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Places to visit in The National Forest and Beyond

Across the gently rolling landscape of The National Forest & Beyond you will discover peaceful villages contrasted by bustling towns, historic monuments, interactive discovery centres, woodlands and waterways the quiet nature of which belies the fascinating ingenuity of its industrial past and the battles fought and won by the Mercian Kings and Bonnie Prince Charlie!

Places to vist banner

All of the following places to visit are easily accessible by road. For the cyclist, Route 6 of the National Cycle Network passes through the area but access to attractions is mostly by road rather than off-road routes.

Beehive Woodland Lakes

Rosliston, Swadlincote, Derbyshire, DE12 8HZ
01283 763981
Beehive Farm Woodland Lakes is a 66 acre site in the heart of the National Forest. With woodland, meadow and wetland habitats, a dedicated conservation team maintains records of birds, wildflowers and wildlife observed at the site. A small animal farm, fishing lakes and a caravan and campsite make this a great all round place to take a break!

Betty's Farm

The Castleway, Willington, Derbyshire, DE65 6BW
01283 703582
Organic, free range egg producer and farm shop with a strong focus on quality, cost and the environment.

Bluebell Arboretum

Annwell Lane, Smisby, Ashby-de-la-Zouch, Leicestershire,LE65 2TA
01530 413700
Young Arboretum established since 1992. Fine collection of rare trees, including oaks, maples, beech, liquidambar and many other cultivars.

Calke Abbey

Ticknall, Derby, Derbyshire, DE73 7LE
01332 863822
This baroque mansion, built in 1704 has become famous as a graphic illustration of the country house in decline. The house contains the natural history collection of the Harpur Crewe family, and interiors unchanged since the 1880's.

Catton Hall

Catton, Walton on Trent, Derbyshire, DE12 8LN
01283 716311
Catton Hall, built in 1745 by Smith of Warwick, is lived in as the private home of the present owners. The surrounding park and estate, purchased by their ancestors in 1405, is now used to host a variety of events throughout the year.

Chantry Farm Shop

Kings Newton Lane, Melbourne, Derbyshire, DE73 8DD
01332 865698
Chantry Farm Shop is a family- run business that is totally committed to offering high quality and locally produced foods that are fully traceable. We have an enviable reputation for rearing our own lamb as well as sourcing locally reared free range pork, beef and free range poultry.

Chapmans Nurseries

Burton Road, Rosliston, Swadlincote, Derbyshire, DE12 8JX
01283 543546
A family run traditional garden centre with its core products being plants, all backed up with expert advise. Our log cabin tea room completes your visit.


Rawdon Road (B586), Moira, Swadlincote, Derbyshire, DE12 6GA
01283 216633
Conkers in The Heart of the National Forest is a unique mix of INDOOR and OUTDOOR experiences.

Dimminsdale Nature Reserve

Severn Trent Water, Staunton Harold Visitor Centre, Calke Road, Melbourne, Derby
01332 865081
Dimminsdale is part of a Site of Special Scientific Interest (SSSI) owned by Severn Trent Water. February is the time to see the annual spectacular display of Snowdrops in bloom at this Nature Reserve, by Staunton Harold Reservoir.

Donington Grand Prix Collection

Donington Park, Castle Donington, Leicestershire, DE74 2RP
01332 811027
Re-live the history and excitement of motor racing while weaving your way around one of the largest collections of grand prix cars in the world.

Elvaston Castle Country Park

Borrowash Road, Elvaston, Derby, Derbyshire, DE72 3EP
01332 571342
Elvaston Castle Country Park has over 200 acres of woodland, parkland and formal gardens to explore. At the heart of the park is the Castle. Due to it's need for restoration, the Castle is only occasionally open to visitors.

Ferrers Centre for Arts & Crafts

Staunton Harold, Ashby de la Zouch, Leicestershire, LE65 1RU
01332 863133
16 craft workshops within a magnificent Georgian courtyard. Ferrers Gallery - wide range of contemporary British craftsmanship. Tearoom. Gift shop.

Foremark Reservoir

Milton, Ticknall, Derby, DE65 6EG
01788 811107
A beautiful 230-acre reservoir and nature reserve in the National Forest with areas of woodland, grassland, heath and wetland, for you to explore along waymarked footpaths.


124 Pack Horse Road, Melbourne, Derby, DE73 8BZ
01332 865986
Elizabeth O'Connor is an internationally selling artist with a studio in South Derbyshire. Abstract, textured contemporary paintings on canvas by internationally selling artist Elizabeth O'Connor, available to buy, rent, or commission your own bespoke artwork. Studio viewings by appointment.

