Matlock Bath station reopens as wildlife discovery hub

The Victorian Matlock Bath rail station is back on track as a community hub.

A long-neglected Matlock Bath railway building is bustling with life once again after it reopened this month as a wildlife discovery centre.

The Grade II listed station booking hall stood empty for several years until Derbyshire Wildlife Trust reopened the doors on Saturday, July 1.

Derbyshire Wildlife Trust are seeking volunteers to help staff and develop the centre.

Now known as the Whistlestop Discovery Centre, it is a multi-purpose visitor hub highlighting the work of the trust, providing information about the local area and flexible community space.

Project leader Ellen Fineran said: “It’s been fantastic to see this wonderful place come back to life.

“It’s also been really inspiring to talk to visitors, local businesses and residents about our plans – they are as excited as we are to see the building open again.”

The refurbishment has revived the original Victorian interiors and reveals a light and airy space.

Ellen said: “It was a real voyage of discovery as the plaster came down and this beautiful building was revealed.

“This is just the start of an exciting journey for the Whistlestop as we still have lots of plans to develop the site into an inspirational space for everyone to enjoy.”

There building already boasts a wildlife garden and a shop selling refreshments and gifts, including the trust’s own beef boxes from their farm at Woodside near Ilkeston.

It also provides space which members of the community can use to try business ventures or run events.

The trust is seeking volunteers to help tend the garden, staff the shop or café, or build a model railway.

The centre is now open 11am to 4pm at weekends, and every day from July 22.

For more information, see www.derbyshirewildlifetrust.org.uk.

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