Beeston to Wolverhampton
(49 miles and 33 locks each way)
The “Shroppie” carries the traveller southwards through some magnificent scenery. Much of it’s course is remote, but there are wayside inns and several towns and villages within easy reach.
This canal has a totally different character to many other others, as it strides boldly across valleys on high embankments and digs deeply through narrow rock cuttings.
Locks are grouped in easy to work ‘flights’ at Audlem and Market Drayton. There are plenty of canalside pubs to slake the thirst and hunger of the traveller.
The countryside is rolling Shropshire hills at it’s best and the long embankments at Nantwich, Shebdon and Shelmore offer unrivalled views.
A selection of places to visit include:
In July Nantwich town has its annual agricultural show and International Cheese Festival. Held within easy walking distance from the canal at Nantwich there is something for everyone from tractors to horses, crafts and cattle and of course the biggest cheese show in the land with loads of free samples for the hungry!
Chester and Ellesmere Port
(21 miles & 9 locks each way) to Ellesmere Port.
A pleasant and very leisurely week’s journey.
From our boatyard you cruise through pleasant country to Chester where you pass through a deep rock cutting, outside the Roman city walls, followed by 3 staircase locks carved from rock, to moor at Tower Wharf. This is the main canal wharf complex for the city.
Chester is well worth visiting, having both historic interest in it’s ancient buildings and cathedral (www.chestercathedral.com) and also has an excellent shopping centre and Chester Races are held in May www.chester-races.co.uk.
The well preserved ancient walls provide a circular walk around the old town, and ‘The Rows’ (shops on several levels in the main streets) predate the modern arcades by several centuries.
Travelling further along the canal takes you past Chester Zoo to Ellesmere Port (port of Ellesmere in Shropshire) where you may see (but not cruise on) the Manchester Ship Canal. Here you may moor up in the old docks and visit the Boat Museum which displays a vast range of old working boats, canal artefacts and historical documents.
Cruising times from Beeston: