A Bank Holiday weekend away, staying at the Waterloo Inn campsite midway between the Derbyshire towns of Buxton and Ashbourne.

Working late on the Friday meant that we only had a Saturday and Sunday night free, so we decided on a fairly local run int0 Derbyshire and the Peak District. Our base at the Waterloo Inn was a small caravan and camping park with maybe a dozen caravan spaces, mixed between seasonal and touring pitches. The site was immediately to the rear of a country pub, which seemed like a brilliant idea. Can’t believe we’ve not done it before – must remember to do the same in future!

By the time we were pitched on the Saturday, and had set up the awning, we wanted a short local run to fill out an hour or two before the evening. So off we went to Ashbourne, a very small town about ten miles away. Not very much to do around the small centre which we had covered in little more than half an hour, but a decent park area and lake to explore directly opposite the main car park. It’s part of a flood management programme for the town centre, and provided a nice large space to let the dogs run free for a while.

Saturday night, and the Waterloo seemed like an excellent option. It’s so popular we had to book in advance to secure a table! Food was excellent, and there was the added bonus of a pretty decent singer in the evening, performing various country & western, eurovision and popular numbers. The pub appeared to draw quite a regular following for both its food and its entertainment.

Sunday was our one full day for sightseeing, so in the morning we headed off to Buxton, a fair sized market town roughly ten miles from the campsite. I could vaguely remember it from a visit many years ago. The High Street shops and the Market Place, and downhill to the original Victorian spa centre of the town. The old Crescent looks to be under significant refurbishment at the moment as part of a plan to turn it into a luxury hotel and spa, which will be interesting to visit once it’s complete. With the weather against us, we took a quick walk around the nearby shopping centre, finishing off with a welcome hot drink at Charlotte’s Chocolates in the Cavendish Arcade, at the end of the crescent and still open despite the nearby building works.

The weather continued to improve as the day progressed, and it was time to get the walking boots on! The Tissington Trail is a disused railway track converted for walkers and cyclists. We picked up the Tissington Trail not far from the pub, and headed North for a mile or so towards Hartington. Then back round to our starting point via some winding country lanes.

Monday saw a significant improvement in the weather, although unfortunately it was time to pack up camp and head home. Perhaps we should keep Buxton Spa in mind for a future visit though!

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