Walk Diary Sunday 7 January 2018 Weather, 5°C. Sunny.
Allestree Park Depart 10 a.m. 10 ½ miles Leader: Jane H.
No. on walk 20
A good turnout on this a bright and sunny day, although the temperature remained quite low, but the lack of any wind allowed us to feel quite snug under our layers. Not our usual type of walk over moors, hills and open countryside, but one which avoided most of the mud, accumulated around the county after the recent wet weather, one of a more civilised nature and very interesting too. We did the three parks Allestree, Markeaton and Darley, also coming within a stones throw of Derby cathedral, not I hasten to add that we would want to throw stones at it! The walk itself, although advertised as an eight miler somehow became a smidgen longer, not that I’m an expert on smidgens, but it seems they are about two miles in length!
The weather and the very interesting places we went made this a very good walk and I think many of us ventured to places that we had not trod before. We set off from the centre of Allestree Park, walking south across the park, then to hug the southern boundary, avoiding the golf coarse, which was being used by a great many players even though there was frost on all of the greens. After leaving the park we walked through the northern most housing estate of Allestree to eventually, after many twists and turns, pass by the modern looking Woodlands School. After the junction of Kedleston Road, we left it to walk a private road and later crossing over the Markeaton Brook we took, what would have been a muddy lane passing by Markeaton Stones, we were saved from the mud by the frosted conditions underfoot.
By eleven thirty, our first break was taken at the Markeaton Park visitor centre, benches, seats and more importantly toilets were available. After our break we followed the Bonnie Prince Charlie Way, passing over the A38, by a spiralling overpass, we continued the ‘Way’, passing by many University of Derby sites, until reaching the inner ring road. Here we walked behind the renowned Radio Derby studios then to cross the busy A6, pausing to admire the magnificent church of St. John the Evangelist, pictured.
Northbound now we entered into Darley Abbey Park, near to the former Roman Bath House site, walking the length of the parkland to the cafe and seating area at the northern end. Seated in the sunshine we enjoyed a good lunch break along with it seems, a good number of the local population. With the break over we left the park, walking by the remains of the Abbey of Augustinian Canons, a pub, called The Abbey Inn is situated inside a fifteenth century monastic building. After passing over the River Derwent, near to Darley Mill, the group split, six taking a possible cleaner route, through the suburbs to Allestree, the rest of us following the eastern river bank as far as the A38. Here we went under the aforementioned road, climbing to it via some steep steps and a few more strides west to take the first road, Ford Lane, which leads to the A6, which we crossed to enter Allestree Park once more, this time following the tree line to return to our cars. With the sun shinning and clean boots, together with good company it truly was a great day out, thanks Jane.