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Review: Chesterfield


Chesterfield, United Kingdom


  • By SilverTraveller Terry

    144 reviews

    Ribbon Ribbon Ribbon Ribbon

  • Apr 2014
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121 people found this review helpful

We chose to stay in Chesterfield Derbyshire as it is an ideal place for exploring the surrounding area. The town is famous for the church with a crooked spire. Built in the 13th Century the spire of the church of St Mary was probably constructed with green timber and the weight of the lead tiles caused the curious twist. The central square is large with bustling market stalls every Monday, Friday and Saturday. The town museum tells its history starting with the Romans, the development of coal mining and its most famous resident George Stephenson the railway pioneer. Still on the railway theme is Barrow Hill Roundhouse features a large collection of locomotives.

We stayed at the Portland Hotel in the centre of town and were made welcome by the helpful reception staff. Although Chesterfield is a lively place in the daytime the hotel was quiet at night for sleeping. The rooms were clean and comfortable with all the facilities including TV and tea-making equipment. Overall it was great value for money. We ate in the hotel for breakfasts and there were lots of other places for evening meals in town. We found in particular that the menu at the Market Pub on the square had a great range of home-cooked food. For drinking we recommend the Chesterfield Alehouse in West Bars a small friendly place, which has no loud music or television – it only serves real ale, ciders and country wines. We also like the White Swan in St Mary's Gate with a lovely view of the church from a comfy "chesterfield" sofa.There are interesting places to explore in the stunning countryside such as Chatsworth, Hardwick Hall, Bolsover Castle and Renishaw Hall & Gardens.

We travelled to Sheffield using our Senior Rail cards, which made the journey incredibly cheap. Our first stop was at the station itself "the Sheffield Tap" a restored Grade II listed Edwardian Refreshment Room, with some great architectural features. Being real ale enthusiasts we had a difficult choice with such an array of hand pumps. The pub looks out over Sheaf Square with its magnificent Cutting Edge steel sculpture. Not to be missed are the Millennium Gallery, the Winter Garden and the famous Crucible Theatre – all within 5 minutes walk from Sheffield station. The Gallery displays some fine art, crafts and design including the metal work, which made the city world famous. We stopped for a cream tea in the bright and airy restaurant. It is easy to explore the rest of the city by tram – modern, accessible and most importantly you can use your elderly persons bus pass! Kelham Island Museum chronicles Sheffield's industrial past – a fascinating story. For art lovers there is Graves Gallery above Central library. Sheffield is a place well worth a visit.

Nottingham is another great place reached easily by train. The city of the legendary Robin Hood is compact enough for one to see many of its attractions – the Castle, the Lace Market and the Galleries of Justice. Our first stop for morning coffee was the Pitcher & Piano housed in a former Grade II listed church – now a stylish space. Another interesting pub is Ye Olde Trip to Jerusalem England's oldest inn. The pub is famous for its caves carved out of the rock. Legends abound in this establishment. It is said that Richard I stopped here on his way to the Crusades. There is an antique chair where it is claimed that a women who sits in it will increase her chances of becoming pregnant! There is also a cursed model galleon kept in a glass box, as anyone who cleaned it would have met a mysterious death. As the inside of the building was crowded and musty smelling, we only stopped for a pint. We opted instead to have lunch at the nearby Round House. We sat in a comfortable windowed booth and were served some beautifully presented fresh food. The building was once part of Nottingham General Hospital and one could imagine how the unique surroundings used to be one of the circular wards. Our final stop before catching the train back was the historic Canal House. The building has a canal running into it and a static narrow boat. We quipped to each other that "the entertainment was free", as the next pub along seemed to be the venue for young revellers. One idiot dived into the canal to applause from his mates and was promptly escorted off the premises! This sort of thing aside, Nottingham is a great place to walk around from the Old Market Square, the Contemporary Arts Centre to the underground caves.

Our stay in Chesterfield may sound hectic, but we went at our own pace and would recommend this as a base for discovering this part of England.

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This review is solely based on the opinion of a Silver Travel Advisor member and not of Silver Travel Advisor Ltd.

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Other Members' Thoughts - 5 Comment(s)

  • DavidAdmin
    almost 7 years ago
    Very interesting. Thank you.
  • Adventurer
    almost 7 years ago
    Haven't been back to Chesterfield for years. Bring back memories. Nice pictures.
  • ESW
    over 7 years ago
    I was thinking more about detailed reviews of places mentioned in this article. Several of them are on my 'to visit' list and I was wondering what your take was on them.
  • Terry
    over 7 years ago
    I've written 27 reviews. I'll be posting another one soon when I get the time. I'm not sure how many words, so am worried its going to be too long.
  • ESW
    over 7 years ago
    I have enjoyed reading your review. Chesterfield does make a good base for exploing north Derbyshire, Nottinghamshire and South Yorkshire. There is so much to do and see within a small area. Have you written more detailed reviews of the places you visited? I'd love to read them.