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October 2002
Darley Park - today
Darley Park
The wide open space of Darley Park
Darley Park is a popular leisure facility in the city and is now home to the annual open air concert. Located just minutes from the city centre, it is easily accessible from the A38 and the A6.
audio BBC Radio Derby's Shane O'Connor explores Darley Park (28k)
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Outline map of Derby showing the location of Darley Park
There are several entrances to the park including Darley Grove, Darley Park Drive – which is off the mini-roundabout on the A6 Duffield Road – and from Mileash Lane via Derwent Riverside Walk.

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Within walking distance of the city centre, Darley Park offers peace and quiet, and relaxing walks though unspoilt parkland.

There are a number of sports clubs based in the park, including the rowing club which makes use of the River Derwent, and the park’s undulating slopes are popular with skiers and those with sledges when it snows.

Part of the Hydrangea and Viburnum collection
Part of the Hydrangea and Viburnum collection
Darley Park is home to a NATIONAL COLLECTION OF VIBURNUM AND HYDRANGEA, started in 1984.

The purpose of plant collections like the one at Darley Park is to save plants which are in danger of extinction, conserving them for future generations.

Species may be under threat due to disease, or simply because they are not being grown by gardeners, if they are not fashionable or are too difficult to cultivate.

The National Council for the Conservation of Plants and Gardens has over 600 such National Collections of cultivated plants.

BBC Radio Derby's John Holmes hosts the Darley Park concert
John Holmes hosts the annual Darley Park Concert

These collections need to be grown in places where interested parties are able to see them, and many of them require a lot of space – housing them in parks like the one at Darley Abbey or in botanical gardens is the easiest way of doing this.

Darley Park also has a TREE TRAIL that you can follow, which takes you past thirty different varieties of tree originating from all over the world, from the Purple Japanese Maple to the Tibetan Cherry.

The park is also the venue for an extremely popular classical concert held each summer, and which this year was again compered by Radio Derby’s very own John Holmes.

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