Stoke, Derbyshire - References in Early Records

Collection by Rosemary Lockie, © Copyright 2002-2012, &c.


This page comprises a selection of references I've collected over the years in an attempt to plot the history of the Manor and Estate of Stoke, and its Hall. Any quotations from modern sources have been kept to a minimum; it is recommended that the interested reader refers to the original source of my quotations for their full text.

  1. The Domesday survey [1] for “Hope, with the outliers Edale (Aidele), Aston (Estune), Shatton (Scetune), half of Offerton (Offretune), Tideswell (Tidesuuelle), Stoke (Stoche) and Muchedeswell” [2] recorded 30 villagers and 4 smallholders having 6 ploughs. There was a priest, and a church, with 1 carucate of land belonging to it; a mill, 30 acres of meadow, and woodland pasture covering an area of about 6 miles by 3 miles wide.

    “Before 1066 these three manors paid £30, 5½ sesters of honey and 5 waggon-loads of 50 lead sheets, now they pay £10 6s.”. In the time of the Anglo-Saxon King, Edward the Confessor, there had been 10 carucates of taxable land, and land for 10 ploughs (a carucate is 8 bovates; a bovate is as much land as an ox could plough in a year; a caruca described a plough, with the oxen that pulled it).

    This land belonged to the King, with William Peverel in charge of it.

    Historically this explains why Stoke belonged to the parish of Hope until relatively recent times (1911)!

  2. The Manor of Abney was owned, in the year 1317, by Robert ARCHER, a member of a family who were lords at this time of at least three other manors - Hucklow, Stoke, and Highlow. See The Manor of Abney: its Boundaries and Court Rolls. Also mentioned in the same source are 'Gerebertus de Stoca' and his Lady Amicia (Gilbert and Amy) of Stoke, temp 3 John (1201).

  3. The Manor of Stoke was sold by Henry Lord GREY of Codnor, about the year 1473 to Robert BARLEY, Esq. [Bagshaw's History, Gazetteer & Directory of Derbyshire], 1846. However, Joseph Tilley, who has more to say about the GREYs of Codnor in his chapter on Stoke Hall in Old Halls, Manors and Families of Derbyshire, Volume I 1892 (The High Peak), claims the estate was bought by a Thomas BARLEY (BARLOW), rather than Robert.

  4. #1267. Lease, for 100 years from Richard BAKEWELL son of Henry BAKEWELL, to George BARLEY of Stoke, of all his Land etc in Eyam and Folowe (except on[e] cottage) Dated 1 Oct 13 Hen VIII [1521] ... Bemrose.
    (1267 is the item number in the volume - “Derbyshire Charters” (County Shelves: Society of Genealogists Library)

  5. 3 Sep., 31 H. VIII. [1539], Inq. p.m. George Barley of Stoke died 27 March ult., holding land in Tideswell of Francis Meveril; Thomas, his son and heir, æt 26. [Tideswell Charters]

  6. Elizabeth, Countess of Shrewsbury (“Bess of Hardwick”) - was married firstly to Robert BARLEY (BARLOW) of Stoke, who died in 1544. She died in 1607/8, supposedly aged 87, according to her monument in All Saints Church, Derby. According to a source the Lysons refer to in Magna Britannia, Vol 5 (Derbyshire, 1817, p.116) as ‘Collins’, she was fourteen when she married Robert, and he died in 1533, but Rosemary Milward's account of Arthur MOWER (DAJ Miscellany, 1992) says 1544, and that he was the elder brother of Arthur MOWER's ‘master’, George BARLEY, who died in 1568. See also The Remembrances of Arthur Mower of Barlow, (1558-1610) elsewhere on this site.

