Those of us living in developed countries in the 21st century take it for granted that when we turn on the tap, fresh clean water will come gushing out. The South Pennines enjoys the greatest density of reservoirs in the country thanks to its natural geology of high ground and steep valleys which enable water catchment on a grand scale.
As part of the Watershed Landscape Project, Rochdale and Oldham Councils, along with reservoir owner United Utilities have worked together to develop a series of walks to help you explore the network of reservoirs and surrounding landscape in the two boroughs.
This short walk explores the country around the two Castleshaw reservoirs in Saddleworth. Along the way, it visits the remains of the Castleshaw Roman fort, which was constructed in around AD 79.
If you access the walk by public transport (to Palin Wood Road to the north of Delph village), this will add an additional 1.6 miles / 2.6 km (there and back) to the walk distance.
Note that you are advised to use the relevant OS Explorer maps or the OS mapping app while completing this walk.
Accessibility and facilities
While many of the paths around the South Pennines reservoirs are well-maintained and surfaced, we have not been able to verify conditions on the ground. For this reason, we have not rated this walk as suitable for wheelchair-users and for families with pushchairs.
There are no public toilets along the route, but there are pubs in Delph village (around 1.2 miles / 1.9 km) from the walk route.
How to get there
The nearest point to the walk start point (Castleshaw Centre car park) served by public transport is Palin Wood Road to the north of Delph village. This is approximately 0.8 miles / 1.3 km from the Castleshaw Centre.
To work out how to get to and from the walk start point, simply click the Google Maps link on this page. Then click ‘Directions’ and enter your postcode or location in the relevant field. For public transport options, click on the train icon.