Reddish Vale

Reddish Vale is in the Tame Valley close to Reddish, Greater Manchester, England. The centre of the vale is around the bottom of Reddish Vale Road. Reddish Vale Country Park is a country park managed by Stockport Metropolitan Borough Council.[1] It covers 161 hectares in all and comprises some of the traditional Reddish Vale area, Reddish Vale Farm and the grazing land and Woodhall Fields, about half a mile to the south. Part of it is a designated Local Nature Reserve.[2][3]

Reddish vale from the air
Viewed from the southeast


Reddish Vale viaduct
The railway viaduct and former mill pond

Reddish Vale is mainly green space, comprising woodland, flat riverside meadows, sloping fields used to graze horses and a golf course. At the end of Reddish Vale Road near grid reference SJ905935 is a small car park and a visitor centre housed in portable cabins. A number of footpaths lead in all directions, with the more popular ones following the line of the river, both up and downstream.

Highly visible from the visitor centre is the sixteen-arch brick viaduct built in 1875 to carry the Hope Valley Line over the Tame Valley.[1][4] There is a legend that during construction a local witch cursed the viaduct and anyone who counted the number of arches.[5] A railway line once led to Stockport from Reddish Junction at the Brinnington (east) side of the viaduct. This line has been turned into a public bridleway joining the two parts of the country park and forms a section of the Trans Pennine Trail. The Stockport to Stalybridge Line forms part of the western boundary of the vale. A spur once ran to the colliery at Denton. Its position is still visible in places marked by a hedgerow that runs alongside Ross Lave Lane. Where the line had to span Denton Brook an embankment was built using slag and other waste from the mine. This slag was ignited by the hot summers of 1975 and 1976. It continued to smoulder and smoke for a number years until the site was bulldozed and cleared in 1981. Train drivers called the place 'smokey ridge', along the bottom of Denton Brook you can still see the bricks used for the tunnel. Some locals refer to Ross Lave Lane as 'piggy's alley' as there was once a pig farm on the Denton side of the viaduct on the embankment above where Denton Brook joins the River Tame. There was a plan at the end of the 18th century for the Beat Bank Branch Canal to run across the vale, and some sections were dug, but it was abandoned before completion.[6]

Nearby are two mill ponds left over from industrial activity in the vale. The ponds were fed from the river above a weir (destroyed in floods in the 1960s, all that remains is the sluice gate) on the upstream side of the viaduct, and provided both power and processing water to Reddish Vale Print Works, a calico printing works dating from before 1800.[7][8] The works had ceased printing by 1975,[8] and have now been demolished and the land turned into a butterfly park. The ponds are now used for angling, and attract herons and a variety of ducks. Most of the race has been filled in, but a short length carries Denton Brook down to the river. Denton Brook (and a small tributary) marks the traditional boundary between Reddish and Denton. The manorial corn mill (one of several to be known as Reddish Mill) was sited over the brook and was demolished in about 1860 when the ponds were extended.[4][9]

River Tame Reddish Vale
The River Tame in the lower part of the park

Woodhall Fields form the southern or lower (with reference to the river) part of the park. The weir here was used to feed the Portwood Cut, dug in 1796, which ran to the Portwood area of Stockport and powered a number of mills around the start of the 19th century.[8][10] Part of the fields were once a landfill site for fly ash; this has proved to be a good growing medium for orchids.

Reddish Vale Viaduct 1905
The LNWR Royal Train travels over the Reddish Vale Viaduct in 1905.

Whilst not really in the vale, at the northern end the late 16th century Arden Hall[11] or 'Cromwell's Castle' (where Oliver Cromwell allegedly spent the night) and the 17th century Hyde Hall[12] overlook it and form part of the overall landscape. Both are in private hands and not open to the public.

Other activities

Reddish Vale Golf Club takes up a substantial area on both sides of the river, but does not form part of the country park. The club house was once a substantial private house in its own grounds.

Just above the visitor centre, on Reddish Vale Road, is Reddish Vale Farm, with riding stables, meerkats and a children's farm. The buildings and associated grazing were Stockton's Dairy Farm until 1996.[13]

The Trans Pennine Trail and the Tame Valley Walk pass through the park.

Screamania is an annual Halloween family attraction that is held within the Tiviot Dale Showground, which is found at the Southern end of the Park.


