Blackwell Halt

Blackwell Halt Main Wall

When Bill Birch and Rick Gibbon discovered this little quarried face at the north-western end of Chee Dale, they truly found one of the best arenas for lower grade sport climbing in the Peak District, so much so that this has become extremely popular with the climbing fraternity. Of course controversy was to follow, doesn’t it always, in the form of Ken Wilson and his anti-bolt campaign but in reality this has to be seen to be unjustified: the cliff was new, discovered by two climbers who were prepared to put the hard work in which has warranted the bolting of the place. Just ask the climbers who have visited the cliff to enjoy its climbs.

A little while later Nadim Siddiqui polished the place off with the addition of a quartet of routes and the place was finished off.

A perfect venue for the climber at the lower limit of the sport climbing grade. Nearly all the routes are in the 6a-6c category with only two above and perfectly bolted.


The whole cliff is a slightly leaning wall, just over vertical, and consequently all of the routes are fairly similar in style. There are a few technical moves more specifically on Micro Chip, Hard Drive, Ernie and Defrag, but the general style is sustained wall climbing.

Care is required in gaining access to the cliff as it necessitates crossing the old quarry railway from Great Rocks Dale to Buxton. This is comparatively harmless and only takes five minutes from the old disused railway track at the western of Chee Dale (actually at the bottom of the hill from the Topley Pike parking area)