historic micro-trail: derby

looking for something a little smaller than our normal trail? head to derby - situated in the east midlands and home to the british rail industry, it is filled with quirky, historic stops to check out.

The Brunswick Inn - Railway Terrace

A purpose built - in 1841- triangular building that was constructed to serve the railway worker cottages of the same period. It was an unbelievably popular pub in the early 1900’s when railway workers (who when paid at 12 noon on a Thursday) all descended on the Brunswick for a pint or two!


The pub got so busy that all space was taken and they even had to put forms in the corridors to act as auxiliary seating. Today this is a well kept pub and microbrewery with it’s own beer range - Brunswick Ales. There are 15 hand pulls in total and apart from its own beers, there is a fine selection including Everards, Stancil Brewery.


We tried Brunswick Ales White Feather 3.6% - a light easy drinking session ale.

The Exeter Arms - Exeter Place

This really is like finding a country pub in the urban sprawl of a city centre - a real hidden gem!


The pub has a great feel with log fires, a Springer Spaniel lying in the bar, and 7 hand pulls with the Dancing Duck Brewery dominating with selections such as:

  • Ay Up 3.6%

  • Indian Porter 5.0%

  • Abduction 4.4%


We also spotted a Walrus Chocolate IPA at 4.6% on our visit.


We sampled all of the above - all well kept and great tasting. The pub also has a great outdoor area for summer drinking.

Ye Olde Dolphin Inne - Queen Street

The Dolphin dates back to 1530AD, allegedly making it the oldest in Derby. It was constructed a good thirty years before even potatoes and tobacco were introduced to the country!


The quaint picturesque pub stands at the junction of Queens Street and Full Street, part of which was known as Nanny Tags Lane.


It has a good selection of mainstream ales including Timothy Taylor Boltmaker, Otter Ales Amber, Sharps Doom Bar and Abbot Ale

Other pubs you might want to check out in Derby (although we don’t think they qualify as an official HPT Trail pub) include:

  • The Alexandra Hotel - one for the railway enthusiasts

  • Smithfield Ale House - Dog friendly

  • The Furnace Inn - Shiny Brewing pub

Please reload



Craft beer

Super old