A Walk to Dunham Massey and Beyond

Between Christmas and New Year my sister and I decided to have a mini-adventure near her house in Manchester. We decided to make a trip to nearby Dunham Massey, at stately home and park on the outskirts of Altrincham (confusingly pronounced Alt-ring-ham). It was cold, but beautiful.

We managed to make the trip on public transport, getting into Altrincham town centre via the bus. From there it is about a 1.5 mile walk through the town and out to the A56 (not the most scenic part of the journey), and then headed up Charcoal Road. We decided to head up this route so I could show my sister the creepy abandoned mansion, owned by the Iranian government from the 1970’s, and now unable to be purchased due to international sanctions.

Creepy abandoned Iranian consulate outside Altrincham

We headed up the main drive of the park, trying to spot deer (some success), enjoying the frozen pond and trying to avoid adorable middle class families whilst my sister had a smoke (OMG second hand smoke panic). We then headed up to spy on the outside of the house (shut up for winter, boo), and then took the opportunity for tea and food and to warm our tiny frozen hands. Which I’ll be honest was a massive mistake… it took forever! I love this place but dear god get a more effective food serving system PLEASE.

After a further amble we headed out to Dunham Massey village, which is all incredibly Cheshire countryside-y and lovely and pleasant. On Woodhouse Lane we headed down onto the canal, which afforded us some stunning winter photos and a chance to say hello to a random cat and a narrowboat owner enjoying a beer as he steered downstream.

About 2 miles later we reached Broadheath, home of the worst designed apartment I ever lived in (Budenberg Haus). I mean it was so beautiful – designed by Foster and Partners, who did the famous Lloyd’s building in London – but god damn it was ridiculous. First, and most importantly they built a SHIP SHAPED building INTO THE PREVAILING WIND. And then to compound the error they made the balconies run uninterrupted around the building, which meant you were TORMENTED by the incessant sound of wind. You also got absolute knobheads running around your balcony and stealing your housemates garden gnome. An important lesson in function over form.

And so we finally arrived back for the bus, cold and slightly tired, but having had a super time catching up on life.



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