Great Hucklow nestles on the fringe of the Dark Peak but amid the rich pasture of the White Peak. The village contains higgledy-piggledy cottages and character houses together with a primary school, The Queen Anne public house and The Nightingale Centre which can provide overnight accommodation and conference facilities for groups and school trips.
The Parish of Great Hucklow is made up of five separate settlements including Little Hucklow, Grindlow, Windmill and Coplow Dale, the latter containing only a handful of cottages and farms.
There is evidence of lead mining in the area around Great Hucklow dating back more than 700 years. High Rake Lead Mine near Windmill is of particular historic interest and contains a shaft more than 600 feet deep. Minerals are still extracted from the hills around Great Hucklow, although mainly from underground, whilst the scars from the lead mining era have healed to provide an environment and habitat where wild flowers and wildlife flourish.
Many of the places around Great Hucklow contain the word ‘low’, as does Great Hucklow itself. This is in reference to an abundance of ancient burial grounds or tumuli to be found hereabouts. These ‘lows’ as they were named were where early men from Neolithic times buried their dead on the tops of hills or mounds, as close to the ‘heavens’ as possible.
Surrounded by footpaths and old tracks, Great Hucklow is located close to the routes of an ancient Portway, Roman road and an important turnpike highway which ran from Sheffield to Tideswell.
With a foreground of rich pasture divided by miles of wonderful drystone walls, Hucklow Edge surmounted by gritstone moorland act as a backdrop, whilst on clear days the skies containing the soaring and shimmering wings of gliders from their base at the Derbyshire and Lancashire Gliding Club on Camp Hill.
A lovely walk through fields and stiles from Great Hucklow will take you up to the ridge top from where there are far reaching and panoramic views as well as a lovely little pub – the Barrel Inn at Bretton is a former coaching inn which is packed with horse brasses and oak beams and very popular.
Great Hucklow was famed for its Playhouse, founded by L Du Garde Peach which ran from 1938-1970. Large audiences attended every production, with visitors arriving from all over the country.
The moors above Great Hucklow contain several old packhorse routes which are now used mainly by walkers although some can be accessed by pedal cycles. Bretton Clough and Abney are steeped in history and fascinating to visit.
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