• Dew pond on farm
    hoe grange blog posts

Browse through our blog posts to find out what life is like at Hoe Grange Holidays along with some great ideas for days out in the Peak District.

Three accessible adventures in the Peak District

July 21, 2022

Welcome to the Peak District and to Hoe Grange Holidays, our accessible self-catering log cabins on the edge of Matlock, between Bakewell and Ashbourne.

We welcome everyone here and are passionate about the service we provide for guests with accessibility needs. For anyone with additional needs – be that limited mobility, a wheelchair user, neurodivergent, those with autism or learning difficulties or dementia – we are proud of our well-designed log cabins.

Not only are the log cabins wheelchair accessible and equipped with a wide range of specialist equipment they’re cosy and offer a real home from home. [read more about our accessible holidays in the Peak District here]

Three-day itinerary for guests with additional accessibility needs

We’re also proud to say that the Peak District and Derbyshire is one of the most accessible destinations in the UK and the region’s tourism businesses are working hard to provide quality facilities and services for all.

But enough about us, we’re here to help you have a memorable stay in the Peak District. To do that, we’ve put together this three-day itinerary of some of our favourite accessible places to visit in the Peak District and included lots of insider tips to help you get the most from your stay.

Day one – an accessible day out at Cromford Mills

Start your stay at Hoe Grange Holidays with a step back in time to the world’s first successful water-powered cotton spinning mill. You may be thinking what’s so special about a mill, but this isn’t just any old mill; Cromford Mills is the birthplace of the modern factory system and a cornerstone of the Industrial Revolution.

Sir Richard Arkwright's Cromford Mill

Built by Richard Arkwright in 1771, its impact on life across the world was huge, and it’s well worth spending the day there.

Just a 15-minute drive from Hoe Grange, Cromford Mills is the northern gateway to the Derwent Valley Mills UNESCO World Heritage Site so it’s a big deal in its own right.

But one of the reasons we love it so much for an accessible day out is because, as you’d expect from a mill, it’s next to water, the Cromford Canal. Running alongside the canal, the towpath is wheelchair-friendly and leads up to High Peak Junction, a peaceful spot with views over Cromford.

The Wheatcroft’s Wharf Cafe opposite the mill is a great spot for lunch (it has level access) before exploring the rest of the site. Despite being a historic Grade I listed building, a large proportion of Cromford Mills is accessible for wheelchair users, and trip hazards are kept to a minimum.

Audio guides are available and for autistic people, staff will happily fast track you through any queues. We really appreciate the attention to detail the staff go to at Cromford Mills, and we’ve found it makes for a really welcoming experience for all.

Other accessible features include a Changing Places toilet across the road at Cromford Wharf (these can make a huge difference to some so it’s great to know there’s one by the canal) and an audio track for the videos in the Video Centre and the Arkwright Experience. For the full description of the site, click here for Cromford Mills’ Accessibility Guide.

When you’re finished at the Mills, don’t miss exploring the Beyond the Mill Walls area, a beautiful riverside meadow with wild flowers, accessible picnic benches and gorgeous views over Willersley Castle and St Mary’s Church. For the visually impaired, the meadow also has tactile chainsaw sculptures to explore.

If you have time, it’s well worth taking a trip on the Birdswood barge, a historical narrow boat that journeys along the Cromford Canal. Either board one of the scheduled trips, or charter a private cruise and get up close to the wildlife that calls the canal home. The horse drawn trips are very peaceful and relaxing.

Chocolate or cheese?

There is plenty of delicious food and drink to choose from today. If you've stayed before you know how David loves chocolate so top of our list are the exceptionally tasty and beautiful hand-crafted chocolates made by Martin at the Taylor-Wilde Chocolatier in Cromford village just a five-minute walk from the Mills.

Taylor-Wilde chocolatier

Next door to the chocolate shop you’ll find Parkys Eatery, which serves one of our favourite ‘proper’ cream teas – with crustless triangle sandwiches, delicious cakes and cream scones for £19.50 per head. Whilst it isn’t wheelchair accessible inside and doesn’t have a disabled toilet, on a summer's day you can sit outside. It’s also dog friendly and it's great to see such a selection of vegan options.

Parkys Eatery Cromford village

Lastly, pop into Cromford Mill Cheese Shop to buy some cheese. You’ll be spoilt for choice, but our favourites are Dovedale Blue (a creamy soft blue cheese made from milk produced within 12 miles of the Dovedale valley) and Peakland White (a crumbly and tangy traditional white stilton). The Miller’s Damsel Buttermilk hexagonal crackers are a must to go with them!

Cromford Cheese Shop

Day two - the jewel in Peak District's crown, Chatsworth House

Whether it’s your first time staying with us at Hoe Grange Holidays or your fifth, spending the day at 16th century Chatsworth House is a must. Home to the Cavendish family since the 1500's, the stately home is everything you’d expect from one of the grandest in English history. It is set in an idyllic spot on the River Derwent in over 1,000 acres of parkland and formal gardens.

Bakewell - pudding or tart?

