Explore the home of the Industrial Revolution and discover Derbyshire’s rich history on this 6 or 8 mile walk. Passing through Arkwright’s Mill, the village of Cromford and along the nearby canal, you’ll get a great taste for what Cromford has to offer.
Starting off at the Cromford Wharf car park, cross the road and visit the UNESCO World Heritage Site of Arkwright’s Mill at Cromford- the site of the world’s first ever water-powered cotton spinning mill. The first and original mill has recently had a major interactive exhibition added into it; this exhibition is a giant projection inside the mill which immerses you in an average working day in the mill in the 18th century.
There are also numerous shops on the Derwent Valley Mill’s site, as well as a café and local cheese shop on Cromford Wharf, near the car park.
From the Mill, you can walk down to the village of Cromford which was originally built by Sir Richard Arkwright especially for his mill workers. This village is full of picturesque cottages, shops and an attractive market square.
Later in the walk you get on to the High Peak Trail, a former railway track which is followed down to High Peak Junction where it’s met by Cromford Canal. This canal is another important piece of the local industrial history of the area, as it was first built to carry limestone from the local quarries to the iron foundry and later was extended to help Sir Richard Arkwright transport his goods too.
If taking the longer route, you will walk along Cromford canal, which is a very pleasant walk, until you reach Lea Hurst, the once summer house of Florence Nightingale.
Please see the PDF attached below for more details, descriptions and a map of the walk.
Map & Directions
From Derby, take the A6 north, pass through, Belper, Ambergate, Whatstandwell and onto Cromford.