Bill Purdue reviews Chad’s brand new tourist book

NMAC11-3231-1''Chad's Stephen Thirkill is pictured at Clumber Park on Wednesday.
NMAC11-3231-1''Chad's Stephen Thirkill is pictured at Clumber Park on Wednesday.

A BRAND new local tourism book which accompanies the popular Chad Audio Guide series is to go on sale.

The 80-page book has been penned by Chad journalist and first-time author Stephen Thirkill and features tours around seven prominent tourist hotspots and beauty locations across Mansfield and Ashfield.

THERE are many local tourist guides available which cover Nottinghamshire and Derbyshire, but none quite like this one, writes Bill Purdue.

In Chad reporter Stephen Thirkill’s new book ‘Tourist Trails, in and around Nottinghamshire and Derbyshire’ the reader is provided with the history and background to seven local tourist attractions all within easy reach of Mansfield and Ashfield.

In addition Stephen describes a guided tour around each one and talks to volunteers or employees who work at those locations and finds out what fires their enthusiasm.

Unlike some authors of travel guides, Stephen has visited every location.

I was particularly pleased that he has included the Teversal Trails, which is my favourite walking territory.

The trails comprise several walking routes, most of which are on old railway lines and so fairly flat. They cover a wide area and are connected to trails in Derbyshire and to the east of Mansfield.

In fact all the locations covered in the book , bar one, are well known to me, but it’s always refreshing to read something new about an old favourite.

By including conversations with a volunteer or member of staff at each location, Stephen offers the reader something new.

There are probably few tourist attractions in the country which can survive without the help of volunteers. Perhaps this book will inspire more local people to get involved and become a volunteer to help care for our local heritage.

Stephen also succeeds in bringing each place to life – there is the ‘wildlife orchestra’ of the birds on the lake at Clumber Park, the magical atmosphere of Chatsworth House’s interior steeped in history contrasting with the bleak surroundings of the Southwell Workhouse.

Included in each chapter are a potted history, opening times, where appropriate, facilities available and contact details. There is also a timeline and factfile. The book is fully illustrated with colour photographs and attractively presented.

Whether you like to soak up the history, look at priceless paintings and antiques or get some exercise in the fresh air, then this guide is for you.

The locations covered are Hardwick Hall, the Teversal Trails, Chatsworth House, Southwell Workhouse, Newstead Abbey, Kings Mill Reservoir and Clumber Park. Most of these locations offer a variety of experiences.

This book deserves to be a big success.

If you would like to pre-order your copy of Tourist Trails, which costs £9.99, call Stephen Thirkill on 01623 450292 or visit Chad receptions.