Roche Abbey

Climbs 78 – Rocktype Limestone – Altitude 70m a.s.l – Faces SW

Crag features

A pleasant collection of steep compact pocketed dolomitic limestone buttresses up to 15m in height in sharing a valley with a ruined 16th century monastery. The best climbing is in the low E grades but the VS and the few HVSs are very worthwhile. The grades seem tough due to the pumpy nature of the rock. The bouldering is excellent though a bit polished. Most of the harder routes are usually top roped (abundant trees provide good anchors) despite the odd peg! A lot of the crag stays dry in the rain but it generally gets better weather than the Peak anyway. The guidebook is out of print, but you could look at [Paz 5/01]

Approach notes

From Maltby (come off M18 junction 1) go south east along the A634 following the brown signs to Roche Abbey. From the end of the cobbled lane (park here) turn right away from the Abbey and walk up the valley. The crags start immediately up on the right.

NOTE - climbing is technically forbidden by the landowner, but the situation is such that you are unlikely to be spotted let alone asked to leave. we climbed here 1/5/2015 and got kicked off after been spotted by security.

Read more... Regional Access notes are available from the BMC.


Out of print: Bouldering in the Peak District Vol 1 (1994)

Climbs at this crag

Sort climbs
 Climb nameGrade
2Gildaf4+ 1
3Rigolettof6B 3
4Octoberf6A+ 2
5Strict Foref6B+ 2
6Scoopf5+ 2
7Flautistf6B+ 2
8The Waspf7A+ *3
9Crackerf4+ 2
10Sloperf6A 2
11Flakef5+ 2
12Lankyf6A 2
13Undercutf5+ 2
14The 5c Dynonone 5c 8
15Low Break Traversef6A 5c 8
16Passionf7A+ **8
17Crystalf6C 33
18Borgf6C 35
19Sharkes Toothf6C+ *16
21The CrackE2 5c 2
22Golden ChaliceE2 5c 3
23The AreteE2 5c 2
24The QuestE3 6a 2
25Holy GrailE1 5b 2
27The FontHVS 5a 2
29Retrof6C *1
30Vintage Leftf6B+ **1
31Vintage Rightf6B 1
32Silent PrayerE3 5c 1
33PenitenceE3 5c 2
34Cold Water TreatmentE2 5c 2
35Vows of CelibacyE2 5c 2
36EvensongVS 4c 6
37CampanologistHVS 5b 2
38Bell RingerHVS 5a 4
40The Foolf7B+ **13
41Jazzy Jesterf7B **11
42The Jesterf7A+ 3
43Jazzf7B **3
44Justicef7A *17
45Fools Justicef8A 3
46Worse Habits Sit Startf6A+ *3
47Sundancef6C+ **12
48Bad Habits Sit Startf7A ***12
49Bad Habits Traversef7A **5
50Addictionf7C+ ** 
51Speedwayf7C+ *** 
52Speedway Sit Startf8A+ * 
53Tight Holef7A+ 7
54Rehabit Sit Startf6C **6
55The Abbey Habit Start 6a+f6A+  
56Faith Left Handf7A+ **13
57Faith Right Handf7A 16
58Habitus sit startf6B **11
59Tony's undercut eliminatef7A+ *9
60Fallen Idolf7B+ **4
61Fallen idol sit startf7C+  
62HabitusE1 6a 3
63MatinsHVS 5a 1
64Shallow GraveE1 5b 1
65Holy SmokeVS 4c 1
66Dirty HabitsE3 6a *4
696b+ Aretef6B+  
70Tripitakaf7A+ 10
71Tripitaka Extensionf7B+ *** 
72Dragon Flyf6C 7
73Idrisf7B+ **5
74Surrender to Strangenessf8B *** 
75Serenityf8B *** 
76Serendipityf8B+ *** 
77Apachef8A+ *** 
78Into the blackf7C 1
79Dark Therapyf8A ** 
80Light Therapyf7C+ ** 
81Black Cherryf7B **3
82Whale Boppf7B **1
836c+f6C+ **1
84The wasp dyno *f7A 1
* Climbs listed in red are waiting to be checked by a crag moderator, and may not be accurate.
Moderator Updates to this page are checked by UKC volunteer Elliot Shiel

USER FEEDBACKLogin as Existing User to add your comments
Many original climbs are missing.
sting - 07/Jan/15
For anyone who has not been before (when leaves are on the trees) I think theyre difficult to find. Once you get to the carpark. The first 2 crags are adjacent to the carpark behind thick woodland. See the excellent for ace info. As noobs we found these crags too hard and prefered the bouldering after the end of the SSSI, down the track from the car park away from the abbey and over the road into the next woodland. It was a bit slippery being shaded but not too bad. Also, the car park was very busy and a flourescent jacket tried telling me i would have to reverse 3/4 mile up a twisty single lane track as there was no room in the carpark. i ignored him of course and found a parking space but be prepared! We will come back when we are more experienced, theres some great climbing to be had but as noobs maybe we should stick to Stanage Edge for now
northernspirit2001 - 05/Jun/07
Access is officially denied as it is a designated SSSI. The Earl of Scarborough recently died and English Heritage allegedly manage the place. More info on Keep a LOW profile and behave and you should be ok. As DP says the bouldering and climbing is pretty good, nothing really here for beginners. Enjoy this smashing little crag.. Dave Law
dangerous - 06/Apr/06
Guide books for Roche Abbey. The Crag appeared in BMC New climbs 1986. Pages 64 to 68.
Paul F - 31/Oct/05
Access problems currently at the moment, Lord Scarborough - English Heritage has installed a new security gate at the entrance to the driveway. This gate is electric opens at 6.30am and closes at 6.30pm. Currently there are signs stating no climbing due to double scientific interest.
steve Greig - 21/Feb/03
What a superb crag. Puts the Minus Ten wall to shame. The bouldering is shady in the summer and a suntrap in the winter - what more could you ask for. The classic \"Borg\" (English 6b), is maybe the best boulder problems of its grade on yorks/peak limestone (see photo Undisputed (as yet) as South Yorkshire\'s premier limestone bouldering venue.
Dave Parry - 31/Jan/02