Barnsley to Old Moor Bike Ride

10th January 2022

Railway triangle on the Barnsley to Old Moor bike path
Railway triangle on the ride from Barnsley to Old Moor

This bike ride is from the Interchange in Barnsley to RSPB Old Moor. It is Stage 14 of the Sustrans Slow Tour of Yorkshire.

The path has a hard, sealed surface until just before Old Moor. The ride is flat, and it's often through woods which means it's pleasant, albeit without any stunning views. The people I came across on the route were all very friendly.

The destination is RSPB Old Moor, a reserve where you can see a wealth of birdlife. It also has cycle parking and a café.

Distance: 6 miles each way, so 12 miles there and back
Time: around 1h each way, so 2h in total

Barnsley to Old Moor Bike Ride: Map

Barnsley to Old Moor Overview Map
Barnsley to Old Moor overview map (click to enlarge)

The overview map from OpenStreetMap above shows the route from Barnsley to RSPB Old Moor with a blue dotted line.

This is the ride on Plotaroute; you can download a navigation file from there.

Barnsley to Old Moor Bike Ride: Sustrans Leaflet

This is the Sustrans leaflet for the Barnsley to Old Moor bike ride.

Barnsley to Old Moor Bike Ride: Route Notes

Barnsley Interchange
Barnsley Interchange

The ride starts from Schwäbish Gmund Way, outside Barnsley Interchange.

You can use the shared use pavement on Kendray Street. It takes you past a number of car shops and Machine Mart. There was quite a lot of broken glass on the pavement when I rode it.

Machine Mart, Barnsley
Machine Mart, Barnsley

The railway path is on the right.

Start of TPT in Barnsley
Start of railway path in Barnsley

There's a short ramp up to the old railway. The woods here seem to be used by local youths (or OAPS, for all I know) to eat, drink, and dump their rubbish.

At the top of the ramp, you join a nice, slightly wiggly path through the woods, alongside the modern railway (that goes south to Sheffield).

TPT path out of Barnsley
Path through the woods out of Barnsley

A sign says that the park on the left is an old coal-mining spoil heap. Here, you drop down to the right and pick up the trackbed of the disused South Yorkshire railway to Mexborough.

Sign by old spoil heap, now a park
A Landscape Transformed...the old spoil heap

The railway ran through Stairfoot, and there was a station here.

Disused Stairfoot station on the TPT
Old Stairfoot Station on the TPT

Stairfoot Station was originally a station on South Yorkshire Railway's main line between Barnsley and Mexborough. It opened in 1851. The next line through the station was Sheffield to Barnsley, from 1854 - see the information board.

Stairfoot became a complex set of junctions and flyovers as more railways were built - the Barnsley Coal Railway, the Hull & Barnsley Railway, and the Midland Railway line between Wombwell and Cudworth.

Stairfoot Station
Stairfoot Station

The bike ride continues on the old Barnsley to Mexborough line, now part of the Trans Pennine Trail (TPT).

There's a railway triangle where (I believe) the Worsbrough Branch line joined the Barnsley-Mexborough line. It was a railway line that went via Worsbrough to Silkstone Common. Go straight on here.

Railway triangle on TPT west of Barnsley
Railway triangle

The path goes through more woods near Wombwell, and under some road bridges.

Bridge over the TPT between Barnsley and Old Moor
Bridge over the TPT

Closer to RSPB Old Moor, there's a bridge with a swallow mural.

Bridge over the TPT with swallows mural
Swallow Bridge

There are some road crossings too.

TPT crosses Manvers Way
Crossing of Manvers Way

This is the crossing of Manvers Way. After Manvers Way the surface is no longer sealed, and in Winter is obvious that it makes a world of difference: the unsealed surface is full of puddles and covered in mud.

Puddles and mud on the TPT near RSPB Old Moor
Puddles and mud on the TPT near RSPB Old Moor

The entrance to RSPB Old Moor is on the left, over a little bridge to the car park.

Entrance to RSPB Old Moor from TPT
Entrance to RSPB Old Moor from TPT

When you get to the car park, turn left to the site entrance. There are a few Sheffield stands for cycle parking on your left, and more in the courtyard near the café.

Barnsley to Old Moor Bike Ride: the Return Trip

Return the way you came.

Have you done this bike ride? What did you think of it?

OS Explorer Map

The Barnsley to Old Moor bike ride is on the 1:25,000 OS Explorer map of Sheffield & Barnsley, number 278.

OS Explorer Map Sheffield Barnsley

Available from Amazon.

RSPB Old Moor

Barn owl
Barn owl

There's lots of birdlife to see at RSPB Old Moor.

On the shallow lakes and scrapes, there are kingfishers and avocets, and among the reeds are bitterns.

Barn owl boxes at Old Moor are usually occupied, which means you could see a magnificent barn owl gliding low over a meadow in the early morning or late afternoon.

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