Going Loco!     The Cromford and High Peak Railway
by John Neave

Part 1 Part 2 Part 3 Part 4 Part 5 Part 6  

Part 5 - Today at the Cromford and High Peak Railway


After the road crossing, Friden (11) was soon seen by the sight of the chimneys of the Derbyshire Brick works. Once a user of the line but by the 60's using road transport the brick works used (and still uses) silica mined locally. At Friden the Middleton train would shunt the train into a siding.

A train from Buxton would be waiting with the empty limestone wagons and probably a water tender to be returned to Middleton. The locomotive of the waiting train, usually an Ivatt 2-6-0 or a Midland 4F 0-6-0, would take the Middleton train forward towards Buxton. The Middleton locomotive would then return with the empty train, at a considerably faster pace than on the uphill journey. The Hopton Incline would be descended with the full train with all brakes pinned down.


Nowadays I often return to the C&HPR with my family for a walk or cycle ride, as the trackbed is now a pathway, along with the Tissington trail, which is joined at Parsley Hay (12).

Winding House  

I highly recommend visitors to Derbyshire to visit the path of the C&HPR by starting at Middleton Top, where there is a visitor centre, where books on the C&PHR can be purchased, and there is a picnic site. At Middleton at the incline the old winding house can be seen, and the restored winding engine can be seen in operation on occasions. Cycles can be hired at both Middleton Top and Parsley Hay, and the length of the line from north of Parsley Hay to Cromford can be walked or cycled. Try cycling up the steep Hopton incline - all the way up without stopping - and then think "how did steam locomotives do it!?"

Final part - Visitor attractions

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