Dovestones Reservoir

East Oldham 5.5 mile (Greenfield)

Reservoir(s) with high crag‐sides


image of dovestones-reservoir
(no website)

Get there

Public transport: infrequent bus service. If you don’t find the path by the brook, uphill on busy roads with no sidewalks. Horrible. People attempt it. Also, no cafe or toilets.


The Chew and Greenfield streams cut their way down—steep, so the valley sides collapse as millstone cliffs. Nestled in the join of the valleys is the cold water of Dovestone Reservoir. As usual, this is not one reservoir—the Greenfield side has two reservoirs higher. Lines of trees cling to the scree. Sounds idyllic? The Royal Society for the Protection of Birds has taken responsibility for maintaining some of the surrounding land. In places like this the South Pennines can be an industrial take on the Lake District. But I give warnings: Dovestones has poor signposting. Like many similar places, Dovestones has been unwilling or unable to construct footpaths from the local dwelling of Greenfield. The low part of the valley contains industrial units and burnouts. Improvements like chalets exist and are planned. And Dovestones gets busy as a town, yet has no facilities at all. When on the reservoir wall, no options for paths—walk round round one reservoir then, if you choose, maybe another. This is a hefty practical and aesthetic list against a place people call ‘beautiful’. Photographs do not tell the truth.