There is now very little housing in the vale. There are 12 terraced houses opposite the farm on the road leading down to the vale. At the bottom of the road opposite the visitors centre is a large dwelling known as Tame House. Tame House was once the offices for the Calico print works. At the back of Tame House is a dirt track called Riverview; there are kennels for racing greyhounds halfway down the track. This was once the canteen for the workers at the print works. Adjacent to the canteen was a large Victorian house but this was demolished in the 1960s. Further along Riverview, where the track meets the river, once stood two rows of terraced houses identical to the ones opposite the farm. These were also demolished in the 1960s after being declared 'slum dwellings'. The same fate may have befallen the terraces opposite the farm if not for the intervention of two twin brothers, John and Christopher Byrne, who removed the Compulsory Purchase Orders put on them, and organised the installation of a sanitation system.

There were nine houses situated between the viaduct and the mill ponds, built to house the workers constructing the viaduct. They were later demolished for expansion of the reservoirs. On the opposite side of the river to where Strines Weir once was there were two houses known as Strines Cottages which were farm dwellings. A recent archaeological dig found the foundations of these structures. There was a flour mill situated above Denton Brook not far from Mill Lane. In later years it was used as a school and was known as 'the ark' because of the flowing water visible through the gaps in the floorboards. It appears that there has never been a church in the vale.

Recent threats

Recent proposals to change the nature of the vale have been met with robust opposition. In 1988, the government of the day asked the Greater Manchester Residuary Body to sell off its holdings in the area; 3,000 people, worried that it would be sold to developers, gathered in the vale to protest.[4][14] The land was acquired by Stockport Council in 1995.[4] They arrived as three contingents from Brinnington, North Reddish and South Reddish.

In 1990, a proposal to create an artificial ski slope at Woodhall Fields was opposed by 7,000 signatories to a petition.[4][15][16] The opposition was led by the Tame Valley Defence Group supported by MP Andrew Bennett and the Reddish Reporter. The Defence Group had made trips to the various ski slopes and supplied local people with reports on Sheffield Ski Slope. This proposal echoed an earlier proposal for a snow dome which was opposed by South Reddish Action Group, who were later to merge with the Tame Valley Defence Group to protect the vale.

In 1992, the golf club hoped to use part of the vale as landfill; the plans did not come to fruition.[17] This again was opposed by the Tame Valley Defence Group who were strongly supported in this by the Director of Public Health in Stockport.


  1. ^ a b "Reddish Vale Country Park". Stockport MBC. Retrieved 2015-01-03.
  2. ^ "Reddish Vale". Local Nature Reserves. Natural England. Retrieved 4 August 2013.
  3. ^ "Map of Reddish Vale". Local Nature Reserves. Natural England. Retrieved 4 August 2013.
  4. ^ a b c d e Cronin, Jill (2000). Images of England: Reddish. Stroud: Tempus Publishing. ISBN 0-7524-1878-5.
  5. ^ Poster in the visitors' centre
  6. ^ Ordnance Survey; Jill Cronin (1994) [1904]. Old Ordnance Survey Maps: North Reddish and S W Denton. Gateshead: Alan Godfrey Maps. ISBN 0-85054-654-0.
  7. ^ Holden, Roger N (1977). Stott and Sons: architects of the Lancashire cotton mills. Carnegie Publishing. pp. 11–12. ISBN 1-85936-047-5.
  8. ^ a b c Ashmore, Owen (1975). The Industrial Archaeology of Stockport. Manchester: University of Manchester. ISBN 0-902637-17-7.
  9. ^ Downham, W A (1922). "Chapter XIII". In Astle, William (ed.). Stockport Advertiser Centenary History of Stockport. Stockport: The Stockport Advertiser.
  10. ^ Arrowsmith, Peter (1997). Stockport: a History. Stockport: Stockport Metropolitan Borough Council. p. 130. ISBN 0-905164-99-7.
  11. ^ Pevsner, Nikolaus (1971). The Buildings of England: Cheshire. Penguin. ISBN 0-14-071042-6.
  12. ^ Pevsner, Nikolaus; Edward Hubbard (1969). The Buildings of England: South Lancashire. Penguin. ISBN 0-14-071036-1.
  13. ^ "RIDING CENTRE BID FOR FARM". Manchester Evening News. 6 July 1995.
  14. ^ "The Greater Manchester Residuary Body has got problems - at the last count about 3,000 of them". Estates Gazette. Estates Gazette Ltd. 9 April 1988.
  15. ^ "Snowdome seeks to build an indoor ski-centre in Stockport". Property Week. 20 October 1988. p. 5. Wolverhampton firm Snowdome has had detailed talks with Stockport Metropolitan Borough Council about building a £15 million refrigerated centre on the former Woodhall tip in Reddish.
  16. ^ "Stockport ski centre plan hits rocky patch". Building Design. Miller Freeman. 19 November 1988. p. 7. The dome would be 250m long and 18m high. It is not even certain that the dome would get planning permission because the site lies within Stockport's green belt.
  17. ^ "Teeing off". Action Update. November 2002. Archived from the original on 2002-12-06. Retrieved 2006-11-13.

