If you are holidaying at Ashbourne Heights, it is likely you’ll find yourself walking or cycling along the Tissington Trail, which runs straight past the park. Here’s a quick guide to everything you need to know about the popular trail.
1/ The traffic-free trail runs for 13 miles between Parsley Hay and Ashbourne and is part of the national cycle network. It’s named after the town of Tissington.
2/ The trail was originally a train line linking Ashbourne and Buxton, but this was fully closed in 1967. Following the removal of the train track beds, the trail was renamed and reopened to walkers and cyclists in 1971, in one of the first schemes of its type.
3/ At its most northerly point, the Tissington Trail joins the High Peak Trail, which then continues in a south-easterly direction, heading away from Ashbourne.
4/ The trail is a fairly easy ride (or walk). With the exception of a steep incline at Mapleton, the trail gently slopes from north to south. You won’t notice the slope as you are cycling away from Ashbourne, but you’ll find riding back a breeze.
5/ There are several stop off points along the trail. The entrance to the outstandingly pretty village of Tissington features an avenue of 200 year old lime trees. The village has been managed by the FitzHerbert family since the reign of Elizabeth I and their Jacobean manor home, which stands just off the main street, is open to the public on 28 days of the year. Tissington is famous for its extravagant well dressing festival, which takes place each spring – this year’s dates are May 25-31.
6/ Another local highlight is Dovedale, a dramatic valley with superb scenery and the much-photographed stepping stones that span the River Dove (yes, you can cross them). The beautiful spot is home to plenty of wildlife and wild flowers, which are set against the sounds of the gently flowing river.
7/ Hartington is an historic village with a market charter dating back to the 13th century. As you approach the village from the Tissington Trail, you’ll pass what’s left of Hartington Station and see the preserved signal box that is left over from the original train line.
To walk or cycle the Tissington Trail, you can book a short break at Ashbourne Heights. With camping pitches, static caravans, a glamping pod and luxury lodges available, we cater for all tastes: