Tideswell village

...home to the Cathedral of the Peak

Nestling on a limestone plateau at 1000 feet above sea level, and just six miles to the east of the equally lofty town of Buxton, is Tideswell - one of the Peak District’s most populous villages.

Affectionately known by the locals as ‘Tidza’, Tideswell is an unspoilt, classic rural village, beautifully preserved and unblemished by tourism. A once prosperous market town, Tideswell today is now altogether sleepier – although it maintains a relative air of village vitality.

Tideswell’s past prosperity is symbolised by its impressive 14th century parish church, the Church of St John the Baptist. Known as the ‘Cathedral of the Peak’, St John’s is a Grade I listed building and surely the Peak District’s most splendid church.

Until the 1960s the village had its own cinema, The Picturehouse, which was revived in 2005 as Tideswell Cinema, bringing film back to the community. Screenings originally took place at Bishop Pursglove School's school hall, before relocating in 2008 to upstairs at The George Hotel.

The George is a cosy 18th century inn, serving home-prepared food (much of it locally-produced) and fine ales. Centrally located in the village, adjacent to the Cathedral of the Peak, the pub is ideally placed to act as your base for some fabulous walking in the stunning surrounding countryside. The George also offers B&B accommodation, in the shape of four newly refurbished rooms.

A downhill stroll from the village takes you to the Tideswell Dale, a Derbyshire Wildlife Trust nature reserve resplendent with flowers. This six mile walk joins up with the Monsal Trail, which follows the former Midland Railway line in the River Wye valley.

Well dressings are a unique part of Peak District life and Tideswell’s are among the finest. They coincide annually with Wakes Week, an ancient village tradition which sees the village bedecked in decorations, with stalls, a funfair and other festivities - as well as the well dressings – on the agenda.

It culminates with a carnival procession on 'Big Saturday' – or, to be precise, ‘Big Sat’dee’ – when a torchlight parade, headed by the local brass and marching bands, leads revellers for approximately a mile through the village. Some beer may or not be consumed on Big Sat’dee.

Tideswell enjoys a prime spot in the Peak District, almost equidistant from both Buxton and Bakewell and surrounded by a network of attractive villages dotting the beautiful landscapes. Other Peak gems such as Chatsworth and Castleton are also within easy reach, making ‘Tidza’ an ideal place to stay for a Peak District break.

The village offers a healthy choice of accommodation, with a wide range of Tideswell cottages, B&Bs, pubs, hotels and campsites from which to choose.

The Old Piggery is a charming pet-friendly let for two, tucked away on a secluded lane overlooking the rooftops of Tideswell. Also welcoming dogs is Rocker’s Cottage, a 200 year old cottage sleeping four in two bedrooms. Situated in the centre of Tideswell, this has also undergone a recent renovation.

Merman Farm is an altogether bigger affair, sleeping 10/11 in five bedrooms – three of which are en-suite. 

With a range of accommodation that belies the village's size, you're sure to find a holiday home to suit your needs. A classic, picturesque village, Tideswell can still be described as relatively undiscovered - and for you that means unspoilt solitude. Stay in Tideswell for a holiday that will stay with you.

Sean Cummins

January 2011


Last Updated: 28 Apr 2015