"CASTLETON is a parish and village, in the hundred of High Peak. 164 miles from London, 27 S.E. from Manchester, 10 N.E. from Buxton, and 7 E. from Chapel-en-le-Frith. It is situate at the bottom of the steep eminence, at whose feet the 'Peak Cavern' discloses itself, and the summit of which is occupied by an ancient castle that gives name to the place. This castle was erected by William Peveril, natural son of the Conqueror, and from its situation was called 'the Castle of the Peak', or 'Peak Castle.'"
"Castleton should be given a wide berth on a Saturday or Sunday in the summer months. On those days it overflows with the tripper, for whom it lays itself out to provide, and the streets are apt to be uproarious until the last brakes have gone singing down the vale. Its main thoroughfares are commonplace, but the cottages on the higher level are picturesque and unspoilt. Castleton retains one interesting local custom, for May 29th, or Oakapple Day, is still honoured in a curious way. A great garland of wild flowers is made, shaped like a bell on a frame, and is carried round the town by a man on horseback, who wears it upon his head, covering his face. He plays Charles II; the part of the Queen who rides beside him is taken by a youth, dressed in a lady's riding habit and veil. Twenty girls dance the Morris dance before them as they ride through the town to the accompaniment of "plenty of brass bands". One can conceive the din! Then the garland is taken to the church and slung up by a pulley to the parapet of the tower, where it is left to wither. It is accounted a great honour to bear the garland, and the privilege has been exercised for the last twenty years." [Firth, J B - Highways and Byways in Derbyshire, 1905. Quoted in The Peak Advertiser, 19th May 2003; p.11]