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24th November 2019 - Wigan Waterways and Green Belt circular walk

Tuesday, 29 October 2019 13:21

24th November 2019 - Wigan Waterways and Green Belt circular walk Dr Andrew Read

Join us for another walk in the Green Belt, this time for a circular walk in Wigan, on Sunday 24th November. Free to attend but booking essential.

 Following the success of our October walk from Sale to East Didsbury, Dr Andrew Read (creator of the Greater Manchester Ringway long distance trail) is to lead a second walk for CPRE Lancashire - this time, a circular walk in Wigan.

This leisurely circular walk from Wigan town centre includes heritage sites, a dramatic flight of locks on the Leeds-Liverpool Canal, and a gentle descent through woodland into the valley of the River Douglas. Approximately half of the walk explores the greenbelt of Wigan borough, which has the highest proportion of green space of any metropolitan borough in the country! Footpaths are well-made and maintained all the way.

 Image Dr. Andrew Read

Setting off from Wigan North Western station, we proceed to Trencherfield Mill and collect any walkers starting from there. After joining the canal near the famous Wigan Pier, we head east along it, soon ascending gradually past the unique flight of 21 locks. These raise the canal by 200 feet (60 metres) in a distance of only two miles. At Top Lock, we break for about 45 - 60 minutes at the adjoining Kirkless Hall Inn. (For those bringing packed lunches, there should be good lunch spots under the trees by the canal.) 

We then veer left with the canal on a very pretty stretch through open countryside with wide views. On reaching the bridge within Haigh Woodland Park, we leave the canal for a lovely descent along the part of the new GM Ringway long-distance trail. This takes us through the wooded Haigh Lower Plantations on very well-made paths. The final part of this section keeps us by the waterside all the way to Wigan town centre for the short stroll along Standishgate and Wallgate back to the start. Expected finish time 3 pm or so.

Walk details:

Length: 6.1 miles / 9.9 km

Difficulty: Leisurely - mainly very good paths; some ascents and descents but gradual with no steep sections; accessibility for pushchairs and/or wheelchairs will be confirmed as soon as possible.

Access:  As it's a circular walk, those unable to use public transport can park at the start (at Trencherfield Mill); otherwise excellent train service to the two Wigan stations from Manchester, Liverpool, Bolton, and Preston.

- For toilets and refreshments, there are pubs about half-way along but no public toilets except in Wigan town centre (at the start and for the last 300 metres or so).

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