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Address: Cromford Wharf | Cromford, Matlock DE4 3RP, England
Phone Number:
+44 1629 823204

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

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Visitor rating
  • 180
  • 115
    Very good
  • 14
  • 1
  • 1

Excellent walking, lovely area, peaceful and quite. Easy flat walking, with lovely small museum area with old train carriage and pumping station . Great cafe at the start of... read more

5 of 5 bubblesReviewed 5 days ago
Matlock, United Kingdom
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312 Reviews from our TripAdvisor Community

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Showing 311: English reviews
Matlock, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
13 reviews
9 attraction reviews
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 5 days ago NEW

Excellent walking, lovely area, peaceful and quite. Easy flat walking, with lovely small museum area with old train carriage and pumping station . Great cafe at the start of canal at Cromford and another really homely one at Whatstandwell - turn rt down road to junction, called family tree. Public toilet at Cromford and at museum.

Thank mazjohn24
Alfreton, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
316 reviews
150 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 173 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 6 days ago NEW via mobile

Love this place. Great for walking the dog. Gets muddy at times so you'll need decent shoes. Not good for people who are unsteady in their feet as there's no fence to stop them falling in if they tumble. Lovely for a blast of fresh air. Loads of places to park.

Thank 0798anne
Level Contributor
19 reviews
4 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 9 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 1 week ago via mobile

I've spent hours down on this little canal over the years because it's just a great place to walk, loads to see and do too and teaming with wild life too! Highly recommended!

Thank Fellwalker63
Derby, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
194 reviews
26 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 71 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 1 week ago via mobile

We regularly visit this area and walk from Cromford to Whatstandwell along the canal. Lovely scenery, toilets halfway at High Peak Junction and lots of different birds to see. Only downside is dogs not on leads and their business being left on the paths.

Thank Ian1200
Derby, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
20 reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 15 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 2 weeks ago via mobile

It is a lovely walk for both people and dogs 🐶 and even better as most people kept their dogs on the lead. It does get very busy there so be prepared for the groups that would prefer you to get into the canal rather than go single file! The shops around the canal are lovely but expensive. Overall a... More 

Thank berniemwalsh
Leicester, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
64 reviews
28 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 16 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 2 weeks ago

Great place for a walk in the countryside . The Leawood Pumping station is along the way and sometimes they fire up the beam engine.

Thank Miroslaw10
Belper, United Kingdom
1 review
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 11 December 2016

Brilliant Santa Special Canal boat trip on the canal from Cromford Wharf. Thoroughly enjoyed by my husband and myself, our 2 sons, 1 daughter in law and 3 grandchildren. Santa and his elf were on the boat and every single child was invited to meet him. Each child was given a present and chocolate coins. Christmas music playing the whole... More 

1 Thank steveclem6
Newport Gwent
Level Contributor
139 reviews
38 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 58 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 7 December 2016

As we were on holiday we decided to walk along the canal as we have not been here for years, we parked on the main road outside the carpark as there was room otherwise you have to pay, a few nice shops as you enter the carpark which were nice to visit before or after your walk. Plenty of birds... More 

Thank MelvinNewportGwent
Derbyshire, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
5 reviews
3 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 25 November 2016

Whatever the weather, with a good towpath alongside the canal means that you can have a flat but interesting and reasonably clean walk Feed the ducks at Cromford wharf, have a coffee at the cafes nearby. A good spot for a quick stop off.

Thank trevorp200
Towcester, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
513 reviews
245 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 284 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 20 November 2016

easy and flat with a wide and good quality tow path, this males a difference if you have kids as you dont have to worry about them falling and you can take a push chair, peaceful with lots of wildlife and full of history.

Thank no1missmarple

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