The Derbyshire Portway is an ancient
prehistoric trackway which can be traced from Mam Tor in the north of
Derbyshire to the Hemlock Stone on the edge of Nottingham. Along the
route are a fascinating variety of prehistoric and historic sites,
including hermitages, hillforts, tumuli, carved crosses, churches and
believed to date from the Bronze Age and in
regular use until the late middle ages, the Portway has been followed by
travellers for thousands of years as a link between the Trent valley,
the Peak District and beyond. The journey of about forty five miles can
be walked as a whole or in stages, and includes Dale, Morley, Coxbench,
Holbrook, Milford, Wirksworth, Alport, Ashford and Wardlow. Much of the
route is now quiet lanes or footpaths, which take the walker through
some of Derbyshire’s most delightful scenery, from the lush Derwent
valley to the moors of the Dark Peak.
Full details of the Portway
have been highlighted in an excellent new book by
Stephen Bailey. Further information about the book has
been shown in the side column of this feature. In
addition, a website has been set up at:
which contains extracts from the book, study maps and
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recommendation of any establishment is implied by inclusion on this
prehistoric trackway which can be traced from
Mam Tor in the north of Derbyshire to the Hemlock Stone on the edge of
Stephen Bailey spent several years studying
the trackway, both walking the ground and doing documentary research.
His book describes the route northwards from the Nottinghamshire border
to Mam Tor near Castleton and includes a full discussion of the
historical context of the Portway.
Full walking instructions are provided, as
well as a detailed commentary on the historical sites. The book is
illustrated with maps of each stage and a wide selection of photographs.
The Derbyshire Portway
Pilgrimage to the Past - a walking guide
ISBN 1 900446 13 8 (THIRTEEN DIGIT 978 1
900446 13 6)
Published by Scarthin Books,
Cromford, Derbyshire DE4 3QF 01629-823272
THE DISCOVER DERBYSHIRE AND THE PEAK DISTRICT GUIDE
a wide range of features with heritage trails and detailed
countryside walks, through some of the most scenically attractive
countryside in the UK.
All details on this
page were correct at the time of publication, but changes may be made