Cheshire walk - Mobberley and Great Warford
PUBLISHED: 09:33 31 January 2017 | UPDATED: 16:21 17 February 2018
You will pass lovely houses and pat quite a few horses in this month's walk around Mobberley and Great Warford, writes Howard Bradbury.
Mobberley’s greatest claim to fame is as the childhood home of George Mallory, the climber who may or may not have become the first man to reach the summit of Everest before he and his partner Andrew Irvine died on the mountain in 1924.
George would not have found much inspiration for his climbing back home in Mobberley. It’s pretty flat hereabouts, which makes our walk an easy five miles or so.
As for wildlife, we spotted a fox, brazenly out and about in broad daylight, and several rabbits. But most of the four-legged creatures we encountered were horses; the fields here seem to be full of them.
Where you find fine horses, you so often find fine houses, and so it is here. You will probably be staring enviously down the drive at some quite gorgeous homes. The other swift animals you will see are cyclists; the roads here seem particular popular with the lycra warriors. Hardly surprising, as we’re only a few minutes pedalling distance from the home of Jason Kenny and Laura Trott, with their joint tally of ten Olympic cycling golds.
The walk - for which I took inspiration from a useful website www.wilmslowwalks.com - takes us around Great Warford. This area has a rather more modern claim to fame as the scene of much of the action in The Real Housewives of Cheshire, Warford Hall being home to Dawn and Ashley Ward and the venue of their annual Crème de la Crème charity ball.
Appropriately for a winter walk, our suggested pitstop is the Frozen Mop pub which, so the legend goes, may have got its name from a lady who used to signal to her lover that the coast was clear by leaving a mop out at night. So there’s another tale of a real housewife of Cheshire...
1. Our starting point is Faulkner’s Lane, Mobberley, postcode WA16 7PE. A couple of minutes’ walk south of the junction with the B5085, you will find a lane leading to Coppock House, with a footpath sign. Follow the path to the farm where you take a footpath to the left which crosses a large field back towards Faulkner’s Lane. Aim for a stile two thirds of the way up the field on the left, and then follow the path with the pond to the left. At a metal kissing gate bear left down a farm track to Faulkner’s Lane, then turn right staying on the lane, past the Frozen Mop, bearing right into Pedley House Lane. At Pedley House Farm, take the footpath to the left, through a metal gate and along the field edge. Over a stile, head for the far right corner of the next field, and then continue on this path bearing left towards Ancoats Lane.
2. Go right along Ancoats Lane following it until Warford Lane, turning left here and after 100 metres or so, take a footpath to the left. This takes you through fields with horses until meeting an unmade track, which you follow around to the left until passing through a wooden gate where you bear left along a similar track. Follow the footpath signs to the right beside another lightly-fenced field and continue on through a couple of metal gates to a nettle-strewn path beside houses, which eventually emerges on a tarmac drive. Bear right to reach Noah’s Ark lane.
3. Go right up Noak’s Ark Lane and when the road curves to the right, take the footpath on the left. Head slightly right across the field, heading for a stile which on our visit, was so heavily overgrown as to be virtually invisible. Up the next field to the top right hand corner and keep on the path until it arrives at Knutsford Road. Cross the road to take the footpath towards Yew Tree Farm, taking a metal gate on the left to join a path which crosses fields to take you to Paddockhill Lane.
4. Turn left along Paddockhill Lane, and keep left as it passes a pink thatched cottage and continues on into Moss Lane. Take the footpath opposite Orchard Barn, and when it emerges into a large field, head for the stile in the top right corner. Cross this and take the left hand field edge to reach Knutsford Road again. Cross over and a few yards to the left is a brick arch which is marked as a footpath. Continue down this path then take a footpath to the right, over a stile, crossing a field diagonally. This takes you to what may be a very muddy hollow, after which the path returns you to Faulkner’s Lane.
Area of Walk: Mobberley
Distance: 5½ miles
Time to allow: 2½ hours
Hazards: This walk does have long stretches on roads which do not always have pavements or verges. You may encounter cattle in at least one field.
Map: OS Explorer 268
Refreshments: The Frozen Mop, Faulkners Lane, Mobberley, Knutsford, Cheshire, WA16 7AL.