Ashopton Viaduct on Ladybower Reservoir, with Crook Hill

SWC Walk 360 - Hathersage to Bamford (via Bamford and Hordron Edges

19-Mar-20 • thomasgrabow on Flickr

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Hordron Edge Stone Circle: 'Fairy Stone' with Win Hill and Lose Hill

SWC Walk 360 - Hathersage to Bamford (via Bamford and Hordron Edges

19-Mar-20 • thomasgrabow on Flickr

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From Outlane Farm to Stanage Plantation and Edge

SWC Walk 360 - Hathersage to Bamford (via Bamford and Hordron Edges

19-Mar-20 • thomasgrabow on Flickr

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Ancient Oak Wood on Descent to Ladybower

SWC Walk 360 - Hathersage to Bamford (via Bamford and Hordron Edges

19-Mar-20 • thomasgrabow on Flickr

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Hurkling Stones

SWC Walk 360 - Hathersage to Bamford (via Bamford and Hordron Edges

19-Mar-20 • thomasgrabow on Flickr

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Sheep and the Wheel Stones (Derwent Edge)

SWC Walk 360 - Hathersage to Bamford (via Bamford and Hordron Edges

19-Mar-20 • thomasgrabow on Flickr

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Win Hill beyond track on Moscar Moor

SWC Walk 360 - Hathersage to Bamford (via Bamford and Hordron Edges

19-Mar-20 • thomasgrabow on Flickr

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Hathersage to Bamford (via Bamford and Hordron Edges) walk

Upper Derwent Valley walk out to Ladybower: griststone edges, moors with pre-historic features, overlooked by Stanage Edge, valleys and pastures with views

Length

25.0 km (15.5 mi) Cumulative ascent/descent: 861/868m. For a shorter walk, see below Walk Options.

Toughness

9 out of 10. Time: 6 hours 30 minutes walking time. For the whole outing, including trains, sights and meals, allow at least 13 hours.

Transport

Hathersage station, map reference SK 232 810, is 14 km south west of Sheffield, 227 km north west of Charing Cross and 157m above sea level. Bamford station, map reference SK 207 825, is 3 km north west of Hathersage and 150m above sea level. Both are in Derbyshire.
Hathersage and Bamford Stations are on the Hope Valley Line from Manchester to Sheffield, with a journey time of 18 mins to Hathersage and up to 24 mins from Bamford from/to Sheffield. Sheffield Station is the terminus of the Midland Main Line from London St. Pancras, with up to two trains per hour (journey time from 118 mins Mon-Sat, longer on Sundays).

Saturday Walkers’ Club: Take a train no later than 9.00 hours.

Maps

OS Landranger Map: 110 (Sheffield & Huddersfield)
OS Explorer Map: OL1 (The Peak District – Dark Peak Area)

Walk Notes

Starting in Hathersage, an attractive village in the Hope Valley, this route leads up a quiet green valley towards the cliffs of the Stanage Edge, only to fork off along the Hood Brook through attractive woods (bluebells in season) and to rise further in a westerly direction through pastures-with-views and along the flanks of Bole Hill up to Bamford Moor and along its gritstone edge. Panoramic views of Mam Tor, Win Hill and Ladybower Reservoir keep the interest before a steep descent through an ancient oak wood and a newer plantation wood to the reservoir shore and the Ladybower Inn for lunch.
After lunch, a gradual ascent through woods leads up to Lead Hill and then the Derwent Edge, revealing stunning views of the Upper Derwent Valley and the Kinder Scout and Bleaklow plateaus. Turn right away from the edge down through Derwent Moor and gently up through Moscar Moor (on good paths) to Hordron Edge with its Bronze Age Stone Circle and across Jarvis Clough back to Bamford Edge for more views up the Hope Valley before the gradual descent to Bamford and the station beyond.

A post-lunch shortcut is described as well as an alternative afternoon route across Moscar and Bamford Moors past an array of pre-historic features (but do not walk this in Ground Nesting Season, from 1 March to 31 July).

Note: For the protection of moorland birds, dogs are not permitted on Moscar and Bamford Moors at any time. In all other Access Land they have to be kept on short leads in Ground Nesting Season (01 March to 31 July).