  7. 1571 13 Elizabeth [1571], Inq. p.m. Humphrey Barley of Stoke held land in Tideswell of Sampson Merevil. [Tideswell Charters]

  8. Thomas BARLEY or BARLOW, a second son, inherited considerable properties in Derbyshire, including Stoke Hall, in 1573 after the death of his father. There is allegedly a connection with Robert above, but at present I can't work out what it is, as if the date of his inheritance is correct, clearly George, Robert's father, wasn't also Thomas's father! Thomas had married Matilda, the daughter of John FITZHERBERT, a leading Catholic and Recusant of the area. On their marriage, Thomas sold Stoke Hall to Charles CAVENDISH and made his home at Nether Hirst, Hathersage. The Barley's house at Nether Hirst became a place of gathering for recusants in the High Peak, and John FITZHERBERT was to be arrested along with the Padley Martyrs Nicholas GARLICK and Robert LUDLAM in 1588 and imprisoned.[3]

  9. GARLICK and LUDLAM were tried, and found guilty of high treason and were condemned to death, by hanging, drawing and quartering at Derby. Sir John was also condemned but allowed to live on payment of £10,000, and spent the rest of his life in Fleet Prison, in London (although this is a story more appropriate to telling in relation to Upper Padley).

  10. Derbyshire 1640/1 Feb 11 EYRE v EYRE
    Doesn't mention Stoke specifically, but follows on from the above by relating to the fortunes of the EYRE and BARLOW families, and to Catholicism.
    EYRE John of Hathersage, gent, versus EYRE Robert Esq., Thomas, gent, Elizabeth, late wife of George EYRE who died c1630, and WILSHAW George.
    Lands in Offerton in Hathersage, of which Robert EYRE of Highlow Esq. was seized. He refused to live with his wife FERRERS Bridget, sister of Sir John F and made settlement on her 20 April 11 James I [1614/5]. She still living. Robert's only son Thomas, father of deft BARLOW Mary, cousin of Robert EYRE, a popish recusant, induced him to become one also, for which he was convicted.[4]

  11. In 1992, an article by David Crossley and David Kiernan on the Lead-Smelting Mills of Derbyshire was published in the Derbyshire Archaeological Journal. This article suggests the lead Smelting Mill they studied at Stoke (SK23927530) was probably built by Charles CAVENDISH, after the Manor of Stoke was granted to him by his mother, the countess of Shrewsbury in 1573. Charles and his brother William were already engaged in the lead trade. Also mentioned are the accounts of Robert EYRE of Highlow, which refer to frequent carriage of ore to Stoke Mill in 1648-9 (Sheffield Record Office, Bagshawe Collection: 369/17). William CAVENDISH, later Earl and then Duke of Newcastle, inherited Stoke in 1617.[5]

    William was a staunch royalist, and fought for Charles I during the Civil War; but following the King's defeat he went into exile, and his lands were forfeited. His manor of Stoke was then sold, by his trustees and purchased by Jacinth SACHEVERELL of Morley. It is believed this may have taken place in 1647, as there is a deed recording the sale (so I understand) in the Derbyshire Record Office.[6]

    The Duke of Newcastle's wife wrote a book about her husband's support of the King, and his exile in Antwerp following the Civil War. An original copy of this book is to be found in Sheffield University Library. Stoke is recorded as being worth or sold for £313 in the financial schedule, adding up to about £1 million, contributed by the Duke of Newcastle in his support of the King.[6]

  12. In turn, SACHEVERELL leased the estate to Robert ASHTON of Stoney Middleton and Thomas FROGGATT, who was living at Stoke Hall, for respectively, £36 and £119 rent. (NRO 157 DD/P/78/1 c1670) When he died in 1656 [Will of Jacinth Sacheverell, 1659] the estate was left to his nephew Thomas of Balscote in Oxfordshire. Curiously, the Will states he (Jacinth) bought the estate from Charles, Lord MANSFIELD, but perhaps that is a reference to the Duke's trustee.

