5 reasons to visit Wrenbury, Cheshire

This quiet corner of Cheshire is perfect for a relaxing day WORDS BY PAUL MACKENZIE PHOTOGRAPHY BY JOHN COCKS


The population of Wrenbury rockets in July as the village hosts its famous Scarecrow Festival. The event regularly attracts thousands of visitors to the village, which sits among farmland about five miles south west of Nantwich. About 150 scarecrows, in all sorts of poses, styles and fashions, appear around the village. Canal

This is one of those corners of Cheshire where it is hard to rush. Surrounded by countryside, nature still dictates much of the pace of life here and it is impossible not to feel relaxed beside  the Llangollen branch of the Shropshire Union Canal as it slides gracefully past Wrenbury. But when it was opened, in stages from the 1770s to the 1830s, the Shropshire Union was part of the network of new transport links which powered the industrial revolution. Three wooden drawbridges which date from the 1790s remain over the canal near Wrenbury, their ancient timbers adding to the tranquility of the scene. Church

The 16th century St Margaret’s Church overlooks the village green and houses many fascinating features. The Grade Two listed red sandstone church was added to in the 18th and 19th centuries, having originally been a chapel of ease to St Mary’s Church in Acton. St Margaret’s has a number of box pews which bear the crests of notable local families, and a dog whipper’s pew. The church also has a number of monuments to the Starkey family of Wrenbury Hall and the Cotton family of Combermere Abbey. History

Wherever you look in Wrenbury you can’t avoid the village’s history. Beautiful old homes are all around and many of them have played significant roles in the story of Wrenbury. When Nantwich was besieged during the Civil War Roundheads sheltered at the 17th century Wrenbury Hall, before the 1643 Battle of Nantwich. Two typically-Cheshire black and white houses overlook the village green and third, thought to have been an almshouse, stands in the churchyard. The primary school is one of several Grade Two listed buildings around the village. Walk and cycle

There are few finer places for a walk or bike ride, than through the leafy lanes in this quiet corner of Cheshire. The Cheshire Cycleway passes through Wrenbury and the South Cheshire Way long distance footpath lies just to the south of the village. There are also delightful routes to explore which take in the village, countryside, canal and river Weaver. There is an unmanned railway station half a mile from the village centre and two good pubs near the canal - the Cotton Arms and the Dusty Miller.

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