29 July 2012


Sometimes, I feel like an employee of the Peak Park Tourist Board but the national park is right on Sheffield's doorstep and since I left the thrilling world of secondary school teaching it's where I have tramped a couple of hundred miles or more. It's my main form of exercise. Some people jog, others cycle or (like Mr Brague) pump iron at the gym but me, I like nothing better than to combine three passions - map reading, photography and rambling.

On hot and hazy Thursday afternoon, I drove over to the Hope Valley, past Hathersage and Bamford until I came to the turn off to the hamlet of Aston. In places, the hedgerows threaten to overwhelm the single track lane that leads there. I managed to find a place to park near Aston Hall Farm and set off along the path to Win Hill.

Here I am looking down from Thornhill Carrs to the valley of the River Derwent with the village of Bamford nestling in the heat haze.
Close to Win Hill, I noticed that there's been some tree-felling at Wiseman Hey Clough Planatation overlooking Ladybower Reservoir and Ashopton Viaduct:-
In the woods of the Woodlands Valley I found evidence of farm buildings that would have been erected long before the water board planted trees here in the 1920's and 30's. They would have been hill farmers and as I poked about the ruins I thought about those hard lives lived in days when motor vehicles and televisions were unimagined:-
On the ridge above Woodlands Valley there is an old Roman road. No doubt the Romans created it both for military purposes and for the movement of lead which is the main reason they settled in north Derbyshire. Next to the road is a seventeenth century wayside marker known as Hope Cross but it is very likely that this was put up to replace an earlier guidepost:-
Near the village of Hope, I spotted these guinea fowl pecking about the meadow stubble and I post this picture principally for Earl Gray in Trelawnyd, Wales and Madam Blawat in Sloughhouse, California:-
And here's a picture of the valley of the River Ashop where Ladybower Reservoir begins:-
Thinking of your next holiday?
Look no further than England's Peak District!!!
For further information contact Senior Information Officer - Y.Pudding.


  1. Thank you for taking me on a hike this morning. The English countryside is so green and beautiful. I especially enjoyed the guinea fowl. Did they sound a warning when you passed?

  2. 5 of the little buggers too!!!
    a nice ramble... did you give Danny Boyle some ideas?
    Earl Grey of Flintshire

  3. Truly a green and pleasant land.

  4. But you've already told us to go to Floc Ferme!

  5. Gorgeous. I will consult when the time and need arrises. I should think I wouldn't want to go anywhere else!

  6. I heartily agree about the Peak District. It's a favourite place of ours especially for the walks through the beautiful countryside. Can I have a job on that Tourist Board ?

  7. JAN BLAWAT No warning sound but they wouldn't let me get any closer.
    EARL GRAY Actually, I've heard that Danny Boyle got most of his opening ceremony ideas from his sister Susan.
    LIBBY Some English people forget that we are privileged to live in such a beautiful and interesting country. To be green you have to have some rain and to be pleasant you have to some appreciation.
    JENNY That's just a euphemism. If somebody irritates you just say - "Go to Floc!"
    KATHERINE When you come to Sheffield, there's a reasonably priced hotel within walking distance of our house. Or you could rent a little cottage in the Peak District. If the weather's okay and you don't mind I'll take you and your beau for a Derbyshire ramble. Have you been to Chatsworth for example?
    HELEN Yes you can have a job! You will be my PA, providing whatever personal services I require....such as coffee.... and barbecued wombats.

  8. You won't like this, but I think I prefer the Derbyshire hills to those of Yorkshire. They're softer and not so harsh somehow. Great shot of the guidepost by the way.

  9. SHOOTING STARS If you like soft hills, nothing can compare with the Yorkshire wolds south east of York. Regarding the guidepost the air was kind of hazy in the far distance - I think that adds to the photo. A few months ago somebody stole the capstone but fortunately it was retrieved.

  10. Oooh, you're getting me all excited YP. You know just what turns me on! :-)

  11. Now I've just 'wasted' half an hour looking up Peak district cottages to rent for summer 2014! What fun!


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