The Tissington Trail

The Tissington Trail was set up by the Peak District National Park as a scenic 13-mile route running north from the outskirts of Ashbourne, at Mapleton Lane to Parsley Hay to provide the opportunity of travelling through glorious countryside without the interference of motor vehicles.

The trail follows the old Buxton to Ashbourne railway part of the London and North Western Railway opened in 1899 and closed in 1967. After the removal of the track bed, it was decided to turn the disused railway into a track for recreational purposes.

This scheme was to become known as the “Tissington Trail” and was to be one of the first experiments of its kind in the country. The trail was opened to the public in 1971.

Tissington Trail

Mapleton Lane has a good range of facilities, including a cycle hire shop, and refreshments. There is a car park here although it can get very busy in the Summer months despite a large field which acts as an overspill car park.

The Tissington trail leaves Mapleton lane and heads slowly upwards, into the surrounding countryside. It eventually reaches Thorpe, where there is a small car park and a few picnic tables.

The trail then continues to Tissington; the car park here is considerably larger, as is the picnic area. It is worth a visit to the village for refreshments and to see the impressive Tissington Hall and Tissington village itself has the reputation of being possibly the prettiest village in Derbyshire.

Leaving Tissington, the trail continues to Alsop, which has a small car park. The trail then continues to Hartington, where evidence of the existence of the railway is present in the form of Hartington signal box now an Information Point, open in summer on Saturdays, Sundays and Bank Holidays.

A short distance after Hartington, at Parsley Hay, the Tissington Trail ends where it meets the High Peak Trail.

How to get there

By Road:

The former railway stations along the way have been converted into car parks – these are at Sparklow (between Monyash and Crowdecote), Parsley Hay, Hartington, Alsop en le Dale, Tissington, Thorpe and on the northern outskirts of Ashbourne. Parsley Hey, Alsop en la Dale, Tissington and Sparklow both lie just off the A515 road between Buxton and Ashbourne, and the former Hartington station lies off the B5054 road which branches off the A515 to Hartington. The Ashbourne end of the trail is about 1km from the Market Place in Ashbourne and is signposted from there.

There is a National Park information centre at Tissington and cycle hire is available at Parsley Hay (tel: 01298 84493) and Mappleton (near Ashbourne – tel: 01335 343156), and this is also to be found in many of the nearby villages (eg Thorpe and Tissington). The former signal box at Hartington has been converted into a Visitor Centre and is well worth a look (open weekends and Bank Holidays from Easter to end of October and Sundays only the rest of the year).

Some of the car parks are pay and display.

For more information on the Tissington Trail, see the Peak District National Parks website.