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New canoe trails in Derbyshire mark exciting partnership with Derbyshire County Council

Two new canoe trials in Derbyshire; the Cromford Heritage Canal trail and Chesterfield Canal trail, mark an exciting partnership between British Canoeing and Derbyshire County Council.

The two new trails, which can be downloaded below, have been developed by British Canoeing in partnership with Derbyshire County Council and are now open to allow British Canoeing members* to paddle the trails free of charge, with the requirement to pre-register your attendance when paddling Cromford Canal. 

Cromford Canal is a particularly special trail, with such rich industrial heritage. Many towns, villages and sites across the UK can lay claim to being the birthplace of the Industrial Revolution – but Cromford’s claim is as strong as any. Water flowing from Cromford Sough helped keep the River Derwent frost free, leading Richard Arkwright to chose the tiny Derbyshire village as the site for the world’s first water-power cotton spinning mill, which opened in 1771. With Arkwright’s Mill, the increasing development of further industries in the area and the continued quarrying and mining in the region led to increased demands for an improved and reliable navigation to help transport both raw materials and finished goods to and from this gateway to the Peak District. The new Cromford Canal was opened in 1794, connecting to the Erewash and Nottingham canals at Langley Mill, and from there to Nottingham itself and the River Trent.

The Chesterfield Canal trail has an interesting background too, as the canal previously ran right from the centre of the town to the River Trent at West Stockwith. As the canal system declined many sections became derelict, and today the canal is cut into two navigable sections.

All the information you need to paddle these two trails can be found in the PDF downloads below.

* Your membership number will be required by Tapton Lock Visitors Centre (Chesterfield Canal) and Middleton Top Visitors Centre (Cromford Canal) when booking.

Useful Downloads