Clement Wilson Park walking route
This route explores parkland along the River Lagan on mostly level surfaced paths with a series of gradual ramps at Shaw's Bridge and tactile surfacing.
||1.2 miles, 1.9 km
|Average time to walk
||20 - 30 minutes
|Access by bike
||National Cycle Route 9 runs through the park.
|Access by bus
||Metro services: 8 (New Forge Lane) and 93.
|Access by car
||Entrance to Shaw's Bridge car park of the A55 Outer Ring Road
Cross the old Shaw’s Bridge (1) and descend the ramps on your left.
Turn right at the bottom and follow the towpath, firstly alongside the river and then by the disused canal (2).
The canal can be crossed using the humpback bridge of the flat wooden bridge. Both lead to the front of the lock-keeper’s cottage (3).
Turn left following the path to New Forge Lane via the wooden bridge over the River Lagan. This path is also part of the National Cycle Network (3) route and is shared with bicycles.
Be careful of traffic on the New Forge Lane and follow the footpath for a short distance to reach Clement Wilson Park.
The raised surface path, known locally as the Burma Road (4), leads back to the car park, passing under the new road bridge beside Shaw’s Bridge.
Things of Interest
- Shaw's Bridge (1) The bridge took its name from Captain Shaw who built an oak bridge in 1655 to transport guns of Cromwell’s army across the river. This was replaced in 1698 with a stone one, which subsequently collapsed. The present five-arch span bridge was built in 1709.
- Lagan Canal (2) The 26 mile Lagan canal was constructed in the eighteenth century to transport bulk commodities between Belfast and Loch Neigh. The Lagan Navigation flourished during the nineteenth century until rail and road competition made canals redundant. By 1950 it was abandoned.
- Lock keepers cottage, industry barge and Lock Keepers Inn (2) Standing beside the third lock, this is one of the few remaining lock keeper’s cottages from the eighteenth century Lagan Navigation System. The Industry Barge and the Lock Keepers Inn are also adjacent to the cottage.
- National Cycle Network (3) National Cycle Network, route 9, Lagan and Lough Cycle Way, runs through this park. The route links Newtonabbey to Lisburn via the centre of Belfast.
- Burma Road (4) This path gets its name from the fact that it was constructed out of rubble from bomb damaged buildings after the Second World War. It runs along the course of a former mill race that led from the River Lagan to a factory at Newforge.
Look out for
- Swallows, swifts and house martins flying over the river on summer evenings
- Common spotted orchids growing in some of the summer meadows.