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13 November 2014

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You are in: Stoke & Staffordshire > Nature > Nature Features > The Apedale Walk

Nature Walks

The Apedale Walk

In Staffordshire, we've been asking you for your suggestions for a walk that reminds us that our landscape is millions of years old... On this page we list one - the Apedale Country Park Walk in the north of the county

Walk details

A meeting point: Apedale County Park Visitor Centre, nr Newcastle (Newcastle Countryside Project office at Apedale:  01782 566331)
Ordnance Survey: Explorer 258, Grid Ref: SJ 818 485 
Distance: approx 2km (1.2 miles); Time: approx 1 hour

Apedale Valley Walk

Apedale is just north of Newcastle under Lyme.

This walk was suggested by, among others, Dr Peter Knight - who supplied the following notes about the ancient geology of the area.
"...The really exciting thing about the Apedale Valley is that it was carved out by meltwater from a huge glacier that extended across Cheshire from the Irish Sea about 20,000 years ago and, for a while, stood with its edge running along the western edge of the Potteries.

....A lot of the valleys like Silverdale, Apedale, Lymedale, the Whitmore trough and others were carved by the meltwater that ran off these glaciers.
Because we are right on the UK national watershed, very peculiar things happened to river-directions - which went into reversal as the ice came and went! ..."

Route of Apedale walk

Park at the 'Grubbers Ash' car park.
Go up to the View Point.
Then turn slightly downwards (along Snipe Hill as it's called), then along the horse-route which is parallel to Blackbank Rd, turning left at Whitebarn Car Park, and down towards Whitebarn Paddock (this a steepish decline needing care).
Then first right to Great Row, and thence along the tarmac to the Dipping Pond (where a Geologically Important Site can be seen) and back on oneself to the Heritage Centre.

The Apedale Heritage Centre is worth seeing while you are there. Built on the site of the former pit, it gives a history of coal mining, and lets you go down (a short way) into the old mine.

The length is one and a half miles, and along paths which are wheelchair accessible - though once the walk is completed, wheelchair users will have to get a lift back to Grubbers Ash, as it would be too steep for them to easily return.

More info:  You will see a variety of wildlife with the potential sighting of abundant bird-life.

See The Apedale Walk

BBC reporter Tim Wedgwood went along to check out the Apedale Walk - on the way he saw some lovely scenery, checked out some fossils, and met experts who explained the area's long history. Take a look at this video for yourself - click on 'See the Apedale walk' link in the top right-hand corner of this page.
(Video director: Matt Lee)

Getting there

Location: on the fringe of the Newcastle-under-Lyme urban sprawl, where town meets country.
The nearest bus stop, at the Staffordshire Knot pub in Chesterton, is 200 yards from the country park entrance.
By bus: Bus 34A  (direction:  Hanley - Kidsgrove) on First Bus, 40 mins from Hanley OR Bus 35 (direction:  Newcastle – Wereton) on D&G
By car: Drive to start point, (see map) room for up to 50 cars in the free car park.

Walk conditions

Paths are of varying width and a mix of tarmac and compacted earth/stone that can become muddy after rain. There are two short hills of approx 1:15 gradient. A gate is set on the route but it has an opening option.

Got a walk?

You've been emailing in lots of suggestion for other walks in the county that you think tell us more about the life and times of Staffordshire's landscape...
See all those other suggestions (click on 'Staffordshire Walks' link in the top right-hand corner of this page), enjoy the walks and, then, why not suggest one yourself? 

last updated: 07/04/2009 at 14:49
created: 09/04/2008

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