Ironbridge - Buildwas Abbey - Benthall Hall - Ironbridge

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This walk is in the United Nations-classified World Heritage site of the Ironbridge Gorge (one of only twenty-six British sites, which puts it on an equal footing with Stonehenge and The Tower of London). On the walk there is the possibility to visit the 12th Century abbey at Buildwas. There you can learn about how the abbot was murdered by one of his own monks (real Cadfael stuff).

After a fairly easy climb up the southern side of the gorge there is a chance to visit the 16th Century hall at Benthall (please note though that the opening times for the hall are limited, so if you want to visit check ahead with The National Trust). The restored gardens are viewable from the route and are worth the walk on their own.

Passing through lovely woodland down the gorge past some impressive stone features, you will go down a set of steps to get to the valley bottom. I did not count them but you may want to; just be glad you are going down them and not the other way round.

Keeping arguably the best for last, you cross the world-famous Ironbridge itself. The walk passes close by Ironbridge Power Station, but it is surprising how little it impinges on the views. I suppose it is in keeping with a valley that is, after all, 'The Birthplace of Industry'. The walk starts and finishes in the lovely town of Ironbridge where you will find all kinds of cafes, pubs and gift shops to spend your money in.

There are also many museums in the near vicinity and I would recommend any of them as being worthy of your time.

England - Central England - Shropshire - Severn Valley

Features

Ancient Monument, Cafe, Church, Food Shop, Gift Shop, Industrial Archaeology, Museum, National Trust, Pub, Public Transport, Restaurant, River, Tea Shop, Toilets, Wildlife, Woodland
01/05/2017 - Ros Wilson

A splendid, varied and interesting walk! I started from Buildwas Rd (5)in a layby/field entrance. I followed the walk from 5 to 18. As a solitary walker, I took great care on the steps and counted as I went. 450 steps!! but do not be deterred, they are very well constructed with a hand rail. Going down was fine. Ironbridge is charming with plenty of eating places. Glad I chose to park elsewhere. It was busy. 3 police officers were giving parking tickets! Returning from 1-5 past the impressive cooling towers, I emerged from the footpath right at my car. A grand day out.

31/08/2013 - karl noon

This walk is more moderate rather than easy in my opinion, the hill in section 9 is quite steep and the way down with all the wooden steps is also a bit taxing, maybe it depends on your age and how fit you are. Nice gentle start and fabulous views at the top.

16/10/2011 - James Martin

Walked this on 15 Oct 2011 and would point out that the path referred to at point 7 was impassable due to overgrown bushes. Better to not attempt at all but carry on to the metalled lane to the caravan site.

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