Garden King

Park Road, Newhall, Swadlincote, Derbyshire, DE11
01283 550516 Garden King offers a wide range of plants, gardening tools, sheds, log cabins, furniture and gifts. Staff are on hand to offer advice.

Grangewood Farm & Forestry

Grangewood Farm, Netherseal, Swadlincote, Derbyshire
01283 760063
Grangewood is a 62ha (153 acre) broad-leaved & conifer woodland planted in 1997 & 2003. Footpaths are defined by mown trails. Horse riding permits.

Highfields Happy Hens

Heage Lane, Etwall, Derbyshire, DE65 6LS
01283 732083
Highfields Happy Hens is an open farm set within the beautiful South Derbyshire countryside. Learn about the corn story in the grain store, hire a pedal tractor or family bike, feed the animals, have fun in play areas and collect eggs.

Ingleby Gallery

Ingleby,Nr Melbourne Derbyshire, DE73 7HW
01332 865995
Ingleby Gallery sits gently in the Trent Valley surrounded by open pasture land extending to the river with ponds and ducks, a very rural setting with ample parking for visitors.

Melbourne Hall & Gardens

Melbourne, Derbyshire, DE73 8EN
01332 862502
Melbourne Hall is a delightful house full of history. Originally a rectory for the Norman Parish Church, it became the home of Sir John Coke in 1628. The beautiful gardens were designed with paths allowing easy access, and intersected by streams that flow through the grounds underneath miniature bridges and through the lush flower beds. There are various statues along the walkways and also the Blakewell Birdcage one of Rt. Hon. Thomas Cokes designs The Gardens are open from April - September 1.30pm - 5.30pm Wednesdays, Saturdays, Sundays and Bank Holiday Mondays (additional open days possible in August).

Melbourne Hall Craft Centre & Tea Room

Melbourne, Derbyshire, DE73 8EN
01332 864224
Browse round the Visitors Centre, open most days throughout the year, where the Gift Shop and Estate Workshops provide a fine selection of unique gift ideas. Enjoy a photographic introduction to Melbourne Hall Gardens by visiting 'Up the Garden Path' display in the Visitor Centre.

Melbourne Parish Church

Melbourne, Derbyshire, DE73 8EN
Dedicated to St. Michael with St. Mary, Melbourne parish church has been described as a Cathedral in miniature. The Domesday Book records a Church here in 1086 with the present Church built in 1120.

Mercia Marina

Findern Lane, Willington, Derby, DE65 6DW
01283 703332
Beautifully landscaped marina offering Tea Room, Shops, Walks, Pub/Restaurant (in 2009), Boats for Sale, Boats for Hire, feature lake & much more. On the Trent & Mersey Canal, between the villages of Willington & Findern.

National Brewery Centre

Horninglow Street, Burton upon Trent, DE14 1NG
01283 532880
The National Brewery Centre is a world-class museum and visitor centre that celebrates Burton upon Trent's proud brewing heritage and its influence on brewing techniques throughout the world. Whether you are an ale aficionado or a family looking for a great day out The National Brewery Centre has lots to offer.

National Memorial Arboretum

Croxall Road, Alrewas, Burton-on-Trent, Staffordshire, DE13 7AR
01283 792333
150 acres of trees and memorials, planted as a living tribute to those who have served, died or suffered in the service of their Country. Chapel, Visitor Centre, Cafe & Shop.

Planters at Bretby Ltd

Bretby Lane, Burton upon Trent, Staffordshire, DE15 0QS
01283 703355
Family run Garden Centre, 20 years of experience. 6.5 acre site offers trees, shrubs, hardy plants, houseplants too many to name, aquatic centre, restaurant and gift shop.


South Derbyshire
01283 222848
Repton, former capital of the kingdom of Mercia, is today a fusion of village and public school. The village has one principal street, lined with a number of Georgian properties. The Medieval cross on its octagonal steps are a focal point.

Rosliston Forestry Centre

Burton Road, Rosliston, Swadlincote, Derbyshire, DE12 8JX
01283 563483
Whether you prefer the tranquillity of woodland walks, lakes and trails or the excitement of activities such as archery, falconry, orienteering, or woodland laser combat, Rosliston Forestry Centre has something for everyone.

