Peak District Mining Heritage Walks and Underground Mine Trips


Here are the guided walks and underground mine visits we currently have planned for the next few months in the Derbyshire Peak District. Do keep checking back here, as more walks and underground trips will be added to the list. 

All our walks are free, and are open to all (not just PDMHS members). However, pre-booking is required when walks are limited to a certain number of people. As the walks are all also weather-dependent, we can keep you informed by email of any changes or cancellation in the event of bad weather. You can contact us at Any changes due to weather conditions will also be posted on the website, so it is advisable to check back here before you set out.

Also, if you are planning on attending with a large number of friends, it would be worth checking with us in advance about car parking availability. 

Donate to support the work of Peak District Mines Historical SocietyOur walks are free but if you would like to express your appreciation, a donation would be very welcome. Alternatively you might like to join PDMHS.

Insurance is compulsory for those going on underground trips. The PDMHS UEG (Underground Exploration Group) can arrange this if you don’t already hold BCA insurance. You can contact the UEG here.

If you want to find out more information about any of our guided mining and industrial heritage walks, contact Chris at

Sunday August 12th – Mining Heritage Walk to Longstone Edge, Longstone Moor, and Stoney Middleton. CANCELLED DUE TO WEATHER CONDITIONS.

Apologies to anyone who was planning to come on this walk, but it will be rescheduled in the near future.

Leader – Chris James

An all day circular walk timed to take advantage of the rare limestone heather being in flower. The walk is approximately 7 miles in length, and will involve a total ascent of about 250m. to its highest point. Meet at 10.30 in the car park next to the playing fields at the bottom of Coombs Dale OS grid ref SK236751, on the left of the A623 just before you get into Stoney Middleton (coming from Calver crossroads). This walk is free and open to all – no pre-booking required. Bring a packed lunch and a drink. Dogs are welcome but must be kept on leads as we will be on sheep pasture for much of the walk.

On our route, we will pass the entrance to Sallet Hole Mine (which was working until relatively recently), then go up to look at the former opencast fluorspar workings along Hard Rake on Longstone Edge, before heading over to Longstone Moor to inspect an old tramway connected with fluorspar mining, and the site of Cackle Mackle Mine. We will then return to our starting point via the settling lagoons of Cavendish Mill and the disused limestone quarries and lime kilns of Stoney Middleton. Lots of other stuff to see on the way!

Optional drink in the Moon Inn, Stoney Middleton, afterwards.

Tuesday August 14th – Underground trip into Owlet Hole Mine, Matlock Bath

Leader – Adam Russell
Meet at 19:00 at the Mining Museum, Matlock Bath. 8 places available. Insurance is required for this trip – the PDMHS UEG (Underground Exploration Group) can arrange this if you don’t already hold BCA insurance.

This easy trip will visit Owlet Hole Mine, a small but interesting site above Temple Mine which shows evidence of mining from the 17th century through to modern times. The trip is suitable for novices. It involves a climb on a fixed ladder but this will be roped up if required. Optional drinks in the Fishpond afterwards.

Thursday August 23rd – Heritage walk in Eccleshall Woods, Sheffield

Leader- Rob Hindle. 10.00am start (estimated finish 12-12:30). This is a pleasant woodland walk of about 7km with little climb, pausing at about a dozen of the more interesting features. I don’t claim any special expert knowledge of the area and will be pleased to hear from anyone who can add to what I have managed to find out.

An audit of Ecclesall woods identified over 1000 historical features. These include some which are of coal and ganister mining interest – including evidence of a small coal mine worked by two men until early WW2. Relevant to the lead industry are what is described as “a lead smelting mill”, numerous Q-pits and some nearby fields which were known as “upper and lower belland”.

Please note: as this is the first time we have arranged a heritage walk on a weekday during the daytime (rather than in the evening), booking is essential on this walk to make sure there is enough interest to make it worth running.

There are now enough signed up to confirm that the walk will be going ahead, however pre-registration is still required.  Should it be necessary to cancel/postpone (e.g. severe weather) you will be contacted by email.

Please contact to book your place as soon as possible. There is no charge for the walk, and details of the meeting place will be sent by email closer to the date.

Tuesday August 28th – Heritage walk to Chelmorton Low

Leader – Adam Russell
Meet at 19:00 outside the Church Inn, Chelmorton. This walk is free and open to all – no pre-booking required.
This short walk is a re-run of the one scheduled for April which was rained off, and will visit sites of interest on Chelmorton Low, including a number of mines, prehistoric barrows, and limekilns, as well as taking in some fine views. It will involve ascents and descents on steep slopes so please wear suitable footwear – though hopefully this time the ground will be dry! Optional drinks afterwards in the Church Inn.

