Released: July 2014
Publisher: Bradwell Books
Size: 220 x 120mm
Author: H Taylor & M McCrossan
Walks for all Ages Staffordshire features 20 circular walks of up to 6 miles, suitable for all the family, that have been carefully chosen to deliver an enjoyable day or half day in the countryside.
Describing the local area at the start of each walk, the authors then provide a detailed description of the walk with snippets of information as you go along.
Including Ordnance Survey mapping and superbly priced at just £4.99, Walks for all Ages - 20 Circular Walks in Staffordshire is the perfect accompaniment for a stroll in the county.
01. Abbots Bromley - 2½ miles
02. Essington - 2½ miles
03. Whittington - 2 miles
04. Chasewater - 3¼ miles
05. Middleton Lakes - 3 miles
06. Tutbury - 2 miles
07. Burton upon Trent - 2½ miles
08. Longnor - 2¼ miles
09. Meerbrook Tittesworth Reservoir - 4½ miles
10. Meerbrook Lud’s Church - 2 miles
11. Wetton - 3 miles
12. Barlaston - 3 miles
13. Milwich - 3 miles
14. Great Haywood - 4 miles
15. Etruria - 3½ miles
16. Cheddleton - 2 miles
17. Trysull - 2¼ miles
18. Cannock Chase - 3 miles
19. Lichfield - 2½ miles
20. Alrewas - 3 miles
Walking in Staffordshire, you will find the remains of Iron Age forts, villages dating back to the Domesday Book, wild woodland, medieval castles and a cathedral with three spires. The Victorians and their immediate predecessors left the mark of the Industrial Revolution on the countryside, although the belching chimneys, grinding mills and coal seams have given way to industrial museums, wildlife parks and walks along disused railway lines. Above all, this county is criss-crossed by canals, combining industrial heritage with beautiful and peaceful countryside.
At the start of the Industrial Revolution in the Potteries, the canals were crucial. Along with James Brindley, a pioneering canal builder, Josiah Wedgwood was one of the prime movers in growing the canal network. The stories of their lives and achievements can be discovered as you follow various walks in this book. Look for Brindley’s Bratch Locks at Trysull and his statue at Etruria. Wedgwood’s story is also told at Etruria and Barlaston.
The history is fascinating but the canals have now become beautiful and lively places, teeming with wildlife. It is a delight to walk here or simply sit at one of the many canalside inns, watching the boats. Many of the industrial sites have been transformed into wildlife areas, with old quarries flooded to attract birds and reservoirs transformed to encourage wildlife and provide facilities for watersports.
Beyond the canals and industrial heritage, wherever you walk, you can find pretty villages like Milwich, Abbots Bromley or Longnor. Wander through Milwich’s interesting graveyard or look in the church at Abbots Bromley for the horns used in the ancient Horn Dance; or better still visit in September to see it performed. At Longnor you can wander through the central market square to find the ‘Table of Tolls’ still displayed on the old Market Hall.
You can also walk through some amazing natural formations, around which tales have been woven. Lud’s Church at Meerbrook is a natural chasm, created by landslips, where an ancient poem tells us Sir Gawain confronted the Green Knight. Have a look too at the magnificent Thor’s Cave, at Wetton, where Ken Russell set the story of the White Worm in his 1988 film.
You will never tire of walking in Staffordshire, a county where the signs of human habitation stretch back into the mists of time and the landscape, both natural and shaped by its people, is fascinating and beautiful.
H Taylor & M McCrossan