Ellesmere Port to Acton Bridge 5 hour cruise (Please park your car at National Waterways Museum Car Park – 20 mins prior to departure - coach will return you to your car following the cruise). More details will be on your confirmation.
On this 5 hour cruise you will see:
• Acton Bridge which was built in 1934 on an island, behind which are the moorings of Acton Bridge Cruising Club, and the original stone bridge which carried the A49 over the Weaver. Our cruise starts from the wharf below the bridge and heads downstream.
• Dutton Locks. The current locks opened in 1880 - the earlier locks were near the large flood control sluices. After leaving Dutton Locks we will pass Dutton Horse Bridge a unique twin span laminated timber foot bridge dating from 1919.
• Dutton Viaduct opened in 1836 and its 20 arches carry the West Coast main line over the river. The original river course was under the opposite end of the viaduct.
• Pickering's O’ the Boat a small village I/4 mile downstream from the viaduct, was the limit of navigation until the first lock was built in 1758. The next stretch of the river is mostly tree-lined and rural until Frodsham Hill comes into view.
• Sutton Weaver Swing Bridge approaching the bridge we pass the silted up Frodsham Cut, the site of the former Sutton Level locks and the sluice/weir water runs to the left. The 1926 bridge carries the A56 and is about about a mile from Frodsham. We then pass our Sutton Weaver berth and continue down to Marsh Lock, under the impressive railway and M56 viaducts.
• Marsh lock allows access between the Weaver Navigation and the Manchester ship canal and also provides space to turn the vessel around and head back up the river. The area is dominated by the former ICI plants now operated by Ineos.
• Manchester Ship Canal – the next 5 miles are through farmland and salt marshes, with great bird life and views to the south of Frodsham and Helsby Hills.
• Stanlow Refinery, with its tanker terminal, isowned by Essar Energy and brings us back into an area of industrial activity for the last few miles of our cruise.
Ellesmere Port Herewe berth at Telford's Quay close to the National Waterways Museum. The docks were owned by the Shropshire Union Railway & Canal Company who were also the original owners of the Danny when she was built in 1903.
This is a three-and-a-half-hour cruise on the Weaver, taking in the beautiful scenery and history of this magnificent waterway from Sutton Weaver down towards Marsh Lock, where we turn, and cruise up river to our berth below the Acton Swing Bridge. Full details of the what you will see on this cruise can be found on our ‘view our routes’ page where you can download a fact sheet by following this link MORE INFO BELOW
IMPORTANT INFORMATION ON PARKING AND TRANSFERS
PLEASE NOTE: due to NO PUBLIC PARKING availability at Sutton Weaver, on cruise days we provide a Park & Ride service from the Anderton Boat Lift car park (CW9 6FW) to take you to the Danny at Sutton Weaver. When your cruise finishes at Acton Bridge, our transport will be waiting for you to return you to your car at Anderton Boat Lift. The transfers are included in your ticket price, but there is a parking charge of just £3.00 for the day for your car.
Please be aware that if you choose to make your own arrangements to be dropped off at Sutton Weaver, you will also need to make arrangements to be collected at Acton Bridge as there is no transport returning to Sutton Weaver.
An ideal introduction for anyone keen to learn more about gin, its history and its diversity, the cruise will include a talk from an expert which will send you away with fresh knowledge and interest about the juniper-infused drink, you can also ask any questions about gin’s rich and wild past.
The themed cruise will also (and most importantly) include a special tasting experience where each passenger will have the opportunity to try four sample size premium gin and tonics along with your talk on gin.
The ship’s well-stocked (and reasonably priced bar) will also be serving a selection of gins, as well as wine, beer and spirits to enjoy as you relax and take in the scenery during the unique cruise.
This is a three-and-a-half-hour cruise on the Weaver, taking in the beautiful scenery and history of this magnificent waterway from Acton Swing Bridge to Marsh Lock where we turn and cruise to our berth at the Sutton Weaver Swing Bridge. Full details of the what you will see on this cruise can be found on our ‘view our routes’ page where you can download a fact sheet
IMPORTANT INFORMATION FOR PARKING AND TRANSFERS
PLEASE NOTE: due to NO PUBLIC PARKING availability at Acton Bridge, on cruise days we provide a Park & Ride service from the Anderton Boat Lift car park (CW9 6FW) to take you to the Danny at Acton Bridge. When you cruise finishes at Sutton Weaver, our transport will be waiting for you to return you to your car at Anderton Boat Lift. The transfers are included in your ticket price, but there is a parking charge of just £3.00 for the day for your car.