Tuesday 11th September – Underground trip into Goodluck Mine, Via Gellia

Leaders: Paul Chandler & GLMPC Member. 
This visit is courtesy of the Goodluck Mine Preservation Club (GLMPC).

An opportunity to explore this fascinating old lead mine which is full of interesting features.

Two trips will be on offer: An easy walk around type trip, which will explore the quite extensive ‘visitor route’ in the mine and a more adventurous trip exploring the workings off the visitor route. BCA Insurance is essential for the ‘adventurous trip’, but optional for the other trip. Brief details of both trips are as follows:

Adventurous trip – Leader: GLMPC (tbc). Climbing lots of fixed ladders, crawly bits, etc, but no SRT. Oversuit recommended.

Easy trip – Leader: Paul Chandler. All walking/stooping size passages. Dry, apart from puddles/drips. Muddy underfoot in places. Boilersuit or old clothes fine for this trip.

It is well worth bringing a camera or smartphone for either trip. Duration of both trips is 2hrs (approx), and there is a maximum of ten places available. Priority will be given to Society members, who have not visited before. Donation of £5 requested (free for GLMPC members). To book your place(s), get details of the meeting time/place, please contact Paul, either by email at or tel 01246-220773. Please state your trip preference when booking. Optional drink after trip in the local area. Reference: “Lead Mining in the Peak District” edited by T D Ford & J H Rieuwerts (2000 edition).

Tuesday 25th September 2018 – Underground Trip into Holmebank Chert Mine, Bakewell

Leader: Paul Chandler.
Meet 7.15pm Holme Lane, Bakewell, parking on the lane. Insurance is required for this trip – the PDMHS UEG (Underground Exploration Group) can arrange this if you don’t already hold BCA insurance.
Another opportunity for Society members (& guests) to explore this interesting, quite extensive mine, with around five miles of passages! An ideal trip for novices and also of interest to experienced explorers. An easy grade, dry trip. A boilersuit or old clothes are fine for this trip. Mostly large, walking or stooping size passages and easy scrambles. The popular through trip is planned, exiting via the quarry entrance. Well worth bringing a camera/smartphone, as this is quite a photogenic mine. Everyone attending will need BCA insurance or similar. Party size is not limited, but booking is advisable by contacting Paul, either by email: or tel: 01246-220773. Optional drink after trip in local area. Access by permission of Oldfield Design, Bakewell. References: Mining History (PDMHS) Vol.13, No.5 (1998) & Vol.19, No.6 (2017).  

If you would like to borrow a caplamp & helmet for yourself and/or a guest(s) for either of the 2 trips above, please contact Paul Chandler, who has a limited number of caplamps, helmets & other equipment for a nominal cost, eg a pint at the pub! 

Sunday September 30th – Barmote Court walk in the Monyash area

Leader – Adam Russell
Meet at 10:00am by the market cross, Monyash.
This walk, timed to be as close as possible to the date of the Autumn High Peak Barmote Court, will have a general theme of mining law and disputes. It will visit the ancient and extensive workings on Whalf Pipe, crossing over to Flagg then from there crossing into Ashford Liberty to view Highlow and Hard Rake. We will then return to Monyash, passing Greensward Rake on the way, and call in at the churchyard to view the grave of Charles Millington, the last of the independent Peak lead miners. The walk will in end the Bull’s Head Inn, where the Great Barmote Court of the High Peak met, to partake of ale in the traditional manner (though not in the traditional quantities!).

Museum Heritage Events

The museum hosts Derbyshire Heritage Talks and offers Guided Heritage Walks, for  times, dates, costs and other details please check the Museum Web Site news page or their Facebook page.

The Guided heritage walks are led by local expert Tony Wood. Tickets  must be purchased in advance from the Peak District Lead Mining Museum in Matlock Bath. Not only does Tony have an extensive knowledge of the local Lead mining history but also the people and places.  His walks have usually been sold out and attract many “repeat visitors”.  You can buy tickets in person at the Museum (check the Museum web site for opening times) or you can email here or phone 01629 583834. Card payments can be taken over the phone for a minimum of 2 or more tickets.

Evening walks begin at 7.00pm and aim to finish by 9.00pm. The starting point will be given when you purchase your tickets.

Separate from the Museum, PDMHS also operates a series of Heritage Walks and underground trips free of charge for members of the society (underground trips require public liability insurance which can be arranged by joining the Underground Exploration Group for which there is an additional cost).

Derbyshire Heritage Talks are hosted at the Peak District Lead Mining Museum in Matlock Bath (part of PDMHS). Talks are on Tuesday Evenings at 7:30 and cover a wide range of historical aspects of the area, including the mining heritage but also other industrial archaeology, folk-lore, social history. These events are well attended and tickets should be purchased in advance (at the museum or by phone to 0162 958 3834) to avoid disappointment.  Tickets cost £6 (£5 to PDMHS members and Friends of the Pavilion).

