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Bollington to Rainow via Rainowlow

Walk 1 starts and ends on Ingersley Vale in Bollington. If travelling by car, drive through Bollington along the main road (B5090), passing under the viaduct and the aqueduct. After the aqueduct, drive uphill and then down again, At the mini roundabout, turn right along Church Street. Turn left into Ingersley Vale, after the Crown Inn. There are usually parking spaces available, adjacent to the mill pond.

View the starting point

Distance: 3.2 miles (5.1 km)
Terrain: Lanes, footpaths and bridleways.
Access: Not suitable for wheelchair users and pushchairs
Grade: Easy
Time: 1 to 1½ hours
Ascent: 156 metres
Maps: OS Explorer Map 268, OL24
Start: Ingersley Vale, Bollington (SK10 5BP.
Grid Ref: SJ 939 776

Walk Description and Directions

The walk is a relatively easy short route. There are slight inclines here and there, but nothing too strenuous. Strong shoes or walking boots are essential, as parts of the walk can get quite muddy after rain.

The walk starts in Bollington, heading out along Ingersley Vale, which becomes a driveway. The Gritstone Trail is joined, heading uphill and passing Savio House (a retreat centre). From Savio House, the walk heads across fields over to the little hamlet of Rainowlow. Rainowlow consists of only about six dwellings. After Rainowlow, the walk heads down a lane into Rainow, passing the Robin Hood pub along the way. The route returns via Waulkmill and its picturesque waterfall.

(1) Walk along Ingersley Vale, passing the mill pond (on your right), small industrial premises (on your left) and the ruins of Ingersley Mill (on your left).
(2) Turn left down a footpath, that descends to a bridge over the River Dean. You have now joined the Gritstone Trail. After crossing the bridge, continue along the Gritstone Trail, uphill. Eventually you will pass buildings on the left. This is Savio House.
(3) After passing Savio House, a crossroads of footpaths is reached. Go through the gate and continue straight on, uphill, through the middle of a field (this photo looks back towards Savio House).
  (4) The footpath emerges onto a bridlepath (Oakenbank Lane). Cross straight over the bridlepath, and cross the wall into a field. The footpath goes straight down the middle of a field (see photo). Walk down to a stream.


(5) Cross the stream, then a stile, and follow the path uphill (the photo looks back towards the stile).
  (6) At the top of the hill, join another path and turn right.


(7) Bear left, and over a stile, to follow the path between two walls (the photo looks back towards the stile).
  (8) Pass through a few farm gates, and over a stile at the top of the hill. You are now in the hamlet of Rainowlow. Turn right along a footpath, signposted to Rainow.
  (9) Follow the footpath through a few fields until you reach a farm. The footpath emerges onto a lane (Kiskhill Lane). Turn right down the lane.


(10) Keep following the lane, past some houses on the right. Bear left at a fork.
  (11) Where the lane meets the main road you will find the Robin Hood pub.
(12) After the pub, bear right along Stocks Lane.
(13) Turn right down a road (Chapel Lane).
(14) Turn right down Sugar Lane, passing tall fir trees on the left.
(15) Bear right, away from the road, along a footpath that passes behind some houses along a paved path.
(16) After passing a private pond on the left (on which is moored a small dinghy!), the footpath emerges into an open field.
(17) Pass through a gap between stone slabs, and walk down the left hand edge of the field. White Nancy sits atop Kerridge Ridge, up to your left.


(18) Pass through another gap between stone slabs, and follow the paved path across the middle of two fields.
(19) Pass through a gate, and descend towards the buildings of Ingersley Vale. Walk along the lane, passing the picturesque waterfall on the left. Waulkmill Farm is on the right, followed by further cottages on the left.
(20) At a junction of driveways, continue straight on along the driveway that will return you to the starting point.

Print the route card and map to take on the walk with you. The step numbers above correspond to the step numbers in the route card and on the map.