External links

Coordinates: 53°26′18″N 2°8′32″W / 53.43833°N 2.14222°W


Adswood is a suburb of Stockport, Greater Manchester, England.

The name is said to be derived from "Adders wood"; in the reign of King Charles, the area was royal hunting grounds with a large population of snakes. Adswood has its own coat of arms, a snake wrapped around a tree.

Council housing in Adswood began in the 1920s with the building of Culver Road at the back of the estate towards neighbouring Cale Green. The rest of the housing was built in the 1930s and 1940s. In 2016 building started again in the north east corner. Before this, a farm stood on the land.

The area benefits from lots of green spaces including a football pitch.


Brinnington is a north-eastern suburb of Stockport, Greater Manchester, England, on a bluff above a bend in the Tame Valley.

The area is being regenerated, including the demolition of the Top Shops in 2007, which were replaced by new shops, 53 shared ownership houses and First House. In 2009, 17 new homes were built at Lantern Close, a new road named after the annual lantern parade in the area.Brinnington was open farm land before the local authority housing developments of the 1950s and 1960s. To the west of Brinnington is Reddish Vale, a country park popular with families to go for a walk and explore the ponds and brick viaducts; under the arches there is a sharp bend in the river and sand has been deposited giving the effect of a miniature beach.

The area consists mainly of council owned dwellings including high rise flats. Brinnington has high crime levels and long-term unemployment at 20%. Two streets, Northumberland Road and Brinnington Road, were named by police as two of the three worst roads in Stockport in 2010.Brinnington is served by Brinnington railway station on the Hope Valley Line from Sheffield to Manchester. The estate is accessed via Brinnington Road, which crosses the M60 motorway at both ends. The original proposed Manchester congestion charge would have charged motorists for crossing the M60 motorway, and protests from local residents led to a change in the proposed boundaries, excluding Brinnington from the charge zone.Brinnington has three churches, St. Luke's (Anglican), St. Bernadette's (Roman Catholic), and Brinnington Community Church at the Lighthouse Centre (Evangelical).

THere are three primary schools, St. Paul's, St. Bernadette's (Roman Catholic) and Westmorland, the last being an amalgamation of the former Brindale, Maycroft and Tame Valley Primary Schools.

Hollow End Towers in Brinnington were the subject of one of the leading cases on the law of nuisance, Transco plc v Stockport Metropolitan BC.

Cheadle Heath

Cheadle Heath is a suburb of Stockport, Greater Manchester, England, 2 miles (3.2 km) west of Stockport town centre and 8 miles (13 km) southeast of Manchester.

Cheadle Heath railway station, on the site now occupied by Morrisons supermarket, closed in 1967.

Davenport, Greater Manchester

Davenport is a district of Stockport, Greater Manchester, England, which at the 2011 census had a population of 14,924.


Edgeley is a suburb of Stockport, Greater Manchester, England.

Edgeley is characterised largely by Victorian terraced housing and council estates around Alexandra Park. The population in 2011 was 14,176.Edgeley Park is home to Stockport County F.C.


Foggbrook is an area of Offerton in Stockport, England.

List of mills in Stockport

This list of mills in Stockport, lists textile factories that have existed in Stockport, Greater Manchester, England.