But before getting stuck into everything that Chatsworth has to offer, on the drive there you’ll pass through the pretty market town of Bakewell, which is well worth stopping at for a cuppa and a Bakewell Pudding from the Old Original Bakewell Pudding Shop. The Bakewell pudding, rather than the tart of Mr Kipling fame, is the truly authentic local speciality and the recipe is a closely guarded secret!

Bakewell pudding

There’s a café on the first floor and a well-stocked shop on the ground floor selling artisan breads and of course the famous Bakewell Pudding – you can even post one to your friends and family around the world!

A warm welcome at Chatsworth House

One of the reasons we highly recommend a visit to Chatsworth House is because of the staff. They are so welcoming and accommodating, it’s a real treat to experience. The house and grounds are home to the Duke and Duchess of Devonshire. Incredibly Chatsworth has been home to the Cavendish family for 16 generations!

Chatsworth gardens

The house and its contents have evolved over five centuries and it has one of Europe’s most significant art collections, including everything from Old Masters and Ancient Egypt artefacts, to contemporary ceramics and computer portraits.

Accessibility at Chatsworth House

Over 30 rooms are open to the public in the house, and our favourites include the Painted Hall and the Sculpture Gallery. A lift provides access to each floor of the house, allowing wheelchair users and people with reduced mobility to cover the entire visitor route; visitors with visual impairments receive a complimentary audio tour of the house when buying admission tickets. You'll find the Chatsworth Accessibility information and map useful and it’s worth calling ahead if you’re planning to visit. The staff are very friendly and can accommodate most requests given enough time.

Chatsworth Gardens

There is so much to explore in the grounds as well. If you’re visiting with children don’t miss the farmyard, where you can get up close to the animals and watch the cows being milked. The adventure playground with a zip wire, and the huge sand pit and water play splash areas are always popular. 

Adventure Playground at Chatsworth House

photo by Chatsworth House Trust

Chatsworth Gardens

For those with limited mobility the 45-minute garden buggy tour at £15 is the best way to see the impressive gardens and parkland, much of which remain as they were when created by Capability Brown in the 1760s. Keep an eye out for red and fallow deer, and the Ring Pond, the Rockery and the Cascade. The Cascade is one of our favourite spots in the gardens – we love simply sitting on the sloping grass and splashing about in the water. It's not often you're allowed to sit on the lawn in formal gardens!

This year Chatsworth also has a stunning display of gigantic sculptures in the park. Radical Horizons: The Art of Burning Man exhibition is on from now until 1st October.

On your way back to Hoe Grange, call in at the new Chatsworth Kitchen at Peak Village in Rowsley. Everything on the menu is sourced from the estate and its local community of farmers, producers and makers. A real taste of the Peak District.

Chatsworth Kitchen at Rowsley

Day three – wildlife spotting at the serene Carsington Water

After all the excitement of the previous two days, it’s time to take things a little slower with a trip to Carsington Water, just a 10-minute drive from Hoe Grange.

A peaceful spot at the edge of the Peak District, Carsington Water has only existed since 1991, yet the reservoir feels older than that, sitting comfortably among its wooded shores and gently sloping hills.

Birdwatching at Carsington

Lots of walking routes and wheelchair-friendly trails circle the reservoir, so visitors with mobility issues can loop the whole eight-mile route if you wish. Two of the four bird hides are easily accessible, and there’s a Wildlife Centre, where you’ll find a RSPB shop staffed with knowledgeable staff happy to share advice on the best places to spot local buzzards, kingfishers and lapwings.

Bird watching at Carsington Water

At Carsington, there are reed beds, ponds, wildflower meadows and native woodlands, so a day spent here makes for a wonderfully sensory experience.

Get out on the water with Sailability 

And if you fancy getting out on the water, Carsington Sailing Club runs twice-weekly sailability sessions for people with disabilities. Taking place on Wednesdays and Saturdays, the sessions are a great opportunity to experience the tranquillity and freedom of being on the water, or to progress your dinghy sailing skills.

Sailing at Carsington Water

What better way to round off our 3 day itinerary than with some delicious pub grub at the dog-friendly Miners Arms at Carsington. Expect a warm welcome, and great pub food, freshly cooked using local produce from trusted suppliers.

Felicity 

Miners Arms Carsington

in the press

our farm

our environment

View our accommodation...

Contact us or book direct online to avoid disappointment

Hoe Grange Holidays Tripadvisor Comments...

  •   Myself and my sister travelled to Costa Rica and Panama via Viva Holidays Ltd. The holiday was exceptional and one to be treasured forever. Andrew at Viva Holidays... read more

    Paula C
    7/04/2019

      Loved every minute of our stay, and so did the family and friends that came to stay. Excellent facilities in our cosy Hipley log cabin. By far the best... read more

    krimpenijssel
    10/25/2019

      For the second year running, we have had a great family holiday at Hoe Grange. We had one cabin for the week, for two sisters and our elderly wheelchair-using... read more

    EJYork2013
    6/25/2019
  •   We stayed in Pinder cabin and had a lovely stay, the cabin was spacious and comfortable, nice and warm after cold days out. The children loved meeting the animals and... read more

    Tiggywinkle15
    11/05/2019

      lovely surroundings real farm country with chickens paying you a visit nice decking area to chill at the end of the day accommodation very good plenty to do nearby... read more

    vincent s
    7/28/2019

      We stayed in Skylark, one of the two glamping pods available at Hoe Grange in February 2020.

