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Whaley Bridge

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Whaley-Bridge-Mechanics-Institute.jpg
The Mechanic's Institute, which serves as town hall, function room and library

Whaley Bridge is a small town in the High Peak district of Derbyshire, United Kingdom. Situated on the River Goyt, Whaley Bridge is approximately 30km South of Manchester and 11km North of Buxton (Template:Coor dm), and has a population of around 7,000.

Contents

History

The name is thought to be of Anglo-Saxon origin meaning "clearing by the road", spellings in early documents include Weylegh and Weyley.

The town expanded greatly in the Industrial Revolution. Although there had been coal mines from earlier times, by 1871 cotton mills had become the dominant industry.

The Peak Forest Canal, approved by act of parliament in 1794, terminates in Whaley Bridge, initially constructed to carry coal. The Peak Forest Canal was connected to the Cromford Canal by the Cromford and High Peak Railway, originally using horse-drawn carriages.

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Whaley_Bridge_canal_basin.jpg
The canal basin in Whaley Bridge on a summer's day

Present day

Whaley Bridge continues to expand as new housing is built, but it retains the character of a small town. As the self-styled 'Gateway to the Goyte' it attracts some tourists, mainly walkers, but it has not become dominated by the tourist industry. With a reasonably good commuter railway service to Manchester many people travel to work in the Greater Manchester conurbation, or in Cheshire. With the recent introduction of ASDL broadband internet services increasingly people work from home.

The town has been twinned with Tymbark, Poland since June1994.

The town has two primary schools, Whaley Bridge County Primary School and Taxal and Fernilee Church of England Primary School, although for secondary education children travel further a field, typically to Chapel-en-le-Frith, New Mills or Buxton.

Festivals and traditions

Whaley Bridge has an annual carnival, the Rose Queen festival, in the early summer, also local wells are decorated with pictures made of flowers, a custom known as Well Dressing.

See also

External links

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