Autumn Footprints 2014 - Week Two
w/e 28 September 2014
All this week's pictures were taken
with a Kodak DX6490
As forecast the conditions at the start of the second
week of the Festival showed a marked improvement on those of
Friday's walk at Belper and the fine weather continued throughout
On Monday we set off from Codnor Market Place with the Heanor
and District History Society and headed straight to the site
of mediaeval ruins on the "Codnor Castle Walk". The
strong autumn sun shone down on us as we heard a brief history
of the castle and explored the ruins before continuing down the
hill to the next phase of the walk.
That second phase moved us from mediaeval times to the industrial
age with a walk along the towpath of disused Cromford Canal into
Ironville and the Codnor Park Reservoir where we stopped for
a picnic lunch. From here we returned to Codnor via Golden Valley
making a short diversion along the canal to see the entrance
to the 3000m Butterley Tunnel. (Click here for aerial route map)
The weather was still fine on Tuesday although the distant views
on the "Crich Walking For Health" route were quite
hazy. This was one of the shorter walks in the Festival but nonetheless
enjoyable for that. We had left the village centre and walked
through the cattle filled fields seen here below before a steady
climb up to walk along the edge of a quarry.
The path led to Crich Stand, the Sherwood Foresters' War Memorial.
There was time here to enjoy some more splendid views of the
surrounding countryside before descending again into the village.
saw us joining a group of about sixty walkers (left) in Breaston
for the Parish Council's "Breaston Macmillan Walk"
and we headed off across fields and the Derby Canal to Draycott.
There we made directly for Brian and Jane Marshall's house and
piled into the garden for tea or coffee and cake. The roving
reporter from Radio Derby was also there - his van was parked
outside (right) - to interview Brian about the event which raised
over £400 for the Macmillan Charity. After our refreshments
many of the walkers returned to Breaston by a different route
but we cheated slightly on this one and caught the bus back from
There was no catching the bus on Thursday though and a chair
lift might have been more welcome to help everyone on the Erewash
Ramblers' "Breadsall to Eaton Park" walk up the steep
steps and hill path at Eaton Bank. The climb certainly made me
and several others blow!
The climb was well worth it though and we were rewarded with
some splendid views over the undulating countryside from Eaton
Park before dropping down again back to Breadsall. (Route map)
Crich Stand loomed large on the horizon for much of Friday's
walk but our route this time had taken us from "Whatstandwell
Station" with the Amber Valley Ramblers to Alderwasley for
the first part of the route. This was another very enjoyable
walk with the same group I had walked with on the previous Friday
at Belper but this time the weather was so much better and the
promised views actually materialised.
After crossing the main Whatstandwell to Matlock road the second
and concluding part of the walk through the wooded Derwent Valley
was alongside the old Cromford Canal. (Route map)
The penultimate day of Autumn Footprints was on Saturday but
it was also my last walk of the Walking Festival for this year
and I joined the Holbrook Parish Council group for the "Holbrook,
Horsley and Castle Walk". This was another walk laced with
interesting anecdotes and history through open countryside and
historic sites like this quiet corner near Horsley Church.
From the village we headed up to the ruins of Horsley Castle
in the woods and a little more history about the site before
returning to Holbrook via Coxbench touching several long distance
paths like the Midshires Way and the Centenary Way on the way
back. There can be no finer end to the Festival though than the
fine views across the Derbyshire countryside in the September
So after twelve walks in fifteen days from the forty on offer
in the sixteen day Festival, the old knees and ankles were beginning
to creak a little but they'll soon recover and I'll be looking
forward to seeing the brochure for next year's event which should
be available about next June. Keeping my fingers crossed that
in these austerity stricken times the funding required from the
respective councils in Erewash, Amber Valley and Derbyshire for
publicity etc will still be available even though most of the
walk leaders are volunteers. Our thanks must go to all concerned
for this year's event.