    Felicity & David welcomed us when we arrived to show us around... read more

    HelenLCarter
    2/06/2020
  •   Arrived and was shown to our pod, fantastic location and the pod was very good indeed plus we had home made bread and milk and tea and coffee. A... read more

    mickvfr
    7/28/2019

      A beautiful place to stay! Amazingly run family business! Everyone were very welcoming, friendly and cozy! The skylark pod we stayed in was very clean, cozy and well equipped! The... read more

    sophiee249
    1/02/2020

      What a lovely weekend away! We stayed in the lovely gypsy caravan, which was a wonderful and really unique experience. We took along our two horses, who also had a... read more

    rachelthomas2015
    6/18/2019
  •   Lovely place to holiday near to interesting locations and easy access to the High Peak trail and Carsington Water. Part of a working farm with fresh produce to enjoy during... read more

    Angie B
    8/03/2019

      We spent four nights at Hoe Grange and had a lovely time. The location is fantastic and right next to the High Peak Trail. The cabin was very clean and... read more

    Big_Al_0000
    7/16/2019

      It's been three years since we last visited but once we arrived it certainly didn't feel like it!
    We stayed in Hipley again which had had a refurbished wet... read more

    ElizabethA717
    9/21/2019
  •   We stayed for a night in one of the cabins . The cabin was spotless and very well equipped , lots of extra touches were added like fresh eggs and... read more

    Ajtravels14
    2/03/2020

      Recently spent a week in "Pinder" and had a lovely time. The location is stunning - the site is nestled in a beautiful valley on the edge of the Peaks... read more

    Peachey167
    7/16/2019

      Stayed last week, from 6th to 13th September in the log cabin called Hipley. This was amazing, it was our first visit but certainly not our last. Gold standard disability... read more

    548julie
    9/14/2019
  •   What a wonderful find. As our first experience of needing accessible accommodation we could not have wished for better. Beautiful well equipped lodges in lovely surroundings. We stayed in both... read more

    L9943KBlesleym
    4/03/2020

      On arriving at Hoe Grange in a downpour, we doubted if we’d made the right decision to go glamping, but after the warm welcome from David and a quick tour,... read more

    karenmD4738KD
    6/25/2019

      We love this place. Very wheelchair friendly, really well equipped and comfortable, with easy access by car to lots of places of interest particularly Crich Tramway Village, Chatsworth, Bakewell and... read more

    David H
    10/25/2019
  •   Second visit to the accessible holiday cabins at Hoe Grange. David and Felicity were as helpful and friendly as ever. We had a welcome pack of freshly baked bread, butter,... read more

    Charlotte M
    8/07/2019

      We've just returned from our second visit to Hoe Grange. The suggested riding routes with stunning scenery were enjoyed by my daughter and I while the menfolk were delighted with... read more

    Jdrichie12
    7/11/2019

      We stayed in the Skylark pod last October (2018) and had a lovely time. There was homemade, rustic goods (bread, biscuits etc) when we arrived. Felicity and David who run... read more

    KBarry
    9/15/2019
  •   Another great holiday at Hoe Grange - such a great place for us all to holiday as a family - this time with a baby, a 3 yr old, a... read more

    Thesamps
    10/04/2019

      Felicity and David made us feel very welcome right from our booking. The pods are well equipped and spotlessly clean. The area is very peaceful with great views and we... read more

    Adventurer_12121
    1/30/2020

      We stayed in Rainster cabin for a long weekend 6 th to 9 th September. This was my 5 th visit to the amazing Hoe Grange. I had visited before... read more

    Jan Horsman J
    9/17/2019
  •   What can I say?
    Absolutely superb!
    We have just returned from a family weekend staying in Daisybank cabin and the Skylark pod.
    It was our first trip away with my... read more

    Wheelieuser
    6/13/2019

      We have just returned from a short stay in one of the pods on site at Hoe Grange Holidays. We couldn’t recommend them enough. The pod has everything you could... read more

    Catboy86
    8/17/2019

      We had a lovely time staying in one of the incredibly well equipped pods. I bought my pony along and we had some great rides on the high peak trail.... read more

    plopster1
    6/07/2019
  •   We love this place. Very wheelchair friendly, really well equipped and comfortable, with easy access by car to lots of places of interest particularly Crich Tramway Village, Chatsworth, Bakewell and... read more

    dghiggs61
    10/25/2019

      We wanted a complete break and some peace and quiet and this was perfect. The caravan was secluded with beautiful views over the countryside. Everything was spotlessly clean and well... read more

    joanne B
    6/04/2019

Join our mailing list