Grinshill is one of the smallest parishes in North Shropshire but with one of the best views across the English Countryside. It’s quite a steep climb up the meandering path but, when you finally reach the rocky outcrop at the summit, it’s well worth the view – patchwork fields speckled with sheep and cows, dotted with farms, criss-crossed with lanes and hedges, all bright and sparkling in the morning air. The reds, golds and dark greens of autumn frame a landscape of peace and tranquillity sleeping in the autumn sunshine.
The Hill rises to 192 metres (630 ft) above sea level and evidence has been found showing it was used during the Mesolithic to Neolithic period. From the top you can see many other hills and ancient settlements including The Wrekin, Caer Caradoc, Corndon Hill, Cefn y Castell, Titterstone Clee, The Long Mynd, Breidden Hill and Haughmond Hill.
The buff-coloured sandstone quarried at Grinshill since at least the 12th century has unique properties. It was subjected to volcanic heat giving it its buff colour and making it extremely tough giving a sharp straight side whichever way it is cut. The Romans recognised these qualities and used it to build Wroxeter (Viroconium Cornovium), once the 4th largest city in England. You can also see it at Haughmond Abbey, Welsh Bridge, Shrewsbury Railway Station – and even at No. 10 Downing Street – the lintels and door surround are made from Grinshill sandstone.
Whatever time of year you visit Grinshill, and whichever way you walk to the summit, there’s always a great sense of achievement to reach the top and see that panoramic view spread out in front of you.
There is a car park at Corbett Wood and there is also a more direct path from Clive church. It is a site of special scientific interest because of its geological importance – exposed rock faces show fossilised skeletons and footprints and distinctive features such as fossilised sand dunes and rain prints.
Published in the December edition of the Whitchurch Gossip