Derbyshire Venues & Accommodation For Every Occasion

May Newsletter

The sun is finally shining in the Peak District and with it comes a whole list of exciting things to do. Take a walk in Hope Valley and if the sunshine gets too much for you why not visit the Blue John Cavern. We have recently hosted our first civil wedding ceremony at Knockerdown Cottages which was a very successful weekend on the site. You don't have to be getting married to visit us, and we have the tempting Pudding Room just across the road... We are still running our streamlined prices offer but we can't guarantee how long it will last so book quickly to avoid disappointment!

What's on in May - Heroes Hike, Rambles, Festivals, Fairs....

Great British Food Festival

Hardwick Hall


3rd, 4th & 5th May

Click here...

Heroes Hike

Worth Brother Wines,

Kirk Langley


10th May

Click here...

Woodland Fair



10th & 11th May

Click here...

 Inside Foxhole Cave

14th May

Click here...

 Hartington Hall Festival

16th & 17th May

Click here...

 Sleep over at Sudbury

17th & 18th May

Click here...

Tramway Ramble

Calk Abbey


23rd May

Click here...

 Dovedale Explorer Day

28th May

Click here...

Click here to see more events in the Derbyshire Peak District for May

Site News - Knockerdown Holiday Cottages hosts it's first Civil Wedding Ceremony!!

 First Civil Wedding Ceremony at Knockerdown




The "Bride & Groom" or should I say "Mr & Mrs" had the most fantastic weekend at Knockerdown Cottages. The Brackendale Room was set out to welcome 100 guests to watch the Bride and Groom take their vows looking out across the stunning countryside.



 The "happy couple" hired the whole venue from the Friday to Monday, they were among all their family and friends and enjoyed the facilities on site such as the meadow, swimming pool and Spa. They did all their own decorations, chose locations around the venue for thier photos and drinks reception, followed by their choice of caterers and entertainment.

Gainsborough Retreats would like to take this opportunity to say a big thank you to the "Happy Couple" for being the first to get married at Knockerdown and choosing our venue for their "Special Weekend"

We wish you all the best for the future




A unique countryside setting for a "Weekend Wedding"

Gainsborough Retreats offer exclusive use hire accommodation and stunning countryside locations to make the start of your married life a weekend you and your guests will never forget.

All our venues are set in the heart of rural Derbyshire so you can get away from the hustle and bustle and enjoy the company of your friends and family for a weekend without time restrictions or have another bride and groom arriving on your tail!

At Gainsborough Retreats we encourage you to bring your own ideas and make your day or weekend wedding dreams a reality. Ask your friends and family to help you, choose your own band, entertainment, decorations, food and drink to really make your guests feel special. We will help in any way we can or recommend a local business to make your ideas really come to life.

 One of our three beautiful venues can accommodate you for almost any type of wedding so please speak to our events team to find out which venue best suits your requirements. Tel. 01629 540525

Local Recommended Business - Pudding Room

The Pudding Room Shop has reopenened its doors after its winter break see website for opening times.

The local produce shop not only sells cakes & puddings, but also a wide range of food stuffs, including fresh vegetables, bread, dairy, meat, preserves & pickles. Please refer to their website below for full details on their shop.


Farmers Markets & Shows attended by The Pudding Room


 The Pudding Room attends regular Farmers Markets during the month.

1st Saturday of the month; Wirksworth Farmers Market, The memorial Hall Wirksworth.

2nd Saturday of the month; Belper Farmers Market, in the Market Place, Belper, Derbys

Last Saturday of the month; Bakewell Farmers Market, at the Agricultural Centre, Bakewell, Derbyshire


Feel free to contact Angie and her team Tel: 01629 540413 Mob: 07866415030 Evenings 01335 370981 before 9pm Twitter: @PuddingRoom

 Really handy shop for all our guests who stay with us at Knockerdown Cottages, when you stay with us visit the shop and grab a cake or lemon meringue pie not to be missed!! very resaonable prices...






