Cheadle has so much to offer and its right here on our doorsteps. Whether you are after a relaxing day in the Churnet Valley, an adrenaline packed day at Alton Towers, or a cultural visit to St Giles Church, Cheadle and the surrounding area has something for everyone.
On a daily basis, we take what we have surrounding us for granted, therefore this leisure section is filled with some amazing attractions surrounding us, whether you've got a full day to spare or just an hour.
Gliding is the most beautiful and absorbing way of flying. Even a first short flight can be a memorable experience, and gliding's challenges and delights continue to enthral the most experienced pilots. While most flights are made within safe reach of the home field, it is possible to soar higher than the Alps for many miles across country, using only the hidden energy in the air and hardly noticed from the ground. Your first flight may seem remarkable, but your first solo or cross country will be every bit as exciting and very much more rewarding. These will be real achievements, gained by applying new skills and knowledge. Although gliding is very much concerned with personal achievement it is far from a solitary sport as each pilot is very dependant on other enthusiasts. You will be expected to help other just as they help you through activities such as running the field, driving the winch, launching gliders and maintaining equipment.
Trial flights start from as little as £75, which also includes 3 months membership to the club.
Contact Number: 01785 282575
The year 2010 heralds the 25th anniversary of our relationship with the National Trust's Stately Home, Shugborough Hall. Over those years, more than 40,000 passengers have flown with us!
The Hall was lived in by Lord Lichfield (perhaps better known as Patrick Lichfield, the photographer) until he sadly passed away in 2005. We are pleased and honoured to have flown Lord Lichfield on several occasions through the years, and it was partly due to his enthusiasm that we began providing pleasure flights from his beautiful home.
His son, Thomas Anson, the 6th Earl of Lichfield, has now inherited the residency and title, and we look forward to his continued involvement at Shugborough.
Set on the edge of Cannock Chase forest, Shugborough Estate is the magnificent 900 acre ancestral home of the Earls of Lichfield.
The Estate stands testament largely to the efforts of two people. Thomas Anson (1695-1773) and his brother, First Lord of the Admiralty, George (1697-1762). As a naval officer, George acquired fame by capturing a Spanish treasure galleon.
Flights from Shugborough often carry the balloon north east, towards Uttoxeter, Ashbourne and Derbyshire. Equally, the breeze may take us across Blithfield Reservoir or down towards Lichfield where we can see the famous three-spired Cathedral. Of course Stafford, our county town, is only a few miles to the west, and we are a regular sight to the inhabitants there as we drift quietly overhead.
Wickers World Ltd
The Haythorns, Tolldish Lane
Contact Number: 01889 88 22 22
There’s something for the whole family, with tons of terrific rides, amazing live shows, and weird and wonderful costume characters. Guests of all ages will enjoy an abundance of fabulous, fun-packed activities - you can scream, let off steam, ride and slide.
Unleash a torrent of fun at the UK's most famous Theme Park!
There's a theme park full of rides and adventures for kids of all sizes and adrenaline addicted adults... It's an absolute must-do day out!
Alton Towers Resort
Contact Number: 0871 222 3330
Uttoxeter Racecourse has something for everyone. Whether you are new to racing, like to enjoy a special day out or you are a loyal follower of the Sport of Kings, come along to Uttoxeter and you are guaranteed a day of fun and excitement in beautiful surroundings.
With 25 race meetings spread evenly throughout the year, you also have the opportunity to come racing in every season! Whether that is National Hunt Racing in the Winter, or glorious summer jumping, you are sure to be on course for an unforgettable day at the Finest Country Racecourse in the Land.
Uttoxeter’s feature days are The John Smith’s Midlands Grand National and the Britannia Building Society English Summer National. Brace yourself for the most exciting racing action in the Midlands combined with the fantastic entertainment that we provide on course.
