A Town for Everyone

There's always something to do in Wirksworth, whether you're visiting for the day or staying for a week, you'll find a surprising amount to cram into your time here.

Take a ride on a vintage steam train or catch a movie at the town's boutique cinema. Spend an afternoon at The National Stone Centre or check out an exhibition at the towns contemporary art gallery - there's so much on offer for every tatse.

And if you're looking for things to do to keep the family happy, there are play parks, zipwires, woodland adventures and even our own indoor climbing wall.

Keep on scrolling to read more about Wirksworth's many attractions to help you plan your visit.



Steam train on Ecclesbourne Valley Railway
Steam train on Ecclesbourne Valley Railway

Heritage in Motion

We're pretty spoilt in Wirksworth in lots of ways but when a rural Derbyshire town can boast of not one, but three heritage railways and vintage train lines, then you know you're in for a treat.

Take a steam train along the unspoilt Ecclesbourne Valley and find yourself gliding between Duffield and Wirksworth in one of EVR's steam trains and classic coaches.

EVR also operate a service up to Ravenstor Station, just north of Wirksworth where you can walk to The National Stone Centre, the Eco-Centre and the High Peak Trail. 

Or take a 25 minute round trip to Middleton, through dramatic quarries and cuttings with the Steeple Grange Light Railway.

Steam train on Ecclesbourne Valley Railway

The StarDisc & Stoney Woods

The StarDisc is a 21st century stone circle, a 12 metre diameter star chart etched into black granite. Sitting high above the Ecclesbourne Valley with Wirksworth below,  the StarDisc is the perfect location for stunning views day or night.

Set atop Stoney Wood, a transformed former quarry, the site is the result of one man's grit and determination, local artist Aidan Shingler. His singular vision created this community space, not just for cosmic contemplation, but for yoga, dance and live music events - as well as earth celebrations.

Galleries, Studios and Workshops

As well as being home to near 100 practicing artists and creatives, Wirksworth is home to Haarlem Studios, a rural arts community in an historic mill at the edge of town. It also boasts the nationally acclaimed Wirksworth Festival  which takes over the town for two weeks in September.

There are also two art galleries in town, along with pop-up exhibitions in the Telephone Box, Wirksworth Library and elsewhere.

Plus you can explore public sculptures in both Stoney Wood and the National Stone Centre or try your hand in one of the town's many workshops and evening classes for life drawing, pottery, creative writing and more.

Steam train on Ecclesbourne Valley Railway
Steam train on Ecclesbourne Valley Railway

The Northern Light Cinema

Wirksworth’s own stylish independent cinema shows the latest films, revivals and live-streamed theatre, opera and ballet and does so with style.

With a range of classic seats, armchairs and sofas, you can relax and enjoy a film whilst enjoying a drink or two and some delicious snacks from the gorgeous bar; complete with sumptuous cocktail booths to give it a classic British retro feel with a dash of Manhattan cool.

St Mary's Church

St Mary’s is surely one of Wirksworth's treasures. Tucked behind the high street it is encircled by a charming stone cobbled walkway, aptly named Church Walk.

The existing church building dates mostly from the 13th–15th centuries, but notable survivals from the Anglo-Saxon period indicate a church has stood on this site since at least the 8th century AD and inside you'll the Anglo-Saxon carving of T'Owd Man - a Medieval Lead Miner - who has since become the town's icon. 

It is one of the few churches to still hold a ‘clypping’ ceremony where the town comes together to 'clyp' or embrace the church by joining hands on the Sunday closest to the Nativity of St Mary on the 8th September, with the Wirksworth Festival on the same weekend.

Steam train on Ecclesbourne Valley Railway
Steam train on Ecclesbourne Valley Railway

Wirksworth Heritage Centre

Visit the Heritage Centre to discover the people and stories that have made Wirksworth.

Set in a building hundreds of years old, you will discover how the town's mills produced the famous governmental 'red tape', how Wirksworth once printed its own banknotes, and you can see Ellen MacArthur’s sailing suit and a Georgian hydrotherapy bath.

There are regular events and activities for young and old and you can always join a guided walk or follow the self-guided heritage trail through town to bring its history to life.

National Stone Centre

Not many rural towns have national centres in their midst, but as Wirksworth was built on mining and quarrying, it's not surprising to find the National Stone Centre housed here. 

Set in a 40 acre Site of Special Scientific Interest (SSSI), for its geological formations, it provides outdoor and indoor activities for all the family with a range of activities including gem panning, fossil trails,  geo-walks and picnic areas as well as a fabulous adventure play area. .

There's also the wonderful Blue Lagoon Café with spectacular views from a balconied seating area. It all helps in the centres mission - to inspire people to engage with geology and history of stone.


Steam train on Ecclesbourne Valley Railway
Steam train on Ecclesbourne Valley Railway

Wirksworth Leisure Centre

The town's Leisure Centre offers an inreedibly wide range of activities - from hitting the gym to hitting the climbing wall, from badminton to basketball, from table tennis to tennis courts, from 5-a-side to full size pitches, there really is something for everyone.

Run by Freedom leisure in partnership with Derbyshire Dales District Council there's even a handy App  you can download to book your sessions.

Mount Cook Adventure Centre

Mount Cook provides group stays and outdoor activities, as well as a range of courses and events for individuals. Their adventurous activities are designed to broaden horizons, develop key skills and create lasting memories.

You can experience the outdoors with a range of residential and non-residential activity experiences, including low and high ropes, bushcraft, archery, indoor climbing and an exhilerating roof top zip wire.


Steam train on Ecclesbourne Valley Railway
Steam train on Ecclesbourne Valley Railway

Wirksworth Community Skatepark & Fanny Shaws Playground

There are several playgrounds in Wirksworth - on The Dale, at Gorsey Bank, Wash Green and Recreation Road, with the main park, called Fanny Shaw's after the Victorian lady who bequeathed the land to the town.

On it you'll find swings, slides and roundabouts as well as climbing frames and a zip wire - but you'll also see where the town's wooden skatepark stood before its enforced closure in 2019, having run the course of its longevity. But soon it will return thanks to the dedication of the townsfolk and the generous donations of like-minded residents and visitors alike!

Pledge your support to help rebuild the skatepark by hitting the link to the Crowdfunder campaign page below.

Derbyshire Eco Centre

The Eco Centre in Derbyshire is the ideal destination for people to gain knowledge on living sustainably and reducing their carbon footprint. It is the first of its kind in the country and offers a wide range of activities, courses, and events for beginners and those with experience. The centre also has an interactive exhibition and a cafe serving locally sourced food and drinks. It is the perfect place for individuals, families, schools, and businesses to come together and join forces in the fight against climate change.