Sunday, 10 August 2014

Bridgewater Way, Mosley Rd to the Ship Canal

This isolated, 2 mile long section of the Bridgewater Way was surfaced earlier this year, and I have been waiting to get back on the bike so I could ride it.

Unfortunately the south eastern end is really not that easy to get to...

After you've carried your bike down the steps from Mosely Road you then have to lift it over this barrier.

The problem is caused by the state of the section of towpath between here and the canal junction at Moss Road. It is not due to be repaired until next year.

The construction traffic can gain access at this point out of the Kellogg's factory, but for the rest of us the nearest access to the new path is the steps.

Between the start of the resurfaced path and Mosely road is an old bridge over a dock entrance. The path is quite steep and stepped.

It made for quite an uncomfortable decent, particularly on the loose stones.

Then under Mosely Road

and heading north west.

There is a mixture of industry on the north east bank and some housing on the south west side nearest the towpath.

With a few boats using this stretch.

After crossing under Park Way these trees on the NE bank reminded me of Kent or northern France.

Some parts of the path look like they still need a bit of work, particularly this access point.

However, by contrast the following access point to the Trafford Centre had clearly been finished to a much higher standard, even if the barriers left a lot to be desired.

The path then goes under Asburton Road West

and then over another lock bridge. At this point it is best to get on the path further from the canal

as the path is better finished, and a bit wider.

The tow path comes to an end in an area of decorated paving with this mini pagoda. It did look rather neglected.

To the left of the pagoda you can get a sight of the Barton Swing Aqueduct, but unfortunately you cannot cycle over it.

Also here there is a rather nice crane.

So, on a bike you have to go to the left of the pagoda, down this path

and out onto the busy B5211 Redcliffe Road where you have to turn right to follow the course of the canal.

Warning there is an almost completely blind exit here onto this road.

You can then cross the Ship Canal on the Barton Road Swing Bridge.

So for the moment this is a rather isolated path only 2 miles long. It will be improved greatly when the path to the south east is finished. However the towpath to the north, in Salford, is unusable for some distance so you have to ride on the road till you can get north of Liverpool Road, or walk on the towpath, and you have to lift your bike over the armco barrier.

Next section of the Bridgewater Way continues from Manchester Ship Canal to Monton Green.

View BridgewaterWay in a larger map


  1. I hate going over the Barton Road Swing Bridge. I have walked over it and been clipped by a wing mirror. I have walked my kids over it, pram and on foot. Most bike on it that I have seen use the pavement, it far to narrow for a main bus route,trucks (see HGVs on it), cars, pedestrians and people on bikes. Next bridge one way is centenary bridge or Warbington Bridge. It needs replacing.

  2. When this section was first opened earlier this year I had communication with Peel who stated that the remaining part should be upgraded by the end of this year. The repairs to the canal bank have now been completed, just needs the path doing now.
    As for the exit by the swing bridge, I have to negotiate that every morning, it's truly awful, you can't see anything coming across the bridge and have to rely on hearing - fat use with electric vehicles. I've pointed out to Trafford that it would be pretty easy to use another exit 50 metres up the road with much better visibility, but no response.

  3. Forgot to add that the barriers on the exit to Barton Square are then repeated the other side of the gates and then you have two sets of curbs to bounce over to get to the car park and the whole lots covered in loose gravel.