Fiddle I'th Bag - Gemini - Winwick Quay - St Helens Canal - Fiddle I'th Bag

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If you want great views this is not the walk for you; although the scenery is very pleasant this very flat and circular walk is more for the canal enthusiast although the only section still in water is a barely recognisable 100m length near the end of the walk. The St Helens Canal was the first to be built in Britain and there is a detailed explanation board with photos at one of its main focal points at what's left of Winwick Quay. The walk is probably used mainly by dog walkers and is excellent for this purpose as there are no stiles or gates on the entire route; the bridges are in very good order and there is very little roadway.

The first third of the route is across agricultural fields so avoid this walk in late autumn and winter when the footpaths are likely to be ploughed up and muddy. In spring and summer, they should be fine, and this section is surprisingly well marked with good old fingerposts at all the junctions. The section ends at a wide brook and the photo on the left shows it passing under the M62. An unmapped and unsigned, but well used path, then takes you along a very pleasant wooded and bushy section with heathland beyond on the left and a major industrial park hidden on the right. Crossing the brook on a concrete footbridge, the return route is along the linear Sankey Valley Park where the hard surfaced path is mainly built along the old canal tow path with the remains of locks and the channel clearly visible in many places.

This walk is probably more suitable for teenagers, senior citizens and anyone in-between. It is hopeless for wheelchairs and not recommended for buggies. Suitable footwear will be anything flat soled, but boots will be essential in late autumn and winter for crossing the ploughed fields. There should be no problems for anyone wearing shorts.

Please note that the pub at the walk start is currently closed.

England - North England - Cheshire - Canal Walk


Birds, Flowers, Industrial Archaeology, Mostly Flat, Pub, Public Transport, Toilets, Wildlife, Woodland

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