Walk Options

Shortcut after lunch: from the Ladybower Inn avoid the ascent up Lead Hill and on to Derwent Edge. Cut 4.9 km/3.0 mi and some ascent, rated 8/10.

Bus stops on the A57, either by the Ladybower Inn or further along the route at Strines Lane End, allow a finish by bus to either Sheffield or Bamford.

Alternative Afternoon Route across Moscar and Bamford Moors: from Hordron Edge follow a meandering route across the moors past one of the Peak District’s finest selection of pre-historic cairns, stone circles and solitary standing stones (in parts without good paths). Do not walk this in Ground Nesting Season, from 1 March to 31 July.

Alternative Descent Route into Bamford: a much more direct descent from Bole Hill into Bamford follows Leeside Road down the Bamford Clough for 600m. This is an ancient packhorse route and was the steepest ‘road’ in Derbyshire until it was closed for traffic. The average gradient is 22% and it is not recommended to take this route other than in perfectly dry conditions, with good profile soles and preferably also with walking poles, as a fall onto – and subsequent slide down – the mainly cobble or concrete ‘road’ otherwise is all but guaranteed.
Absolutely and entirely at your own risk!

Lunch

The Ladybower Inn Bamford, Hope Valley, Derbyshire, S33 0AX (01433 651 241). The Ladybower Inn is located 10.2 km/6.3 mi into the walk and a quaint stone pub with rooms (some offering views of the picturesque Ladybower Reservoir). Open 08.00-23.00 daily. Food served 08.00-21.00 daily. Owned by the Batemans Brewery from Lincolnshire.

Tea

The Anglers Rest Main Road, Bamford, Derbyshire, S33 0DY (01433 659 317). The Anglers Rest is located 1.6 km from the end of the walk. In 2013 it became the first community pub in Derbyshire when it was purchased collectively by over 300 people. As a LocAle pub, they mainly source beers from the local area and have been awarded the Sheffield and District CAMRA pub of the month award for their selection of quality ales. Open 11.00-late Mon-Sat and 12.00-late Sun. Light Bites served 12.00-15.00 every day. Full Menu served 12.00-15.00 and 18.00-21.00 Wed-Thu, 12.00-15.00 and 17.30-21.00 Fri (Fish & Chips Night), 12.00-21.00 Sat and 12.00-18.00 Sun. The next-door café is open 08.00-17.00 Mon-Sat and 09.00-16.00 Sun.

Notes

Hathersage
Hathersage is overlooked by the ringed cliffs of Stanage and Millstone edges and the ancient iron-age hill fort of Carl Wark, and the distictive Higger Tor can be seen through a break in the cliffs, standing on Burbage Moor. The origins of the name are disputed, although it is generally accepted that the second half derives from the Old English word ecg meaning "edge", although there is little to suggest it is to mean “heather’s edge”.
The area has been occupied since at least Mesolithic times and has remains of a Romano British settlement. Later the area became an important source of pins, needles and brass buttons as well as of building stones and millstones. In 1990, the cutler David Mellor opened the award-winning Round Building on the site of a former gasometer as a cutlery factory. In 2007, an extension was opened as a design museum.
A number of local landmarks are associated with Robin Hood "of Locksley" (there is a Loxley over the moors near Sheffield) and one of the graves in Hathersage is claimed to be Little John’s.
In 1845, Charlotte Brontë stayed at the Hathersage vicarage, visiting a friend, whose brother was the vicar, while she was writing Jane Eyre. Many of the locations mentioned in her novel match places in Hathersage.
Hathersage boasts a public heated outdoor swimming pool.

The Peak District (National Park)
The Peak District is an upland area at the southernmost end of the Pennines.
The Peak District National Park is one of the UK’s most popular and is located within the boundaries of five counties (Derbys., Ches., Staffs., Yorks. and Greater Manchester). Founded in 1951, it was the first national Park in England. The Park spans an area of around 1,440 km2 (550 mi2) and – despite its name – its terrain consists mainly of rolling hills, farmland, moorland and some gritstone escarpments (the "edges"). It is however significantly higher than much of the terrain in the surrounding area.
The Peak District is formed almost exclusively from sedimentary rocks dating from the Carboniferous period. They comprise the Carboniferous Limestone, the overlying Gritstone and finally the Coal Measures, though the latter occur only on the extreme margins of the area. In addition, there are infrequent outcrops of igneous rocks including lavas, tuffs and volcanic vent agglomerates.

