Steamy Trains & Stately Homes
Trails around Shropshire
We were carried away by the romance of steam on an old-fashioned journey to Dudmaston Hall.
Take the Severn Valley Railway from Bridgnorth station to Hampton Loade. Cross the river by the pedestrian ferry, operating April to September (dependent on river level), to explore Dudmaston Hall and grounds. Hampton Loade and Dudmaston Hall can also be reached by car.
With all the sounds and smells of a bygone age, we left Bridgnorth on the Severn Valley Steam Railway. Over the viaduct - its tall arches lifting us up above the valley - we looked down to Daniels Mill with its water-wheel still turning.
As we pulled into Hampton Loade station, our steam-age romance was over. Down by the river, we rang the bell for the hand-operated ferry - from steam-power to people-power, this was a unique day out. We were transported on the little white raft across the river. With the water running so high and so fast, it was hard to picture the ford, or lode, the Saxons named this village after.
We streched our legs on the walk through the parkland and gardens to Dudmaston Hall (National Trust).
Exploring the seventeenth century house, with its furniture and famous flower paintings, would have to wait for another day as we were eager to repeat our 'brief encounter' with the steam age.
The Severn Valley Steam Railway runs between Bridgnorth and Kidderminster. Daniel's Mill can be vistited on Bank Holidays, Wednesday afternoons and at weekends, Easter to September. Dudmaston Hall is open April to September on Tuesday, Wednesday, Sunday and Bank Holiday Monday, while the grounds are accessible at all times.