Friday, 9 December 2016

Middleton back to Cromford

Good morning, it's Friday morning and I'll post the second half of Wednesdays walk. The National Stone Centre is on the High Peak trail to Middleton Top, when it turns into The Pennine Bridleway. Here we have the restored Steam Engine House built in 1829, to haul wagons up the steep incline. It has a visitor Centre and cycle hire, which were closed, it is only open weekends throughout the winter. Check out the Derbyshire County Council web site for more info. 

I didn't go into Middleton village, this is the view as I left the Engine House. I skirted around the outside, following footpaths. The fog is lifting a bit.

Heading off along a track I walked through Slinter Wood. It was quite steep in places, careful not to slip off the edge.

I was a bit confused at one point as the track seemed to go off in a different direction from what was indicated on the map. It also gave the impression that it should have been a wide bridleway, when in fact it narrowed down to single lane and went through a couple of fields. I heaved a sigh of relief when I caught a glimpse of the pond at Via Gellia Mill. Yes, I was going in the right direction and here is the mill. 
Crossing over the main A5012 trunk road, I took the minor road to Bonsall Village. Boy was it steep. Luckily there was a bench half way up to sit for a few minutes and eat, and cool off a bit. By this time I was sweating buckets.

Lovely olde worlde stone buildings.

The Village Cross. There are more pictures of Bonsall here.

From Bonsall it was a long trek on the Limestone Way, passing Massom Lees Farm. Matlock looks a bit misty in the distance. 
Then as I descended towards the town it became clearer and more details came into view.

I had a little bimble around Matlock, I have been here many times, even bought a car once from the Ford dealer. The market was packing away, daylight was fading, and people were doing a last bit of shopping before they made their way home for the night. I decided that the safest way to get back to the hotel would be to walk along the main A6 trunk road, as it would be well lit and has a footpath alongside. There was an alternative route to follow the river, but a bit risky in the dark. I asked a local man and he confirmed my decision to keep safe, saying there could be an encounter with undesirables, (drug users) along the path. He said he had just finished work and was going to get the train back to Matlock Bath. As I was passing the railway station 20 minutes later, who should I see but the man I had spoken to.

Matlock Bath is famous for their annual illuminations, a bit like a mini Blackpool. The river runs alongside the main road and reflects the lights making the place sparkle. I was sort of hoping there would be some Christmas lights, but apart from the ones on the shop fronts, all I saw were these lights across a bridge. They changed colour every few seconds.

Still on the A6, Masson Mills is the last building on the left between the road and the river, before you get to Cromford. This is an old Richard Arkwright Mill, now home to a shopping complex. 

Five minutes and I was back at the hotel. A couple of night time shots. The Christmas tree decorations were a bit disappointing, nothing to rave about. In fact there was a much better tree at the back of the building which could be seen from the meeting room. 

Dinner was lovely, freshly cooked, plenty of it, served by friendly staff. Couldn't ask for more. I was half way through uploading the pictures when I decided to retire to my room.

Come back tomorrow for the third and last day of my mini break in Derbyshire. Thanks for popping in, we'll catch up soon.
Toodle pip.


  1. I haven't visited for a while, so I have been going way back through many of your past posts as well as this one. I absolutely love the way you capture the moment on film and how visiting your blog is an adventure in tranquility and peaceful quiet. All that I hear is the music of birds and the baying of sheep. Your photos are wonderful and I so enjoy reading your text and touring with you. As I walk through the damp forest I can smell the moist earth and I love it . . . that's how amazing your posts are :)
    Thank you so much for sharing.
    I needed this lovely break in my busy day.
    God bless,
    Connie :)

  2. You take the best pic's! That is a lovely village *from even a distance* ;) Thanks for sharing. :)

  3. another thank you for sharing your photos

  4. A trip down memory lane for me, my MIL used to live on the end terrace house built in the cliff face in Cromford.It was lovely to visit with you all the places again even Boleshill cemetary.We used to drive back home up Via Gellia spooky place the locals say you can hear the soldiers marching to Derby.

  5. Lovely walk. Super industrial heritage we have in the UK!

  6. You should work for the Derbyshire Tourist Board Ilona! I have only been there once in my life and I remember thinking how pretty it was. Your photos have really made me want to go back there. Jane xx

  7. Even in winter the landscape looks lovely.

  8. Hi glad you are spending your extra money on travel and walking. We are careful with our pension and are enjoying the winter in Spain in our motorhome doing lots of walking.

  9. Your photos and the places you visit take my breath away. In California there are no villages, pubs, etc. like what you enjoy. I have been away from blogland after the recent death of my dear husband, but popped in to say hi to you.