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Hartington Hall Youth Hostel

Hartington Hall Youth Hostel
Originally uploaded by GeoBlogs.
Youth Hostel - posted using Flickr

SLN FIELD WEEKEND – February 11th – 13th 2005


For a version with images head to

FRIDAY – 5.30pm onwards - ARRIVAL (from East Anglia, the Midlands, Kent, the North and 'north of the border')


Fog, rain, accidents on the roads all around.

Delegates gathered from 5.30pm onwards at Hartington Hall Youth Hostel, based in rooms 16 and 18, and the Byre Study Room.

An excellent venue for the weekend. For more details, head to This is a 4* hostel, which had a lot of Lottery funding for its renovation. Also has a Bonnie Prince Charlie room where he once slept, and free Fairtrade coffee.

For more information, e-mail the youth hostel: - but be quick because it gets booked up!

Drinks from 6.30 in the panelled entrance hall with Wood-burning stove. Excellent local Goldings ale.

Evening bar meal: out to one of the various pubs in and around market place: the DEVONSHIRE ARMS

Joined by others following a trip up in the fog from East Midlands Airport. Food and ale.

Back to the Youth Hostel in time to avoid the 'curfew'.

Night caps in the lounge, and carrot cake which had flown in the hold from Edinburgh but survived the trip.


Breakfast: the ladies were on time, the gentlemen were 'fashionably late' having woken up at 8.20am

Plans made.

A Day ‘in the field’ :

  • Visit to Bakewell as an example of a ‘honeypot’ location. Information gathering & visit to National Park Information Centre - nice diorama! - village tour and retail therapy.

  • Purchase of Original Bakewell Pudding optional (but recommended…) - cafe stop

Possible other stop offs included:
  • Long Rake – abandoned calcite mine

  • Arbor Low: stone circle

DEC Tsunami Appeal – Sponsored Walk

Circular route from Monsal Head Hotel.

The Stables’ serves food from 12 until 9pm, and has 13 real ales - also a huge roaring fire - sampled the 'Pale Rider' (CAMRA Champion Beer of Britain 2004) and noticed how everyone who came through the door was soaking wet through !

Great views of the Wye Valley and viaduct.

Out to meet up with Andy (Noel rang earlier and had a chest infection)

Walk along Monsal Head railway track over the viaduct, and then down towards Cressbrook Mill - discovered that the Water Cum Jolly Dale path to Litton was underwater - also started to hail and throw it down, so decided on a loop round over the tops, and then back down the railway track.

Back to the Youth Hostel - road flooded en route so had to take a detour.

Hour break to shower and warm up...

Resource swaps: Byre Study Room.

Swaps of CDs, books, resource sheets, Taboos.

Discussion of resources etc.

Presentations of Picasa image tool, OS Mountain biker viral, wonderful PhotoJams of Dundee and the Arbroath coast, Memory Map, Interactive Powerpoint quizzes etc.

Rather nice fruit cake too.

Evening Meal: Eliza's Restaurant - 3 courses for £7.50 - can't be bad! - serenaded with 'Green grow the rushes'... local ale

Geography Santa in the lounge – exchange of gifts - £3 limit - some very thoughtful and imaginative choices of gift, including:

Kentish Apple Juice, an Eyam plague rat, 'tablet' & oat cakes, globes, books, maps, Geog Hogs and lots more...


Breakfast - woke to a dusting of snow on the hills. Breakfast and resource hand-out by Kate.

Sunday morning stroll - drive out to Wetton via Hulme End, past a sign saying 'Welcome to Staffordshire'

Walk to Thor's Cave. A bit muddy ! - Manifold Valley and Thor's Cave image page

Back to the cars, and bye to Kate.

Back to Youth Hostel for final piece of cake and chat to LittleMiss.

Off back South, via the Via Gellia, World Heritage site of Derwent Mills, Ambergate (where I lived when I started my teaching career) & the Toyota plant at Burnaston, to East Midlands Airport, and back across the Fens...

Manchester 2006 ?


About me

  • I'm Alan Parkinson
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    Teacher at King's Ely
    Mission:Explorer with Explorer HQ
    Chartered Geographer
    Hon. FRSGS
    Tivy Education Medal Winner 2013
    OS Award Winner 2008
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