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Women only walk at Ironbridge for The AOG

This was the first women only walk ever held at an AOG.

For some years I have been trying to get more women involved in this yearly event but with little response so as the women only weekends in April each year are so popular we decided we would hold a women only walk on one of the days of the AOG as a bit of a trial to see if more women would attend.

The result was the largest numbers ever, with 16 women due to attend the whole event.

As happens, unfortunately nearer the time 3 had to pull out, but it was great to see the others join in and obviously enjoy the weekend.

7 assembled for the walk in Ironbridge, a World Heritage Site, near the heavily wrapped up bridge--there is resoration work being carried out at present.

From the bridge we followed The Shropshire Way on what used to be The Severn Valley Railway line. The path starts off on the level until one of the Pink cooling towers, part of the soon to be demolished Power station, came into view, looming above the trees.

We then started a long gradual climb up through Benthall Edge Wood and then a descent down to where we could view more of the huge Power station and where the Pylons and power lines were crackling away very noisily.

Surprisingly we then came across a caravan park which was very close.

We walked through and then walked the perimeter of the Power station, quite a sizeable aea of land.

We could then join The Severn Way for a bit near the river which was lovely before coming out onto a pavement.

Sadly the next couple of stretches of The Severn Way were very overgrown and we were unable to walk on the path so had to continue on the pavement until taking a path going down the side of a pub, where we could rejoin the path by the river.

A lovely park then emerged before we found ourselves by the Coalbrookdale Company Wharehouse where we decided to sit on the wall and have our lunch.

Having been dry up until this point, it suddenly decided to drop some raindrops from on high, but luckily the shower only lasted a little while.

As we were almost back in Ironbridge, after lunch, we walked back to the centre so that the walkers could see at close hand the work that's going on, on the Ironbridge.

For the second loop of this walk  we made our way up to Dale end or Rough park. 

Richard Reynolds, Quaker and Ironmaster levelled and widened existing pathways in this wood, especially for the workers to enjoy on the Sabbath, their day of rest.

We followed the lovely woodland path towards Lincoln Hill and to The Rotunda a fabulous viewing area where you can look down onto Ironbridge and the surrounding area.

A short descent brings you back to Ironbridge and to our starting point.

This was a really lovely walk looking at the industrial past of this very interesting area.

Many thanks to the women who came, everyone enjoyed catching up and most (if not all) really appreciated that the walk was a women only one and requested a similar one be put on in future.



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