Rescue teams making their way back off the Snake Pass
Rescue teams making their way back off the Snake Pass

The famous Snake Pass is 200 years old - here's 14 pictures looking back over the road that links Sheffield and Manchester

The Snake Pass, that sometimes perilous route linking Sheffield and Manchester, is celebrating its 200th birthday.

By Julia Armstrong
Thursday, 19th August 2021, 10:59 am

The road, whose hair-raising bends are often made treacherous by bad weather, was first designed as a toll road by the famous engineer Thomas Telford and financed by the Duke of Devonshire.

Opened on August 23, 1821, at the time it was England’s highest turnpike road.

One amusing tradition that takes place near the road is the annual Great Kinder Beer Barrel Challenge. The original challenge was laid down on a bleak January night when Edale shepherd Geoff Townsend complained that the Old Nags Head Inn had run out of his favourite beer. Geoff jokingly offered to fetch a barrel from the Snake Pass Inn, only three miles away as the crow flies, but with 900ft of ascent and descent in between.

The landlord challenged him to do just that, with the promise he would win its contents, and now teams race carrying barrels on mountain rescue stretchers.

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