Contact Number: 01889 562561
The Foxfield Light Railway is one of the UK’s earliest heritage railways. The line was built in the 1890’s and unlike many lines which follow valleys, the Foxfield Railway maintains a 5½ mile round journey which boldly crosses open moorland, hills and woodland. This results in spectacular sounds and sights as the locomotives climb the steepest gradients as trains steam through Scenic North Staffordshire to terminate in the remote woodland halt of Dilhorne Park which offers one of the finest unspoilt views across the open moorlands where very little modern life can be seen
Contact Number: 01782 259667
Escape the daily grind in the beautiful Peak District with Peak Pursuits. Amazing memories are waiting for you in outstanding locations, try something new and recharge your batteries. Excitement and exhilaration are just around the corner with healthy, fun activities like abseiling, climbing, canoeing, mountain biking and more.
Peak Pursuits offer fun, memorable experiences with outdoor activities in and around the Peak District. For couples, families, friends, stags and hens we are the Peak District’s premier outdoor pursuits provider and the number one choice for adventures big and small!
Your safety and enjoyment are of the utmost importance at Peak Pursuits. Our leaders are highly qualified and experienced at instructing your chosen activity. We hold an AALA licence indicating our high standards of safety and delivery.
We want you to embrace the spirit of adventure and to go away with a big smile on your face, a sense of achievement and the desire to return for more!
Contact Number: 01782 722226
The Churnet Valley Railway runs through delightful hidden countryside between Cheddleton, with its grade II listed Victorian station and Froghall, with its newly built station. You'll also have the opportunity to discover Consall, our jewel in the crown complete with sleepy rural station. Sit back and enjoy a 10.5 mile return steam train journey through picturesque surroundings.
The Railway hosts numerous events throughout the year including Victorian Extravaganza, Ghost Train, Santa & Steam and much more.
We strongly recommend that wheelchair users board the train at Kingsley & Froghall Station as it has a higher platform.
Kingsley & Froghall Station
Stoke on Trent
Contact Number: 01538 360522
A warm welcome of hospitality awaits at Whiston Hall, the 19th Century Manor House and eighteen hole Golf Course hidden away in the heart of the Staffordshire Moorlands.
This fine example of a Victorian Hall was built in 1850. The residence and estate was owned, founded and lovingly restored by Mr Tom Cooper, local landowner,into what is now an exciting and thriving business venue.
At Whiston Hall you will discover many stunning architectural features and carvings which all add to the original charm and elegance of this magnificent building. Experience the challenging 72 par golf course in our beautiful grounds.
Contact Number: 01538 266260
The Public Toilets in Cheadle are located on the Short Stay Car Park and as well as unisex toilets you will also find disabled facilities.
Cheadle at present doesn't have a dedicated Tourist Information Centre, but the award winning Councils Connect one stop shop which is partnered with the Staffordshire County Council and the Cheadle Town Council can provide you with any information you may require regarding tourist information and council services.
The one stop shop aims to be easily accessible to customers with facilities for people with impaired hearing, PCs for customer use, a comfortable waiting area, access to a language interpretation service and children's play equipment. You can also find numerous leaflets regarding local attractions and amenities in the area.
Cheadle Councils connect is located on the High Street.
(15a/17 High Street, Cheadle, Stoke-on-Trent, ST10 1AA)
01538 483864 (ground floor) 01538 483874 (first floor)
Normal Opening Hours
Monday, Tuesday and Thursday 9.00am to 5.00pm
Wednesday 10.00am to 5.00pm
Friday 9.00am to 5.00pm (Library Service until 7.00pm)
Saturday 9.00am to 1.00pm
Cheadle has 2 pay and display car parks. The first which is located in the centre of Cheadle which primarily is a Short Stay Car Park and has easy access to high street shops. "The Discover The Secret Trail Walk" also starts from this Short Stay Car Park. This car park is charged at 40 pence an hour and is chargeable from 9.30am to 3.30pm. If you are using a Satellite Navigation to be directed please use the post code "ST10 1UY".
The second is located a little further away, but is still only a 1 minute walk to the High Street.
