Stratford Greenway

Stratford Greenway

Looking for days out with a camera?  Look no further than the Country Parks managed by Warwickshire County Council.  I have featured their parks in my blog with visits to Burton Dassett and Kingsbury water park.  All their parks are well maintained and have many different activities. 

Stratford Greenway
Start of the Stratford Greenway where you collect your bikes
Stratford Greenway
On your bikes and get ready, go

The Stratford Greenway is a 5 mile stretch of disused railway that runs from the west of Stratford dwon towards Long Marston.  Along the way there are iron bridges, signs, wild flowers and beautiful countryside to view.  My photo buddy, John and I met at Stratford Cycle Hire at the start of the trail.  Parking is easy and a short walk leads to two train carriages.  The first is the bicycle hire and the second is Buddy’s Café with views over Stratford-upon-Avon Racecourse.  I had previously arrange the bike hire with Vic the owner and there was a cheerful person to meet us and get us ready for our bike ride. 

Stratford Greenway
views over Stratford upon Avon Racecourse

The track runs along the racecourse and the first encounter was the iron railway bridge.  Lots of beautiful rust and overgrowth of bushes etc around the bridge.  There is also the change to get down onto the river path and take some tourist pictures looking back at the bridge.  The bridge is fascinating, and the iron rust makes for contrasting views with the greenery of the countryside.  Many leading lines and processing in black and white.  It was one of those structures that I could have spent a lot of time photographing. 

Stratford Greenway
The river Avon crossed by the old Iron Bridge
Stratford Greenway
Taking pictures

The cycle trail takes you through some picturesque Warwickshire countryside and you are able to move along holding a conversation.  My experience is that the Greenway is relatively quiet and therefore only occasionally do you have to go single file.  This may be different at the weekends.  Several minor roads and farm entrances are passed on the way.  It is part of the National Cycle way and therefore many signs are place commemorating this.

Stratford Greenway
National Cycle Route sign-posts

At Long Marston there is still the old railway lines in the road.  There is a large industrial estate and rail works and so a left turn and around half a mile down the road and you arrive at Expresso Coffee.  Time to sit down with a coffee and a pastry.  The café is owned by ExpressoStation They have outlets at Dorridge and Moor Street railway stations and expanding further afield.  A lovely rustic place to stop and refuel.  Rust is the word in this blog. 

Stratford Greenway
Expresso Station at Long Marston

Then the return journey.  At the half way point we took the right hand fork for a slightly different route and discover another train carriage which is Milcote Station Café.  It was after 4pm so the place was quiet and not open.  However the camera was at the ready and we were able to take some great photos of the place.  Then the final bit back to get the bikes in before 5pm.  There was then a chance to take a few pictures of Bobby’s Deli café and the Stratford Racecourse.

Stratford Greenway
Railtrack wheels
Stratford Greenway
Back of the Carriages
Stratford Greenway
Lightbulbs at Bobby’s
Stratford Greenway
Bobby’s Deli Cafe

A grand day out and one to recommend for photographers who like to add a bike ride to their day out.

If you enjoyed this, then I have other blogs covering the Warwickshire Country Parks
Walking in the hills and discovering Fox Covert covers one of my many visits to Burton Dassett Hills.
Feel free to browse through my blog for a range of places that I have photographed over the recent years. Enjoy!

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Author: Damien Walmsley

Photography started many years ago when I was influenced by my father who was a keen amateur photographer who loved slide and cine film. I had a black and white Kodax camera and quickly progressed to colour prints and slides. 35mm pictures chronicle my family growing up. But it was the digital age combined with the reach of social media that opened my eyes to a new world of photography and I am still learning. My favourite subjects are travel, people, macro and of course Birmingham! Damien Walmsley Twitter @dammo Instagram @dammodammo  

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