Surface improvements to the Gritstone Trail near Hedge Row (lane), near Sowcar, Bollington

The surface on the Gritstone Path (Rainow FP 28) north of Hedge Row, both on the approach and at the first kissing gate, has deteriorated due to rambler footfall. This has caused erosion and subsequent deep puddle water at both places. In this circumstance, negotiating the k-gate was especially constricted because of its railings.

Two of the Project Teams members, Nick Wild and Roger Jubb proposed to carry out refurbishment work. Gravel was taken from ECR Project Team’s temporary stockpile in Ingersley Val and stacked by the GT path at Hedge Row (40 bags at 15 kg each -approx. 0.6 tonne in all), for use in the repairs. Brian Richardson providing materials transport.

Both ‘hollows’ were drained by digging outlet channels, and both these and the hollows were filled with 20 mm limestones. The stone on the approach path was contained by placing side timbers (50 x 200 mm cross-section) with support stobs on the lower outlet side. The stone-filled drainage channels were covered with turves. Approximately 30 bags of stones were spread, and ten bags transported onwards to Gaussie Brow steps. (For the latter, see website article)

Their finished work has been captured in photos of an ECR Ramblers walk on the trail.

Roger and Nick each carried out four man-hours work on these tasks on Friday 6th August ’21. A vaste improvement.


Updated Risk Assessment for Group Walks October 2021

The Ramblers Association have updated the Risk Assessment for group walks. “Risk assessments need to be completed ahead of all group walks to ensure we meet the requirements of our insurers.” Walk Leaders can access the Risk Assessment via the Ramblers Association website or they can be downloaded here.

A Path Improvement at Poynton, in Memory of Alan Catherall

Alan Catheral, sadly, passed away in January this year. Our ECR committee recognised a wish of our members to provide some permanent recognition of Alan for his enthusiastic and comprehensive contribution to the affairs of East Cheshire Ramblers Group, both in the countryside and management. Quoting from our Chairman Jane Gay “Alan has been a member of ECR since 1985. He was an extremely strong long walker and walk leader who enjoyed the mountains. He particularly enjoyed walking with other members of ECR and chatting to them about the countryside and his latest projects. He was passionate about improving access for walkers.”

Alan working at Back Dane concessionary path December 2017 (See Article “Restoring a Concessionary Footpath at Back Dane, Wincle – ECR Projects Team, November 2018” herewith)

It was agreed that Poynton-with-Worth FP 27, centred at SJ 9470 8270 between Elm Wood and Ben’s Wood would be improved, and a plaque in memory of Alan would be posted there. A kissing gate and finger post would be erected at the path’s north-eastern end, a waymarker post erected at an intervisible more southerly spot. At the southern section by the canal, hawthorn trees would be cut back to improve the path’s accessibility. At the south end, plastic fingers would be restored to an existing finger post, and its ground anchorage made more firm. This post is adjacent to a footbridge leading to Hagg Farm and Poynton Coppice.

Eight members of our ECR FP Projects Team assembled on site in July and carried out this work to everybody’s satisfaction. Assembling and placing the kissing gate……..

Clearance of hawthorn tree obstructions on the path by the Canal……….

A finger post was erected by the gate, and the fence meshed to the gate……..

Incidentally, we have adopted a protective system for posts against rotting, whereby a bituthene sleeve is wrapped around the post at its most vulnerable rotting zone (100 mm above, and 250 mm below ground level), melted and rolled onto the wood………

A waymarker post was placed midway………..and the bridgeside finger post was refurbished……..

Soon after, a site visit was made to attach the plaque to the new finger post……

My thanks go to Janet Allan, Roger Fielding, Adrian Flinn, Ken Hobbs, Roger Jubb, Ian Wasson and Nick Wild. They contributed to a team total of more than 39 hours of work, excluding breaks.


