A brief look at Steetley Church

Were taking a brief look at the important Norman church at Steetley, courtesy of our Derbyshire VCH volume III – ‘Bolsover and adjoining parishes’. It’s well worth seeking out this attractive building. Our illustrations here are taken from Lysons’ 1817 Magna Britannia (volume V). These were based on measured drawings. The chapel, in the north …

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A brief look at Chesterfield Grammar School

We are taking a brief look at Chesterfield Grammar School in this blog. With the school closing in 1991, quite a few people might not realise that Chesterfield actually did have such a school. Surprisingly few photographs of the old Chesterfield Grammar School, on Sheffield Road, appear in the public domain – at least those …

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Hulleys of Baslow reach their centenary

North Derbyshire and peak district local bus operator Hulleys of Baslow are celebrating their centenary this year. In this blog we take a look at this operator, whose buses have been a familiar sight in the area for 100 years. VCH covers local bus operators in our red book series (but not the actual fleets …

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We’re finding out more about the Foljambes in Chesterfield

DD/FJ/9/1/1 – part of the Foljambe deposit at Nottinghamshire Archives – may not sound very exciting, but some of its contents are helping to fill in gaps in our understanding of the Chesterfield area under that formerly influential family. Our pictures here show some of the Foljambe tombs in Chesterfield Parish Church along with the …

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Another brush with The HMI – Shuttlewood school’s early 20th century challenges

Our blog of 14 August covered our use of His/Her Majesty’s Inspectors of Schools (HMI) reports and school log-books in our VCH red books. We used Barlborough school’s 19th and early 20th century brush with the inspectors as an example. But problems weren’t only confined to Barlborough! When the local education authority took over Bolsover …

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A brief history of Chesterfield’s markets

In this post we take a very brief look at Chesterfield’s markets. The first reference to a market in Chesterfield is in 1165 and the present market place (known throughout the Middle Ages as the New Market) had been built by 1199. This is before the burgesses (inhabitants of the borough with full rights of …

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New book on the Chesterfield Brewery Company

We are pleased to welcome Chesterfield pub and brewery historian John Hirst’s new book on the Chesterfield Brewery Company. Whilst VCH seeks to chronicle local communities, including breweries and public houses, it is not designed to replace research like that by John. In fact, we have used some of John’s previous research, published in his …

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Harsh comments for Barlborough School in the 19th century

We make extensive use of school inspectors reports and school log books in our VCH ‘Red Books’ as we plot the history of education in a particular parish. Here we look briefly a Barlborough, where some of the comments made by the Her Majesty’s Inspectors of Schools in the late 19th century were quite severe. …

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A Chesterfield Mystery: ‘The Pump House’

This June 1985 view of Chesterfield taken from the parish church tower shows a familiar, if changed, view. But it’s not the by-pass under construction snaking away to the top left, the now demolished Trebor (once the Chesterfield Brewery Company) premises (left of centre) or the soon to be demolished Chesterfield Hotel just behind the …

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How your place got its name

Local historians are often asked what a particular place-name means and where it’s come from. In VCH we use the standard reference work on the subject, the multi-volumed English Place-Name Society (EPNS) volumes. As the society’s website explains EPNS; … was established in 1923 to conduct a county-by-county survey of the place-names of England. The first county …

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