Regional Route 74 provides a link between national Routes 45, Salisbury to Chester and 5 Reading to Bangor.
It starts in the lovely village of Wrenbury, with its canalside pubs and village post office. This is a dairy county and some delightful Cheshire-made cheeses are on sale in the local shops and Wrenbury Post Office is no exception.
The landscape is generally flat with very few climbs other than when dropping down to cross rivers and streams. Head north towards Nantwich and you will criss cross the Llangollen Branch of the Shropshire Union Canal, before heading north east to Ravenscroft and its large pub at the main crossroads in the village.
Just a mile or two ahead and you will meet the canal again, this time it's the main Shropshire Union. Once over the canal bridge you'll find yourself in the town of Nantwich, an area steeped in history. The route itself will take you away from the town centre but it is really worth a longer visit. The church merits a closer view and the pedestrianised area is home to number of coffee shops, retail outlets and pubs for refreshments.
Head out of Nantwich on the cycle lanes of the A534. This road is busy but there is some protection from general traffic with cycle lanes and some cycle tracks through Willaston and into Crewe itself.
Traffic gets heavier as you proceed towards Crewe Station and you will need to cross a couple of very busy roundabouts. Once past the Crewe Arms hotel you will find a cycle track running alongside the A534, past the University campus and to another very busy junction.
From here head towards Haslington and Wheelock. These villages provide plenty of opportunities for refreshment stops. At Wheelock you will cross yet another canal, this time it's the Trent and Mersey. Just beyond this you will cross the Wheelock Rail Trail down below.
Look out for the signs for Route 5. This is where you can join the route and head north or south. Otherwise stay with route 74 into Sandbach. Another fascinating town in Cheshire's beautiful and diverse countryside. Here you really are spoilt for choice on what to see and do!
Please use Ordnance Survey map and signs. Please note that the downloadable route pack details were produced by the former Cheshire County Council.
Grade: National Cycle Network
Distance: 24km/ 15 miles
Time: 2 - 3 hours
Map: OS Landranger 117
Terrain: Country lanes, Canal towpaths and public roads
|2020 (1 Jan 2020 - 31 Dec 2020)|