The Recreation Ground has a large football playing field, two playground areas (one of which is enclosed for younger children), a tarmac-based basketball area, plus extensive additional open space for walking.
There are bowling greens with groundsman’s facilities, 2 hard court tennis courts and two skateboard ramps.
Blackbrook Zoo is a fun and edcuactional day out for all, whatever the weather. Rare birds, reptiles, unsusal animals and aquatics.
Blackbrook Zoological Park is the largest bird collection in the UK, Blackbrook is internationally renowned for it’s achievements in breeding some of the world’s rarest birds. At Blackbrook, conservation is at the heart of everything that we do and we are working hard to protect and breed the many species of birds and animals that we have here.
Blackbrook was established in 1991 by Mrs Diana Holloway and Mark Rubery. Following Mrs Diana Holloway sudden death in 2006, Mark Rubery took over the park with a view to develop it with the same passion and enthusiasm as his mum had shown.
As a tribute to his mum, he closed the park throughout the winter months of 2006 to develop a wonderful new entrance and store. The entrance includes a lovely waterfall set in a beautifully prepared garden with a walkway up to the brand new store. The old store has been converted into a fantastic new deli that offers various snacks, drinks and pastries, plus a range of condiment and confectionery gifts.
They now have a brand new penguin exhibit that is the first of it's kind in the UK. It features an amazing underwater viewing area that is housed in a cave and also features a raised walkway that allows wonderful views over the entire exhibit. They are also pleased to unveil there fantastic new riverhog area and have many new exhibits planned to open in the next few years including the largest river aviary in the UK.
Blackbrook Zoological Park
Contact Number: 01538 308 880
Consall Nature Park is situated within the beautiful valley of the River Churnet. Sir Derek Barber, Chairman of the then Countryside Commission (now Natural England), opened the park in 1989.
Part of the park is also a Site of Special Scientific Interest (SSSI) and here the emphasis is on nature conservation, whilst at the same time welcoming the public to enjoy the paths, fishing and picnic facilities.
The Visitor Centre provides displays and exhibitions on the varied and dramatic past of the valley and its present natural history interests. There is a small shop area, selling leaflets and souvenirs throughout the summer (April - September). Toilet facilities are provided all year round and there is easy access to facilities for the less agile. There are designated car parking spaces and toilets available for people with disabilities.
If you are unsure of where to walk, try our Consall Nature Park Trails, a series of waymarked walks starting from the Visitor Centre.
Also situated within the consall forge nature park is the famous consall forge pottery shop http://www.4ateapot.co.uk
Consall Visitor Centre
Contact Number: 01782 550939
Situated in the centre of Cheadle this site is mainly know and used as Public Open Space.
The site follows the Cecilly Brook from Ullswater Drive to the footbridge below the South Moorlands Leisure Centre. It also incorporates unimproved meadow grassland to the west of the Thorley Drive Football pitches.
Cecilly Brook itself is one of the most important breeding sites for water voles in Staffordshire. This has been recognised by the designation of the site as a Local Nature Reserve in 2004
This is a very pleasent walk and if your lucky you will see one of the water voles pearched alongside the waters edge.
How to get there
The site can be accessed via the valley walk footpath from Ullswater Drive, Oakamoor Road, Ashbourne Road,and Rakeway road. There are also footpaths on to the site from Bittern Lane, Dale Close, Maple Close, Cedar Close and through Thorley Drive Playing Fields.
Parking is available at the South Moorlands Leisure Centre, Allen Street, Cheadle. Cecilly Brook is below the sports grounds to the rear of the centre. The brook can be crossed using the bridge at Ashbourne Road or the footbridge below the Leisure Centre.
JCB Rocester has many species of wildfowl on its 42 acres of beautifully landscaped lakes, which earned a Civic Trust Award for ‘an undoubted attraction’ that adds interest to the surrounding countryside.
The Lakes, with their wide variety of wildfowl, in the landscaped grounds of the JCB factory are a popular attraction for both visitors and residents. Paved footpaths provide all-year-round accessibility for all, though some shallow steps may prove difficult for wheelchairs, on the circular route around the North Lake.
