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Cromford Canal

Certificate of Excellence
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Address: Cromford Wharf, Matlock DE4 3RP, England
Phone Number: 441629823204
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The construction of the Cromford Canal by William Jessop and Benjamin...

The construction of the Cromford Canal by William Jessop and Benjamin Outram, partners in the Butterley company, was completed in 1794. It is 14.5 miles long and joined Cromford with the Erewash Canal at Langley Mill. The site has a wealth of industrial heritage and lies in the Derwent Valley Mills World Heritage site. The canal is a Site of Special Scientific Interest for its entire length from Cromford to Ambergate. The 3.3km southern section from Whatstandwell Bridge to Ambergate is a Local Nature Reserve. The canal is a haven for water vole, a threatened and declining species, and for grass snakes, little grebes, moorhen and coots. The southern end towards Poyser's Bridge is excellent for dragonflies. The canal can be explored from the towpath between Cromford Wharf and Ambergate, a distance of just over five miles. The walk from Cromford Wharf to High Peak Junction is suitable for pushchair's and wheel chairs. We manage the section from Cromford to Ambergate for recreation and wildlife. The canal has a very rich and diverse wildlife running through the attractive Derwent Valley and part of it has been designated a Site of Special Scientific Interest and Local Nature Reserve. The Nature Reserve can be accessed from the north end at Whatstandwell or at the southern end from Ambergate by a towpath off Chase Road. The old towing path which follows the canal is a public footpath - please note that this path is narrow and uneven in places. Birdswood, a restored narrow boat is run on scheduled trips through the year by the Friends of Cromford Canal. Open to all members of the public. Come and enjoy a peaceful journey along the canal, from Cromford Wharf to High Peak Junction, introduced by a booming announcement from the FCC President, Brian Blessed. Birdswood is also available for private hire and for specialist educational trips. Limited canoeing is permitted on the Cromford Canal between Cromford Wharf and High Peak Junction. Because of the sensitive nature of the canal, numbers are strictly controlled. There's a Changing Places toilet for use by the public in the car park at Cromford Wharf.

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TripAdvisor Reviewer Highlights

Read all 199 reviews
Visitor rating
  • 113
  • 77
    Very good
  • 9
  • 0
  • 0
Very pleasant walk, though canal rather silted

We walked from derby to Matlock, and the 5 mile stretch of canal was a very pleasant part of it (especially nice as it was flat). The canal seems rather in need of dredging, but... read more

4 of 5 starsReviewed 1 week ago
St Albans
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199 Reviews from our TripAdvisor Community

Date | Rating
  • English first
  • French first
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English first
St Albans
Level Contributor
125 reviews
25 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 76 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed 1 week ago

We walked from derby to Matlock, and the 5 mile stretch of canal was a very pleasant part of it (especially nice as it was flat). The canal seems rather in need of dredging, but there has been a lot of work done to keep the reeds at bay, and a lot of tree-felling has opened up the views. Some... More 

Thank St_Albans_City
Level Contributor
310 reviews
23 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 154 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed 2 weeks ago

We often visit Wirksworth and Cromford and weather and time permitting take a walk along the Cromford Canal. It's an easy, flat walk and is fascinating seeing the wildlife along the Canal. Thoroughly recommended

Thank SheffieldPip
Lichfield, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
37 reviews
5 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 21 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed 2 weeks ago

Great walk, really well signposted, very informative information along the route. Plus, cheese shop...

1 Thank Cathyabrown
Matlock, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
47 reviews
20 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 9 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed December 15, 2015

When the hills are just too muddy or I need an ultra brisk walk, this is ideal. 3 miles from Cromford wharf to the tea room at Whatstanwell and three miles back. Flat with a path. Lots of ducks and moorhens and coots. Water voles too, though I have never seen one. There are other places to stop or join... More 

Thank id27226
Nottinghamshire, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
15 reviews
7 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed December 6, 2015

I have walked the cromford canal many times. You can either start at amber gate for a 5mile walk or whatstandwell for 3miles very enjoyable and there's a snack shop at the junction also a cafe at cromford wharf plus a little shop that sells different types of cheeses

Thank Emurichards
Sheffield, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
1,625 reviews
1,087 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 1,085 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed November 13, 2015

very pleasant walk by the canal but a tourist attraction - not really well used by locals but thats all

1 Thank swift314
Maldon, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
24 reviews
15 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 14 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed October 28, 2015 via mobile

We took the dogs here for the day it's a nice walk we walked from Amber gate and went onto the high peak trail. There are lots of pay and display car parks in the area so parking is not an issue.

2 Thank deeptechgnone
Derby, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
23 reviews
3 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 15 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed October 26, 2015

A walk down the canal tow-path from cromford basin towards Ambergate stopping off for brunch/lunch at The Family Tree (dogs welcome inside) is one of our favourite weekend pastimes. Meander back after enjoying good food and drink and a lovely time had by all.

Thank Alfierules
Boston, England, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
34 reviews
16 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 21 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed October 25, 2015

The area is very picturesque and the trees were showing autumn colours, the pathway is good going for walkers and there is plenty of car parking space with toilets at Cromford Mill.

1 Thank 551JohnS99
Middleham, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
5 reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 5 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed October 4, 2015

Just returned from a lovely gentle trip on the Cromford canal pulled by a horse , seven of us went and we even managed to get our elderly mother { restricted mobility } safely on board , all volunteers very helpful and full of interesting information . We would recommend it for all ages young and old .

Thank APC57

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Stockport, United Kingdom
3 months ago

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