We set off from outside Hathersage Swimming Pool and walked down past the station and under the railway bridge towards the Plough Inn. Just before the bridge over the River Derwent, we turned off along a tarmac track signposted Public Footpath, Private Road (which really ought to be the title of a Mills and Boon novel).
The River Derwent was a bit full
and the track was rather damp too
A little further along, we had our first exciting discovery. On one side of the road was what appeared to be an ornate mounting block alongside the remains of a wall
while on the other side of the track, someone had been storing recovered building materials
Next we found what might once have been a font, just before our first sighting of the Magic River
here, it's nearly reached the River Derwent, but we'll meet it again later
The Magic River was so named when I was very young and used to visit it year-round where it flowed through the woods close to the Millstone Inn. Sometimes, though it wasn't there... (the drought of 1976 may have been responsible for that).
Having crossed the fields, we followed steep and muddy tracks up through the woods, encountering another stream along our way
before emerging into fields again to cross the railway
At last we came across our one and only sighting of part-finished millstones
I need to read up on whether they were all abandoned at exactly the same point, or whether the decline of the industry took place over weeks or even months.
Then we found a sign telling us where we'd been and where we could go, but not where we were actually going to, and had a sighting of another unusual stone
before encountering the Magic River again
At last we emerged onto the main Road and walked a short distance down to the Millstone Inn where Mum and I both grew up (her moreso than me)
Finally, I'll leave you all with a photo of the path to the section of the Magic River I used to know best, although sadly we didn't have time to visit it there before the rains came
A grand morning out indeed, and the panini at beer at the Millstone were much appreciated. I had a pint of Deception.