The northern Dark Peak (whose geology is gritstone) is one of the most famous landmarks in the Peak District National Park, known for its exposed and isolated tracts of moorland, as well as its expansive rolling plateau which is covered by cotton grass bogs and heather moorlands. The soil of the area is composed of moorland peat which provides the perfect environment for the plant life in the area. The areas to the flanks of the high moorland host numerous copses which are composed of Oak and Birch.
The southern White Peak (whose geology is mainly limestone) is another distinctive area within the park due to its gently sloping Limestone plateau, crisscrossed by the Limestone Dales. The Dales provide the areas’ drainage and vary in steepness throughout the area.

White to Dark
The White to Dark Way is a 43 km (27 mi) waymarked multi-day path from the White Peak to the Dark Peak developed in 2012 by TrailZilla and Country Walking Magazine. It claims to be the first major walking trail dedicated to linking the Peak District’s two 'halves', across terrain ranging from meadows, woods and farmland to wild moorland and gritstone edges, going from Bakewell to Hope. The route includes Monsal Head, Cressbrook Dale, Litton, Eyam, Stanage Edge and Win Hill. http://www.trailzilla.com/trail-guide/w2d

Brookfield Manor
Grade II listed Brookfield Manor, parts of which date back to an original farmhouse of 1658, underwent extensive alterations, with additions, in the 1830's when it was the property of Joseph Holworthy of Derby. Holworthy was an artist and set about rebuilding and extending it in gothic style with chimneys, sash windows, turrets and pinnacles. Holworthy was also a friend of JMW Turner and two of Turner's paintings used to hang in Brookfield. Brookfield Manor and its 138-acre estate were fictionalised as ‘Vale Hall’ in ‘Jane Eyre’ written by Charlotte Brontë and inspired by her visit in 1845 when staying with Ellen Nussey in Hathersage, which becomes ‘Morton’ in the book.

The Hope Valley
The Hope Valley is a wide valley running East-West along the boundary between the gritstone moors and edges of the 'Dark Peak' and the limestone outcrops and deep cut dales of the 'White Peak'. It is a rural area centred on the village of Hope, but although it appears to be a single valley, the name of the river changes several times. The head of the valley lies at Castleton below Mam Tor, once the home of Iron Age people. From here, the Peakshole Water flows out of Peak Cavern to Hope, where it enters the lower reaches of the River Noe, which has risen on Kinder Scout near Edale. The Noe then flows to Bamford, where it enters the River Derwent, which has travelled about 15 km from Bleaklow and is a tributary of the River Trent.
The valley is now technically the Derwent Valley, but the term "Hope Valley" is still used as the Derwent flows through Hathersage and Grindleford. Other streams in the area include the Burbage Brook.
The area is a popular tourist destination, particularly as the Hope Valley Line railway from Sheffield to Manchester runs through it.
From earlier times there are traces of a Roman fort at Brough, just to the east of Hope. Its Roman name Navio was later replaced with the Old English word for fort, Brough. It is thought that the fort was probably built to protect Roman lead-mining interests in the Peak District.
Later, the parish of Hope covered two thirds of the Royal Hunting Forest of north Derbyshire.

Ladybower Reservoir
Ladybower Reservoir is a large Y-shaped reservoir, the lowest of three in the Upper Derwent Valley. The River Ashop flows into the reservoir from the west; the River Derwent flows south, initially through Howden Reservoir, then Derwent Reservoir, and finally through Ladybower Reservoir. The area is now a tourist attraction, with the Fairholmes visitors' centre located at the northern tip of Ladybower. The east arm of the reservoir, fed by the Ladybower Brook, is overlooked by Hordron Edge stone circle.
Ladybower was built between 1935 and 1943 by the Derwent Valley Water Board to supplement the other two reservoirs in supplying the water needs of the East Midlands. It took a further two years to fill (1945). The dam differs from the Howden Reservoir and Derwent Reservoir in that it is a clay-cored earth embankment, and not a solid masonry dam. Below the dam is a cut-off trench 55m deep and 1.8m wide filled with concrete, stretching 150m into the hills each side, to stop water leaking round the dam. During the 1990s the wall was raised and strengthened to reduce the risk of over-topping in a major flood.

