Discover the rich history of Severn Trent Upper Derwent Valley

Discover two new beautiful trails in the Upper Derwent Valley.

Severn Trent Upper Derwent Valley is full of memories and a rich history just waiting to be discovered on your next walk through this amazing landscape. You can learn about the fascinating history behind the ‘Dam-builders to Dambusters’ with two new trails marked by beautiful metal sculptures.

Tin Town Trail – 1.5 mile / 2.5 km

The building of Derwent and Howden Dam took over 10 years to complete, involving over 1,000 labourers, many of whom lived in the purpose-built village of Birchinlee, locally know as ‘Tin Town’. This remarkable purpose-built village consisted of housing, a school, hospital, canteen, shops and even a recreation hall which historically hosted local community dances.

The Tin Town trail starts in Birchinlee, a 2.4 km walk from Fairholmes Visitor Centre, allowing you to wander the streets of the lost village as you search out what remains of this old navvy settlement.

Tin Town

The Valley of the Dams Trail – 0.6 mile / 1km

This trail allows you to get up close to Derwent Dam and discover the history behind the reservoirs, exploring how this abandoned village led to an amazing source of reliable water for several new cities.

Not only can you learn about the engineering feat that it took to construct the Derwent Dams but also how it proved crucial in the training of the RAF ‘Dambusters’ Squadron, which later helped them in destroying Nazi Germany’s Rhur Valley Dam in the Second World War.

Starting from Fairholmes Visitor Centre, the trail follows pavements, roads and tracks making it accessible to all.

You can follow both trails and read about the history in the 'Dam builders to Dambusters' booklet, giving 20 pages of photos and stories from the past to help you to discover more about the history of the valley, available for £4 at the Fairholmes Visitor Centre.


Discover local Severn Trent sites:

Business Directory Carsington Water

Business Directory Upper Derwent Visitor Centre

Business Directory Tittesworth Water

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