Wednesday, 4 January 2012

Peak Rail

Another fond Derbyshire memory was an impromptu stop coming back from Tideswell (to Matlock), and walking a small stretch of a disused railway line. A ghost of the old industrial Midlands. Old stations, tunnels, viaducts, all in unbeatable peak countryside. Memories were stirred up - and retrospectively informed - by Julia Bradbury's programme on the Monsal Trail, which follows the old track from Bakewell to Buxton. This is the first in her series of Railway Walks. Loved the photo of one of the stations pre-Beeching, with the green carriages and red enamel signs. Ruskin, of course, disapproved of the Midalnds Company ramming train lines through the Dales: ‘Every fool in Buxton can be at Bakewell in half-an-hour, and every fool in Bakewell at Buxton,’ he pronounced (I wonder why he felt it necessary to add the second half of the sentence). Having mentioned it in passing, here's a nice piece by Matthew Fort on the scrumptious town of Bakewell.