Eyam via Bretton
Time taken 2 1/2 hours
This is a great walk if you don’t mind a stiff walk uphill at the start, out of Eyam on Hawkhill Road. It is also a great walk when you have a dog (Humphrey - my Rain Rescue lovely) that pulls like a train and who is daft enough to pull you all the way to the top! Humphrey, for anyone who has read some of my other pages on Peak District Online has now been with me two months and is thoroughly enjoying his new life in this fabulous area. He has new friends to walk with and lots of people to love him, but he struggles with some of the basics - lead walking, without pulling and SHEEP! For these reasons I am being careful at present on where I take him, so this walk fits the bill well
If you start in the centre of Eyam, take the road out to Townhead as if going towards Foolow. You will see a fruit and veg shop on the right that marks the right turn that you need to take. Climb up passed Eyam Museum which details Eyam’s rich history and then follow the winding Edge Road towards Mompessom’s Well – itself central to the plaque story of 1666. This part of the walk is the hardest, but well worth the road climb as you are able to look over the village of Eyam whilst climbing and at the top you can take advantage of the wide open spaces which give some of the most stunning views in the whole of the Peak District.
Continuing straight on the same road passed the well and beyond, spectacular views of Froggatt Edge down towards Chatsworth and up towards Stanage Edge are all off to the right so it is worth spending time as you walk to take this all in. As you follow the road, with farmland on either side after about a mile you reach a bend down towards Grindleford. If you take the stile straight over there is some great moors walking that will lead off to Hathersage, but for the purpose of walking Humphrey, we took the Roman Road that leads off to the left and over to Bretton.
The Roman Road is quite pitted but still proves comparatively easy walking to the top of the moor. Once over the peak you also again get classically beautiful Peak District scenery, down to Hathersage and over to Ladybower and Strines – we walked this in recent snowy conditions and the view was truly breath taking! Half way up the initial climb, you can choose to cross onto the moor, to the right over an stile – if you have strong footwear, it is worth the detour as it drops down nearer to Bretton through rough ground, woodland and farmland. The other option is to follow the Roman Road until it comes to an end and meets the Bretton Road.
Turning left, on the road the return to Eyam is quite straight forward as you follow the road back towards Mompesson and back down Edge Road and Hawkhill, but whilst easy, it is never boring – whether it is playing spot the yurts off to the right, the geese and chickens at or just enjoying the views down to Foolow and then Eyam after passing through Highcliffe.
There are a number of footpaths that lead off the road and down through the trees into Eyam, but in wet and wintery weather these can be very slippery and are not “Humphrey-proof” so for any who don’t want a muddy derriere, it is best to stay on the well-trodden paths and road.
In walking back to Eyam, there are a number of options for food and drink to end the walk with – Peak Pantry and Eyam Tea Rooms, being central to the village or The Miners Arms, if something a little stronger is needed – they are all worth a visit, offering Peak District hospitality to any weary muddy traveller (and their well-behaved dogs)!