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The unusually wet winter of 2023/24 has left the ground in many parts of the Peak District very wet and muddy. As a result of this, we have been forced to temporarily revise or postpone a number of our walks. Fortunately, this walk is unaffected by these changes, and so is still available as advertised.

Cromford - Birthplace of the Industrial Revolution

Distance: 2 miles
Price: £6.00 per person

(Group & family rates available)

Greyhound Pond, Cromford Greyhound Pond, Cromford Greyhound Pond, Cromford Greyhound Pond, Cromford Greyhound Pond, Cromford Greyhound Pond, Cromford
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 and a historical adviser for the BBC's landmark Restoration TV series. 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.

Duration (approx):
2 to 2.5 hours (including lunch).
Start point:
Cromford Meadows,
Off Mill Road (Mill Lane),
Start time:
End point:
Car park of Cromford Mill
Mill Road (Mill Lane),
Dates available:
Available year-round as an open walk on a date of your choosing on Mondays, some Tuesdays, Wednesdays, some Thursdays, Fridays, most Saturdays and some Sundays.

Scheduled walks available on the following dates:
March 1st, 3rd, 6th, 10th, 16th, 20th, 23rd, 27th, 31st.
April 3rd, 6th, 14th, 17th, 20th, 24th, 27th.
May 1st, 5th, 10th, 15th, 18th, 22nd, 25th, 29th.
June 2nd, 5th, 7th, 16th, 19th, 22nd, 26th, 30th.
July 3rd, 6th, 14th, 17th, 20th, 24th, 26th, 31st.
August 3rd, 7th, 9th, 17th, 21st, 23rd, 28th, 31st.
September 4th, 8th, 13th, 15th, 18th, 21st, 25th, 29th.
October 2nd, 5th, 13th, 16th, 19th, 23rd, 27th, 30th.
November 1st, 2nd, 3rd, 6th, 8th, 10th, 15th, 16th, 17th, 20th, 22nd, 23rd, 24th, 27th, 29th, 30th.
December 2nd, 4th, 6th, 8th, 9th, 13th, 15th, 16th, 18th, 20th.
(Online pre-booking is essential for these walks.)

Private group bookings are also available on a date of your choosing via a Personal Walking Guide (subject to availability and Coronavirus restrictions)..

When is this walk available?

This walk is available all year round on a date of your choosing. Scheduled walks take place at least once per month, and more frequently in the winter months. If you wish to have the exclusive services of one of our guides, it is also available year-round as a private booking on a date of your choice via a Personal Walking Guide. For Personal Walking Guide bookings, we are usually able to offer a range of different start times from 9:00am to early evening on most days.

All bookings are subject to the availability of a suitable guide - Please see our online calendar or e-mail us for availability of your chosen date.

Is this walk Covid-secure?

At Derbyshire Heritage Walks we follow all current government and industry guidelines, and all of our guides have been fully vaccinated. 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.

Will we have the exclusive services of the guide?

All of our open and scheduled walks are open to all. If you book onto either of these types of walk, then there is a chance that there may well be other people on the walk with you. If you wish to have the exclusive services of the guide, you MUST book a Personal Walking Guide.


The following prices apply for this walk:

(Included in overall price)
Adult or Child aged 16 and over
(Up to 8 people in group)
£6.00 per person
£2.00 per person
Personal Walking Guide
(Group of up to 4)
£40.00 per group
£10.00 per group
Personal Walking Guide
(Group of 5 to 10)
£60.00 per group
£15.00 per group
Personal Walking Guide
(Group of 11 or more)
£90.00 per group
£22.50 per group

Discounted family tickets also available, giving cheaper prices for groups including children aged 15 and under. Please e-mail us for details.

Travel to and from the walk.

This walk is easily accessible by both car and public transport. If you do need to use public transport, the latest information on buses and trains to and from this walk can be found on our travel information page.

If travelling by car, there is "pay-and-display" car parking available on Cromford Meadows itself, on the adjacent canal wharf, and also across the road at Cromford Mill. The postcode for sat-navs to reach Cromford Meadows is DE4 3RQ, and the Meadows are directly opposite St Mary's Church just south of the bridge over the river.

Are there any disabled access issues?

There are a few minor issues with wheelchair and mobility scooter access on this walk, but with small modifications to the route it is fully accessible to all. The main issues concern narrow paths, rough surfaces, steps and narrow gates. However, all of these can be bypassed by taking alternative and slightly longer routes.

If you, or a person you are booking for, are a person of reduced mobility, please either contact us before booking or let us know when you book, so that we can make any necessary adjustments and send you any additional information you may need regarding access arrangements.

Is this walk suitable for dogs?

As an urban walk, there is a lot going on in the area which your dog may find distracting. However, there is nothing to stop you bringing your dog if you think it can be well enough behaved. If you would like to bring your dog with you, we do ask that you inform us at the time of booking. We also ask that, due to the traffic and large number of people likely to be encountered, and the possibility of meeting other dogs, you keep your dog under close control on a short non-extendible lead at all times and do not allow it to run free under any circumstances.


You can book places on any of our open or scheduled walks via the PayPal button below. Other payment options are available on request - Please e-mail us for details if required.

If you wish to make a Personal Walking Guide booking for this walk, please see our Personal Walking Guide booking page here.

Bookings for walks can be made at any time up to 48 hours before the intended date of your walk, or up to 72 hours beforehand for Personal Walking Guides. We regret that we cannot accept bookings made less than 48 hours prior to the planned start time of the walk (72 hours for Personal Walking Guide bookings).

Please ensure before booking that the date you require is not listed below and on our online calendar as unavailable or fully booked, and that you have read and agree to our terms and conditions.

Latest Booking News

  • The March 10th walk is unavailable due to all guides being busy with other walks.
  • Bookings are open for all other scheduled dates listed, and close at 10:00am two days prior to the date of the walk.
  • We are now accepting open walk and Personal Walking Guide bookings for this walk on Mondays, some Tuesdays, Wednesdays, some Thursdays, Fridays, most Saturdays and some Sundays from January 4th to December 20th 2024.

Book An Open Or Scheduled Walk

Please select the number of places you would like to book, the start time you would like, and enter the date required.

Other payment options are available on request - Please e-mail us for details if required.

By placing a booking with us, you are accepting and agreeing to our terms and conditions.

Number of places
Date required
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Book A Personal Walking Guide

To book a Personal Walking Guide for this walk, please go to our Personal Walking Guide page.

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