This has been a really interesting trip for us. We were especially looking forward to this Jolly adventure and it lived up to our expectations. The weather was reasonably kind, some sunshine and no rain. Hayfield is a beautiful village in the High Peak area of the Peak District National Park and was one of the locations used for the BBC drama ‘The Village’. It is also the birthplace of the late actor Arthur Lowe aka Captain Mainwaring in Dad’s Army (one of Bri’s favourites, he’s always watching the repeats!).
We stayed at the Camping & Caravanning Club Site just a short walk from the village – approximately 15 minutes along the stream that runs alongside the site. The staff are helpful, guiding you onto the site and allowing you to choose your own pitch. We were mid-week on this trip so had plenty to choose from and got a nice sun spot.
We enjoyed a little time on site before venturing out. There’s a little piece of history right on the doorstep of this site that’s worth a visit. It’s opposite the site entrance, across the main road, in Bowden Bridge car park. It’s an old quarry and the site of the Kinder Scout Mass Trespass of 1932 when around 500 walkers, mostly from Manchester, trespassed en masse and walked from Hayfield to Kinder Scout to secure access rights to open country for all to enjoy forever.
After visiting the old quarry, we called into The Sportsman pub for tea but ended up only having one drink. We decided not to eat there so can’t comment on the food. We sat out in the rear beer garden which was tired looking and overgrown, with log furniture that was falling apart and had rusty screws protruding in places. We’d previously heard it was a good place to visit but apparently the pub is currently awaiting new management so hopefully it’ll get the tlc it needs and regain it’s appeal. We cycled further down into the village instead, and ate at the Pack Horse Inn. It’s located in the centre of the village and serves excellent food. In fact, considering the size of the village, Hayfield is very well served with a good choice of pubs. Others include: The Royal Hotel, The George Hotel, Kinder Lodge and The Roundhouse. Needless to say, we popped our heads into most during our trip 🙂
While walking through the village it was easy to spot some locations used in the BBC drama ‘The Village’.
We also visited the late actor Arthur Lowe’s birthplace which is on Kinder Road itself. We spoke to a friendly neighbour there who informed us that the house with the blue plaque on wasn’t actually where he was born. He was apparently born at his grandparent’s house next door, lived there for 3 days, then moved with his parents to the house with the plaque on. So there you go!
For walking fans, Hayfield offers a challenging circular walk up to the moorland plateau that is Kinder Scout, standing around 600 metres above sea level. It will take approx. 4-6 hours. The walk begins at Bowden Bridge car park.
Instead we decided to visit the town of New Mills, cycling along the Sett Valley Trail. It’s just 2.5 miles to New Mills where you can then proceed on foot through the Torrs Riverside Park to get to the spectacular Millennium Walkway that runs high above the River Goyt. The walkway is suspended from the side of a gorge and runs around the ruins of the old Torr Mill.
We finished the day off by cycling up to Little Hayfield to visit the Lantern Pike Inn, and had built up quite a thirst and appetite by then. The pub houses some Corrie memorabilia, not least the original glass doors of the Rover’s Return. Pat Phoenix (Elsie Tanner) and Tony Warren (writer) both lived in Little Hayfield for a while. It is also said that Tony Warren wrote the very first Corrie episodes in this pub *gasp* so this was a MUST visit for us two Corrie addicts!
We chose a good night to visit too (Monday) when a group of local musicians meet and play together in the pub. It was a great atmosphere and entertainment, so much so that we ended up staying a couple of hours longer than originally planned, before heading back to site in the dark to cabin up for the night.
Great break. Bring on the next one, when we’re back in the Peak District to visit Bakewell, home of the tart. Don’t you comment Bri!
Suzie & Bri