EAST CHESHIRE RAMBLERS
THE East Cheshire Ramblers recently ventured slightly further afield for walk just inside northeast Wales.
Starting out from Penyfford, the group followed a section of the Wat’s Dyke Way before catching the bus back to the start.
For much of the way, the dyke runs parallel with its more famous neighbour Offa’s Dyke.
Heading south, the group stopped at the historic church in Hope where a cascade of poppies was still hung.
The tower dates from the 16th century and was built later than the nave.
Continuing with the Wat’s Dyke Way, next stop was Caergwrle and we entered the village by crossing the ancient packhorse bridge over the River Alyn before making to the ruins of Caergwrle Castle.
A stiff but short ascent led to the ruinous walls which still stand quite high.
Work on the castle began in 1277 by Dafydd but was partially destroyed before it was finished and when work began again, a disastrous fire in 1283 broke out and work on the unfinished castle was abandoned.
It is believed that the castle was only lived in for around six years. Quarrying in the 16th century undermined part of the building and it collapsed.
Leaving Caergwrle, we passed the former Caergwrle Spa.
The heyday of the spa was in the early 20th century and the natural spring waters here were noted for their health giving properties.
The adjacent bottling plant, which is a rather unusual building, is now a private house.
Continuing on field paths, we diverted into the Alyn Waters Country Park for our lunch stop before pressing on to reach Wrexham Bus Station for the return journey.
Despite the gloomy skies of the day, the group enjoyed exploring an area with plenty of unfamiliar paths and much historical interest.
Poppy cascade from St Cynfarch’s Church