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Hathersage Loop (21 miles)

This short ride takes you through Grindleford to the infamous plague village of Eyam, which has a number of interesting buildings including the 17th century manor house at Eyam Hall . Away from Eyam takes you through rolling fields criss crossed by row upon row of drystone walls through the pretty village of Foolow. You will continue past St Peters stone to Litton before arriving at the ancient village of Tideswell. Away from Tideswell you will pass through Great Hucklow and along a fine ridge to Bretton with outstanding panoramic views. An amazing 4 mile descent takes you through the picturesque hamlet of Abney back to Hathersage .

Practical Notes

  • The road from Hathersage to Grindleford can be quite busy so take extra care for the 1st few miles.

  • There is a hill away from Grindleford.

  • There are a number of places to buy refreshments at Grindleford, Eyam, Litton, Tideswell and Bretton.

    0 Miles - From the centre of Hathersage go along the B6001 to Grindleford & Bakewell.

    0.2 Miles - Pass the station on your L. Stay on this road which follows the River Derwent through to Grindleford. This is a nice road but does have a reasonable amount of traffic so please ensure that you cycle with care.

    2.5 Miles - Pass through Grindleford  You will follow the road round past the Sir William Hotel & turn R at the T-jcn.

    Grindleford is a small village and from here, each year in July, there is a pilgrimage to Padley Chapel to commemorate two Catholic martyrs of 1588. The ruins of ancient Padley Manor House, found alongside the track of the old railway line are all that remain of the home of two devout Roman Catholic families. It was from here that two priests, Robert Ludlam & Nicholas Garlic were taken, in the 16th century & sentenced to death, in Derby, by hanging, drawing & quatering.

    As you pass through Grindleford you will go past some attractive houses to your L & a small homemade furniture shop on your R as the road climbs.

    2.9 Miles - Turn R along the minor road (New Road), the road doesnt have a road sign but there is an Except for Access sign. This is a climb away from the main road which reveals fine views to your L. Continue along this road which drops down into Eyam.

    4.3 Miles - Arrive Eyam  When you pass the tea rooms take the road to the R (Church Street) to Eyam Hall .

    Eyam has a pub called the Miners Arms (01433 630 853), a 17th century coaching Inn which is open all day & does food. There is also a good tea rooms marked by the bicycle outside. The village also has 2 general stores, a butchers, post office & a pantry which serves sandwiches, ice cream, tea, coffee etc

    Eyam is infamously known as The Plague Village. In 1666 , a local taylor received a bundle of infected clothes from London. It didnt take long before the plague spread & terrified villagers prepared to flee. The local rector, William Mompesson, persuaded the villagers to stay put. Because of Mompessons intervention most of the neighbouring villagers survived.

    Eyam was quarantined for over a year, relying on food left on the village boundary. Out of 350 inhabitants only 83 survived.

    The village itself is quite large & self contained, typical of a mining & quarrying settlement. An interesting place to wonder around, Eyam has many information plaques documenting events where they took place. Eyam Museum tells the villages story & the Church of St Lawrence houses an excellent exhibition of Eyams history.

    Also inside the church are two ancient coffin lids; the top of one of the lids is known as St Helens Cross. Born in Derbyshire, St Helen was the daughter of a British-Roman chief & the mother of Emperor Constantine. Also in the churchyard is the best preserved Saxon Cross in the Peak District, along with an unusual sundial which dates to 1775.

    The wonderfully unspoilt Eyam Hall is a 17th century manor house which is now open to the public. The Hall was home to the Wright family for over 300 years. The Hall has an impressive stone flagged hall, tapestry room and the magnificent tester bed. There is also a café & gift shop.

    The Eyam Hall Craft Centre is housed in the farm building & contains several units which specialise in unusual & skilfully fashioned crafts.

    4.6 Miles - Pass by Eyam Hall  It is easier to go past the main entrance & go round the side to the café, shop etc. The house & gardens are open to the public from 1st July  30th August. Adults £6.25 01433 631 976. Continue through the village.

    6.3 Miles - Pass through Foolow. The Bulls Head pub is usually open all day & serves good food 12.00  14.00 & 18.30  21.00.01433 630 873.

    7.4 Miles - At the cross road (be careful not to miss the turn) turn L along the unsigned road. There is a sign for the Queen Anne pub on the R.

    7.9 Miles - At the next L turn go L. This road is called Trot lane but there isnt a sign to say this.

    8.8 Miles - When you reach the main road turn L at the busy A623 (watch out for traffic). Take the next R to Litton & Cressbrook. To your L is a beautiful area known as St. Peters Dale. The rock in front of you is St. Peters stone, named after St. Peters basilica in The Vatican.

    9.7 Miles - Pass through Litton.

    Litton is a typical example of a Peak District limestone village. Though the oldest house dates from 1639, most date from the mid-18th century, a time of prosperity when the lead mining industry was booming. There is a post office & a pub called the Red Lion 01298 871 458.

    The Red Lion is a cosy pub made up of three 17th century cottage. Open 11.30  16.00, 18.00  23.00 M  T. 11.00  23.00 F  S and 12  22.30 on Sundays. Food served 12-2, 6-8.

    10.1 Miles - As you pass through Litton the road drops down to the B6049.
    Before you reach this road take the small track/road to your R. At the Unsuitable for Motors sign. When you reach the main road turn R into the village.

    11.0 Miles - Arrive Tideswell.

    Tideswell is known locally as Cathedral of the Peak due to its 14th century church of St John the Baptist. There is a fine collection of brasses inside & the Minstral of the Peak William Newton is buried in the graveyard. The village received its market charter in 1250 and by the 14th century it was a flourishing centre for the local wool trade. Today the village is home to a number of craftspeople working in buildings converted from other uses. There are a few nice cafés & a number of pubs in Tideswell.

    12.0 Miles - Pass through the village & continue to the main road (A623).
    You will see The Anchor Inn in front of you, cross over the road and continue along the road to the R of the Anchor (B6049).

    13.1 Miles - Turn R at the sign for Great Hucklow Gliding Club & continue through Great Hucklow.

    There is a pub at Great Hucklow called the Queen Anne 01298 871 246. Open 12 -2.30 & evenings (closed Mondays). Food served lunchtimes & evenings.The pub dates back to 1621.

    13.6 Miles - Pass through the village of Great Hucklow. Continue along the road through the village  the road climbs!

    14.2 Miles - Pass the turn to Gliding Club & Abney. You will need to go along this road to get back to Hathersage but there is a nice, short detour by staying on the road for a mile to Derbyshires highest pub, The Barrel Inn.

    15.2 Miles - The Barrel Inn dates back to 1597 and lies claim to be the highest pub in Derbyshire. This is a fantastic pub with a cosy lounge, range of beers & good food 01433 630 856. Food is served lunchtimes & evenings 7 days a week.

    If you visit The Barrel Inn, go back the way you came & turn L to the Gliding Club & Abney.

    16.7 Miles - Pass Derbyshire & Lancashire Gliding club. Established in 1935 the club is one of the oldest in England. 01298 871 270. Stay in this road which is a fantastic long decent back to the B6001 at Leadmill.

    18.3 Miles - Pass the small hamlet of Abney.

    20.6 Miles - Reach the main road opposite the Plough Inn  turn R back to Hathersage.

    21.5 Miles - Arrive Hathersage.


    This information has been provided by Peak Tours, cycling and walking holidays in the Peak District.
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