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Alderley Edge, Cheshire

623 of 1160 nominations


Alderley Edge, Cheshire

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Alderley Edge, Cheshire

Alderley Edge is a geological anomaly of the Cheshire landscape — all is flat, until up rises a ridge of soft red sandstone, reaching up to 600ft above the surrounding land. On a clear day, it’s possible to see Manchester, Stockport and the Pennines from its highest point.

The Edge has been mined for thousands of years — its rocks contain copper ore. Mining started in the Bronze Age (a wooden shovel was found which dated back to 1750BC), continued via the Romans, and only ended in 1926, when the last commercial mine was closed. The shafts and tunnels run for miles under the hillside, and Derbyshire Caving Club now makes good use of them.
The Edge has a mystical allure: in the 1960s, it was reputed to be the meeting place for a witch's coven. However, the stone circles found among the trees are not as old and mystical as might appear: they were probably placed there about 200 years ago by the Stanley family who owned the land then. For many years, a man called John Evans lived as a hermit in the old quarry, close to the present car park.

Photo: David Noton © NTPL



Your comments

This fantastic ancient site and its surroundings are an important part of our national identity, and is one of the sites linked to the 'king of the Britons' Arthur, in one of its legends. It has also inspired many artists and writers in the North-west.

Chris Dawson

Audley Edge was also the setting for the wonderful book by Alan Garner, "The Weirdstone of Brisingamen"...spooky.



I believe rice, peas and jerk chicken is an Icon of England.

Ade Adeluwoye