The walk starts and ends at a layby on Shrigley Road, opposite a house named “Needygate” (postcode SK10 5SG). By car, take the main A523 road out of Macclesfield in the direction of Poynton and Stockport. At a set of traffic lights in Adlington, adjacent to the Legh Arms pub, turn right up Brookledge Lane. Turn left along Shrigley Road. This will take you past the Coffee Tavern cafe, well worth a stop for refreshments. A short distance past the cafe, there is a layby on the right, with enough room for about 10 cars. The house named “Needygate” is on the left.
Get directions to Needygate by public transport or car with Redplanet.
|Distance:||4.8 miles (7.6 km)|
|Terrain:||Lanes, footpaths and bridleways.|
|Access:||Not suitable for wheelchair users and pushchairs|
|Time:||2 to 2½ hours|
|Maps:||OS Explorer Map 268|
|Start:||Layby on Shrigley Road.|
|Grid Ref:||SJ 948 817|
This circular walk involves an easy walk up a lane past West Parkgate to Green Farm, then footpaths in Lyme Park, before returning along an Interest Trail through Ladybrook Valley and Crow Wood, then a gentle stroll through Hase Bank Wood back to West Parkgate. Refreshments and toilets are available at the Coffee Tavern (half a mile along Shrigley Road from the starting/finishing point), and at the coffee shop in the Timber Yard in Lyme Park. Strong shoes or walking boots are essential.
The house at West Parkgate passed just after the start of the walk is returned to at the end of the walk. As the name suggests, this is at the western-most point of the Lyme Park estate. This house is a Grade II listed building dating from 1620. Along the outward stretch of this walk, as it passes Green Farm and enters Lyme Park, there are wonderful views across the Cheshire Plain to the escarpment of Alderley Edge and beyond to Helsby Hill and the mountains of North Wales. Also, on a clear day, the tall buildings in the centre of Manchester may be seen – the tallest is the Hilton Tower Hotel.
The walk begins its return leg by following the southern part of the Ladybrook Valley Interest Trail. This is a 10 mile route from South Manchester, using suburban green waterside corridors from near the Mersey at Cheadle and Cheadle Hume, into the countryside to reach Lyme Park, along the brook whose name changes along the way: Micker Brook, Lady Brook, Norbury Brook and, beyond the Trail to its source, Bollinhurst Brook. The Interest Trail is an easy path through the northern woods of Lyme Park. To the left of the Interest Trail, the Cage may be seen on top of a hill – a walk up to the Cage may be an interesting addition to this walk. The Cage was originally a hunting lodge and was later used as a park-keeper’s cottage and as a lock-up for prisoners. The Interest Trail eventually leads you into Crow Wood, ending up at the Timber Yard cafe and visitor centre.
After passing the Timber Yard and mill pond and the main car park in Lyme Park, the walk returns to West Parkgate via Hase Bank Wood. This is probably the highlight of the walk, and is a gentle stroll down through this very scenic wooded area.
The route is also available as a plain page.