Canals, a Castle and a World Heritage Site in two countries
by Sue from Mile End Visitor Information Centre, Oswestry
Follow the A5/A483 to the north of Oswestry. At Gledrid Roundabout take the B5070 towards Chirk. On the right is Moreton Park Garden Centre, Moreton Park Motel and the Lord Moreton pub restaurant. The garden centre sells plants, has a good gift shop and café. The restaurant offers reasonably priced food, as well as a carvery on Wednesdays and Sundays.
Tel: 01691 777722
TIME: 40 minutes - longer if dining
Continue towards Chirk. On the left opposite the Moreton Park complex there is a turning at the side of The Poachers pub LL14 5DG (Tel: 01691 773250), with a small car park on the right. From here you can walk along the towpath to English/Welsh border and the start of the Pontcysyllte Aqueduct and Canal World Heritage Site. At this end of the World Heritage Site is the Chirk Aqueduct where the Llangollen canal runs high over the Ceiriog valley alongside the Chester/Shrewsbury railway. Head across the Aqueduct and, if you're feeling brave, on through the 400m long 'darkie' tunnel if desired to Chirk. The Poachers pub back at the car park offers good value pub food and a canalside beer garden.
TIME: You can take a twenty minute walk to the aqueduct and back, or make a longer walk taking in the footpath along the river underneath and/or the castle wood.
After your walk continue along the B5070 to Chirk. Turn left following signs to Chirk Castle. (NT) LL14 5AF
Tel: 01691 777701
Allow: 2 - 3 hours to visit the medieval fortress of the Welsh Marches - it's still lived in today! Gardens, visitor centre and tearoom. 200m walk from car park to house.
OPEN: March - October plus special dates in the winter.
Leave Chirk Castle and head back into the town of Chirk. Turn left and proceed through the town until you reach the mini roundabout. Take the A5 towards Llangollen. In the village of Froncysyllte, turn right signposted Trevor and Aqueduct. Cross the River Bridge and bear right following the signs to the car park. From here it is a level walk from the Trevor canal basin onto the 126ft high, eighteenth century Pontcysyllte Aqueduct. Or take a short narrowboat trip across. During the season boat trips operate from Trevor Basin and there are longer trips from Llangollen Wharf.
Tel: 01978 860702
and 'Jones the Boat'
Tel: 01691 690322
Return to Oswestry along the A5 (A483). You may wish to take an evening stroll along the Montgomery canal from either Queens Head (parking by the Queens Head pub which serves meals and has a conservatory overlooking the canal) SY11 4EB Tel: 01691 610255www.queensheadoswestry.co.uk or from Maesbury by the Navigation Inn SY10 8JB Tel:01691 672958 www.thenavigation.co.uk which offers real ale and a menu featuring local produce.
For more information and photos of the Montgomery Canal visit.
Oswestry Mile End Visitor Information Centre
Mile End Services
Tel: 01691 662488