This is part of a heritage trail around Belper, taking in some of the key historic areas, and talking about some of the people involved in the development of the town. You can find a map of the trail, and information on where to find interpretation boards containing more details on the town and its history at www.derwentvalleymills.org/belper.
The Old Station
This was not always a narrow channel down the side of a supermarket. Where you are standing used to be part of the yard, and later car park, for Belper Station. The ticket office (pictured) was removed in 1973 for the building of the Fine Fare (now Poundland) supermarket. At the far end of the channel behind you, you’ll find yourself standing next to the shop on the left of the photograph – the only part to survive the demolitions.
The Railway Hotel’s Music Hall
Over the wall that runs along most of this channel is the yard of the Railway Hotel. This was originally the Tiger Inn – it changed its name to cash in on the building of the railway station in 1878. At the rear of the yard, the two-storey building was originally stables, possibly with a brewhouse above. Since then, uses have included a music hall, reached from an arch in King Street (see photograph), a Salvation Army Citadel and an exhibition area for fur and feather societies in the town.
Comings and Goings
Behind you is King Street. The area by the entrance to this channel has seen many arrivals and departures, at the now-gone station gates. Here, the soldiers returning from the Boer War were met by crowds in 1901 (the trees on the left of the photograph are the same trees lining this channel today). And on the first day of World War One, these were some of the first men to leave the town via the station, bound for the Front.