Wirksworth is situated approximately 6 miles NW of Belper, just to the south of Matlock.
Wirksworth is a town that was founded on lead mining. The Anglo-Saxons certainly mined the area, and historical finds make it likely that the Romans also mined lead in the area.
Its industrial prosperity came to an end in the mid 19th century with the collapse of the lead mining industry in the UK. It then entered a major slump - its population halved between 1831 - 1850. Limestone quarrying in the area and some textile mills were not sufficient to maintain what once was a prosperous town.
This state of affairs lasted until the 1980's, when Wirksworth was revitalised. Various local groups with government money transformed the town - buildings were restored, shops reopened - Wirksworth was reborn - the age of industrial tourism had arrived!
Today Wirksworth is well worth a visit.
(Photos to follow)