GPS Cycle and Walking Routes

Healey Dell

2 miles (3 km)

This circular walk explores a lovely little nature reserve in Whitworth. At the site you can explore lots of nice footpaths through a densley wooded valley. There's the rushing water of the River Spodden with pretty waterfalls and lots of wildlife to look out for. The site also includes water mills, picnic areas and the impressive 1867 Healey Dell Viaduct. The reserve has good facilities with a visitor centre providing lots of helpful information and a nice cafe.
The reserve is in a great location for extending your walking in the area as there are number of waymarked footpaths to pick up. If you head west you can climb to Hunger Hill and Forsyth Brow before coming to Greenbooth Reservoir. The Rochdale Way and Pennine Bridleway pass the reserve so you can follow these paths across the surrounding Pennine Moors.


OL12 6BG - Please note: Postcode may be approximate for some rural locations

Healey Dell OS Map - Mobile GPS OS Map with Location tracking

Healey Dell Open Street Map - Mobile GPS Map with Location tracking


At the site you'll find the excellent Healy Dell Heritage Centre and Tea Rooms. Inside there's a lovely Edwardian themed tea room where you can enjoy a lovely afternoon tea. The associated heritage centre includespermanent heritage information on display and local information to take away with you. There is a wealth of information on the area's history, local wildlife, trees and plants. You will also find details on the munitions factory which remains to this day.

Dog Walking

The reserve is a fine place to walk the dog so you're bound to bump into other owners on your visit. The tea room mentioned above is also dog friendly.

Further Information and Other Local Ideas

Head south into Rochdale and you could enjoy another easy waterside walk along the towpath of the Rochdale Canal.
The Hail Storm Hill and Scout Moor Wind Farm Walk starts off from the reserve. The area is notable as the highest point of theRossendale Valley and the location of the second largest onshorewind farm in England. Just to the west of the hill you could also visit Waugh's Well. The structure was created to commemoratelocal poet Edwin Waugh who is known locally as "the Lancashire Burns". There is also a small reservoir and more excellent views from this interesting spot.
For more walking ideas in the area see the Greater Manchester Walks page.


Fairies Chapel, Healey Dell - - 1186190

Fairies Chapel, Healey Dell

Wild deer at Healey Dell - - 977722

Wild deer at the reserve

Healey Dell Viaduct - - 369689

Healey Dell Viaduct. Built in 1867, it carried the Lancashire & Yorkshire railway Company's Bacup branch line over the River Spodden north of Rochdale. Closure of the line came gradually in the 1950s and early 60s.

River Spodden in Healey Dell - - 1186288

River Spodden in the reserve

Autumn down in the Dell - - 424203

Autumn down in the Dell. The River Spodden flowing down to join the River Roche.

Th' Owd Mill I'th Thrutch. - - 2121006

Th' Owd Mill I'th Thrutch.


GPS Files

GPX File

Healey Dell.gpx (On Desktop:Right Click>Save As. On Ipad/Iphone:Click and hold>Download Linked File)

Memory Map Route

Healey Dell.mmo (On Desktop:Right Click>Save As. On Ipad/Iphone:Click and hold >Download Linked File)