Eroica Britannia: cycle in style

by Katie Rowe

Category: Things to do
March 9 2015

Handlebar moustaches and sepia filters at the ready...

Cyclists making their way through a village street for Eroica © Polly Baldwin © Polly Baldwin

Eroica Britannia is back in Central England for a second year! The ‘World's Most Handsome Bike Ride' sees cyclists on sleek pre-1987 road racing bikes whizz past the dramatic scenery of the Peak District National Park, including the grounds of Chatsworth House in June.

Along with the bike ride, there’ll be a weekend-long festival (June 19 – 21) spanning the event, dedicated to all things vintage. Sift through retro fashions galore at The British Bazaar, do your best Lindy Hop to live music and admire the world's greatest Bike Jumble, before feasting on the best of British food courtesy of GRAZE’s award-winning food vendors.

Calling all revellers and riders...

Winners of the 'Best in Show' at Eroica in the Peak District © Thom Heald

Back on the track, Eroica Britannia's famously tough ‘World's Most Handsome Bike Ride' departs the festival during the early hours of Sunday 21st June, with 3,000 entrants zooming through the wild vistas of the Peak District, including the private grounds of the Chatsworth Estate. There’ll be stop off points at six villages tucked away in the National Park, each hosting their own mini festival and feast stop packed with local food and drink.

If you see yourself more as a festival reveller than a rider, there are still competitions to be won, including the vintage-style Sports Day and the quintessentially English 'Best in Show', where the best dressed will be paraded on the Village Green. Bring on the pearl necklaces and pinstriped waistcoats! 

A three-day pass is just £10 if bought in advance from And if you want to stay over, it will cost under £100 for a family of four (including camping, parking and festival tickets), making it one of the best value family festivals in the UK.

And while you're in the area...

Chatsworth © Katie Rowe

Treat yourself to Bakewell Pudding

Bakewell Puddings were first made at a local inn in Bakewell, around 1860, though the recipe was a happy accident. Visiting noblemen ordered strawberry tart, but the cook, instead of stirring the egg mixture into the pastry, spread it on top of the jam. A local woman called Mrs Wilson purchased the recipe and set up The Old Original Bakewell Pudding Shop, whose puddings are lauded to this very day. 

Have a movie moment at Chatsworth

With grand gardens, Baroque interiors and golden fixtures glimmering from every angle, Chatsworth was made for the big screen. Nestled in the Peak District National Park, its majestic columns and grand gardens have made appearances in The Duchess, The Wolfman and Pride and Prejudice (film 2005, BBC TV series 1995).

Step into a fairytale at Haddon Hall

With an architectural history spanning from the 12th to the early 17th century, it’s no wonder film-makers flock to Haddon Hall. Just a few miles away from Chatsworth, its intricate turrets and leadlight windows give it a distinctive fairytale feel. The house has played host to no less than three versions of Jane Eyre. Screen credits also include Elizabeth, Pride and Prejudice and The Other Boleyn Girl.

Try your hands and feet at rock climbing

The striking formations at Dovedale, stark carapaces of the Roaches, dramatic gritstone crags of Windgather Rocks and the sinuous moor-top crest of Stanage Edge are places of pilgrimage for climbers from across the world. If you don’t know your carabiners from your crimps, get in touch with one of the area’s outdoor pursuits experts who will have your fingertips aching and your adrenaline soaring in no time.

Find more things to do in the Peak District...

Katie Rowe

Instagram updates


Customer survey …

VisitEngland would like to invite you to take part in a short survey about our website.

It should take no more than a couple of minutes.

Please click here to be taken to the survey


To add items to favourites …

… you need to be logged in.

If you already have an account, log in.

Or register a

Access your account

Enter your e-mail address or username.
Enter the password that accompanies your e-mail.
Forgot your password? Recover your account
Don't have an account? Register an account