... was an engraver at Strines Printworks and believed to be one of the greatest walkers of the times. Often hiking 30 miles a day for weeks on end throughout the country until the ripe age of 95. In honour of Old Ralston ‘of amiable disposition and sound constitution” here are some walks he would be proud to show you
There are a hundreds of routes and walks and places to see in the area. We have curated just a few and have based them on visiting us at the Nightingale on the way. These are intended as guidelines, but its easy to combine different train stations to start and finish from.
The roads and the canals tend to stay dry, but it is often wet on some these tracks - especially around Brook Bottom and Mellor, even in Summer, so decent footwear is always recommended and some water for the dog.
Much of the area around Marple and Mellor was shaped by Samuel Oldknow - follow this link for heritage walks based on this giant of the Industrial Revolution.
Connecting Manchester Piccadilly to Sheffeild on the Hope Line, one of the prettiest routes in the UK with 5 stations in the Peak District national PArk, of which Strines is ju8st on the border.
One of modern Britain's greatest criminals Lord Beeching had much of this once beautiful station demolished in 1974, after his catastrophic 1963 report which led to the closure of 55% of Britain's rail network and a future focused on roads, car fumes and buses. All that remains is a rather unexciting platform and very little of what inspired Edith c nesbitt to base the world famous book “ The Railway Children’ right here in little old strines.
The RAILWAY CHILDREN
It is believed that Edith Nesbit, author of The Railway Children, set her famous book around
Strines Station and the railway line between Marple and New Mills. The writer’s half-sister, Sarah Deakin, and her husband John first resided in Cobden Edge, Mellor. Electoral rolls show the Deakins to be living at a house called Paradise during the 1880s. This was a property next to the cottage of Three Chimneys, the name of the house used in The Railway Children. It was here, overlooking the Goyt Valley at Strines, high above the smoking chimney of Strines Printworks and the railway along which the steam trains travelled, that appears to have inspired Edith Nesbit's writings.
First published in 1905, it has been made into a movie several times with the 1970 version with Jenny Agutter being the most famous and is number 66 on the BFi 100 greatest British Films of all time. A sequel was released in 2022.
Wiki ""The story concerns a family who move from London to 'The Three Chimneys', a house near a railway, after the father, who works at the Foreign Office, is imprisoned after being falsely accused of spying. The children, Roberta (nicknamed "Bobbie"), Peter and Phyllis, befriend an old gentleman who regularly takes the 9:15am train near their home; he is eventually able to help prove their father's innocence and the family is reunited.”
The Bleaching Fields
(somewhere down on the fields near whitecroft farm)
These fields were once used for linen bleaching. Or grassing. A method which involved stretching linens out on the open fields, and nature would oxygenise the fabric over several days until it achieved full whiteness.
The Legend of No-man's Land
As these linens were left out in the open for several days at a time, they are open targets, and a man was once convicted of stealing them, but was caught and hung and gibbeted where the cage has been built near Lyme Park. The trial was in Cheshire and the costs were expensive. And the elders of marple realised, this area called Strines was not actually in their boundaries, but actually in Derbyshire. The people of Derbyshire then produced equally ancient plans and contested this was not in Derbyshire either. Both cases seemed correct so the Crown had to cover the costs Marple then had to give up all rights to collect taxes in the area, which essentially meant everybody in Strines lived tax free for a great number of years.
A clock stands here in honour of a local hero, Old bruce who lived on no mans land, in whitecroft farm and was for years the head mechanic at the Strines Printing Works.
St. Pauls Tin Tabernacle Church
Constructed in 1880. Classic and increasingly rare examples of the days of missionaries and empire, when corrugated ‘Tin Tabernacles’ like this were spread far and wide. Still in active service, this Anglican church enjoys Grade II listed status. They have a cracking wine deal on Sundays.
The Peak Forest Canal
The Peak Forest Canal was built for the purpose of transporting limestone from the Peak District
quarries. Engineered by Benjamin Outram, the summit level from Marple to Bugsworth was opened in 1796. The canal is in two distinct parts. The upper section, one of the highest summits in the country, runs along the valley of the River Goyt and Strines and the lower along that of the River Tame. Separating the two is Benjamin Outram's splendid stone Marple Aqueduct together with its slightly higher railway viaduct neighbour running parallel. At Marple Junction the Macclesfield Canal, 30 years junior to the Peak Forest line, is encountered. Between the junction and the aqueduct is the magnificent flight of 16 locks rising over 210 feet (64m).
The section near Strines is a burst of a thousand lush greens, strikingly similar to areas of ancient British rainforest.
The ROMAN BRIDGE
Originally called ‘Windybottom Bridge’ and changed to attract more tourists - this is defintely not Roman, but it is an old packhore bridge from the 17th Century. Incredibly photogenic all year round.
The ROMAN LAKES
A single ‘lake’ and certainly not Roman, these old Mill Ponds were cleverly transformed after the great fire at Mellor Mill (more of that later) into Marples premier tourist attraction. Famed for its tea dances and its orchestra, good people from all over the region have enjoyed many hours here - and continue to do so to this day.
The STRINES MERMAID
Ever taken a photograph, and then months later noticed something in the background? That's exactly what happened to a young photographer capturing the Roman Bridge who later discovered a Woman's Body floating in the water. He alerted the police but by then it was too later, nobody was ever recovered, perhaps it floated all the way to the Irish Sea., or perhaps it was The Strines Mermaid which appeared to the occasional merry revellers on this stretch of the Goyt on their way home late at night.
The Strines Viaduct
Built in 1865 and Grade II listed. This fabulous piece of engineering was built for the railway.
The OLD MELLOR MILL
From the years of 1769 to 1805 a series of astonishing innovations in iro production, steam power and textile production changed the prospects of humanity. Inventors and entrepreneurs seized the opportunity the time had given them and made machines that allows humans to transition into a new kind of existence. In rural communities and forgotten Northern backwaters like this the very modern world as we know it, was created.
The Mill burnt down in 1892.
The Dovecote at Strines Station