Thoughtful landscaping and planting by JCB has created a natural nature reserve on the land surrounding the Fosse Statue, making this footpath between The Churnet and Ashbourne Road an interesting and practical walk with young children, though not suitable for pushchairs.(Strategically placed seats made this walk ideal for the less energetic too!)
JCB Lake Side
Nestled on a hillside overlooking the beautiful Churnet Valley, a “little piece of heaven” is taking shape for a couple who have invested the last seven years of their lives on an incredible project. Their task has been to transform a 30-acre site, much in need of some tender loving care, into a unique habitat for some very special birds. In a delightful woodland setting, visitors can now marvel at the sight of rare and spectacular owls and birds of prey from around the world. They might choose to join a guided tour, experience supervised one-to-one handling or spend a half day learning about falconry, but whatever the option, visitors leave in awe of these majestic birds and cannot fail to be impressed when they hear of the dedication of a very determined couple of conservationists.
Kingsley Bird and Falconry Centre
Contact Number: 01538 754784
This walk takes you north of Froghall and Foxt into some beautiful wooded areas. It is approximately 4 miles and you should allow 2-2 ½ hours to enjoy the scenery. Good stout footwear is recommended as the ground is steep and wet in places.
This walk takes you north of Froghall and Foxt into some beautiful wooded areas. It is approximately 4 miles and you should allow 2-2 ½ hours to enjoy the scenery. Good stout footwear is recommended as the ground is steep and wet in places.
How to get there
Froghall is on the A52, Stoke on Trent to Ashbourne Road, north east of Cheadle. The Wharf is located on the road from Froghall to Foxt 200m from the A52, where parking is available.
This walk takes you through the beautiful Churnet Valley. Churnet Valley is situated just on the outskirts of Cheadle and is highly recommended that you visit the Churnet Valley to take in the beautiful countryside.
Discover how bone china tableware was made in the original workshops and giant bottle kilns of the former Gladstone China Works, now preserved as the last complete Victorian Pottery factory in the country.
Gladstone was not a famous pottery, however it was typical of hundreds of similar factories in the area making everyday ceramic items for the mass market.
Experience for yourself what conditions were like for the men, women and children who worked at the centre of the world’s pottery industry.
Gladstone Pottery Museum
Stoke on Trent
Contact Number: 01782 237777
Les Oakes & Sons was started in 1965 by its founder Les Oakes. Les had learned the ways of ‘wheeling and dealing’ from travelling to sales and auctions with his grandfather from the time he was a child and this knowledge coupled with a natural ability and fascination for the world of architectural reclamation meant that when he built his farm at Hales View, Cheadle it was only natural for him to supplement his income by buying and selling from the farm.
Les’s skills at auction coupled with his eye for the unusual and the interesting soon made Les Oakes’s famous as the place to go for anything from a door to a lintel and a lock to a stone trough. But a visit to Les Oakes was a lot more than simply ‘shopping’. He built amazing fantasy buildings with little regard for planning control in which he stored not only his reclaimed architectural finds but also his collection of 750 horse drawn vehicles and other antiques and objects from bygone eras.
"A Fools Paradise"
‘If you can’t find it at Les’s – you won’t find it anywhere…
There’s nowhere else like Les Oakes & Sons - from the moment you first catch sight of the amazing and unique architecture of Les’s buildings in the beautiful countryside outside Cheadle in Staffordshire you are entering a wonderland where you can spend hours just wandering around the maze of buildings, letting your eyes catch whatever they fancy or seeing that elusive ‘whatever’ that you never thought you’d ever find. And the wonder is that if you ask for anything, as likely as not someone will tell you exactly where it might be!
So if you’re looking for something in particular or you just want a great place to have a look around why not search our website, contact us with your enquiry or better still, call in and see us – but bring a flask and some sandwiches because you won’t want to leave.