Heritage Talks Schedule:

  • 2 October 2018: The history of the Cromford Canal
  • 6 Nov: The poisonous legacy of lead mining & smelting
  • 4 Dec: The Wirksworth quarries
  • 8 Jan 2019: Mining hazards
  • 5 Feb: Eyam plague
  • 5 March: Folk lore, calendar customs and annual events in the Peak district
  • 2 April: Archaeology of the 18th & 19th century steam engines in the Peak district 

Note that the schedule is subject to change, you are advised to check with the Museum.


Heritage walk report: Ecclesall Woods 22 Aug 2018

This was an experiment to see if a mid-week daytime walk would attract any participants.  It did, 11 on the walk (could have been more, a further 2 missed the start point and one had to cancel).

It was also an experiment from the leader’s perspective, claiming limited knowledge and welcoming corrections and additions from the participants.  That aspect worked out OK too.

It was a pleasant woodland walk of about 7km featuring, as well as some items of lead-processing interest and extractive industries, other natural resources and non mining historical features dating as far back as 2-3000 BC.

A map and full details are available on this web site to logged-in members as a PDF.

Magpie Mine Heritage open day: 16 Sept 2018

The Society is pleased to announce that one of the Heritage Open Day events in the Derbyshire Peak District will be held at the Magpie lead mine, near Sheldon, on Sunday 16th September 2018.

The day’s events will include:
– guided tours of the buildings and other surface features of the mine. Tours take place on the hour from 11.00am to 4.00pm, with the last tour starting at 4.00pm. (Tours last about 1 hour). No booking required – just turn up on the day.
– light refreshments including tea and coffee

There is no charge for entry or for the guided tours but donations to PDMHS to help fund the upkeep of the site are most welcome.

No underground access is possible at Magpie Mine but you can safely look down the mine shaft which is over 700ft deep.  If you would like to visit some historic underground lead mining workings our Museum in Matlock Bath offers guided tours of Temple Mine a short walk from the museum.  See the museum web site for times and prices. 
For more extensive mine exploration members of PDMHS can join our Underground Exploration Group.

The Magpie Mine is the best preserved example of a 19th century lead mine anywhere in Britain, and was in use from at least 1650 until 1958 – the last working lead mine in Derbyshire. It is now a Scheduled Monument, and is looked after by the Peak District Mines Historical Society. You can read more about the history of Magpie Mine here.

There is no vehicle access to the mine site itself, but cars can be left on the road close to the mine. A short walk along a track leads to the mine buildings, which are situated near the village of Sheldon in the Peak District, three miles west of Bakewell, and two miles east of Monyash. The event will be signposted from the A6 at Ashford-in-the-Water and other roads which lead to the site. Use postcode DE45 1QU to find it on sat-nav, or click here to see the location on Google maps.
Sturdy footwear is advised because parts of the site are quite rough. The site, at over 1000ft above sea level on the limestone plateau is quite exposed, so a wind- and waterproof jacket is also advisable.

This event is not suitable for children under the age of 5.  Visitors are asked to take care not to interfere with any aspect of this Scheduled Monument to ensure the site, with its historic artefacts and buildings, remains in good condition for the enjoyment and education of future generations. 

More about Magpie and other Heritage Open Days. 


Website offline 11/7/18

The PDMHS web site was offline for 10 hours on 11 July. The webmaster spotted the problem within a few minutes and raised a support ticket with our web host CWCS.  They found that a cluster of servers was affected. Rebuilding and restoring from backups then took about 10 hours. To put it in context this represents 99.9% availability on an annual basis against a target of 99.99%. Although regrettable, even business critical computer systems do experience occasional technical issues and reliability remains far better than, for example, TSBs recent 5 day outage.

Emails sent to PDMHS addresses will have been delayed until the server recovered.

CWCS maintains backup copies of all web sites they host but in addition we take our own daily off-site copy of the PDMHS site.  This places us in the position that, should the need arise, we could restore the web site to a different hosting service.

Ivor Brown memorial day 27 Oct 2018

Dr Ivor Brown was a pioneer in the documentation of Yorkshire’s coal mining heritage.  He wrote or contributed to numerous articles in PDMHS Bulletin of Mining History.

The Friends of The Ironbridge Gorge Museums and the Shropshire Caving & Mining Club are holding a day of talks and films in memory of Dr Ivor Brown, Saturday 27th October 2018 in the Glass Classroom, Ironbridge Gorge Museum Offices, Coalbrookdale. Details here.