An impromptu diversion took us to Ironbridge in Shropshire, possibly the heart of the Industrial Revolution.

En route, I found a walk in the area that passed many of the places that were key to the industrial era. The walk itself quickly rose into Lloyd’s Coppice then continued to Coalport. We crossed the River Severn to find museums and many country pubs, which we didn’t have time to visit.

The area around Ironbridge, Ironbridge Gorge, benefitted from many natural resources. Minerals, coal, iron ore, limestone, sand, and clays were all around the Gorge and fuelled the Industrial Revolution. The legacy of this rich history are the many museums in the region: Museum of the Gorge, Jackfield Tile Museum, Coalport China Museum, and Coalbrookdale Museum of Iron. They’re on our list for when we return on a planned trip.

Along the route, we came across two craft centres, which sold everything from multi-flavoured nut butters to vegan candles. There was also a place to design and paint tiles.

Ironbridge circular walk

The return journey to Ironbridge on the south bank was largely along a disused railway. Now, trees straddle either side of the former track and today it was filled with autumn leaves.

The heart of the region is The Iron Bridge, which crosses the River Severn and was built in 1779. It was the first cast iron bridge in the world. During our visit, the Bridge was surrounded by poppies.

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