Hales View Farm
Contact Number: 01538 752126
These are two water mills on the river Churnet at Cheddeton, 3 miles south of Leek. The north mill was a Flint mill, built in the late 18th century and the other was a corn mill, dating originally from the 13th century and converted into a Flint mill in the 19th century. The flint was ground by the mills and then sent via the nearby Caldon Canal to the pottery factories of Stoke-on-Trent, where it was used in earthenware pottery. The mills are grade II* listed buildings and are run by a trust and are open to the public. There is a small museum with cottage kilns, a canal boat and steam engines.
The mill is run by trust and open at weekends and is free of charge.
Contact Number: 0161 4085083
Bethel Chapel Cheadle was originally built in 1851 and has recently had a magnificent renovation to bring it into the twenty first century.
Chris Longhurst is the Pastor of Cheadle New Life Centre, that meets at The Bethel Chapel.
More details to follow shortly.
Cheadle Staffs Methodist Church stands in the centre of the Staffordshire Moorlands town of Cheadle.
The Methodist Church has been serving the community here for many years.
The present building was built in 1967. There are traditional services, hymn services, interactive services with the use of the latest technology to name just a few.
As well as a large worship centre we have extensive premises which are intensively used throughout the week.
Worship is central to our work.
The Verdun family, originally from Normandy, granted land in Cotton (a few miles north) and Croxden to monks from the Cistercian abbey of Aunay-sur-Odon. The monks moved from Cotton to the more remote site of Croxden in 1179. The church was built first, followed by the buildings around the cloister. Completion and further enlargement followed under the prosperous leadership of Walter London, abbot in 1242-1268.
Despite the lack of historical records in the later periods, it is evident that Croxden was never particularly wealthy. The abbey flourished in the 13th century when it may have supported as many as 70 monks but during the 14th century the community suffered from the affects of crop failure, cattle disease and plague. Henry VIII eventually suppressed the abbey in 1538, and the site became part of a farm.
Cistercian monks observed the strict Rule of St Benedict, originally written in the 6th century. Monasteries of the order favoured remote sites and their buildings were often austere at Croxden. These communities endeavoured to be self-sufficient and much of the surrounding land belonged to the abbey. Indeed, the abbey precinct covered 30 hectares of fertile land and included a mill and fishponds.
You are able to walk around the Abbey's ruins today and is completely free of charge
Why not explore Cheadle’s fascinating past by taking a walk along our short Discover the Secret Trail. Here you will be able to explore the High Street, find out why St Giles likes blacksmiths and discover the magnificent "Pugin's Gem", the highlight of this walk.
On the map* below of the "Discover the Secret Trail", you will see the 5 stopping points. At each point you will find an Interpretation Trail Information Panel, similar to the one displayed. These panels are designed to be informative as well as highlight historic aspects that are a must view on your walk. The trail starts with the first panel at the top of the short stay car park located in the centre of the town. The trail leads you along the high street, on to St Giles the Abbot Church at the edge of town, and finally to the spires of Pugin’s Gem, St Giles RC church. The easy walk (with no steep banks) takes approximately 45 minutes and allows ample opportunity to sit and relax or call into one of the many coffee shops. The trail ends back in the car park with the final panel located in a seated area next to the Millennium globe.
Enjoy discovering the secret that is Cheadle!
In 1190 (c) WM Basset, (Lord of the Manor), presented Henry De London to be the first Rector of Cheadle.
In the 1320's the Advowson of Cheadle Church was transferred from the Basset family, to Michael House Cambridge, and it is thought that after this period @ 1350, the medieval church was built.
In 1538 King Henry VIII dissolved the Monasteries, and sold the lands of the church, to the laymen nobility of the church, and the proceeds began to build Trinity College, Cambridge, and on 24th December 1546, the Advowson (right of Patronage) of St. Giles Cheadle transferred to Trinity College Cambridge. In 1941 Patronage of Cheadle Parish Church was transferred to Lichfield Board of Patronage.
In 1837 the church was taken down and rebuilt the same on a more convenient site on the north side.
