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Middleton Top Area

Contact information

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Approx 9 miles away

Getting there from Ashbourne

See below


The Middleton Top area offers a visitor centre, cycle hire, walks & bike rides, the National Stone Centre and a historic winding house.

The winding house is the imposing building with the tall chimney, that you can see for miles around. It is the last surviving complete winding engine house built by the Cromford & High Peak Railway Co and still contains its original pair of beam engines. It was one of a series of winding engines and inclines required to lift railway carriages from the Cromford canal up to the High Peak Railway. The engines are still in working order and several times a year there are open days when you can experience them running.

The old railway line is now the High Peak Trail, a walking and cycling route which links with The Tissington Trail at Parsley Hay.

A short walk down the incline from Middleton Top is the National Stone Centre, which has a cafe, a self-guided tour around some of the disused limestone quarries above Wirksworth and offers courses in dry-stone walling.

Wirksworth is a charming town that is easily reached by walking on down through the Stone Centre (but remembering you have to walk back up!).

If you carry on down the inclines, past the Stone Centre, you find yourself at Black Rocks and further still at the bottom of the inclines is the Cromford Canal, part of the Derwent Valley World Heritage site.

By car from Ashbourne

Follow the B5035 towards Wirksworth and its on the left at the very top of the hill just before you drop down into Middleton village. Its about 9 miles from Ashbourne.

By bus from Ashbourne

Take service 110 or 111.

By bike or on foot

By bicycle it makes part of a fabulous all day round trip taking in the Tissington Trail and the High Peak Trail (route description coming soon).