In choosing a destination for today’s ride, I remembered that on other rides we had often passed an interesting-looking pub on the banks of the River Severn. So it was that our destination became the Royal Hill Inn, midway between Melverley and Pentre. We set off on one of our regular routes from Chirk, through Hindford and Welsh Frankton. Caution was in order as we came across patches of ice which we passed gingerly, and sometimes dismounted and walked around. We hoped these would disappear as the day progressed. We cycled on through West Felton and Knockin, past the radio telescope dishes and beneath the helicopters always hereabouts due to the local military base. Before long we were seeing signs to our pub.
|Photos by Mike G|
Soon it was time to move on. Mike G suggested that we should visit St Peter’s Church in nearby Melverley. This is a delightful timber wattle and daub structure, built in the early 15th century after Owain Glyndwr burnt down the previous one. In the early 1990’s a major effort succeeded in protecting it from falling into the River Severn. As a result Melverley was given a “most motivated village” award.
From here we headed north through Maesbrook and Maesbury to join the road through Whittington to Gobowen. Before entering the town, we headed west, past the Robert Jones and Agnes Hunt Hospital, very familiar to Steve T, and then picked up the lanes to Western Rhyn and the Ceiriog valley. From here we climbed up into Chirk and back to the Castle Bistro.
It had been an exceptionally good ride. The weather turned out to be excellent once the frost lifted. Apart from some muddy lanes around Chirk, the roads were generally clear and there was little wind. The route held plenty of interest, especially the church, and the pub was a notable find to which we will return. Total distance travelled was 42 miles.
See route map and/or gpx file download