The town of Matlock is situated on the River Derwent in the heart of Derbyshire. The river here has carved a course through the limestone to create the spectacular Matlock Dale, which today lies on the edge of the Peak District. Matlock Bridge stands at a crossing point on the river and has been an important stage on routes to larger settlements such as Derby, Nottingham, Sheffield and Manchester. It was the development of the town as a spa, following the discovery of thermal springs, and the arrival of the railways that led to the town's major expansion and the development of Matlock Bath, with numerous hydros adjoining Matlock town. The legacy of this nineteenth-century growth and prosperity can be seen in the numerous imposing Victorian buildings around the town. Many of these have since been converted from their previous use and the town attracts many visitors as a base from which to explore the Peak District.
Secret Matlock & Matlock Bath explores the lesser-known episodes and characters in the history of this Derbyshire town through the ages, bringing to life tales of those who have lived here and the places they inhabited.
Richard Bradley grew up and lives in Derbyshire, near Chesterfield. He has a particular interest in Derbyshire and Peak District folk-lore and customs and has been researching this subject for a number of years.