Indian Meal Viceroy Bollington 14th October 2021


22 Ingersley Road,

Bollington, Macclesfield, SK10 5RF

01625 573 006

THURSDAY 14th OCTOBER 2021 7.30pm

SET MENU (Including Service)

£15 for 2 courses


Poppadoms and Chutney

Mixed Starter (Veg Option)


Chicken Tikka Masala

Chicken Jalfrezi

Lamb Rogan Josh

Lamb Bhuna



Served with pilau rice and naan bread (peshwari, keema, garlic or plain)

We can change the curry you request to any other dishes

Last date for booking 8th October




Andy Davies


No. of places:

Payment made by: (please select payment method)

Bank transfer / Cheque enclosed

Please provide an email address (preferred) or phone number for confirmation of your reservation:

Email address:

Telephone no.:



Unity Trust Bank Sort code: 60-83-01

Account Number: 20129929






If you do not have the facility to transfer payment into the ECR account then please complete the form above and return with a cheque, made out to RA East Cheshire Group to:

Andy Davies

9 Appleton Walk





Social Events Calendar 27/08/21

REVISED 27th AUGUST UPDATE 2021 EAST CHESHIRE RAMBLERS SOCIAL CALENDAR   Thank you to all those involved in organising these events, any suggestions or ideas about an event would be warmly welcomed. Please don’t hesitate to contact me on: Maggie Swindells  07729327940 /01625 829671   
23rd April to 1st October 2021Start of fortnightly Strollers’ walking programme organised by Maggie Swindells
Thursday 13th May to August 2021Start of evening walks organised by Ralph Atherton
Thursday 2nd September1.30 pm Stockport Guided Walk with Judith Wilshaw organised by Maggie Swindells
Friday 17th September10.00am Wincle History Walk  led by Rodney Hughes
Friday 17th to Sunday 19th SepAmbleside Weekend away – Andy Davies
September 25th to October 3rdBollington Walking Festival
Thursday 14th October 2021Indian Meal at The Viceroy Bollington organised by Andy Davies – details to follow
Saturday 20th November 2021ECR AGM
Tuesday 30th November 2021Ramblers Association Area AG
Saturday 4th December 2021Christmas Carol (Carol Service TBC) short walk Jenny Bordoli
Tuesday 14th December 2021Mid-Week Christmas Meal The Church House Bollington – organised by Andy Davies
Saturday 11th December 2021Weekend Christmas Meal at the Windmill – organised by Maggie Swindells
1st January 2022‘Keith’s Sherry Walk’ organised by Melanie Davey and Lorraine Tolley

Winter Hill Mass Trespass – 125th Commemoration Walk Sunday, September 5th, 2021

The mass trespass of Kinder Scout in 1932 is famous as the time working people asserted their right to roam when they challenged the landowners who wanted to close off ancient footpaths.

In fact, a protest took place 36 years earlier on Winter Hill above Bolton in September 1896 when wealthy landowner, Colonel Richard Ainsworth, erected a gate across Coal Pit Road, an ancient route the people of the town had used for years, in order to protect his grouse shooting. 10, 000 people turned out to stage a mass trespass.

Access to our countryside and our open spaces is sadly still an issue today.

A commemorative walk is planned to mark the 125th anniversary of the original ‘mass trespass’.  It is taking place on Sunday, September 5th, 2021, and many organisations and individuals will be walking with us that day.  We would welcome all Ramblers to join us for what will, hopefully, not only be an enjoyable, happy walk through some beautiful countryside but one which will affirm what  the Ramblers, as an association, stands for.  The Ramblers’ president, Stuart Maconie, is hoping to join us at some point (he is doing a radio programme at Salford early that morning).

The walk will start from the bottom of the A6099, Halliwell Road (SD716103 on the OS map 287) which is approximately a half hour walk, north, from Bolton Bus & Train Interchange in the town centre.  Buses will be at the Interchange to meet the 9 o’clock train from Manchester Victoria and the 9.50am train from Manchester Piccadilly to take participants to the start of the walk.  There is car parking in the streets around the bottom of Halliwell Road and in the car parks in Bolton town centre (charges apply).

