Whitchurch to Shrewsbury to Mercian Way National Cycle route No45

Whitchurch to Shrewsbury. On National Cycle Route No 45 ‘Mercian Way


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National Cycle Rote No45 is part of the Sustrans network and runs all the way from Salisbury to Chester, mainly using country lanes and ‘B’ roads. This 30 mile cycle ride takes you along a section of route No45 from Whitchurch to Shrewsbury through some of the best quiet country lanes and countryside in Shropshire. Along the way you pass near to some local attraction such as, Hawkstone Park, with its Hall set in historic parkland, Moreton Corbet with its castle built through the ages and Haughmond Abbey near Haughmond Hill, 11th century abbey ruins. A fairly flat route with some rolling hills along the way. However there are a lot of short country lanes to navigate along the way, so be prepared to consult your map at times. There is a direct train service between the towns so you can if you wish return by train. Remember to check the timetable before you set off on your ride.

Whitchurch is bustling market town originally founded by the Romans. You can enjoy the

fantastic array of shops in the town or enjoy the ‘Clock Trail’ finding out about the towns historic timepieces. Starting from Whitchurch Railway Station cycle along Station Road B5398 towards the centre of Whitchurch and after 500 yards you come to a ‘T’ junction. At the junction TURN LEFT along Bridgewater Street and after 200 yards you come to a roundabout. GO STRAIGHT ACROSS THE ROUNDABOUT continuing along Bridgewater Street. When you reach the end of Bridgewater Street after 100 yards TURN LEFT along Doddington and THEN FIRST RIGHT on to Rosemary Lane. Follow Rosemary Lane around the bend and you will come to a cross road with Alkington Road. TURN LEFT on Alkington Road and cycle along this road out of Whitchurch. After about half a mile you come to a cross road with the A41. At the cross roads GO STRAIGHT ACROSS the junction continuing along Alkington Road towards Alkington. When you reach Alkington village continue along the road past the village and about 250 yards past the village just before the road bends to the left, TURN RIGHT along a small country lane.

Cycle along the lane and then TURN SECOND RIGHT, which is about half a mile along this
lane just by the Shropshire Union Canal on your right. Follow the lane over canal and 100 yards after the canal TURN LEFT towards the village of Welsh End. Cycle along the road following the canal on your left and after 800 yards you come to a ‘T’ junction. TURN LEFT at the junction on to Platt Lane, back over the canal and take THE FIRST RIGHT AFTER THE CANAL, which takes you to the small village of Welsh End about 300 yards along the road.

At Welsh End you TURN RIGHT along another country lane and then after 300 yards at the ‘T’ junction TURN RIGHT. Cycle along the lane for about 500 yards then it joins with another lane coming from the left. At this point BEAR RIGHT along the lane. Follow the lane as it twists and turns for about half a mile then you comes to a ‘T’ junction. At the junction TURN LEFT then after about 300 yards TURN FIRST RIGHT. After about 250 yards you come to a ‘T’ junction with the B5476. At the junction TURN LEFT and THEN FIRST RIGHT (250 yards), and follow the lane over the railway line and to the village of Prees which is about three quarters of a mile along the lane. One famous person associated with Prees is Captain Black, whose manor is located near the war memorial in the village. When you approach Prees the road is called station Road. Continue along the road straight through the village as it changes its name to Church Street. On Church Street you come to a cross road junction with the A49. GO STRAIGHT ACROSS THE JUNCTION along Church Street and about 100 yards after the A49 as the road bends to the left you TAKE THE SCOND TURNING ON YOUR RIGHT, which bends sharply to the right and then left on to Lacon Street taking you out into the lovely countryside sign posted for Sandford. After about 700 yards Lacon Street bends to the right at this point you TURN LEFT, again towards Sandford and after 300 yards you come to a cross road with the A442. At the junction TURN RIGHT for a short distance (250yards) then TURN LEFT along the lane towards the village of Fauls. Note: – take care on the short stretch on the A442 as it can be a busy road.
Follow the lane the short distance to Fauls and at the village TURN RIGHT along a small country lane and follow this lane for half a mile where you TURN RIGHT along Woods Lane, then after 400 yards TURN RIGHT on to Rookery Lane. Cycle to the end of Rookery Lane, about half a mile and TURN LEFT along the A442 for a 100 yards into the village of Marchamley where you TAKE THE FIRST TURNING ON YOUR RIGHT . At this point when you have turned there is a turning immediately on your right or the road bears to the left. GO TO THE LEFT and THEN BEAR TO THE RIGHT. Then after 100 yards TURN LEFT along a rural lane away from the village. Note: – the Village of Marchamley is the home of Hawkstone Hall and Park.

Cycle along the lane and after about 400 yards it bends sharply to the right. After the bend TAKE THE SECOND LANE ON YOUR RIGHT and cycle along it for about three quarters of a mile to the end past Hawkstone Motor Circuit on your right. At the ‘T’ junction TURN RIGHT and then after 500 yards TURN LEFT to the village of Booley.

When to reach Booley TURN LEFT and follow the lane for three quarters of a mile to the village of Stanton Upon Nine Heath. When you come to the village BEAR RIGHT along Booley Road and after a few yards you come to a ‘T’ junction. At the junction TURN RIGHT AND THEBN IMMEDIATE LEFT towards Morton Corbet. After about a third of mile you come to the village of Moreton Corbet with its castle.
At the end of the village you come to a ‘T’ junction with the B5063. At the junction TURN LEFT along the B5063 and after three quarters of a mile you come to the village of Shrawbury, which was mentioned in The Domesday Book. When you reach the centre of Shrawbury you come to a junction with the A53. TURN LEFT and then after 30 yards TURN RIGHT on to Church Street. Follow church Street for 150 yards where you come to a ‘T’ junction. At the junction TURN LEFT along Poynton Road.

Cycle along Poynton Road for three quarters of a mile where you come to the village of Little Wytheford. Continue through Little Wytheford and 500 yards after the village TAKE THE FIRST TURNING ON YOUR RIGHT along a country lane towards Bing’s Heath. Cycle along the lane and just before you reach Bing’s Heath (at the start of the village) TURN LEFT and then at the end of the lane TURN LEFT again and cycle along the lane for about 1 mile where you come to a cross road with The B5062. GO STRAIGHT ACROSS THE JUNCTION and continue along the lane for 1 mile to the small village of Upton Magna. Upton Magna is notable for having the oldest cottage (that still stands to this day) in Britain and possibly Europe – Cruck Cottage – which is a thatch-roofed, timber framed cottage located near the church. Tests on the timber in the cottage showed it to come from 1269.

At Upton Magna you follow the road round to the right and at this point you join up with National Cycle Route No 81. Continue to cycle along the lane for about 1 mile to the village of Uffington. When you get to the village of Uffington and by Mill Lane you follow the sign posts for Cycle Route No 81 which takes you from the village along the north river bank and after about 2miles you come to the railway bridge and station at the centre of Shrewsbury, the end of the cycle ride.

Shrewsbury is an historic market town with the town centre having a largely unaltered medieval street plan. The town features over 660 historic listed buildings,including several examples of timber framing from the 15th and 16th century. Shrewsbury Castle, a red sandstone castle fortification, and Shrewsbury Abbey, were founded in 1074 and 1083 respectively. The town hosts one of the oldest and largest horticultural events in the country, Shrewsbury Flower Show, and is known for its floral displays, having won various awards since the turn of the 21st century, including Britain in Bloom in 2006. You will also find a host of various establishments for refreshments etc’, and there is also a cycle shop that hires cycles, Spokes Cycle Hire, 48 Washford Road, Shrewsbury. SY3 9 HP.

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