Medlock Valley Walk – Hollinwood Branch Canal & Woodhouses
This Medlock Valley walk starts at the car park just off the A627 Oldham Road at Bardsley. The car park is on the left just before the iron bridge over the River Medlock, travelling towards Oldham.
Walk the short distance downhill to the Hollinwood Branch Canal entrance and turn left to follow the towpath. Anglers use this section of the canal but soon another section is reached which is very overgrown. In in under ¾ mile Sammy’s Basin is reached. Here we turn right and follow the canal towpath to Crime Lake which has an interesting history.
From Crime Lake this Medlock Valley walk crosses Cutler Hill Road/Stannybrook Road, goes along Ashton Road and over the M60 motorway. It continues on into Woodhouses. After passing the Dog & Partridge public house, or preferably calling in, follow the footpath sign between the two rows of terraced housing which follow.
The path goes over Brookdale golf course and down to Ash Bridge, which crosses the River Medlock. Continue through the trees and uphill to again cross the golf course to a stile at Cinderland Bridge on the Hollinwood Branch Canal. Turn left here and follow the canal, which again becomes overgrown.
The canal, or what is left of it, finishes at the top of Stannybrook Road. Cross the road and go through the area housing the Daisy Nook Visitor Centre, under a metal bridge to the end of the enclosed path. This was formerly where the canal ran but has been filled in for many years.
Just before where the canal starts again bear right, through a stile and gate and drop down into the Medlock Valley. The path meanders above and to the right of the River Medlock and reaches a wide lane. A short distance down this lane take the path signposted on the right, back to the car park, to finish this fine Medlock Valley walk. The walk is exactly 3.74 miles and takes around 1 hour 10 minutes to complete.