his will for almshouses & a school for Madeley, his son also John Offley followed, a friend of Izaak Walton, who dedicated the first edition of his book, ‘The Compleat Angler’ to him; He married Mary, daughter of Thomas Broughton of Broughton Hall (now the residence of John Cauldwell). He was succeeded by his son also John Offley married Anne Crewe of Crewe Hall. The two estates merged and the Manor House at Madeley was eventually abandoned & fell into decay and ruins.]
[16] Turn L in 50 yds past remains of moat & walk parallel with moat for 200 yds, turn half L (crossing remains of fish ponds) & head up the hedge row to a FB & stile, just before a wooden TP.
[17] Turn half L & see four oak trees in the middle of the field, forming a line that hits the tree line on the L. Use the third tree in from the R as the marker & head for it, pass it on R & see stile in tree line ahead; cross stile & tree line is now evident as the disused Knotty Line, cross FB, turn half R & diagonally ascend to stile. Keep hedge on R for 100 yds until reach double stile & FB next to an oak tree.
[18] Cross into next field, see large pond & use L side as marker to aim for stile & FB in hedge row. Head up field & cross stile to L of oak tree. Use R side of pond in this field as marker to head for stile in top R corner, hidden behind a holly bush.
[19] Keep hedge on R to next field, over stile, & in 400 yds (just before hedge line goes L), look for stile in hedge on R, cross & turn L, follow hedge down to gate & cross stile on L, round to L & over stile & into tarmac’d road: FOR THE LONG RED ROUTE, TURN R & PICK UP ROUTE FROM POINT [9]; FOR THE PURPLE FOUR MILE STAND ALONE WALK: turn L, & follow farm lane up to Lunt’s Farm; turn R as reach farm house along track, to a gateway. Cross stile in top L corner of field; keep fence on L & cross stile in top L of field; half right, cross farm track, & over another stile; keep barbed wire fence on left & aim for double set of stiles in far hedgerow (about 20 yards in); turn R, then L after 50 yds, up steps to a stile & keep fence to L to cross stile by trough. Half L & follow hedge down; where it goes sharp L, go half L to stile by gate in field corner & down track to Parkwood Drive.

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