Sunday, 12 April 2015

Oldham to Grotton Railpath - via Leesbrook Nature Park

This route continues on from the Ashton to Oldham Greenway as it meets Park Road in Oldham.

This is the route taken by the "Delph Donkey".

The start is decidedly unpromising, in the Matlan car park.

You have to ride round to the eastern corner of the car park

where you can find this, well hidden, entrance to the path.

The path runs alongside Woodstock Street, hidden behind the trees on the right

It then turns left before turning right over Waterloo Street on this bridge.

The path then opens out, running round the back of a factory car park and under a pedestrian bridge.

Further on it turns right and crosses Hamilton Street

before turning left and running alongside Southlink on a shared use pavement.

As the path moves away from the road it meets Glodwick Road. This is the former site of the Glodwick Road Railway Station, though no sign of it remains now. At this point the railway used to pass under the road, so the area has been extensively re-landscaped.

The path then crosses Moorhey Street. Again the railway would have passed under the road at this point, the stone wall appears to be the remains of the bridge parapet.

The next section includes a wiggly path in a slight cutting.

Next the path crosses Cranbrook Street, again on a level because of the infill.

Here the old railway cutting has some large rock for decoration.

However, it is clear that this section has been infilled with rubbish as the path has these ventilators are placed frequently along the path.

The next road to cross is Lees Road at the junction with Brewerton Road and Clarksfield Road.

The easiest way to do it is go to the right and go out onto Brewerton Road, cross Lees Road and then regain the path on Clarksfield Road above the left hand green box.

Again the cutting has been heavily infilled.

After crossing Clarksfield Street the path goes from tarmac to a gravel surface

and then to a rough surface with some mud, probably the original railway ballast, as here the line went from being in a cutting to an embankment.

The line would have crossed the wonderfully named Wellyhole Street on a bridge, at Bank Top, but the bridge has long gone, so it is yet another road crossing.

Here the path enters Leesbrook Nature Park

via some vividly coloured barriers!

Now the cycle path runs along the trackbed on the top of the embankment.

As the line runs into a cutting again, the infill has not been complete and the path manages to pass under the St John's Street bridge. Just beyond was the site of Lees Railway station.

This exit on the left gets you out onto Station Street.

After crossing Oldham Road the path then crosses Ashbrook Road - both on the level after infill.

The path then wiggles left,

then right

before approaching Grotton beside this little playground.

The station has this information board.

The platforms at Grotton Station are still clearly visible.

At this point Ian decided to check if he had missed the train :-)

Beyond this point the track becomes very wet and the cutting soon goes into Lydgate tunnel.

The big problem with this route is the way the cuttings have been infilled and the crossings are mostly level with the road. It is a shame, as it would have otherwise been an atractive route.

Wednesday, 8 April 2015

"Cycle Tracks" aka parking spaces for lazy contractors...

I am so sick of obstructions on cycle tracks in Manchester.

This evening's ride home met with this pair of vans.

There was no sign of either driver.

One van is on the legitimate access road, the other idiot drove down the cycle track!

Remember this name...

Sunday, 5 April 2015

Dantzic Street Closure

This recently created cycle cut-through has been closed off.

It looks like there are going to be several buildings demolished round here.

It is clear that the contractors don't care much for the cycle route!

This is what it used to look like...

Smashed Sign & Missing Bollards

Two weeks ago I posted pictures of the ludicrous "repair" of the bollards on Middlewood Street, and asked "How long before a passing HGV sends the sign and bollard flying?"

Well, the answer is less than two weeks...

This was the site two weeks ago,

and this is the site today.

I found the smashed road sign around 50 metres further down the road and the bollard was nowhere to be seen.

How long before TfGM and the local councils come to realise that this sort of plastic rubbish is a waste of money?

Sunday, 29 March 2015

Bridgewater Way, Monton Green to Worsley

This is a continuation of the Bridgewater Way, Manchester Ship Canal to Monton Green and also links to the start of the Tyldesley Loopline.

There is access here from Parrin Lane which is carried over the canal on the bridge that was built for the trams.

From here the towpath is wide enough and well surfaced.

The canal at this point is almost rural.

The path on the other bank is around Broadoak Park.

Beyond the park, the canal turns to the left and there is a tasteless new housing development. It is the equivalent of a 4x4 parked on the pavement. It is completely out of touch with the surroundings.

The houses beyond are even more bizarre...

The canal then turns to the right again,

and passes Worsley Dry Docks on the opposite bank.

The canal now passes under a footbridge

and heads towards the Delph.

Here the access to the coal mines branches off the far bank as the canal turns sharply to the left.

Then it passes under Burton Road.

Watch out this is very narrow!

After the bridge is this crain.

The canal then passes under the M60 motorway

and one of its sliproads.

The surfaced path comes to a halt just after the bridge, at what looks like a water feed from a reservoir, though my normal sources haven't come up with confirmation of this.