This month’s walk is a nearly six-mile (around 2. hours) loop starting and ending in Penley. It takes you south and then north of one of our most remote villages, and covers rolling meadows, woodland and quiet country lanes.
OS Map ref: explore.osmaps.com/route/17460633.
The walk was VERY overgrown in places and we had to clear paths through nettles on a few occasions. We recommend you wear trousers or at least gaiters and take a pole or stick to remove any vegetation that has reappeared.
The walk is not dog friendly as several fields contain cows and sheep. You may have to lift a dog over some of the stiles. You must read the disclaimer before attempting any of our walks: love-wrexham.com/walk-disclaimer.
Off-road parking is available in a layby on the right-hand side of the A539 as you enter the village from the direction of Overton (just after you pass the church).
Start the walk by facing the road in front of St Mary Magdalene Church (LL13 0LU). Cross the road and walk through the gateway into the car park to the left of Madras Aided School (1). Walk to the left of the prefabricated building and go through the metal walker’s gate. Turn left when you enter the field and follow the hedge/fence line on your left. Walk as far as you can (about four minutes) and then exit the field over the wooden stile in the right corner, ignoring the metal walker’s gate on the left.
Turn left again, following the hedge/tree line on your left. You’ll come to three gateways – walk through the right-most gateway of the three, ie the one more or less in front of you. Walk across the field along the pathway between the top sets of crops (2). Go through the gate onto Ellesmere Lane. Walk past the row of houses on your right and carry on down the hill as they peter out.
Penley Bank Cottage
This stretch has no pavement so take care walking along it. Turn right at the yellow grit bin. This is a blind bend to the right so take extra care here. Walk a few paces, pass Penley Bank Cottage and turn right into the field through the metal walker’s gate.
You’ll see a slope in front of you with some trees at the top. Head towards the bank and turn left to walk across the lower contours of the hill. You’ll see a mown strip that acts as your pathway indicator. Walk between the two clumps of trees. The field opens out as you pass the trees, but keep following the pathway.
As you pass the second telegraph pole on your left, you’ll start walking past a fenced-in wood on your right (3). Climb the rise, still walking alongside the wood on your right. The wood finishes after about 10 minutes.
The England-Wales border is in the wooded dip to your left. Keep walking along the mown strip as you walk along a hedge and fence line on your right. Look out for the metal walker’s gate in the fence that runs across you as you reach the end of the field. Turn left once you’re in the next field to the bottom of the slope. Then turn right and walk across the bottom of the field with the wooded area to your left.
Follow the bottom of the field as it bends left and right, always keeping the wooded area on your left. After about 10 minutes, you’ll reach the end of the field. Exit through the metal gate and turn left along the overgrown path to another metal gate after a few yards.
You’ll come to a mown strip running across you. Turn right and follow the main path north as it bends left and right. You’ll see a small lake under construction on your left. After about five minutes, you’ll come to a lawn and some kind of activity centre. You’ll see a waymarker arrow on the lawn pointing you to a path behind the green wooden building (4). A sign on the building also directs you behind it.
Walk along the narrow path behind the building. Go through the metal walker’s gate and you’ll come out on a concrete bridge. Penley Mill and Penley Mill House are on your right. Turn left and pass Penley Mill garage on your right and then turn right onto Lion Lane and walk along it for a few minutes until you reach the main road.
Turn right and walk carefully for a short way along the pavement until you reach the bridge. Cross the road here and go through the metal walker’s gate. The bolt is quite stiff so you’ll need both hands to open it. Go down the wooden steps and follow the narrow path between the new wooden fencing until you come to a wooden stile.
Hop over and continue across the field with the thistles, heading northwest, keeping the wooded area to your right. Use the metal walker’s gate in front of you to exit the field. Walk through the long grass in the next field in the same direction until you get to the end of the field. Exit through the metal walker’s gate towards the left of the fence in front of you.
You’ll now be in a large field of shorter grass. We saw a fox cub playing in the grass here! Walk in the same direction, following the right-hand fence line and stream. The field narrows and you’ll have trees on either side of you. Exit through the dilapidated gate in the left-hand corner, along the short tree-canopied path and then through the metal walker’s gate, over the very short bridge into the next field.
** We had to clear a path through the nettles to get into this field. They may have grown back by the time you reach here, so use your stick if necessary to reach the field **.
Walk straight across the next field, aiming for the left of the large farm outbuilding ahead. Turn left up the slope once through the gateway. Turn right almost immediately through the metal gate. You’re now walking past the rear of the farmhouse. Hop over the wooden stile and along the overgrown path into a field. Follow the hedge line on your right. Enter the next field through a gap in the hedge. You’ll see three oak trees in a line running across in front of you. Walk past the right-hand one.
Work your way down to the far right-hand corner and exit the field over the almost hidden stile. Be careful scaling it, as it’s a little rickety. Walk in the same direction through the next field through the awkward-to-walkthrough grass. Exit the field through the metal gate in the far left corner. You will find yourself on Burgess Lane. Turn right and right again at the T-junction after about five minutes by Bridge House. You are now on Hollybush Lane. Go over the Rhyd-y-cyffyn bridge with the green railing and past Holme View on your left.
Turn left through the gate just past Holme View, following the public footpath sign. Once in the field, follow the left-hand hedge line. As you reach the top of the field, take the easy-to-miss path by the holly tree down into the dell and cross the curious two-stiled bridge (5).
In the next field, follow the same direction as you leave the bridge. Follow the path in the grass and then the tyre tracks into a large open field. Walk along the field, gradually making your way up to the right-hand fence line at the top of the slope. Halghton Hall You can’t open the first metal gate you get to after about 10 minutes, so use the second one, turn right and right again through another metal gate. Walk to the right of the farm buildings (6) and then follow them around to the left.
Go through the gate onto the lane, taking a minute to admire Halghton Hall. Turn right once through the gate with the annoying chain and walk along the gravel track. Peel off right after a couple of minutes when the track bends to the left. Go through the double wooden gate (7) and follow the righthand hedge and tree line. Go through the single metal gate, not the double one. Walk along the right-hand hedge line of another field and go through another metal gate. Look ahead at the large Lee’s Wood in front of you. You’ll notice a gap between the trees – head for that.
Walk down the grassy slope ignoring the wooden gate to your right. Instead, head to the left corner and; go through the gate and over the bridge. Walk up the grassy slope on the other side and walk straight on towards the telegraph pole, turning left through the gap in the fence just before the pole (8). Walk along the right-hand hedge line until you reach a metal gate on your right. Go through it onto Hollybush Lane again. Turn left and walk for about a mile, passing Penley Village Hall until you get to the main road. Turn left to reach the church again.
Congratulations! You have finished the walk! If you’d like to see some more of our walks, click here.