Drinking water must be pumped to treatment works rather than using gravity flow as in the other two reservoirs, increasing costs. It is treated at Bamford water treatment works and then flows south down the 45 km long Derwent Valley Aqueduct to supply clean water to the cities of Nottingham, Derby and Leicester. The aqueduct passes through the park of Chatsworth House. A tunnel carries some of the water from the Derwent Valley eastwards through the hill and into the lower of the two Rivelin Dams to supply Sheffield.
The building of the reservoir resulted in the submergence of the villages of Ashopton and Derwent, including Derwent Woodlands church and Derwent Hall. Ashopton stood roughly where the road to the Snake Pass met the Woodlands Valley. The narrow stone Packhorse Bridge over the Derwent was removed and rebuilt at the head of the Howden reservoir. In 1976, 1995 and 2018, dry conditions caused the water level to drop and the village of Derwent to once again be exposed.

Ashopton
Ashopton was a small village in the valley of the River Ashop with a population of fewer than 100. In the early 1940s, the village (along with neighbouring Derwent) was demolished to make way for the filling of Ladybower Reservoir. The village was located near where the Derwent Valley joins the Woodlands Valley and the route of the current A57 Snake Pass to Glossop. The reminders of the village include the name of the Ashopton Viaduct which carries the A57 (the main part of the village was located immediately to the south of the viaduct) and Ashopton Sawmill and Ashopton Cottage. Unlike the remains of Derwent Village which have become visible when water levels have dropped, Ashopton will never re-emerge from the waters of Ladybower as silt has already covered the remains of its buildings.

Hordron Edge Stone Circle
The Bronze Age Hordron Edge Stone Circle is also known as the 'Seven Stones of Hordron', but there are in fact 23 stones visible these days plus another 3 that are known to be below the peat. Only the 7 higher stones are thought to be ancient and in their original position though, hence the ‘Seven Stones of Hordron’ tag, with the others having been placed in modern times where gaps suggested stones might have stood originally.
The stone circle stands in a prominent position close to Hordron Edge on a shelf of Moscar Moor with the imposing Stanage Edge to the east, looking out south west to Win Hill and Lose Hill across the Upper Derwent Valley (now flooded as Ladybower Reservoir).
Unlike many other Derbyshire circles the stones are not set into a bank but instead form a freestanding ring of ca. 15 metres diameter with heights ranging from about 50 to 95 centimetres. Dispersed around the circle are several small and indistinct mounds which may either be natural hummocks or possible clearance cairns.

Bamford Mill
Bamford developed around its mill, which existed before the Industrial Revolution. From 1782, a water powered corn mill was built here, but it was destroyed by fire in 1791. Rebuilt as a cotton mill, it was still powered by water. In the early 19th century it converted to steam power, with a beam engine. A more modern engine was installed in 1907 (and remains on site today), but water power was still used for generating electricity.
At the peak of employment in 1857 the mill employed 230 people, but it closed as a mill in 1965. The building was then used to make electric kilns and laboratory furnaces into the 1990s and later converted to flats.

Derwent River
The Derwent is a Derbyshire river of 106 km/66 mi length and is a tributary of the River Trent, which it joins south of Derby. Its waters ultimately reach the North Sea via the Humber Estuary. For half its course the river flows through the Peak District and for most of the first 10 km it forms the border to South Yorkshire. In the lower reaches between Matlock and Derby it was one of the cradles of the Industrial Revolution, providing power to the first industrial scale cotton mills. Today it provides a water supply to several surrounding cities, and its steeply sided valley is an important communications corridor through the uplands of the Peak District.

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Version

May-20

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