can you get from a Visit to Matlock Bath?
A visit to Matlock Bath can be very rewarding whatever time
of year you choose and whatever the weather. The scenery here is
stunning and because the village is a designated conservation area
a great deal has being done to conserve and protect the buildings
is something in Matlock Bath to suit every taste – from museums
to amusements. They live quite happily side by side because
the conservation area guidelines keep control of any excessive promotional
activity that might jar with aesthetics, while allowing businesses
to prosper, along with the historical and scenic side of tourism
that has made Matlock Bath so worth visiting and which is nurtured
by its other core businesses and attractions.
web site, presented by the creator of the Life in a Lens museum
and The Victorian Teashop, promotes all aspects
of Matlock Bath, but particularly the really pleasant aspects Matlock
Bath has to offer – being the gateway to the Peak District
and blessed as it is with breath-taking scenery. Click on
any of the pictures to enlarge them.
Bath is a unique village just south of Matlock in Derbyshire nestled alongside
the River Derwent in a steep and beautiful gorge. It developed as
a spa town in the nineteenth century and was extremely fashionable
and prosperous, with its spectacular scenery adding to the general
appeal. It was visited by the then Princess (later Queen) Victoria
on 22 Oct 1832 .She was a guest of the Duke of Devonshire staying at
nearby Chatsworth House and visited again in 1844. These visits served to
enhance the reputation of the resort but eventually the advent
of the railway changed all that, bringing 'day trippers' by the
score. It was at this time that Matlock Bath developed its inland
'seaside' resort image that it still carries today.
health spar aspect of Matlock Bath began much earlier than Victorian
times. In fact, it was in 1698 that three medicinal springs were discovered. Soon afterwards the first 'bath' was devised
and constructed. It was made of wood and lined with lead and it was
this that gave Matlock 'Bath' its name.
famous people have made comment on Matlock Bath, including Lord
Byron and Mary Shelley, who mentions Matlock (Bath) in her novel
'Frankenstein': "We proceeded to Matlock (Bath), which
was our next place of rest. The country in the neighbourhood of
this village resembles Switzerland; but everything is on a lower
scale". In those days, many people used the name 'Matlock'
when they meant 'Matlock Bath'. John Wesley found it "pleasant
beyond expression"; Ruskin expressed his delight as did Nathaniel
Hawthorne. The extremely observant 'Poet Laureate', Sir John Betjeman,
wrote a poem about the village, which is actually called 'Matlock
Bath'. Click on Sir John's photograph to the left to read it.
recent years the village has continued to thrive and is a favourite
place for tourists visiting the Peak District. The original railway
station also exists and this still brings visitors in their thousands.
is true to say that Matlock Bath has lost a number of its shops
recently, but there are other developments, and maybe 'shopping'
in a general sense is going out of fashion a little these days.
The trade in Matlock Bath now seems aimed towards a 'cafe-culture'
and 'attractions', subtle and otherwise, and given the right direction
and freedom from the tediously stale 1960's image of 'seaside' and
fish and chips, the village could see a wonderful upturn in its
fortunes and attract a much broader market base year round – it certainly has the natural setting and the beautiful
buildings for it.
the best out of Matlock Bath
is a lot to be said for visiting Matlock Bath in the 'off season'
as well as the main summer season and very many people do so. It
can be the best way to see the truly breath-taking nature of the
Gorge, particularly when the trees are bare and also the best way
of seeing the variety of interesting Georgian and Victorian buildings
that give Matlock Bath its wonderful architectural heritage and
friendly appeal. Having said that, if you choose the right time
to visit, even in the high summer Matlock Bath can be a very quiet
and relaxing place – very different from the often over-loaded
Sundays when you can't really see anything except who not to bump
fact, the atmosphere in Matlock Bath changes like the tide –
from day to day, week to week, season to season –
just like the Derwent River changes in character as it flows through
the year, from gentle and placid to occasional raging torrent that
washes tree trunks southward towards the city of Derby.
"Jubilee Bridge", which we featured on our Matlock Bath
web cam site, was build in 1897 and has seen many thousands of visitors
cross the Derwent river to the fantastic historical park with its
'lovers walks', children's play areas and high paths up the cliff
faces. The park is currently the subject of a revitalisation scheme.
site contains photographs of the 'Matlock Bath' so often missed
among the bustle of tourism and traffic that can overwhelm
the village and ruin its appeal. As business owners and residents
who have found both peace and prosperity in this pleasanter side
of the village, we can honestly say it is a 'Matlock Bath' that exists
with much greater force that than those hectic days that project its sometimes
will continue to add to this site and hope our efforts will help
to attract a broader interest in the place and its unique geographic
location. We also hope to promote a curiosity for its wonderful
atmosphere, which changes subtly throughout the days and weeks of
the year. What you may experience here on a given Sunday
can be worlds apart from the following Monday, or even a different
Sunday in another part of the year – we said at the beginning,
there is something here in Matlock Bath for everyone – there
is also a time for everyone – come and find yours!
about our teashop, museum and other web site developments, such
as the amusing Teashop site and the live web cam can be found on