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Dry Stone Walling Course

If you want to try your hand at Dry Stone Walling this place runs a two day intro Course which is... read more

Reviewed October 19, 2018
Geoffreysm1th
,
Sandiacre, United Kingdom
A better name would be “Wirksworth Stone Centre and Café”

The National Stone Centre and Gasto Café does oversell itself: for a “National” centre and a... read more

Reviewed September 8, 2018
Andrew081
,
St Albans, United Kingdom
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All reviews gem panning the high peak trail activity pack info boards kiddies play area school hols different parts exhibition area brass rubbings tracing paper light railway fascinating place ample parking all age groups for sale information centre old quarry
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Reviewed May 3, 2015 via mobile

Recently came for a visit with my 2 yr old son. Not clear where u pay,grumpy staff that also stunk of fags,icecream wasnt very nice and you had to dodge the dog poo that was on all the pathways. Only thing that was pleasureable was the weather.wont be going again but it could be such a good place due to it location!

Date of experience: April 2015
1  Thank jadeyv84
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Pittywood, Trustee at National Stone Centre, responded to this reviewResponded May 8, 2015

We have had difficulty getting our local District Council to empty the dog bin. For some reason, they could not locate it after years of emptying it. A possible change of personel ? It took three phone calls, three site visits for them to finally locate it!

In the case of the cafe, our Franchisee is aware of your comments and taken note. I can only say that you sound as if you also had "a bad hair day!"

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Reviewed April 25, 2015 via mobile

Was a great family day out. The staff were very friendly and couldn't of helped us enough with what we could do whilst at the National Stone Centre.The food is lovely for a small bite to help get you through to dinner and the gem panning was the most fun activity for the children, they extremely enjoyed it! Would definitely visit again and have to purchase some of the beautiful jewellery! :-)

Date of experience: April 2015
Thank Woff90
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Pittywood, Trustee at National Stone Centre, responded to this reviewResponded April 27, 2015

We are glad you and your family enjoyed your visit. It makes it all that much more worth while for us from our small but hugely dedicated band of volunteers point of view.

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Reviewed April 11, 2015

Visited this place, what a disappointment.
As others have said the car park is more than adequate as I can't see the place getting packed.
You walk down towards a uninviting looking gloomy building, the entrance door is not obvious as for some reason it is blacked out, once inside things are even less clear, Staff didn't really seem all that interested, I asked the entry price to be told they were all on the board behind the till. We paid the entry to the exhibition £5 adult £2 under 15.
Entered the exhibition........disappointing is the only word I can use, tired and dated, out of order sign on what appeared to be some sort of interactive exhibit, little else other that wall boards and examples of different rocks, as others have said I can only assume it is geared more to guided school trips.
The external geo trail is poorly laid out, conflicting numbers mean it's hard to work out where you are, more organisation required please.
We were there in total for less than an hour, in my personal opinion this place is in need of an update given it calls itself the "National" stone centre your expectations, well certainly ours, are a lot higher.

Date of experience: April 2015
Thank markw283
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed April 5, 2015 via mobile

Hadn't read any reviews before we went apart from looking on the website at the price (which wasn't that expensive given the cost of other local attractions). We were a bit confused when we arrived as the signage is a bit lacking. I actually thought the stone centre was the Eco Centre (but they are different!)

So parked up and went down to the stone centre and through the blacked out doors (not that welcoming!). Greeting wasn't great either when we went in and I felt awkward asking for tickets (it was as though I was interrupting something far more important than serving paying customers?)

So off we went with our outdoor activity packs (not given any info about where to start or any general information). The packs were good and contained note book, tracing paper, pencil, crayon, magnifying glass and a few bits of info. Kids loved the magnifying glass!

The actual quarries and route around the place was absolutely lovely and peaceful. This has been carefully thought out and looking for fossils passed a lot of time which meant we could sit down and take in the place whilst the kids were busy! This is why you should visit because it's a magnificent location where nature is claiming back what must have been heavy industry!

So after the trail we went into the exhibition. Great area but this really needs some attention. Not the content just the experience and internal look of the place as its seen better days - it's tired.

So on to gem panning. "Make sure you bring the pans back nice an clean" was the only real instruction we were given. Although we did say we hadn't done it before and a slightly warmer description was given. Kids loved the panning!

So the verdict from me is this place needs a kick up the backside and some energy injecting into it. It's a great location with a great resource but it's un inviting from the outside, definitely un inviting from the inside but beyond that the quarries and trail is well worth a visit.

Thank Stickman_blue
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Pittywood, Trustee at National Stone Centre, responded to this reviewResponded April 9, 2015

Stickman Blue

Thanks for your wide ranging review. I could respond to each and every point but I will not.

It is pleasing to know that you enjoyed the prime reason for our existance, the geological trails traversing the various SSSI (Geology) allocations of the site. And of course we believe the site is a gem in its very own mixed-ecological way. Just to walk it should be a pleasure in own right. Something that many locals do up to twice daily.

We are looking to improve the site experience by rolling back impact of ecological time through increased maintenance from a varity of voluntary through to school team sources.

Would you like to help us inject a kick or two by joining us as a volunteer/supporter? We need people like you with a strong vision in mind to help us meet your personal asperations.

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Reviewed April 1, 2015

Very good collection of gems and local stone. Has a dry stone wall area which gives demonstrations. Has a nice tea room.

Date of experience: March 2015
2  Thank Christine W
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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