The new Parish church of St. Giles was consecrated on Saturday 12th January 1839, by The Lord Bishop of Hereford, in the absence of The Lord Bishop of Lichfield, through illness, and was opened on Tuesday 11th June 1839.
In May 1967 it was notified by the Church Commissioners that St. Giles Church had been designated a building of special architectural or historic interest.
Today, St. Giles is the centre of a lively and outward looking congregation and our worship is enriched by a strong and excellent musical tradition.
The St. Giles Catholic Church is a Grade I listed building, 1 of only 11 Grade 1 listed buildings within the Staffordshire Moorlands area and the only one in Cheadle. It was designed by Augustus Welby Northmore Pugin and commissioned by John Talbot (16th Earl of Shrewsbury) and opened on 31 August 1846.
The church is known as "Pugin's Gem" and took 5 years to complete from start to finish. During the build money was no object to the Earl of Shewsbury who resided at Alton Towers, which was then known as Alton Abbey. The original estimate of £5,000 had increased dramatically to a figure of some £40,000 by the time of its completion in 1846. .
Pugin believed that, after stained glass, encaustic tiles were amongst the most important forms of decorative art. By the winter of 1843 Pugin was able to tell Earl Shrewsbury that the tiles for Cheadle were proceeding well and that they would have "the finest floor in Europe".
The tiles for the chancel and the Chapel of the Blessed Sacrament were both rich and expensive. Earl Shrewsbury was concerned that they would be damaged by being constantly walked upon, so he suggested putting down carpets, which in Pugin's view defeated the object of having patterned tiles in the first place. The clerk-of-works, John Denny proposed a solution: the priest and his assistants would be required to wear special overshoes made of cloth. Earl Shrewsbury warmed to the idea, and told Pugin: "You may have your tiles and we shall want no carpet"
The date for the consecration of St. Giles was fixed originally for September 1845 but with the various alterations this proved to be optimistic. Pugin noted that the spire was topped on 27th June 1845, but the bells did not arrive until January 1846. The inscriptions on them, in Gothic lettering, include invocations of Our Lady, St. Giles', St. Chad and St. Francis.
St Giles Catholic ChurchThe consecration of the church was postponed for twelve months, but by March 1846 Pugin could not guarantee even that, unless Earl Shrewsbury would allow him to keep a full work-force including joiners and painters. Of particular concern were the great crucifix and carved figures for the Rood, which were being made by George Myers at Lambeth.
The loss of the sculptor Thomas Roddis, who died in October 1845, was another sad blow, for although Roddis had completed his works at St. Giles' by this time, his contribution to the building was substantial and of superb quality.
To this day the 200 foot steeple of this magnificent church dominates the town and is visible from miles around, St Giles is of unique importance in the history of the Gothic and Catholic Revival. St Giles was a seventh-century French abbot and is often pictured with a doe, an allusion to the story that he once rescued a doe which was being persued by hunters.
The Church itself was opened and consecrated on the 31st August 1846. The very next day the First Solemn Mass was celebrated amid great pomp and splendour. Historical records tell us that eight carriages bearing the Earl and Countess of Shrewsbury and their guests left Alton Towers(when it was a stately home) for the drive to Cheadle. Among the guests were eight Deacons, 53 Priests, 13 Bishops and two Archbishops.
Unfortunately, the 16th Earl died before the Church could be endowed and his heir, the 17th Earl died only four years later. The 18th Earl was not a Roman Catholic and so the upkeep and maintenance of the Church has since fallen upon the parishioners and townspeople of Cheadle.
As with the exterior of the Church the interior is absolutely magnificent and highly worth a visit, even if you only have a short stay in Cheadle ensure that the St. Giles Catholic Church is top priority on your to do list.
The Church is open every day from 8.00 till around 3pm. On Saturdays, we do not close till after Evening Mass, which finishes at 6.15pm. You are welcome at any time, though please do not wander around during the liturgy and other times of public prayer.