The Big Debate


Why is taking family holidays in term time in the news?

Recent rule changes by the Department for Education have made it harder for parents to get a school's permission to take their children out of class during term time, and so to avoid higher prices in peak season.

Why is it a problem for families?

Peak holiday demand drives up prices for flights and accommodation, and some families argue that term-time holidays are the only way they can afford to take their children on enriching overseas trips.

Would forcing holiday firms and airlines to lower their peak prices make any difference?


A rant on the subject on Facebook has highlighted the possibility of legislation or controls to stop holiday price-gouging. But such an effort would probably backfire if it meant fewer holidays on offer overall. Also, August and Christmas are fixed points in the year, and there is no changing that.


We at Gainsborough Retreats can help you with your holiday plans in the Derbyshire Peak District

Come and join us and enjoy the luxury feel of your own self catering cottage, take to the outdoors and enjoy the fresh air!!

Our new pricing is on offer for a limited time only so book quickly on 01629 540525 in order to take advantage of our reduced school holiday prices!


Brackendale Spa Offer


Brackendale Spa our offering a delightful treat for your fingers and toes for the whole month of May


Book in for a Brackendale Smart Polish on fingers & toes for &30. Offer includes a mini manicure & mini pedicure Advanced bookings only.

Booking is advised as  the spa does get busy during weekend and holiday periods.

Please like their facebook page and log into the website for all the latest information and monthly offers.

Tel: 01629 540727 E:                                      

May's Recipe of the Month - Chilli Marrakech

Serves 10, Preparation time 30 minutes, Cooking time 1 hour.


1.5 tablespoons ground cumin

1 tablespoon olive oil

3 onions, thinly sliced

1.2kg lamb or beef mince

2 tablespoons finely chopped ginger

4 finely chopped garlic cloves

2 x 400g cans chopped tomatoes

1 tablespoon paprika

1 tablespoon ground cinnamon

1.5 tablespoons ground coriander

4 tablespoons harissa

3 red peppers, chopped into chunks

2 x 400g cans of chickpeas

40g chopped fresh coriander

500ml beef or lamb stock


 1. Add the oil to a large saucepan or casserole pan and fry the onions for a few minutes until they start to colour.

2. Add the mince, ginger and garlic and cook until the mince is no longer pink.

3. Stir in the tomatoes, cumin, paprika, cinnamon, harissa, peppers, chickpeas, stock and three quarters of the coriander. Cover and cook for 40 minutes until the sauce thickens slightly.

4. Remove from the heat, stir in the remaining coriander and serve or freeze.

Walk of the Month - Hope Valley


 Hope Valley Walk 


Distance: 7 miles

Parking: Pay and display car park, Castleton Road, Hope S33 6SB (SK171835)

Terrain: There are 11 stiles, 10 gates and several sets of steps as well as steep inclines.

Refreshments: There are various pubs and tearooms in Hope. Scarlett Rose Coffee Shop, High Peak Garden Centre

Walk highlight: Fabulous panoramic views including views of Mam Tor

Click here to view the walk


Underground Adventure 

We spend so much time walking upon this earth, yet many of us never stop to think about the beauty that lies just under our feet. A mystical world can be found down under the Hope Valley and Peak District where mining is still an important part of life and caverns such as Blue John Cavern is still used by miners who double up as tour guides for visitors.

If you have the courage to descend deep into the heart of the earth you will find a land of underground waterfalls and rivers and is the size of any man-made cathedral.
speedwell cavern canalMost of the caves are suitable for the whole family with lots of activities and events on during the holidays.
The Blue John Cavern remains the most popular whilst Speedwell Cavern is ideal for romantic boat rides! or for the more experienced cavers, head to Bagshaw Cavern.
Many of the caves are suitable for both beginners and advanced potholers.
So do something a little on your holiday and open your eyes to a whole new world that lies just beneath your feet!