10 March 2014

Tracks

Our weather has been lovely recently and it is set to continue. There is a certain sharpness and freshness to the quality of light in the early springtime - when the earth is beginning to rouse itself from wintry hibernation and associated darkness.

So I was off - away from the city - out beyond Bakewell and Monyash to park at what was once Hartington Station. The railway track  from Derby to Buxton ceased operation long ago. Where once steam trains belched white columns over their shoulders, now cyclists with plastic helmets and fluorescent joggers with i-pods race by. Here's the old signal box at Hartington Station:- 
I am not very fond of walking on old rail tracks as you often find yourself plodding along in deep cuttings - or maybe the tracksides are so overgrown with trees that you cannot see a thing. But today - on what is now The Tissington Trail - there were a couple of stretches where I found myself walking on high embankments with fine views of the surrounding countryside. A farmer was bringing food supplements to his sheep and they forgot their usual nervousness:-
I took several shots of remote buildings bathed in the March sunshine. This was probably the best of the bunch:-
The Tissington Trail meets with The High Peak Trail  - another old railway track. Here cyclists pedal beneath the old bridge that led to Blake Moor and its mine workings:-
Near Brundcliffe, I left The High Peak Trail to reach a line of trees which follows the course of an old Roman road. There's only the straightness to  see now but for over two hundred years this road knew Roman carts and foot traffic - travelling between Derby and the important spa town of Buxton. Derbyshire lead would have been transported along this route and some of it would certainly have ended up in Rome and Pompeii.

There was even a surprise stone plaque in the drystone wall - in Latin of course. It bewails the condition of the road as well as confirming that this was the route from Derventio (Derby) to Aqua Arnememetiae ("The Spa-Town of the Sacred Groves") or what is now Buxton:-
A lovely walk in gorgeous sunshine and a good day just to be alive.

14 comments:

  1. I enjoy your walks and all the history that goes with them.

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    1. Thanks Red. You always seem to say nice things.

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  2. The signal box looks well maintained. Does someone live there now?

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    1. Nobody lives there but in England there are many nerdish men who care more about the history of railways than they do about child mortality or over-population. Some of those men have probably made sure that the signal box remains in tip-top condition.

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  3. A lovely walk indeed! Thank you for taking us along. I didn't know about the Roman road. Great pictures!
    Lovely weather here, too, but I am confined to my four walls, sadly. GP has given me a sick note for the entire week, and my boss has severely warned me against coming into work in this condition, sneezing and coughing and hardly able to look out of my poor little red swollen eyes.

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  4. Poor Arian! I am glad my blogpost took you out on a virtual walk. There are many Roman roads in Britain. I hope you are feeling better soon.

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  5. Instead of HS2, they should restore the railways to all those abandoned lines.

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    1. There could be real economic sense in resurrecting some of those old lines. Dr Beeching had little foresight.

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    2. They could bin the Trident replacement while they're at it and the F-35B Lightning II.

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    3. I know that Trident is a kind of chewing gum but remind me - is the F-35B Lightning II a new kind of razor blade from Gillette?

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    4. No. It is a 2.5 billion pound procurement for 14 hot air blowers for the House of Commons.

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  6. Would you be a dear and translate the rest of the Latin inscription into English for us?

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    1. No problem my dear colonial friend - "Huius viae curam curatores viarum non susceperunt" (The road menders have not taken care of this road)

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  7. The Tissington trail brings back poignant memories. My late husband and I discovered it shortly before he died, and we had some happy cycle rides along it.

    Lovely photos.

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