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Lockdown 19


Route description & photos

Park on the minor road on the west side of the A523 at Fools Nook.  There is space for several cars at the roadside just after the canal swing bridge.


Liam & Tom        Start of walk at Fools Nook


Start by walking on the canal towpath, north towards Macclesfield.  Cross the first footbridge and the cross the A523 road.


Footbridge to exit Macclesfield Canal        Sutton Reservoir


Enter the gate over the road into Sutton Reservoir.  It is possible to walk around either side of the reservoir, but the path to the left is considerably better.


Footpath beside Sutton Reservoir        Sutton Reservoir


At the other side of the reservoir, exit onto Leek Old Road and turn right.  Walk uphill along the road and then turn left into Croker Lane.


Croker Lane Entrance to Croker Farm Liam in Croker Farm


Follow this road (a byway) into Croker Farm.


Croker Farm        Croker Farm


The road eventually becomes a track, some of it with a concrete service vehicle surface. 


Croker Farm        Track ascending Croker Hill


It weaves through Croker Farm and then Hanging Gate Farm before angling left to climb up to the ridge.  On the ridge turn right to follow the Gritstone Trail route up to the telecommunications tower on Sutton Common.


Concrete road up Croker Hill Bosley Tower Bosley Telecommunications Tower


The Gritstone Trail turns left off Sutton Common beside a farmhouse.  This can be taken, but to avoid the mud, continue along the Sutton Common service road down to the A54.


Lunch break on Sutton Common        Road south off Croker Hill


At the A54 Buxton to Congleton road, turn left and walk down to rejoin the Gritstone Trail.


Tom @ Bosley Tower Looking back at Bosley Tower Gritstone Trail route off Sutton Common - do not follow!


Turn right onto Minn End Lane, which is also the continuing route of the Gritstone Trail.


Start of climb up Wincle Minn Wincle Minn Summit of Wincle Minn


Follow this quiet lane right along Wincle Minn and enjoy the scenery in all directions.  Bosley Cloud will be prominent to the right on a clear day.


Liam on Wincle Minn        Walking off Wincle Minn, Bosley Cloud in the distance


As the road begins to drop and swing left, look out for a bench on the right.  From here, pass through the kissing gate and follow the path down the field to a stile and signpost.


Wincle Minn        Rest spot before leaving the road onto the public footpath


Do not cross the stile, but turn right at the signpost to head downhill.


Start of footpath, another view of Bosley Cloud        Veering right to drop towards Stilesmeadow Farm


Don't be tempted to veer right, but keep on straight ahead to drop down to a gate.  This section can be muddy and slippery.


Muddy path down to Stilesmeadow Farm        Heading towards Stilesmeadow Farm


Continue dropping downhill towards Stilesmeadow Farm.  A boggy stream is crossed by a wooden footbridge, but the area before it can be extremely boggy itself!


Footbridge near Stilesmeadow Farm        Approaching Stilemeadow Farm


The path follows through Stilesmeadow Farm.  Look out for a footpath diversion and signs showing the route out of the farmyard.


Walking through Stilesmeadow Farm  Footpath diversion at Stilesmeadow Farm  Footpath route out of Stilesmeadow Farm


At the end of the road, turn right and walk up to Bosley Reservoir.


End of road to Stilesmeadow Farm        Bosley Reservoir


Turn left and walk across the dam at the south end of Bosley Reservoir. 


Dam across Bosley Reservoir        Bosley Reservoi, looking back to Croker Hill in background


The original route for this walk used the public footpath around the right hand side of Bosley Reservoir, but this becomes appallingly muddy and should be avoided!


Croker Hill behind Bosley Reservoir        Bosley Reservoir


Take the steps down off the dam and follow the public footpath through Kiln Hill Farm.


Stairway off the dam        Kiln Hill Farm


Exit through the kissing gate onto the A523 Leek to Macclesfield road.  Turn rght and walk up to Bosley village.


Exiting onto the A523  Footpath beside St Mary's Church  Muddy footpath under the disused railway line


Turn left onto a public footpath just before St Mary's Church.


St Mary's Church, Bosley        Passing underneath disused railway line, Bosley


Follow the path down under a viaduct (disused railway) to emerge at some industrial works.  Parts of this path can be very muddy.


Works at Bosley        Leaving Bosley village


Continue onto the road and head a short distance in the direction of Bosley Cloud.


Bridleway from Bosley to Macclesfield Canal        Cattle at Bosley


Turn right onto a public bridleway.  Follow this up to the River Dane and continue towards the aqueduct.


Aqueduct Macclesfield Canal Information board at Bosley Locks


Join the Macclesfield Canal towpath and turn right to follow towards Macclesfield.


Entry back onto the Macclesfield Canal        Walking along the Macclesfield Canal towpath, with Croker Hill in the background


This towpath now leads all the way back to Fools Nook to complete the circular route.


Bosley Locks        Bosley Locks


The full flight of twelve locks at Bosley are encountered.  These allow the canal to climb a total of 36m.


Bosley Locks        Sean M0GIA


Exit the canal at Fools Nook to complete the route.


Macclesfield Canal        Return to Fools Nook