    The Duke (by some miraculous process) recovered the estate after the Restoration, making an arrangement whereby he leased Stoke and other lands back to Thomas SACHEVERELL, who continued to claim rent from ASHTON and FROGGATT. They disputed this, as they said they were now paying rent to the Duke! Various records in the Nottinghamshire Archives record the dispute. (NRO 157 DD/P/78/1-4 c1670)

  13. A further document (157 DD/P/103/3: 24 Jan 1671/2) then records that the Duke of Newcastle sold Stoke to Ambrose BLOXHAM, also of Balscote, Oxfordshire in 1672. Plots mentioned in the summary of the document provided via TNA's Discovery (formerly Access to Archives) website include the Nethergold Cliffe, the Gouldyleas, the Snowtleas and the Upper Gold Cliffe, which were occupied by Thomas FROGATT, and Mill Meadow occupied by Robert ASHTON, the latter being a reference to the Smelting Mill referred to above, studied by Crossley and Kiernan. Power of attorney was vested in Richard CALTON of Stanton and William SAVILE of Bakewell for this transaction.

    Also mentioned is a Cottage called Toadpoole in Bakewell parish (ie Froggatt). Thus it appears that FROGGATT and ASHTON retained their leases following the dispute in 1670 with Thomas SACHEVERELL.

  14. On 2nd December 1727, Fra: (Francis) STRINGER of Stoke left his “landed Estate in Darbyshire” to his nephew John SIMPSON. Amongst other bequests, he left his niece Martha STRINGAY £2000. The Will was proved in February 1727/8. [Will of Francis Stringer, 1728], and it is believed that John SIMPSON was the son of Francis's sister Elizabeth STRINGER, who married John SIMPSON of Eckington in 1695.

  15. According to otherwise reliable sources, John SIMPSON married Martha STRINGER, probably at Clowne, in Derbyshire in January 1728. Martha was the daughter of Thomas STRINGER, who had married Martha BENBOW, one of the daughters of the well known Admiral BENBOW, in London in 1704; Martha was born in 1705. Thomas STRINGER's origins are unknown, but if he was the brother of John SIMPSON's mother, Elizabeth STRINGER, Martha would also have been the niece referred to in Francis STRINGER's Will, above, and John SIMPSON and Martha STRINGER would in fact have been cousins.

  16. Certainly Martha STRINGER had an interest in her own right in Stoke, as according to the Revd. John SIMPSON's Will he acquired his Manor of Stoke in 1729 as part of his wife's dowry. [Will of John Simpson, 1784] It was conveyed to him by one Paul CALTON of Milton, co. Berks, and Millington HAYFORD of Romeley Hall (Clowne, co. Derbys), but how they acquired it from Ambrose BLOXHAM, and how Francis STRINGER who died in 1727/28 featured in any transfer, remains for the moment a mystery. The only perceived connecting factor between BLOXHAM's purchase of Stoke in 1672, and Martha's Marriage Settlement some 50 years later is mention of members of the CALTON family in both transactions, though this would appear to be no more than coincidental, as they came from different parts of the country. Richard CALTON, who was granted power of attorney in 1672 for the transfer of the estate from the Duke of Newcastle to Ambrose BLOXHAM, was of Stanton (presumably co. Derby), whilst Paul CALTON was of Milton, co. Berks. He was married to Catherine BENBOW, Martha BENBOW's sister, so was Martha STRINGER's uncle. Millington HAYFORD was a business partner of John SIMPSON's father.

  17. Rev. SIMPSON built the present Hall. Rainwater heads (guttering) have on them a date 1751[6] [NB not 1757, as is reported in other sources], and the Hall was supposedly rebuilt after a fire about this date. It was reputedly designed by William BOOTH of Stoney Middleton. Thorold (Ed: who he?) suggests that James PAINE had a hand in it - BOOTH was an avid student of PAINE's work. James PAINE (1717-1789)[7] was the architect who designed - amongst other works, the Stables, and the bridge over the River Derwent at Chatsworth., for which BOOTH was the mason.

  18. Sir Henry BRIDGEMAN, Lord Bradford, acquired Stoke through marriage with Reverend SIMPSON's daughter and sole heiress Elizabeth, after her father's death in 1784. Although the SIMPSON family's major residence was apparently at Babworth in Nottingham, the couple married locally at Eyam. Elizabeth was described as being “of Stoke Hall”, marrying “Henry Bridgeman Esq. of the parish of St James Westminster in the county of Middlesex” by Special Licence at Eyam Parish Church on 12 July 1755. Witnesses to the marriage were Jno SIMPSON, Wm SIMPSON and Lindley SIMPSON.

