Visit Peak District & Derbyshire – Well Dressings 2023

This colourful guide highlights venues and dates of our Well Dressing events that visitors can enjoy this summer across Derbyshire and the Peak District.

During May to September, the unique spectacle of Well Dressings takes place – a custom that celebrates water and the life it brings. Many villages have revived this ancient tradition and create living art installations to decorate their wells, often combining it with local carnivals and other festivities.

Well Dressings are pictures made from growing things (wool, bark, cones, flower petals, berries, leaves, seeds and other natural materials), constructed on a bed of soft clay spread over a wooden board and erected at the site of the spring or well. Well Dressings depict a wide range of themes from biblical stories, historic themes and natural history to Disney characters! Dressing a well can take a team of skilled people up to a week to produce. The finished well will only last a week or so, as the flowers fade and the clay dries out and cracks.

Visit a Well Dressing from May through to September each year and marvel at this age-old unique tradition and superb show of artistic creativity.