Real Ale Rambles

REAL ALE RAMBLE 283 Saturday 25th May COLESHILL PARKWAY STATION 7 miles and 2 pubs

This is a repeat of a walk we attempted to do a couple of years ago. At that time the path was closed because a railway bridge alongside the path was was being rebuilt. Now is an opportune time to try again.

After meeting at the station at 10.50 we catch the 11.02 train from Coventry and arrive in New Street at 11.27. Then the 11.52 train arrives in Coleshill at 12.06. From the station we walk towards Coleshill and at the traffic lights turn left through an industrial estate. Then a path takes us past old sand and gravel workings. Here we are close to the confluence of the Rivers Cole, Blyhte and Thame, which flow north to eventually join the Trent. We pass the new railway bridge and the hardcore track that was built a few years ago to take the heavy machinery needed to rebuild the bridge. This is already being colonised by scrubs and grasses. After this there is a section of uneven ground, so be careful where you tread. We cross the rivers Cole and Blythe by footbridges and then follow a track alongside the reservoir at Blythe End, which is not visible here. Then we take Watery Lane and the main road into Shustoke.There is a footpath alongside the main road, but it is a busy road, so be careful! As we approach the village there is a gap in a hedge which will lead us into the car park for Shustoke reservoirs. Here we follow the lane towards the Boat Club. We take to a footpath that skirts the Boat Club and follows the reservoir bank to the end. Then we cross a couple of fields and turn towards the chuch tower on the horizon. This takes us to a gap in a hedge into the grounds of the Griffin Inn.

We can stay here for 30 miniutes before starting off again, retracing our route as far as the Boat Club, where we turn onto Bixhill Lane.This takes us into Shustoke vuillage, where we can visit the Plough for half an hour, to see what it is like these days.

From the Plough we retrace our route to Coleshill station. If we have time we can even have a look at the pub there, if it is still open. I doubt it would sell anything we want to drink, but it is always worth a check.

Return trains run at 3.58, 4.25, 4.36, 5.00, 5.25, 5.36, 6.00 etc, etc

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FUTURE EXPEDITIONS

June 22 SARAH HUGHES & MUD CITY

Meet Coventry Station 10.45 for 11.00 am train arriving Birmingham NS 11.26

11.39 from Birmingham NS arrives Coseley 11.59

July 20 MOUNT ST BERNARD

Aug CHURCH END 3

Sept 3 BREWERIES

Oct LONDON

Nov EASTERN GREEN

Dec METRO

Jan GBG PUBS

Feb Standing water in Warwickshire (Coundon park, Kingsbury, Draycott etc) or lost villages

Copies of the walks are available at Beer Gonzo, Earlsdon.

SUNDAY LUNCH WALKS - in conjunction with the Health Development Service of Coventry City Council.

These walks all start at 12 noon. Copies of these walks can be obtained from Beer Gonzo in Earlsdon, or for more details contact moc.liamg@ttekculfg>

SUNDAY LUNCH WALK 82 Sunday 5th May OAKES FARM SHOP 4 miles

This month we meet at 12 noon at the RAILWAY INN, Balsall Common, and at 12.30 set off along the drive beside the Inn. A path starts on the right and leads through waste land and woods to a road. Turning right along this road we pass the end of Grovefields Crescent and come to a flight of steps. These lead up to a playing field and following the hedge to the right we pass a car park and emerge onto a lane. Left here takes us to a main road, which we cross to enter a cul-de-sac called 'The Paddocks'. At the end of this a gate leads into fields. Through two fields we come to the access track to Grange Farm. We cross this and soon come to Grange Lane. Then up the hill and left onto another main road we come to the drive to OAKES FARM SHOP. We can stay for a cup of tea and nibbles admiring the view.

Leaving Oakes we turn right along the road and take a path alongside house No 49. The we use paths and roads to cut through the housing estate, passing John Sullivan's house in Malvern Road. We cross another main road and follow a path alongside the Sports Association's grounds. Slightly left we take the next path through a field to the drive for Barratt's Farm. Slightly left again a path starts through fields towards the Greenway. The earthworks for HS2 are visible here, not too obtrusive as yet.

This path takes us back to the RAILWAY INN. At the start of this path there is a sign saying 'Beware of the Bull' but on my survey there was no sign of one. I suspect it is a case of the farmer being cautious and maybe trying to deter walkers! If anyone is nervous we can walk back along the roads!

SUNDAY LUNCH WALK 83 Sunday 2nd June INSIDE THE RING ROAD 3 miles

After the success of the walk round the Town Wall I thought it would be a good idea to do another round the city centre. Perhaps no one else is old enough to remember that the ring road was originally built on the level, with no flyovers or underpasses and with all the roundabouts on the level. This ring road was flanked on both sides with a cycle lane, and outside that a footpath. All very sensible. The cycle lane has since disappeared to make way for sliproads and flyovers etc, but there is still a footpath for much of the route. The footpath passes rarely-seen views of the city and plenty of green space.

We meet at 12 noon at the GATEHOUSE TAVERN on Hill Street. As long as the weather is good we can meet in the garden, which is the best pub garden inside the ring road. At 12.30 we set off in an anti-clockwise direction alongside the ring road. We soon pass Lower Holyhead Road, where there is a terrace of weaver's cottages, doubtless the last left in the city centre. Next there is a view down Lower Spon Street. After this we pass the Skydome and come to a very short stretch of the River Sherbourne, imprisoned in concrete, one of the few bits of river visible inside the ring road. Then we walk down to Rudge Road in order to cross the road at the traffic lights.

Now we pass the end of Starley Road and Queen Victoria Road and walk through Greyfriars Green. In medieval times this was outside the city, and had a pond in it. Continuing we follow St Patricks Road and use subways to cross the road to the Police HQ. The path continues alongside the Police Station but then we are diverted around the Severn Trent building. We pass Whitefriars Gatehouse before being diverted again, this time by some of the manic building of tower blocks. Fortunately this diversion takes us past Whitefriars Monastery. We cross Gosford Street and walk under the flyover to get back to the inside of the ring road and meet the city wall. We follow the route of the wall past the Leisure Centre and Pool Meadow. Here I have planned a stop at SPRINKLES Ice Cream Parlour in the old Fire Station, so that Pauline can get her sugar rush. It is the only stop I could think of that is actually on our route.

From Sprinkles we walk through Lady Herbert's Garden, between the city wall and the ring road. Then we follow the ring road along the only stretch that still has its original cycle lane, disused now. Across Upper Well Street we are diverted again by more manic tower block building, and so return to the GATEHOUSE via the footbridge.

FUTURE EXPEDITIONS

July 7 COOMBE ABBEY

Meet at the MOUNT PLEASANT, Walsgrave Road

Aug 11 NEWBOLD COMYN (Please note that this is not the first Sunday in August due to holidays)

Meet at the EPISODE HOTEL, Upper Holly Walk

Copies of these walks can be obtained from Fred & Sharon. They are usually in Beer Gonzo in Earlsdon on Thursdays, from around 7 pm to 9 pm.