This Staffordshire walk begins with an exploratory look at a small part of Cannock Chase - now designated an Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty. It then includes a walk through the parkland surrounding Lord Lichfield's Shugborough Hall before concluding with a look at some of Britain's canal heritage.
Calculated time is computed with the distance, the height difference, and an average speed of 2.2 mph. For an intermediate walker, this time includes small breaks.
(D)The starting point is Milford Common (grid ref. SJ973211) on the main A513 Stafford to Rugeley Road. A popular place for visitors throughout the year, there is ample parking either on the common or on adjacent areas of the Chase. From the main car park head east across the common to the main entrance to Shugborough Hall. Cross the main road and, ignoring the main entrance, follow the main road uphill for a short way to take the first clear footpath on your left.
(1)This leads gently uphill through typical Chase woodland past a covered water store and then heads downhill again. Like much of the Chase there are numerous paths and the best guidance that can be given is to keep the boundary fence of the Shugborough Estate to your left. After a few minutes you reach the main road which is followed as far as the entrance to Shugborough Estate.
(2)Go through this gateway and follow the road, which passes a converted farm on your right before turning left to cross the railway. Stay with the road past Shugborough Park Farm (open to visitors during the season and also home to some rare breeds of farm animals) to reach open parkland. Ahead is Shugborough hall with its fine facade. Just past the house bear right on a gravel path that leads to the southern side of Essex bridge.
(3)Cross the River Trent to reach the Trent & Mersey Canal using the steps by the bridge to reach the towpath. Head north to Great Haywood Junction where you turn left under the bridge to follow the Staffordshire & Worcestershire canal back as far as Tixall Bridge (grid ref. 975217). Here you need to join the lane for the short walk back to Milford Common and your transport.(A)
D : km 0 - alt. km 0 - Start: Milford Common
1 : km 0.36 - alt. km 0.36 - Take first footpath on left
2 : km 1.57 - alt. km 1.57 - Follow road into Shugborough Estate
3 : km 3.07 - alt. km 3.07 - Cross River Trent
A : km 6.71 - alt. km 6.71 - Finish: Milford Common
Hikideas and this author cannot be held responsible in the case of accidents or problems occuring on this walk.
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