On our hunt for the elusive Blue John Stone, we learned that the only 2 places you can find it, so far, on the face of the earth is Treak Cliff Cavern and Blue John Stone Cavern in the Peak District National Park, Derbyshire. So on the rainiest day so far this year we packed up the car and tramped down to this magnificent part of the country.
For just £13 - adults and £10.50 - children, we learned some amazing facts on mining through the ages and how this semi precious stone was formed. Miners have been constructing tunnels since the 1750’s with only hand tools.
Luckily we had just entered the cave’s gift shop when the heavens opened, giving our expedition an extra dramatic ambience.
After purchasing a few ‘necessary’ crystals such as Rose Quartz, Amethyst, Lapis Lazuli and of course Blue John Stone, we entered the caves via The TARDIS!! For any non-Dr. Who enthusiasts, it’s a blue telephone box. Loved this idea as we were being transported back 330 million years!
Would you believe this cave was once a reef on the edge of a tropical lagoon?
Under much pressure, time and tectonic movement, crystals and fossils were formed and landscapes changed beyond recognition. You can observe some early fish skeletons that look like Cheerios in most of the rooms in the cavern.
At the moment there are no guided tours but a recorded audio tour can be downloaded to your smartphone and is narrated by one of the employees.
Each room becomes even more impressive than the last with huge stalagmites and stalactites such as The Pillar, The Stork and even one that resembles the BFG’s ear!
The Witch’s cave is where you will find the most prominent colours of blue crystal with metres of blue ‘veins’ adorning the walls.
Flowstone, a type of mineral that drips down the walls in the water and remineralises over time, decorates Aladdins cave. The white colours indicate they contain large amounts of lead.
This takes thousands of years to achieve.
On the way out, we were told that we may see some Orbweaver spiders but not to worry they would ONLY give a nip if threatened! 😳
Fortunately we were blessed to avoid an encounter as we’re a bit petrified of them.🕷🕸
Imagine this place at Halloween!!