Matlock Bath Pavilion Site

River: River Derwent, Matlock Bath, Derbyshire
Contact: Chris Martin.

Grid reference:SK 29328 58163

Pavilion:South Parade, Matlock Bath, Derbyshire

Nearby Postcode:DE4 3NR

Access:Restricted between 1st March to August Bank Holiday (Saturday) and shared with the public rowing boats during high season.

Access and Egress:Behind The Pavilion or the Slalom Site

The River through Matlock Bath is quite unique because nowhere else has a seaside resort in the middle of a landlocked countryside.  Its seaside-style promenade along the river, picturesque walks and tourist attractions, such as the famous Heights of Abraham cable cars.

The river has restricted access which can be paddled between 1st March to August Bank Holiday each year. Approximately 1000m stretch of river along the promenade, behind the Pavilion to the end of the River Gardens. The access during the peak tourist period is shared with the public rowing boats.

It can be accessed from behind The Pavilion or from the Slalom Site upstream, about 2000m north of Matlock Bath centre.

This stretch of the river is ideal for the inexperienced paddler being coached individually or as a group.

The river is generally grade 1. When the river is high (fast moving water, grade 1) it is still enough to present an enjoyable challenge for all paddlers.

The river access agreement starts from the Victorian shelter/toilets at the North end of the promenade. The course then progresses along the promenade where river right bank to the Pavilion is in private ownership and there is no access agreement to access or egress from this bank. Left bank no problems. Passing under the Victorian foot bridge, along and behind the Pavilion where there is some steps and a good an access and egress point latter stretch of water passes the Victorian River Gardens to where the access finish at the far end of the river gardens.

 River Grading at the Slalom Site


Even though the river is easy paddle it can become dangerous in exceptional high water conditions. If in doubt, seek advice or stay off the water.

Levels to be aware of:
0.90m – No Matlock Canoe Club beginner sessions
1.50m – No Matlock Canoe Club sessions

A rough guide to river levels at Matlock Slalom Site:
1.23m – Flowing over Killer- good eddies- nice level for experienced paddlers to play
1.29m – No egress at bottom steps
1.65m – Very few eddies; washed out- too high to do anything
3.99m – Touches bridge!

For current River Derwent river levels at Matlock go to: