A Day Out To Dowery Dell
Inspired by the MIAC
persuaded the wife it would be nice to
go for a country walk on Easter Monday 2006.
We parked up at the Waseley
Hills Country Park
and grabbed an Illey Way
leaflet. Soon after setting off we hit the fields and this lovely
view towards Halesowen.
The initial route follows field boundaries on a pleasant, gentle
downward slope. After a section with woodland to the right, you
pass through the wood before reaching more fields. As the path
rises, the unmistakable elevated trackbed of the old railway line
becomes clear. I have to admit to getting a little excited at
About 45 minutes after leaving Waseley Hills Country Park, you arrive
at Dowery Dell itself. It wasn't long before I spotted these old
sleepers in the undergrowth.
It's a short walk through the dell before you come to the site of the
viaduct. Though 40+ years of growth has seen the trees become
dominant, the pillar bases jump out at you. The engineering
bricks used to build them are really heavy! Just pick one of the
loose ones up when you visit.
While my wife polished off the rest of our picnic, I went
exploring. I wasn't able to get up to the trackbed at the
Hunnington end but during the attempt I made the find of the day - a
section of the railings from the top of the viaduct!
On the walk back I did manage to climb to the trackbed at the Rubery
end. It's a bit of a dangerous underfoot but well worth it - you
really get a feel for how high it was.
On the descent I found this old track
key, dramatically rusted.
That gentle slope downwards didn't seem so gentle when climbing it, but
I'm not complaining. A cracking day out - highly recommended!
The Illey Way is well signposted. When my wife and I visited, all
the details were on the Worcestershire
but they seem to have disappeared now. I
managed to find a copy of the Illey
Way leaflet PDF
so I've made it available from this site so it will
be online for the forseeable future.