  19. John BRIDGEMAN, the second son of Henry and Elizabeth, and an officer in the guards, assumed by Act of Parliament in 1785 the surname and arms of SIMPSON for the purposes of inheriting the property. His daughter, Louisa Elizabeth married her cousin the Rev. Henry Edmund BRIDGEMAN, Rector of Blymhill, Staffs, and their fourth son Granville Henry Orlando BRIDGEMAN had become the owner of Stoke Hall by 1885.

  20. At present, it is unclear to me how Granville BRIDGEMAN acquired it, as the Stoke Hall Estate - described as so long the favourite abode of Robert Arkwright, Esq. - was offered for sale by ‘Public Competition’ at The Mart, London, on Saturday, 18th May, 1839.[8] Perhaps the terms of the owners' Wills resulted in it having to be sold, and he was a subsequent purchaser.

  21. Also of note is that it was the residence of Robert Arkwright. However Stoke Hall itself was probably always tenanted - that is to say that the Lord of the Manor lived elsewhere whilst his agents ran the Hall. The 19th Century censuses list several households under the category “Stoke Hall”, although it seems probable not all of them actually occupied the Hall itself. For instance, on the 1861 census an Ezra TRICKETT is listed as living there and described as “Farmer of 250 acres”, and he has four servants in his household. In 1871 he is listed as living at Knouchley, and Stoke Hall has two “Gentlewomen” in residence: Mary A. Hargrave WATSON and her sister Catherine.

  22. In 1885 (11 May) the Manor, including Goatscliff, Flora Wood, Stoke Hall Quarry, Knouchley and Stoke Hall itself was conveyed (sold) by Granville Henry Orlando BRIDGEMAN to Michael HUNTER Esq. of Sheffield.[9]

  23. His son, also Michael HUNTER, sold the estate again in 1938, when it was offered for sale as 19 Lots. The estate was sold again in 1953 with further separation of the original land: no longer did one landlord own several houses and rent them to workers on the estate, now people were beginning to own their own homes and work elsewhere.

[1] Morgan, Philip - >Domesday Book, Derbyshire, 1978. Published by Phillimore & Co. Ltd. ISBN 0 0 85033 166 8.
[2] Kenneth Cameron, in his Place Names of Derbyshire (1951-2) says Muchedeswell is a lost placename, the only references being in Domesday, with Hope as above, and jointly with Wormhill.
[3] Smith, Barbara M - A History of the Catholic Chapel at Hathersage, 1987. Published by Hope Valley Press. ISBN 0-9512614-0-1
[4] PRO Class C2/ChasI/E1/2 - this is the reference as I copied from an abstract of the document at the Society of Genealogists Library). However I can't find it in the National Archives Discovery Catalogue so either I copied it incorrectly, or else it's not been catalogued yet.
[5] Derbyshire Archaeological Society Journal - The Lead-Smelting Mills of Derbyshire, DAJ, vol. 112, 1992, pp20-21.
NB: The source referenced by note [3] above states Charles CAVENDISH bought the Stoke Hall estate from Thomas BARLEY. This source states he inherited it from his mother - whatever - there seems no doubt he became the owner, either in or after 1573. Charles was the third son of Bess of Hardwick's marriage to William CAVENDISH. He was born about 1552, and died 1617 at Welbeck. [Bickley, Francis - The Cavendish Family, 1911, p.67]
[6] Information provided by the current (2001) owner of Stoke Hall.
[7] Talbot, Rob and Whiteman, Robin - The Peak District, 1997, p45. Phoenix Illustrated Country Series No. 39. ISBN 0-75380-207-4.
[8] Sale of the Stoke Hall Estate in 1839.
[9] Copy of Deeds in the author's possession.

Compiled by Rosemary Lockie in December 2002 & July 2012.

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