A lengthy walk to a country house and delightful village.
Calculated time is computed with the distance, the height difference, and an average speed of 2.2 mph. For an intermediate walker, this time includes small breaks.
(D/A) From the car park of the pub, turn left along Park Lane and walk through Pickmere village to Mere Lane and beyond (the latter section without pavements or verges).
(1) At the triangular junction with Frog Lane, keep left. After 150 yards, turn right over a stile (signposted “Budworth Road 1 mile”); cross a field to a stile and footbridge at the corner of a wood. Walk up the grassy ride to the left of the trees, then turn right at the end of the wood. Turn left by the Millennium Wood plaque onto a farm track. Bear right then left before some corrugated iron barns. Follow the fenced path past the farm buildings then join the drive beyond. Ignore a turning to the right and walk out along the metalled farm drive for ½ mile.
(2) Pass George’s Lane Farm and cross the road into a no-through road signposted “Arley Hall & Gardens”. Follow the road for ½ mile, passing Arley Moss Farm on the right. When the road bends left at a lodge-gate, turn right onto a footpath. After 100 yards, turn left at a footpath sign to a kissing gate into a field. Cross the field between two ponds and continue over a series of stiles between fields. In the last field, follow a line of trees to a stile, then follow a narrow fenced path to another stile into a track. Follow the track past a brick-built house and continue ahead (ignoring a right-turn) over a stream below some ponds and up through the houses of Arley Green.
(3) Continue along the lane to the right of a cricket field with distant views of Arley Hall. The track curves smoothly to the left, passing a turning to a farm on the right. After another track on the right, and the entrance to the Home Farm on the left, you reach a crossroads. Carry straight on past car parks to left and right.
(4) When the estate drive bends to the left, take a footpath on the right. Follow a track past a wood then, beyond some houses on the left, along a path along a field edge to a gate. After a tree-lined section, cross a footbridge and turn left past the old bridge. Cross a second, concrete-slab bridge, then continue along a field edge. Join a concrete farm track and follow it past a cottage and out to a road.
(5) Follow a path through a hand gate opposite and follow a fence to a stile and kissing gate at the end of the field. Cross a muddy farm track and go through an unusual chain-and-hinged-post stile to the right of a field gate with an NCW (North Cheshire Way) waymark. Walk along the top of a narrow field towards a pylon then turn right at a footpath sign along a fence to a kissing gate. Cross a stile in the left-hand corner into a lane and turn left to a road junction on the edge of Great Budworth. Turn right and follow the road when it bends left at the junction with Smithy Lane.
(6) Turn left along the churchyard wall and pass the old schoolhouse on your right and the modern primary school on your left. Go straight ahead through a gate onto a tree-lined footpath. Go through a pair of kissing gates at the bottom of a drive and continue ahead. At a stile, turn right and walk downhill across a field. At a footpath sign and stile, turn left above a hedge and follow it below a farm to a stile and steps down to Hield Lane.
(7) Turn right and walk to the bottom of the valley. Just before the road starts to climb, go through a kissing gate on your left. Walk down the valley (climbing as necessary to avoid wet ground near the stream). At the end of the field, go through a metal kissing gate and follow the path ahead (ignoring a permissive path to the left) with views over the Mere. Follow the lakeside path for the next ½ mile, through gates and along boardwalks, to the bottom end of the mere, where there is a panel showing the birds of the area.
(8) Turn right here and leave the lake along a metalled path that climbs to a car park. Go through the iron gates and continue ahead to Mere Lane. Turn left to reach Park Lane. Turn right through a small park, to the junction of Clover Drive and Park Lane. Turn left and right and follow Park Lane for a third of a mile back to the Red Lion.(D/A)
D/A : km 0 - alt. 42m - Red Lion
1 : km 0.8 - alt. 45m - Frog Lane
2 : km 2.3 - alt. 60m - George’s Lane Farm
3 : km 5.01 - alt. 60m - Arley Green
4 : km 6.97 - alt. 69m - Footpath
5 : km 8.97 - alt. 65m - Budworth Heath Lane
6 : km 10.01 - alt. 54m - Smithy Lane
7 : km 10.97 - alt. 43m - Hield Lane
8 : km 13.03 - alt. 24m - Metalled path
D/A : km 13.97 - alt. 42m - Red Lion
A long but relatively undemanding walk. May be muddy after rain or overgrown in places in summer.
Visorando and this author cannot be held responsible in the case of accidents or problems occuring on this walk.
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