Policing the North West skyline, Peel Tower is a landmark that has long attracted my attention when driving along the M66 from Manchester towards Bury and East Lancashire.
Until today, I’d never made the effort to take a closer looking look and my reward was a magnificent view across the Manchester, with buildings including the Beetham Tower and Chill Factore prominent features.
It’s an arresting view and that’s fitting given that Peel Tower was built and named in commemoration of the life of Sir Robert Peel, who worked in his family’s textile business before going on to become British Prime Minister and creating the Metropolitan Police force.
The easiest way to access Peel Tower is to park up in the pretty little village of Holcombe, where you’ll find free off-road parking on the right hand side of the approach from Bury.
From there it’s a quick stroll to Cross Lane, which leads to the top of Holcombe Hill and Peel Tower itself.
There are two routes to the top – one a bit of scramble straight up the side of Holcombe Hill, the other a more gentle walk around the hill itself. One is quicker and one is easier. The tower itself is an impressive way station but most impressive are the views from the top.
Looking down over Holcombe and across Bury there’s a panorama which stretches for miles. Equally impressive is the view from the opposite side of the hill, where it’s possible to see the Winter Hill television transmission station on the moors above Horwich. Well worth the effort and a relatively short walk in return a long vista.
Like a lot of people before us, we ended our walk with a quick drink in the Shoulder of Mutton. Thirsty work this walking and it would have been rude not to.