Scaddows Farm Shop and Cafe

Scaddows Farm, Ticknall, Derby,DE73 7JP
01283 563483
Farm Shop and Cafe situated outside the village of Ticknall. Farm Shop offers a range of local produce. Pick your own fruit is also available during the summer months.


Shardlow, South Derbyshire
01283 222848
Shardlow is situated 8 miles south east of Derby and was once a considerable inland port on the River Trent. The area has many inns and restaurants and the canal and river have been extensively developed for leisure use.

Shardlow Heritage Centre

Canalside, London Road, Shardlow, South Derbyshire
01332 793368
Story of Shardlow and Great Wilne Parish from pre Roman to present day. Audio and visual displays, objects and full sized mock up of narrow boat.

Sharpe's Pottery Museum

West Street, Swadlincote, Derbyshire, DE11 9DG
01283 222600
A former "yellow ware" and toilet factory (established in 1821), which exported its products worldwide. The visitor centre housed in the newly restored pottery works in the heart of Swadlincote, is a registered museum with exhibits and displays and the latest in interactive technology, which reveals the hidden treasures and fascinating facts behind a South Derbyshire pottery. There is a cafe & Gift Shop. School parties are welcome & the kiln holds a number of concert evenings.

Stanton Nurseries

Woodland Road, Stanton, Burton-on-Trent, Staffordshire
01283 214144
A family run business that offers a wide range of outdoor plants with help and advice concerning all aspects of all year round gardening.

Staunton Harold Reservoir

Calke Road, Melbourne, Derbyshire, DE73 1DL
01332 865081
Originally named Staunton after the local name for limestone, and Harold after the 12th century lord of the manor. The reservoir was developed from one of six ponds on the nearby National Trust Calke Abbey Estate.

Sudbury Hall & Museum of Childhood

Sudbury, Ashbourne, Derbyshire, DE6 5HT
01283 585305 (infoline)
Explore the grand 17th Century hall with its richly decorated interior and see life below stairs. You can also visit the Museum of Childhood, which has eight new galleries where children and adults can celebrate childhood.

Swadlincote Woodlands & Park Area

Derby Road, Swadlincote, Derbyshire, DE11
01283 595782
Bringing The National Forest right to the edge of Swadlincote town centre, an 80 acre urban woodland park with 40,000 new trees, interpretative boards, arts and heritage features. Facilities include play area, picnic area and climbing rock.


South Derbyshire
01283 222848
Swarkestone is marked by the river bridge built in 1797, which leads on to a largely medieval stone causeway. The bridge and causeway are 3/4 mile long and was the point at which Bonnie Prince Charlie turned back northwards in 1745.

Swarkestone Nursery

Lowes Lane, Swarkestone, Derbyshire, DE73 7GQ
01332 700800
South Derbyshire's leading retail nursery open year round for bedding plants, perennials, shrubs and trees. Visit us for quality plants and helpful staff.

Tara Centre

Tara Kadampa Meditation Centre (KMC), Ashe Hall, Ash Lane, Etwall, Derbyshire, DE65 6HT
01283 732338
Established by the modern-day meditation master Venerable Geshe Kelsang Gyatso in 1983, Tara KMC is a Kadampa Buddhist college, retreat and meditation centre, situated in the heart of England within 38 acres of lawns and woods at Ashe Hall in Derbyshire.

The Magic Attic Archives

c/o Sharpe's Pottery Museum, West Street, Swadlincote, Derbyshire, DE11 9DG
01283 819020
The Magic Attic Archives hold newspapers, old maps, catalogues from local works, some old company papers, old photographs, records of baptisms, burials and marriages, census returns and other local history memorabilia.

The Roundhouse Gallery

The Firs, Foston, Derby, DE65 5DL
01283 585348
The Gallery stocks at least 50 of Britain's leading Contemporary Studio Potters. You are most welcome to peruse the collection in the quiet, calm, atmosphere of a former 18th Century Coaching Inn.

Willow Orchard Farm Shop

Uttoxeter Road, Hilton, Derby, DE65 5FX
01283 733603

Traditional free-range pork and eggs, duck eggs, homemade produce (e.g. pork pies, jams and chutneys) and even the vegetables sold are grown on site.

Woodhouse Farm Shop

Woodhouse Farm, Woodhouses, Melbourne, Derbyshire, DE73 8DN
01332 862645
Heaths Farm Shop and Nursery. Vegetable Growers since 1914 the Farm Shop offers a range of fresh home-grown and locally sourced produce. The Nursery offers a wide range of composts, seeds and plants, fertilizers and sundries to help you make the most of your garden or allotment.