Sunday, 7 January 2018

A saunter around The Roaches, Tameside

Many councils have free walking guides on their pages and Tameside have a great variety. This short walk of 2 miles is one I've done several times in different directions.

There's a good reason why I've done this walk more times than others on the list - it's got 2 good pubs at the start/end. The Roaches Lock is well known for great food and beer and it is this pub's car park where the walk starts. Further up the canal is the Tollemache Arms which is a proper boozer. Lovely bar and today the scene of a blazing fire. It's a quiet pub and full of old men, which is how I like it. The landlord won't spoil you with smiles but when he can get a pint of Robinson's Unicorn tasting good then who cares?

The walk is in a figure of eight style so you can do one of 2 circular walks of just a mile, both of which have the Huddersfield canal as a decent stretch. As well as a bit of hill farming fields, the river Tame roaring away (with an old millhouse next to it, minus a wheel but lovely nonetheless) and plenty of birdsong in the woods, there's also heaps of industrial heritage too. Perhaps the mills aren't the prettiest things you'll see and their time for being spruced up and given a new lease of life hasn't arrived yet, but it's a fine way to spend an hour. I even had a  kingfisher dart alongside me, a small bolt of electric blue skimming the water and then disappearing up the river.