In 1936 George Orwell described Rudyard Lake in one of his diary entries as ‘very depressing’. Today though, I can confirm that it really is a lovely place, with a fascinating display of lakeside cabins and boathouses—more reminiscent of something you’d see in New England than the Midlands. The most popular thing visitors do is set themselves the goal of walking full circle around the lake, which is about 4-5 miles and takes around 2 hours.
Address
Rudyard Lake, Rudyard, Stafford, United Kingdom
Current city: Stafford
Ben Anslow is a designer and illustrator working mainly with print, specifically in book design. Since graduating from Staffordshire University last year he has gained recognition from a variety of design publications, including Wallpaper*, Digital Arts and the London Design Festival. In 2011 Ben was awarded a D&AD Best New Blood and an ISTD membership for his typography. He is currently doing illustration work for Penguin Books.
 

More Places in Stafford 3

The village of Brocton is well known for having a number of timber-frame houses, but this house just stands out to me in particular. It was built in 1911 and is one of the most atmospheric and characterful houses you could possibly come across, in what is otherwise a quintessential English village.
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The Shire Hall Gallery is in the central area of Stafford town and is an exhibition space, library and cafe rolled into one. Recent exhibitions have included paper-cutting artist, Rob Ryan.
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Well known as being J.R.R. Tolkien’s inspiration for ‘Middle Earth’ in the Lord of the Rings books, Cannock Chase (colloquially ‘The Chase’) is somewhere that friends and I have frequented for many years. If you go to a part called Broc Hill at just the right time, you can literally just sit there and watch the sun disappear behind the horizon, and witness some stunning gradients in the sky. Also a great place for running and photography—you even get to see the odd few deer just bounding around. Cannock Chase is officially listed as one of England’s ‘Areas of Outstanding Natural Beauty’ (AONB).
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