Today’s post features a place very local to us – Worsley Village. Despite driving through Worsley many times, I’d never actually stopped and visited, nor did I realise what there is to do there. It’s a great place to spend half a day and finish off with a lunchtime treat and definitely somewhere to visit for the day as a family.
Before our visit I’d read about the canal walk and thought it sounded an interesting place to explore. There is a trail set up around the village that you can follow which has seven stop off points, giving you information about the history of the village and how important it was to Britain’s canal system. We began at The Packet House, so ended up accidentally doing the tour backwards but it didn’t really matter. The Packet House dates back to 1760 and was where passengers visiting Manchester climbed aboard – it is a great example of the timber-frame buildings Worsley is known for.
We then went past the oldest building in Worsley – the old Nailmakers Shop, before crossing over the road and across to Worsley Delph. This was where the underwater canals, quite a feat of engineering, began and 48 miles of tunnels where millions of tonnes of coal were mined each year.
After that we wandered up the hill into Worsley Woods, which is a really nice place to have a wander with the children and/or dogs. They span 30 hectares and whilst we didn’t explore them all, what we did see was really lovely and a fantastic place for wildlife and nature. You wouldn’t know you were yards away from the motorway and busy roads.
Next we ventured across to The Green, which is a lovely expanse of open space surrounded by the beautiful timber-framed houses. It was actually a worker’s yard until 1900 and a busy and noisy area, but now it is full of greenery and really tranquil.
Finally we wandered over the humpback bridge, from which you can see The Boathouse, designed specifically to house a barge built for Queen Victoria’s visit in 1851, and the oldest example of a dry dock. We then had a short walk down the canal and enjoyed taking it all in. There is something about canals that seems to peaceful, with the way the water sits quietly next to you, disturbed every now and again by a passing boat or duck gliding along. They are great places to take a load off and watch the world go by.
We finished our trip off with a visit to The Secret Garden Tea Rooms, which is a cosy little cafe tucked away on the main road, and enjoyed a delicious afternoon tea before heading home. If you are in the area and looking for something to do for a couple of hours then Worsley Village is definitely worth a visit.