Greyhound Pond, Cromford
In 1771, inventor Richard Arkwright built the World's first successful water-powered cotton mill in the small Derbyshire village of Cromford. Arkwright's pioneering mill was the birthplace of the modern factory system, and so can claim to be the true birthplace of the Industrial Revolution. Soon overtaken by larger mills in the big towns and cities of Lancashire, cotton spinning ended at Cromford in 1844, but the village's place in history was assured. In 2001, the historical importance of Cromford Mill was recognised when it, along with the surrounding village, became a keystone of the Derwent Valley Mills World Heritage Site.
The walk begins at the site of the now-demolished original medieval village of Cromford and the adjacent wharf of the Cromford Canal. It then makes its way up into the modern village of Cromford, where it explores the pioneering houses, pubs and other facilities constructed by the Arkwright family for their workers. Leaving the village, the walk continues by looking at the grand house of Willersley Castle, and St Mary's Church where many members of the Arkwright family have been laid to rest. It then concludes outside the gates of Cromford Mill itself, where it is possible to join one of the Arkwright Society's own highly-recommended tours of the preserved Cromford Mill.
This walk is led by a guide with over 30 years experience of leading guided tours around the village, and who was formerly one of the senior guides at Cromford Mill from 1988 onwards. As they are quite possibly the most experienced person currently doing tours of the village today, with a wide range of stories about the history of the village and the restoration work at Cromford Mill, this makes this walk one of the top things to do in Cromford.
When is this walk available?
This walk is available all year round as a private booking on a date of your choice via a Personal Walking Guide.
You can request a different start time if desired. Available start times are between 9:00am and early evening (around 7:00pm), although do bear in mind the need to finish before it gets dark. If you would like to request a different start time, please contact us before booking in order to determine if your requested start time is feasible.
Is this walk Covid-secure?
Derbyshire Heritage Walks has been awarded the Visit England "We're Good To Go" mark. This means that we fully comply with the current government and industry Covid-19 guidelines and are subject to random checks to make sure that we are complying. Therefore you can be confident that this walk is as Covid-secure as we can possibly make it. Details of how we do this can be found here.