Disley, the Bowstones and Bramhall

A route around the hills surrounding Lyme Park and finishing with a delightful section of Ladybrook valley to Bramhall. The regular (twice hourly) between the train stations makes this a viable point-to-point walk.

Technical sheet
No. 10378951
A Disley walk posted on 10/06/21 by Stuart R. Update : 31/08/21
Calculated time Calculated time: 6h45[?]
Distance Distance : 13.28mi
Vertical gain Vertical gain : 774ft
Vertical drop Vertical drop : 1145ft
Highest point Highest point : 1309ft
Lowest point Lowest point : 220ft
Moderate Difficulty : Moderate
Back to starting point Back to starting point : No
Walking Walking
Location Location : Disley
Starting point Starting point : N 53.358005° / W 2.042568°
Ending point Ending point : N 53.385985° / W 2.141668°
Download : -
Ladybrook Valley, Bramhall The Bowstones Approaching Lyme Park


(D) Leave the station car park (on the "Trains to Manchester" side) by the steps adjacent to the Gritstone Trail Information Notice. On reaching a tarmac road go straight ahead to a T-junction and turn left (Sign to St Mary's Church) and follow the road round to the right. It becomes a walled lane with views right to the Cage in Lyme Park and left to Black Rocks. The lane becomes a surfaced path and then meets a stony, sunken lane.

(1) Turn right down the lane to cross a stream by a bridge. Do not worry about the "Road Closed" signs - the footpath remains open and it climbs way from the bridge. A footpath sign for the Gritstone Trail leads left across fields, crossing the stream before turning right and rising to reach Cock Knoll Farm. Go through the farm and follow the farm track to a minor road.

(2) Turn right uphill on a minor lane towards Dissop Head Farm (prominent sign) and after passing the farm take the path signposted on the right to climb to the boundary wall of Lyme Park. Cross it by a stile, turn left and follow the path by the wall to a Topograph then on to meet a broad track coming up from Lyme Park. Here turn left over a stile then on to the minor lane at Bowstones Farm.

(3) The Bowstones are on the left a few metres down the lane. From the Bowstones retrace your steps up the lane and continue on the walled track leading south. After entering an open field a path branches right to follow a wall and a broad ridge. A clear path branches right to reach a gate in the wall on DaleTop. Go forward and follow the wall ahead downhill to a vehicular track near a copse. Turn left and after 200 metres turn right on the signposted bridleway along a lane past Birchencliff cottages down to a minor road. Turn right along the minor road.

(4) Pass (or call at) the Coffee Tavern then slightly uphill to a signed track on the left. Partway along the field aim diagonally for Lockgate Farm. Follow the surfaced farm track to cross the Macclesfield Canal and in about 50 metres turn right as signed to join the Middlewood Way (converted railway line). Follow this for 600 metres and look out for a path turning sharply left. Cross the lane and follow the track opposite through woods to a footbridge. Cross this and come to a lane with houses opposite.

(5) The footpath goes between houses a little to the right into a field. The path is not clear at first but aim for the dead tree then look a little to the left to see the waymarked stile. From here the path is clear. Cross a road, passing between houses and around some allotments as sign-posted to the right. The path then curves gently to the left (ignore stiles to the side) and up a rise. The path forks so take the left-hand fork to a gate and continue in a straight line. Aim for the large tree ahead. A dead tree and then a way-marked stile will come into view. go to it and along the track to a minor road. Cross this and take a track uphill. In 100 metres a path branches left alongside the golf course practice area. Though a gatekeep in a straight line to pass under a track by a brick archway. After one field turn left at an FP sign towards Poynton.

(6) At the road go right, then first left into South Park Drive. At the busy main road go right, cross over, then left at the Bull's Head pub into Vicarage Lane. At the end do not turn left but go through a gap to a green area and take the surfaced bridleway opposite. Cross a bridge then go right and to and around Park House Farm to reach a stony path (big wooden fence ahead) and turn right. The path goes left under the busy A555 road by an underpass by a brook then left up to a marked path right to become a track and meet a minor road.

(7) Go right (take care - no footway) to a bridge over the brook then left up to a signed path left to follow the delightful Ladybrook Valley towards Bramhall. At a footbridge stay on the right side of the brook up to a residential road and continue to the main road (Bridge Lane). Cross over, go left to a path right (signed Fred Perry Way) which goes between houses then follows a small watercourse uphill. At a green space continue ahead to pass (in quick succession) the Shady Oak pub, houses, across a road, under a railway bridge, more houses and some allotments. At a T-junction in the path go left to Woodsmoor Station in a few metres. (A) For trains back to Disley, cross the line by the steps and road-bridge.

Waypoints :
D : mi 0 - alt. 636ft - Disley
1 : mi 1.02 - alt. 860ft - Sunken lane
2 : mi 2.02 - alt. 1017ft - Cock Knoll
3 : mi 3.09 - alt. 1276ft - Bowstones Farm
4 : mi 5.47 - alt. 643ft - Coffee Tavern
5 : mi 7.28 - alt. 410ft - Wardsend Bridge
6 : mi 8.74 - alt. 354ft - South Park Drive
7 : mi 10.62 - alt. 282ft - Millhill Bridge
A : mi 13.28 - alt. 272ft - Woodsmoor Station

Useful Information

(4)The Coffee Tavern is a former lending library, but now is a licensed cafe/restaurant serving a wide range of (excellent in the author's opinion) snacks and meals.

(A) There are no facilities at Woodsmoor Railway Station but there is a convenience store adjacent to the Shady Oak public house just before the end of the walk. Divert from the path left up a flight of steps to reach the store and pub.

Visorando and this author cannot be held responsible in the case of accidents or problems occuring on this walk.

During the walk or to do/see around

(D) The walk goes around Lyme Park. This mansion house and gardens are set in a large deer park with a number of interesting features. It deserves a day's visit in its own right.

(3) The Bowstones comprise two headless Anglo-Saxon crosses decorated with interlaced carvings indicating that they may date from the 10th century or earlier. They are thought to have been moved to their present location in the 16th century.

(7) The largely Tudor manor house of Bramall Hall and landscaped gardens are about 1 kilometre west of the Bridge Lane road crossing in Bramhall. Again the house and park are worthy of a visit.

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The GPS track and description are the property of the author.