From the Visitor Centre, which is next to the Crooked Spire, enter the churchyard and take the path on the left, past the end of the church. Go right and down the steps, then cross the road at the pedestrian crossing. Go down Corporation Street, past the museum. Bear left and cross the bridge over the major road. Continue past the entrance to the Chesterfield Hotel. Turn left into Malkin Street, cross the road and go right along Brimington Road at the mini-roundabout (see photo right).
The area to your left, behind the blue railings, is earmarked for a major development scheme which will eventually include a new length of canal. You soon come to Holbeck Close (see photo left). Turn left along here and pass an old information board about the canal. There is a sign marking the start of a footpath which follows the River Rother. It’s fairly industrial here – which of course was why he canal was built 240 years ago! A short section of river was used by boats when the canal was built. After crossing the river, you will come to a weir, where the canal leaves the river. You then arrive at Bridge no. 1 and the Flood Lock Gate that protects the canal in case of a flood on the river (see photo below).
Again start at the Visitor Centre. Go up to the left along Stephenson Place. Turn right at the traffic lights, then straight ahead into Corporation Street as the main road bends to the right. Follow the On foot route above as far as Holbeck Close. Here you should carry straight on along Brimington Road – the route off Holbeck Close beside the River Rother is for pedestrians only. After about half a mile, there is a clear sign (see photo left) showing the route off left, down the hill and joining the towpath at Bridge no 1. Although Brimington Road is quite busy, there is a cycle lane along the whole half mile or so to the canal. Overall its about a mile from the Visitor Centre to Bridge no. 1