From the Industrial Revolution until the 20th century, Stockport was a major centre of textile manufacture, particularly cotton spinning and hat making. During this period, the valleys of the River Mersey, River Tame and their tributaries were dominated by large rectangular brick-built factories, many of which still remain today as warehouses or converted for residential or retail use.

List of schools in Stockport

This is a list of schools in the Metropolitan Borough of Stockport in the English county of Greater Manchester.

Millennium House

Millennium House is a Grade II listed building in Stockport.

National Cycle Route 62

National Cycle Network (NCN) Route 62 is a Sustrans National Route that runs from Fleetwood to Selby. As of 2018 the route has a missing section between Preston and Southport but is otherwise open and signed.

New Hall, Woodford

New Hall is a 17th-century cottage in Woodford, in the Metropolitan Borough of Stockport, Greater Manchester, England (grid reference SJ893813). Above the door, there is a Tudor-arched lintel with the date '1630' along with the initials 'WDED' (William and Elizabeth Davenport) and the family shield. The same Davenport family owned Bramall Hall in Bramhall, close by. The cottage, along with the adjoining farmhouse is a Grade II* listed building.

North Reddish

North Reddish is the northern part of Reddish, in Stockport, Greater Manchester.

North Reddish or Reddish North can refer to:

A loosely defined geographical area covering the northern part of Reddish;

A precisely defined ward named Reddish North that elects three Councillors to Stockport Metropolitan Borough Council; or

A railway station in Reddish with commuter services to Manchester, Marple and Sheffield.

Offerton, Greater Manchester

Offerton is a suburb of Stockport, Greater Manchester, England. Historically in Cheshire, it includes Bosden Farm, Foggbrook and the Offerton Estate. Its high school, Offerton School, (formerly Goyt Bank) closed in August 2012 and is now home to Castle Hill High School. The ward population at the UK Census 2011 was 13,720.


Portwood is an area in Stockport, England, lying just outside the town centre in the vicinity of Great Portwood Street. It is a mixed area, with the part closest to the town centre mainly given over to shops (e.g. the Peel Centre) and the further part residential. The Rivers Tame and Goyt and the M60 motorway run through the area.

The former Stockport Portwood railway station lies under the M60 motorway.


Reddish is an area of the Metropolitan Borough of Stockport, Greater Manchester, England, 2 miles (3.2 km) north of Stockport and 4.6 miles (7.4 km) southeast of Manchester. At the 2011 Census, the population was 28,052.Historically part of Lancashire, Reddish grew rapidly in the Industrial Revolution and still retains landmarks from that period, such as Houldsworth Mill, a former textile mill.

Reddish Vale is a country park.

Reddish Vale High School

Reddish Vale High School, formerly Reddish Vale Technology College is a secondary school in Stockport, Greater Manchester, England. It is a coeducational school with academy status, part of South Manchester academy trust, educating 1100 pupils in the 11-16 range.

The school has excellent facilities including a sports hall, gym, astro turf pitch, tennis courts, purpose built performing arts block, library, farm and swimming pool. The school also offers specialist classrooms in the areas of cooking and nutrition, art and design, performing arts, science and computing.

It has been awarded the Artsmark Gold Award from the Arts Council of England. A 2006 OFSTED report summarized it as "a good school". The school achieved its best ever GCSE results in the summers of 2016 and 2017. It became the most improved school in Stockport in 2016.

Reddish Vale became a specialist Technology College in 1995, being one of the first LEA schools in the country to do so. The current Deputy Headteachers are Ms Carolyn Forsyth and Mrs Claire Evans. The current Headteacher is Mrs Linda Hanson.

River Tame, Greater Manchester

The River Tame flows through Greater Manchester, England.

South Reddish

South Reddish is the southern part of Reddish, in Stockport, Greater Manchester.

South Reddish or Reddish South can refer to:

A loosely defined geographical area covering the southern part of Reddish;

A precisely defined ward named Reddish South that elects three Councillors to Stockport Metropolitan Borough Council; or

A disused railway station in Reddish renowned for only having one service a week.

Vernon Mill, Stockport

Vernon Mill, Stockport is a former cotton spinning mill in Portwood, Stockport, Greater Manchester. Built in the late 19th century, it was taken over by the Lancashire Cotton Corporation in the 1930s and later sold on. Although still in business use, it is now a grade II listed building.

Areas and suburbs of Stockport

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