Thursday 23rd October 2014
Walking Cheshire’s Sandstone Trail

Top 5 pubs on the Sandstone Trail

The ancient Bluebell Inn at Tushingham

The ancient Bluebell Inn at Tushingham

For walkers, pub goers and lovers of fine food and real ale, here are my all time top five pubs on Cheshire’s Sandstone Trail.

The 34 mile Sandstone Trail sticks to the wooded sandstone ridge that runs roughly north to south through rural Cheshire and north Shropshire. This lofty walk offers ever-changing views and panoramas at every turn. But even better, are the lovely country pubs and ancient inns along the way.

The winning combination of a bracing walk and a relaxing pub lunch with a couple of beers is hard to beat.

So, what are the best pubs on the Sandstone Trail?

My all time favourite five are:

Ring O’ Bells. Not far from the start of the Sandstone Trail, this homely traditional black-and-white pub, opposite St Lawrence’s Church, is halfway up Frodsham Hill. It has always been a personal favourite for its friendly atmosphere, central bar, good beer and cracking views from the car park over the Mersey Estuary, especially at night! Bellemonte Road, Frodsham WA6 6BS. 01928 732068

The Boot Inn. Cheshire’s best-hidden pub sits in a cul-de-sac combe near Kelsall. Converted from a row of cottages, it promises great food and beer, open fires, and a sunny terrace that looks out over the Cheshire countryside towards Wales. Well worth a visit. Boothsdale, Willington, CW6 0NH. 01829 751375

Pheasant Inn. High on the hills roughly halfway along the Sandstone Trail, the upmarket Pheasant Inn has views to die for. Open fires, good food, en-suite rooms, a lovely beer garden, and excellent Weetwood beers, this popular in also has a walled terrace with perhaps the finest views in Cheshire. Higher Burwardsley CH3 9PF. 01829 770434

The Sandstone. This unexpectedly great pub deserves to be far better known. Just below the Sandstone Trail on the A534 near Brown Knowl, the Sandstone pub offers a relaxed modern  take on the traditional pub, with open fires, sunny rooms, sofas, and a conservatory. Pub quizzes, bonfire nights, barbecues and superb regularly-praised menus and top food. It has superbly kept beers, too. Give it a try. Nantwich Road, Broxton CH3 9JH. 01829 782333

Blue Bell Inn. Another hidden gem, just off the Sandstone Trail near Tushingham, this half-timbered black-and-white beauty is one of the oldest pubs in Cheshire. Great atmosphere, open fires, and lovely beer and food. Track it down but don’t tell everyone. Bell O’ th’ Hill, Tushingham SY13 4QS. 01948 662172

So what are your favourite pubs on the Sandstone Trail? Add a comment below. :)


Written by abowerman on March 29, 2012 – 6:14 pm -


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Sandstone Ridge Trust – a new charity

Trustees of the new Sandstone Ridge Trust

Trustees of the new Sandstone Ridge Trust

The Sandstone Ridge Trust is proud to announce that it has recently been approved for charitable status by the Charity Commission.

The new charitable organisation has been set up to protect and enhance the wildlife habitats and historic heritage on and around Cheshire’s Sandstone Ridge. The Ridge stretches from Frodsham and Helsby in the north part of Cheshire West and Chester right down to Bickerton Village in the south of the Borough.

Read more here

Written by abowerman on March 22, 2012 – 6:07 pm -


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Chester Tribune article on ‘Walking Cheshire’s Sandstone Trail’

Chester Tribune cover

Chester Tribune cover, July 2010

Here’s an interesting article on the Sandstone Trail from the Chester Tribune magazine, July 2010 issue.

“FOR WALKERS AND THEIR FAMILIES, there’s no better place to be at the height of summer or on a crisp winter’s day than high on Cheshire’s central sandstone ridge. Only a few miles away from the compact walled city of Chester, the ever-popular Sandstone Trail is the ultimate ‘Cheshire Way’.

For many good reasons, it’s one of the finest and best loved middle-distance walks in North West England. The Trail offers unbroken walking over some of the loveliest countryside in Cheshire.

It meanders across the still largely green and pleasant English county of Cheshire from the ancient market town of Frodsham on the broad Mersey estuary, in the north, to Georgian Whitchurch in rural north Shropshire, in the south.

Walking even a short section makes a perfect family day out. With its beautiful scenery and wide and ever-changing views, the Sandstone Trail is an invigorating place to be at any time of year.”

To read the full article, see:http://www.chestertribune.com/index.php?option=com_content&view=article&id=132:walking-the-sandstone-trail&catid=57:cheshire&Itemid=105

Written by abowerman on March 18, 2012 – 11:00 am -


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Outdoor writer Christopher Somerville walks Cheshire’s Sandstone Trail

Christopher Somerville on the Sandstone Trail

Christopher Somerville on the Sandstone Trail

“Jane and I set off from the very hospitable Pheasant Inn”, writes the well-known British outdoor writer, Christopher Somerville, in the London Times newspaper, “to explore the heights and the breathtaking views along the Sandstone Trail. This splendid three-day path hurdles the upthrust of Cheshire’s backbone, a sandstone ridge that runs from the River Mersey south to the Shropshire border.”

Somerville clearly has an eye to the land and its wildlife. His word pictures are certainly evocative. Read the rest of this stirring piece here.

Written by abowerman on March 15, 2012 – 11:25 pm -


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YouTube on the Sandstone Trail

Here’s the first of a series of six video diaries covering the whole of the Sandstone Trail that appear on YouTube.

They’ve been lovingly created by a jolly chap who calls himself Henllan. His real  name is Ian Adams. Some nice shots, clever fades and an amusing commentary. Enjoy.

Thanks, Ian! :))

Written by abowerman on March 8, 2012 – 5:55 pm -


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Welcome to the Sandstone Trail blog!

Walkers on the Sandstone Trail's highest point

Walkers at Rawhead on the Sandstone Trail's highest point

Welcome to the blog about Cheshire’s Sandstone Trail.

Week by week, we’ll look at all aspects of this lovely lofty walk along Cheshire’s central, wooded sandstone ridge. Everything from favourite stretches and viewpoints along the way to upcoming events, races and challenges, popular places of interest, unusual wildlife, history and tales of the unexpected … But whatever we cover, it’ll never be dull.

Feel free to email me your stories and pictures, too — send them to ‘tony at northerneyebooks.com’. I’ll put the best up here.

So, let’s have fun.

Written by jono253 on March 8, 2012 – 12:00 pm -


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