Eldon Hole.

Eldon Hole is known as one of the seven wonders of the Peak district, and at 245 feet in depth it well deserves this title, the other six wonders of the Peak district are Peak Cavern, Poole’s Cavern, Mam Tor, St Anne’s Well at Buxton, Chatsworth House and the ebbing and flowing well in Barmough Clough. It is thought to be the deepest pothole in Derbyshire and it can be found on the side of Eldon hill. No one is quite sure how it came to be formed in this location but it must have been formed over millions of years by water seeping through the limestone and slowly eroding it away.

The entrance to the hole is 110 ft in length and 20 ft in width and as I have stated before it is 245ft in depth, however there is a 60ft pile of stones in the bottom of the hole which slope away into a huge cavern which has a huge domed roof with stalactites hanging from it.

As with any natural unusual feature in the landscape legends have been created over the years, it is said that in the early part of the eighteenth century Daniel Defoe told of a rope being lowered for more than a mile down Eldon Hole and he also told of a traveller being forced to step over the edge by two villains, maybe his remains were discovered at the bottom of the hole when it was first explored in 1780 and found not to be bottomless as once thought.

In the past it was thought that Eldon Hole was the abode of Fairies and Supernatural beings, however over the years these stories changed in that it was thought to be a place where the Devil resided.

In the past when the hole was thought to be bottomless a man called Charles Cotton was lowered into the hole on a rope and back then it was claimed he was lowered for a mile without reaching the bottom, it is said that another man had been lowered and when he was brought back to the surface he was unconcious, he died soon afterwards.

Another legend surrounding Eldon hole is that in the past a goose was thrown down and it is claimed the same goose reappeared coming out of Peak Cavern a few miles away, it is said that its feathers were blackened and charred from the flames of hell. In fact quite the opposite is true as it must be quite cold at the bottom of the hole as in the past a 20ft snow and ice plug has been found there on more than one occasion as late as July!

Eldon Hole is still a very dangerous place even in this day and age, all that surrounds it is a small barb wire fence and when I was leaning over a 250ft drop taking these photos to put on this website I found it quite character forming! A woman in recent years lost her life here when she was trying to control her dog and slipped over the edge, so if you do visit this strange creepy place do take care.

When I was taking these photos I could here what sounded like a crow calling from down below so I am not sure whether birds live or nest here or whether one was injured, however one thing was for sure I was not about to climb down and find out!

I found that Eldon Hole is not signposted so is therefore quite difficult to find, however if you follow these directions you should have no trouble finding it. I took the A6 road from Buxton and just before you come into Chapel-en-le Frith turn right at the island and follow the A623 for two to three miles until you come into the small village of Peak Forest. When you come to the traffic lights in the centre of the village turn left onto Church lane follow Church lane then take the second turn on your right which will be Eldon lane. Follow Eldon lane as it climbs up the hill after a short distance you will come to Eldon lane farm, the tarmac road turns into a rough track, follow this rough track for a 100yards up the hill and you will come to a gate, pass through this gate and turn immediately to your left and follow the stone wall, ahead of you, you will see a small wood a few hundred yards away, Eldon Hole is behind this wood on the hillside.

2 Responses to “Eldon Hole.”

  1. I was walking near to Peak Forest and noticed something unusual on a distant hillside. Turns out it’s Eldon Hole.

  2. I bottomed Eldon Hole in the late sixties and found it necessary to ease myself between the rock wall and a considerable snow plug, and this was in August!!

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