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Bagshaw Cavern, a cave system in Bradwell, Hope Valley, Derbyshire

The Peak District covers much of Derbyshire and parts of Staffordshire, Cheshire and Yorkshire. There are numerous interesting towns such as Ashbourne, Bakewell, Buxton, Leek, Matlock and Wirksworth, plus many enchanting villages

Bagshaw Cavern

opportunities for exercise
Bagshawe Cavern is a largely natural cave system which was discovered by lead miners in 1806. It is open by arrangement for instructor-led 'Adventure caving for beginners', which gives access to a greater part of the cave for those who are prepared to get themselves dirty. A helmet, lamp and suitable clothing are necessary, for to see much of the cave system involves a certain amount of ladder-climbing and crawling, but some of the equipment can be hired at the cave.

The show cave descends 102 steps to a chamber and a horizontal passage, giving features called the Elephant's Throat and the Chandler's Shop. Beyond this is a passage of decorated flowstone called the Grotto of Paradise and a decorated chimney called Niagara Falls. There are some good stalagmites. The cave then divides into two parts - the lower section goes down a passage called the Dungeon and extends down close to a resurgence in Bradwell Dale, while the upper part leads to a chamber known as the Hippodrome.

References: Caves of Derbyshire by Trevor D Ford and David W Gill, Dalesman Books. Also: Underground Britain by Bruce Bedford, Collins/Willow.
Associated Videos

Bogtrotting on Bleaklow
Bogtrotting on Bleaklow

Ordnance Survey Grid Reference: SK172809 Click here for Google Maps

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How to get there

By Road:
the cave is situated up the hillside above the centre of Bradwell, on a small lane which leads to Bradwell Dale. Bradwell can be reached along the B6049 road from the A6013 road, which runs from Castleton to Sheffield. Approaching from the south, take the B6049 road from the A623 Chapel-en-le-frith to Chesterfield road, turning off near Tideswell.

By Bus: the 272 and 51A buses from Sheffield to Castleton pass through Bradwell. The 173 bus from Bakewell to Castleton also passes through Bradwell, and connects in Litton or Tideswell with the 66 bus from Buxton.
When is it open?

Details of opening times are obtainable from: Amanda Revell, email:

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