Sunday, September 4, 2011

Bradwell, Coplow Dale, Little Hucklow, Great Hucklow, Eyam, Stoney Middleton and Calver.

After getting off the bus at Bradwell church I walked south along Bradwell Dale. It was drizzling and murky, and with the tall trees and overhanging rocks it was very dark as I was walking along the road; so I put on my brightly-coloured anorak and took out my head-torch and held it so that oncoming traffic could see me.

I soon left the road behind and was steadily climbing up Green Dale and then across the fields to the hamlet of Coplow Dale.

The short path to Little Hucklow was overgrown with nettles and thistles. Even though I was wearing long trousers my legs still got stung by the nettles; it's fortunate that dock plants always grow in the same places that nettles do. After rolling up my trouser legs and giving my skin a vigorous rub with a couple of dock leaves to ease the stinging, I walked through the village, continued along the road and then took a track which leads to Great Hucklow.

I then took a route that bypassed Grindlow and Foolow, across typical White Peak countryside of grassy fields, sheep and drystone walls; arriving in Eyam to discover that it was the final day of the well-dressing celebrations.

This is a photograph of one of the 'Plague Cottages' - these green plaques, listing the names of the inhabitants who died during the plague outbreak in the seventeenth century are all over the village.

It was at times a difficult descent down to Stoney Middleton, due to slippery stones underfoot along certain sections; away from the main road many parts of this village are very attractive - such as this row of stone cottages.

Finally, there was a walk of less than a mile to Calver, where I arrived with plenty of time to enjoy a ten-item all-day breakfast at the café.

The bus arrived on time; it was a very old double decker, which really struggled going up the steepest hills, not travelling much quicker than walking pace and making some very unhealthy noises. To be honest, it didn't sound much better going downhill into Sheffield.

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