Peak Forest, Derbyshire

White's Gazetteeer and General Directory of “Sheffield and 20 miles round”, 1862

Transcribed by Rosemary Lockie, © Copyright 2000

PEAK FOREST, a chapelry, small village, and ex. par. liberty, 2½ miles N.W. from Tideswell, contains 5,026A. 3R. 34P. of land, and in 1851 had 596 inhabitants. The Duke of Devonshire is lord of the manor and principal owner. The Chapel (St. James) is a plain stone edifice, with turret and one bell. The living is a perpetual curacy, value £70; the Duke of Devonshire, patron, and the Rev. Wm. P. Rigge, incumbent, for whom a handsome parsonage house was erected in 1861 by the patron. The King's Forest of the Peak, anciently called De Alto Pecco, was of great extent, and was in ancient times much infested with wolves. Eldon Hole, Hole, ½ mile N. from Peak Forest, is a famous perpendicular chasm, and considered one of the seven wonders of the world; its mouth is about 90 feet in length, and 30 in breadth in the widest part. The interior of the chasm is described as consisting of two parts - one small like an oven, the other very spacious, and in form like the dome of a glasshouse, communicating with each other by a small arched passage. In the year 1845, the Duke of Devonshire erected a neat school here, which is endowed with £30 per annum. The Wesleyans have a neat stone Chapel, erected in 1851, at a cost of £250. Here are several extensive lead mines in the neighbourhood. Feast, first Sunday after St. James.

BARMOOR, 2½ miles E. from Chapel-en-le-Frith, is an extensive liberty in this district, where is the celebrated “Ebbing and Flowing Well”, justly considered one of the wonders of the Peak. Close to this intermitting spring is a small cavity that receives the water from several apertures by the side of it; from these the water does not, however, issue at regular intervals, for as that depends on the quantity of rain which may previously have fallen, it has sometimes, though rarely happened in very dry seasons, that the well has ceased to flow for two, three, or four weeks together. Sometimes it flows only once in twelve hours; sometimes every hour, and in very wet seasons twice or thrice within the hour. When it begins to rise, the motion of the water is at first gentle, but in a short time the quantity that issues becomes very large, and it continues to flow four minutes and half. It has been calculated that, in the space of one minute, twenty hogsheads of water are discharged. Though the flowing of the well does not happen frequently in a dry season, yet its appearance then is far more striking the cavity that receives it having previously become dry. Sparrow Pit, a village 2 miles N.W. from Peak Forest, is principally in Chapel-en-le-Frith parish. The poor have several charities.
[Unfortunately this extract is incomplete, as my photocopy didn't cover the rest - my apologies]

Transcribed by Rosemary Lockie in June 2000
from of an original edition in the Society of Genealogists' Library.

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