Please be aware that if you choose to make your own arrangements to be dropped off at Acton Bridge, you will also need to make arrangements to be collected at Sutton Weaver as there is no transport returning to Acton Bridge.
YOUR CRUISE ROUTE
Our transport will collect you from Anderton Boat Lift and transfer you to the start of the cruise from
our berth below Acton Swing Bridge, which dates from 1933 and swings on a pontoon on the island.
Built at a cost of £52,000, when the bridge swings most of the weight is borne on a floating pontoon
on the island and a motor of only four horsepower is required to swing the bridge.
At this point on the river, The Trent & Mersey Canal is only 300 metres away passing through the
hamlet of Bartington, while Acton Bridge village is around one mile up on Acton Hill.
Our journey continues down the Weaver Valley and after a further mile and a half we reach the idyllic
setting of Dutton Locks with its pretty cottages.
Like Saltisford Locks, Dutton Locks were extensively modernised and enlarged around 1874 and the
original locks were over a quarter of a mile away from the current position. Worthy of note is the large
flood control sluices at Dutton where up to eight sluice gates can be lifted over two metres to deal
with any flood water coming down from Northwich.
As soon as we leave Dutton Locks you will notice Dutton Horse Bridge with its unique twin span timber
foot bridge, dating from 1919 and is a Grade 2 listed structure and is described as ‘an elegant structure
in the functional waterways tradition’ and is believed to be the sole remaining laminated greenheart
timber bridge in the country.
When passing Dutton Horse Bridge, you will not fail to notice the impressive Dutton Viaduct which
takes the West Coast Mainline over the river. The viaduct dates from 1836 and costs £54,000 to build
and the engineers were Joseph Locke and George Stephenson. Built in red sandstone with 20 arches
and around 700,000 cubic feet of sandstone was used in its construction.
A quarter of a mile downstream from Dutton Viaduct we pass the hamlet of Pickering’s O’ the Boat.
This small village is approximately one mile from Kingsley near Frodsham, and was the site of the first
lock on the River Weaver, which dated back to 1759, and was the first attempt to tame the river from
the vagaries of the tides, which made the river tidal over its full length and navigation to Northwich
A small caravan park exists at Pickerings along with a dozen houses, one of which is the former pub
simply named The Boat Inn. We pass between some sandstone works and this was the site of the later
Pickerings Lock at the time when the River Weaver had 13 locks along its length. While we sail between
Dutton Viaduct and Pickerings look out for the winding course of the old river which can still be seen
The next 45 mins is spent gently meandering through the Cheshire countryside and passing locally
given place names on the river such as Devil’s Gardens and Goulding Point, when eventually Frodsham
Hill comes into view and we soon afterwards pass the now silted up Frodsham cut, which at one time
led to the now disused Frodsham Lock.
Shortly after passing Frodsham Cut we pass the site of the former Sutton Level Lock. This twin chamber
lock only had a small rise and fall, and was eventually taken out of use in the 1950’s when a new deep
cutting bypassed them altogether, and the locks and their approach waterways became a boat
graveyard, the last resting place for dozens of redundant carrying craft as canal and river traffic
Probably the most famous vessel to be sunk here was the Weaver flat Daresbury dating back to 1772.
The main channel continues to the left whilst the sluice/weir water runs to the right and we continue
our journey and soon reach Sutton Weaver Swing Bridge. A slightly smaller version of Acton Bridge
dating from 1926, carrying cars to and from the Cheshire market town of Frodsham about one mile
We then pass one of our berths at Sutton Weaver, which we use for departure and embarkation at
the bridge, and continue down to Marsh Lock, which offers us our last chance to turn the vessel around
and head back up the river.
While on passage to Marsh Lock we pass under the impressive M56 viaduct and also the small dock
that once belonged to a soap manufacturer, and is now home to a Weaver Motorboat Club. Shortly
afterwards we pass the recently upgraded facilities of Runcorn Rowing Club, whose members can
often be seen out and about on the river.
The last mile or so can be described on one side as heavy industrial, with the site of the impressive
and sprawling chemical manufacturing plant at Rock Savage belonging to INEOS, while on the other
side the River Weaver old line can be seen winding its way towards the Manchester Ship Canal, and
beyond we see Frodsham Marshes, which is a haven for bird life and wild life, and beyond that the
impressive hills of Frodsham and Helsby and onwards to North Wales.
While turning at Marsh Lock you will notice the MSC beyond. Marsh Lock will drop you down
approximately one metre onto the Manchester Ship Canal, and eventually at Eastham out into The
River Mersey and beyond.
We will now make our way back to our berth at Sutton Weaver where our transport will meet you and
return you to your car Anderton Boat Lift.