Extract from Lewis's Topographical Dictionary of England, 1831.
Transcribed by Mel Lockie, © Copyright 2010
Lewis Topographical Dictionaries

BAKEWELL, a parish in the hundred of HIGH-PEAK, county of DERBY, comprising the market-town of Bakewell, the chapelries of Ashford, Baslow, Beeley, Blackwell, Buxton, Chelmerton, Great Longstone, Monyash, Sheldon, and Taddington, the townships of Brushfield, Bubnell, Flagg, Froggatt, Over Haddon, Harthill, Holme, Priestcliffe, Rowland, Great Rowsley, and Wardlow, and the hamlets of Calver, Curbar, Hassop, and Little Longstone, and containing 9162 inhabitants, of which number, 1782 are in the town of Bakewell, 26 miles (N.W.) from Derby, and 152 (N.W. by N.) from London.

The Saxon name of this place, Baderanwylla, or Badde cum Well, of which its present appellation is a contraction, is derived from a chalybeate spring, which was in great repute prior to the year 924, when Edward the Elder is said to have built a castle, or fort, in the vicinity. The town, which is in an improving state, is situated in a beautiful and picturesque vale, about four miles from the confluence of the rivers Wye and Derwent, and at nearly an equal distance from Buxton and Matlock, between which places is an excellent turnpike road, leading through a district replete with pleasingly diversified scenery. The river Wye, which flows through the town, abounds with fine trout and grayling, and is much frequented for angling during the season.

The air is salubrious, and the inhabitants are amply supplied with water from numerous springs in the neighbourhood. An Agricultural Society has recently been formed, the members of which hold their meetings at Bakewell and Chesterfield alternately, generally in October. The chalybeate baths, lately re-established by the Duke of Rutland, and now in the occupation of Mr. White Watson, F.L.S., who has a good collection of minerals and fossils attached to them, constitute one of the greatest attractions: the principal bath is thirty-three feet long, sixteen wide, and of proportionate depth, and is constantly supplied with fresh water, which, on its influx, emits a considerable quantity of carbonic acid gas, and-possesses a temperature of 60° of Farenheit. There are also shower baths, and a private warm bath with suitable accommodations; and a news-room has been added to the establishment.

Near the entrance into the town from Ashford stands a cotton-mill, erected by the late Sir Richard Arkwright, in which about three hundred persons are employed: and in the immediate vicinity are extensive quarries of black and grey marble, and of chirt, which is used in the Staffordshire potteries, in the manufacture of earthenware. The market is on Friday, and on every alternate Monday there is a cattle market, which was established in 1825, and is now extremely well supplied with store and fat cattle and sheep. Fairs are held on Easter-Monday, Whit-Monday, August 26th, the Monday next after October 10th, and the Monday after November 11th, for horses and horned cattle.

The town is within the jurisdiction of the county magistrates, and a constable and other officers are appointed at the court leet of the lord of the manor. One of the quarter sessions for the county was formerly, and a petty session for the hundred of High Peak, on the first and third Friday in every month, is still, held here. A mineral court is also held for the manor, according to the local articles and customs of the lead mines within it, which have prevailed from time immemorial. The living is a discharged vicarage, in the peculiar jurisdiction and patronage of the Dean and Chapter of Lichfield, rated in the king's books at £40.

The church, dedicated to All Saints, is a spacious cruciform structure, partly in the Norman, and partly in the early style of English architecture: the tower, rising from the intersection, and surmounted by a lofty spire, having become in a dangerous state from the failure of the pillars that supported it, has been lately taken down: at the western entrance is a highly ornamented Norman arch. Within are several magnificent altar-tombs of alabaster, supporting recumbent figures, and a stone font of great antiquity; and in the churchyard is an ancient cross, decorated with rude sculpture, but greatly mutilated. There are places of worship for Independents and Wesleyan Methodists.

A free school was founded here, in 1636, and endowed with £15 per annum, by Lady Grace Manners, for the instruction of poor children in reading, writing, and arithmetic; the original endowment has been augmented with £35 per annum by the Duke of Rutland, and the school is now open to the poor children of this parish and Great Rowsley: the schoolroom is over the town hall. Mary Hague, in 1715, gave certain houses and land, for which seven poor children are instructed, the master occupying one of the houses. St. John's hospital, for six aged men, was founded and endowed, in 1602, by Sir John Manners Sutton and his brother: the income amounts to £40 per annum. A dispensary and a lying-in institution have been established, and are supported by subscription.

At the distance of two miles south of the town stands Haddon Hall, the property of the Duke of Rutland, lord of this manor, one of the largest and most perfect of the ancient baronial mansions in the kingdom; about three miles toward the north-east is Chatsworth House, the princely seat of the Duke of Devonshire, in which Mary, Queen of Scots, was confined in the year 1570; and about two miles and a half to the north is Hassop Hall, the seat of Earl Newburgh. Dr. Thomas Denman, an eminent physician and accoucheur, and father of the present Sir Thomas Denman, Attorney general, was born here in 1733.

CALVER, a township in the parish of BAKEWELL, hundred of HIGH-PEAK, county of DERBY, 1 mile (E.S.E.) from Stoney-Middleton, containing 604 inhabitants. There are extensive lime-works in this place; also cotton-mills, in which from two to three hundred persons are employed. The village is situated on the river Derwent.

CURBAR, a hamlet in the parish of BAKEWELL, hundred of HIGH-PEAK, county of DERBY, 1½ mile (E. by S.) from Stoney-Middleton, containing 392 inhabitants.

FROGGATT, a township in the parish of BAKEWELL, hundred of HIGH-PEAK, county of DERBY, 2 miles (N.E. by E.) from Stony-Middleton, containing 179 inhabitants.

HARTHILL, or HARTLE, a township in the parish of BAKEWELL, hundred of HIGH-PEAK, county of DERBY, 3¼ miles (S.S.E.) from Bakewell, containing 60 inhabitants.

HASSOP, a hamlet in the parish of BAKEWELL, hundred of HIGH-PEAK, county of DERBY, 3 miles (N. by E.) from Bakewell, containing 128 inhabitants. Hassop Hall was garrisoned for the king by Colonel Eyr, in 1643.

ROWLAND, a township in the parish of BAKEWELL, hundred of HIGH-PEAK, county of DERBY, 2 miles (S.W. by W.) from Stony-Middleton, containing 109 inhabitants. It is in the honour of Tutbury, duchy of Lancaster, and within the jurisdiction of a court of pleas held at Chapel en le Frith every third Tuesday, for the recovery of debts under 40s.

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