by John Moss
unless otherwise credited
The Derbyshire Peak District National Park
Trips out from Manchester
Park lies immediately on the eastern borders of Greater Manchester
County, and is accessible by train or car within 20 minutes from
the city centre, and several scheduled public buses go directly
into the park 2 or 3 times an hour. It is Manchester's nearest
from Manchester Piccadilly Rail Station run regularly every day
to Buxton, Matlock, Glossop and Whaley Bridge.
wishing to access the highest hills should consult local weather
forecasts, and read all mountain safety notices at access points.
Please note that the building of fires and camping are strictly
forbidden, as the pathways may be ancient rights of way, but the
land over which they pass is invariably privately owned, and departure
from pathways is technically a trespass.
might also note that there are actually no "peaks" in the Peak
District - the hills are gentle and rounded slopes - the name
"Peak" is a corruption of the old English word "Pict". Before
the building of roadways, major movement throughout Britain was
often by remote pathways, and this range of hills was the favourite
route used by Scots (or Picts) invaders from the north. Hence,
it was once "The Pict District".
The Peak District
Peak District National Park offers a wide variety of landscapes,
from moorland, to grassy hills, craggy rocks, stone walls, lakes,
streams and innumerable public footpaths. It is a landscape of severe
contrasts : in summer time it is a place where visitors may enjoy
a quiet leisurely stroll, while in winter it can become arctic in
conditions where only the most intrepid walkers and climbers dare
tread. It is England's most southerly highland country, the very
end of the Pennine Hills which form the backbone to most of northern
Britain, and which divides Lancashire in the west from Yorkshire
in the east.
the Peak District's 555 square miles 143,824 hectares) is above
2,000 feet (610m), and while for the most part it is centred on
Derbyshire, it also extends into the surrounding Counties of Cheshire,
Yorkshire and Greater Manchester.
are many delightfully pretty villages nestling in its valleys - Whaley
Bridge, Chapel-en-le-Frith, Tideswell, Bakewell (famed for its Bakewell
Tarts), Monyash (pronounced "moon-ash"), and many others, as well
as a few major towns like Chesterfield, Buxton, and the County Town
Buxton is a
major tourist attraction, as it has been for several centuries on
account of its Baths with their health-giving spa water, famed from
Roman times. Bubbling up from an underground reservoir, its waters
maintain a constant 83°F (28°C). The town also has many
fine buildings, including the Georgian Crescent built by the 5th
Duke of Devonshire, the Old Hotel dating back to 1570, once the
host to Mary Queen of Scots, the magnificent Devonshire Hospital
with its spectacular dome, and the elegantly decorated Edwardian
Opera House, home of the annual Buxton International Festival.
Buxton - The
Photograph Image Courtesy of www.webbaviation.co.uk © 2005
the National Park lie many great Country Houses, including Chatsworth
House, home of the Dukes of Devonshire, and Haddon
Hall near Bakewell. The Peaks are a great venue for
hill walkers and climbers, with several peaks, all over 3000 feet
to challenge all but the faint hearted. Kinder Scout, White Peak and
Dark Peak, all present their own particular challenge, and can quickly
change from pleasant garden atmospheres to raging tempests or dark
and dismal fogbound wastelands.
Trails in the Peak District
the less adventurous walker, there are many designated and easy trails
to follow in the Peak District - many are disused railway tracks,
most have picnic areas and toilet facilities. Trails are:
Grange Country Park
Rocks Picnic Site
Buxton Country Park
Valley RSPB Trail
Hall, Goyt Valley
Park Gritstone Trail
County Park, Leek.
Nick, off Rushup Edge Road.
Monsall Trail, Bakewell.
Valley Trail, Hayfield-New Mills.
Tourist Information Centres
Old Market Hall, Bridge Street Tel: 01335-343666.
The Crescent, Buxton. Tel: 01289-73153.
The Gatehouse, Victoria Street. Tel: 01457-855920
Town Hall, Market Place. Tel: 01625-504203.
- Peak Activities
Managing Director: Dr Iain Jennings
Hathersage, Derbyshire S32 1DD. Tel 01433-650345.
Website: www.iain.co.uk. Email: firstname.lastname@example.org.
Provider of utdoor activities for people visiting the Peak District
and Lake including abseiling, caving, climbing, led-walking, potholing,
sailing, windsurfing, canoeing, orienteering, treasure hunts and many
more outdoor activities - all suitable for groups of people or for
individuals. Fully AALA licensed to operate with under 18s as well
as with adults. See
District Caves & Caverns.