People will start rallying at the start point at 10am when there will be some live music and some short speeches.  At 10.30am, the walk will move off and will proceed to the top of Halliwell Road, cross the A58, Bolton Ring Road, Moss Bank Way, and continue north along Smithills Dean Road, past Smithills School to Smithills Hall & Museum (SD699117).  Expected time of arrival will be around 12 midday.  The walk will only pause briefly at the Hall but it is expected that a number of people will join the walk there.  There will in fact be a number of events going on at the Hall from 11am to about 3pm, including live music and performance art, dance, workshops, a mobile cafe and a variety of stalls, including one promoting the Ramblers.  Car parking is available along Smithills Dean Road.  The Hall has its own car park but it is likely that this will fill up quickly and early.

The walk carries on to the next road junction, with Scout Road and Colliers Row Road, and passes straight over into Coal Pit Road, still heading north-west.  As Coal Pit Road bends to the left, the footpath where, 125 years ago, the gate was erected to keep walkers out (at SD675133) – now a Public Right of Way – bears off north-west.  At this point there will be another pause to recognise the significance of the spot, and then the walk will carry on over the moors to the summit of Winter Hill and the Radio/TV Mast & Station.  It then continues on downhill, north-east, to Belmont and the A675 where refreshment can be obtained at a restaurant or pub.  Expected time of arrival is between 2pm and 3pm.  Buses will be available to ferry walkers back from Belmont to Smithills or to Bolton town centre.

The walk is about 6 ½ miles long and includes walking on roads and on rough moorland tracks.  The weather in this area can be very changeable so bring sturdy walking gear, water and any refreshment required.

Bolton Ramblers look forward to seeing you on the walk.


Dear Members

I am writing to you, on behalf of the East Cheshire Ramblers (ECR) committee, to ask you for your help. ECR is one of the largest ramblers groups and has one of the most extensive programmes in the country.

To enable this to continue to we need to attract more walk leaders and to help us to achieve this we are asking you to complete the short questionnaire which you can download using the link below.

I would be grateful if you would return it via email to by Monday 16th August.

Many thanks

Jane Gay

Chair East Cheshire Ramblers

WINCLE HISTORY WALK Friday 17th September 2021


Friday 17th September 2021

Rodney Hughes, a member of the East Cheshire Ramblers Association, has kindly offered to lead a History Walk for members on Friday 17th September 2021.

The walk is about 5 miles and will take about 4.5 hours. We will start at Dane Bridge Wincle at 10.00am. There is parking alongside the road leading down from the Ship Inn. SK11 0QE SJ 9584 6603


There will be a lot of stops and historical explanations on this walk so a dry day will be necessary. If the weather is bad we will have to re-arrange if possible.

Brief outline:

  • Dane Bridge and previous industries.
  • Over the old Battle field and conclusions.
  • Past roman Tomb.
  • Roman Road and original Ford. [Slideford] Double circle Druid stones.
  • On to Lane Head past Hammerton Farm Roman Road over Hammerton Moss to Wild Boar PH.
  • Over to Barlow hill- salt trail and Bennits Hill and Roman check point.
  • Woodcottage Farm across to Broomhill to Nettlebeds drive and to Wincle Grange. [History]
  • Salt trail across to Whitelee [local hanging] River Dane on to Wincle Brewery.

There is no charge and up to fifteen/twenty walkers would be ideal so that everyone present can hear what Rodney has to say. Please feel free to bring a drink and a snack as there will be a stop to take some refreshments.  We will return back to the start for about 2.30pm and walkers may wish to take a refreshing drink at the brewery before we head off home?

If you would like to join Rodney on his walk please would you email or text me so that we can have an idea of numbers? 07729327940   Many thanks Maggie Swindells