Glossop, long a western gateway into the Peak, is beautifully situated at the foot of Snake Pass. The famous A57 Snake Pass Road weaves up from Glossop across the the Dark Peak heights of Snake Pass and Featherbed Moss where it meets the Pennine Way, then down through Hope Forest to emerge spectacularly at Ladybower Reservoir and the Upper Derwent Valley. In fine weather this is one of England's most beautiful drives. Glossop's rich heritage stretches back to the Roman period. A Roman Fort, Melandra Castle, once sat just 2 miles west of Glossop at Gamesley. An old Roman Road, Doctor's Gate, ran over the Snake Pass connecting Glossop to the Roman Fort of Navio at Brough near Castleton. Glossop was the Roman western gateway fort protecting their lead mining interests in the Dark Peak. Glossop's history is also linked closely to cotton textiles in the 19th century. Acclaimed British designer Vivienne Westwood was born in the Glossop area. Her mother was a weaver in a local cotton mill and her father was a local shoemaker. Glossop is ideally situated for access on to the Pennine Way which weaves up east of the town.
Hadfield just north of Glossop is famously linked to the hit TV series and film 'The League of Gentlemen' which was filmed around the Hadfield, known in the series as Royston Vasey. Particular sites which featured in the TV series in Hadfield include the award winning J.W.Mettrick Local Butchers and Cafe Royston. The Cafe Royston in Hadfield features B&B accommodation and cycle hire. Hadfield is ideally situated for easy access on to both the Trans Pennine Trail and the Pennine Bridleway. Both these trails are open to horse riders, cyclists and walkers. The Trans Pennine Trail weaves up from Hadfield to the beautiful Longdendale Valley which contains stunning reservoirs including Torside Reservoir which a cafe open in summer and an adjacent car park.
Glossop and Hadfield are popular holiday bases for walkers looking to access the network of walking trails in the area. The Pennine Way National Trail weaves up across the Snake Pass and Bleaklow just east of Glossop making the town a popular stopping off base with Pennine Way walkers. The Trans Pennine Trail (TPT), which celebrates its 21st Anniversary in 2010, is open to walkers, cyclists and horse riders and passes through Hadfield and Longdendale then across the Peak District National Park via Windle Edge and on to Penistone. The Pennine Bridleway National Trail, open to horse riders, mountain bikers and walkers also sits close to Hadfield and Glossop just to the west.
Glossop is beautifully situated right at the foot of Snake Pass. The stunning A57 Snake Pass Road, a major trans-pennine route and one of the most spectacular drives in the Peak District, pushes up from Glossop across the Dark Peak moors down through Hope Forest to emerge at the Upper Derwent reservoirs. The 373 TM Travel bus service runs between Glossop, Derwent and the Reservoirs and Castleton during the weekends via the Snake Pass and famous Snake Pass Inn. (see timetable via the Bus Timetable website link right). Glossop and Hadfield Railway stations link the towns to the North West and Manchester (Northern Rail).
Glossop has a rich heritage stretching back to the Romans who quickly realised Glossop's strategic importance as a western gateway to the Dark Peak's lead deposits. The Old Glossop original settlement sits around Glossop Brook, Market Square and the old Cross. Fine historic buildings can be found around the Old Glossop area. The old Roman Road, known as Doctor's Gate, sweeps up from Old Glossop across the Snake Pass. This road would have connected the two Roman Forts of Melandra at Gamesley just west of Glossop to Navio at Brough near Castleton. In the 19th century through to the early 20th century Glossop was a major centre for cotton textiles. At one time towards the end of the 19th century there were over 50 mills around Glossopdale, with mill workers coming in from Manchester and Stockport.
Glossop town centre is a perfect base for easy access into the Peak District National Park and is ideally close to top West Peaks attractions at Hayfield and New Mills including the Sett Valley Trail. Glossop town centre contains the Partington Theatre, a superb venue for family theatre shows. The main Glossop high street bustles with a fine choice of shops, traditional inns, cafes, and tearooms. The town boasts excellent amenities and a superb choice of B&B and self catering accommodation. The Glossop Heritage Centre has now sadly closed, but the Glossop Heritage Trust continues its work and often has a stall at local events. The Trust's website (link right) offers further information on Glossop's fascinating history and details on heritage trails around Old Glossop.
Hadfield just north or Glossop is ideally situated close to the Pennine Bridleway National Trail and the Trans Pennine Trail. Both these trails are popular routes for horse riding and a selection of B&B farms in both the Hadfield and Glossop area near the Bridleway offer stabling facilities.
The Trans Pennine Trail (Coast-to-Coast route), open to horse riders as well as cyclists and walkers, also passes through Hadfield en-route to Longdendale and Torside reservoir then on towards Penistone. The Longdendale Trail (7 miles from Hadfield to the Woodhead Tunnels) forms part of a small section of the Trans Pennine Trail and commences from Hadfield following the line of the former Manchester to Sheffield railway up to the beautiful Upper Longdendale Valley reservoirs including Torside which boasts a sailing club. A car park is also at Crowden and Torside Reservoir for access on to the Longdendale Trail.
A selection of charming B&B guesthouses cluster around the Longdendale reservoirs, particularly around popular Torside reservoir which boasts a car park, cafe during summer and public toilets. See iknow listings for more information.
Hadfield is also famously the site of the popular TV series and film the 'League of Gentlemen'. Hadfield appeared as Royston Vasey, the famous 'local village for local people' in the dark comedy series. The award winning J.W.Mettrick & Son Butchers in Hadfield featured in the hit TV series (website link right). Also fans of the TV hit series can visit Cafe Royston on Station Road in Hadfield. Above Cafe Royston is the Hikers & Bikers B&B offering accommodation above the cafe. Cycle Hire is also available at the Hikers & Bikers and cycle trails lead up from the B&B into the beautiful Longdendale Valley.
Clog dancing image contributed by Alan Flemming. Railway station image contributed by Alan Flemming. Hills above Glossop image contributed by Alan Flemming. All images are copyrighted but licensed for further reuse under the Creative Commons License.