BONSALL, Derbyshire - Extract from National Gazetteer, 1868
1868 - The National Gazetteer of Great Britain and Ireland
"BONSALL, a parish and town in the hundred of Wirksworth, in the county of Derby, 2 miles S.W. from Matlock, 17 from Derby, and 11 miles N.W. from Cromford railway station. It is situated in a hilly district, abounding in romantic scenery, on the west side of the river Derwent, and contains the hamlet of Slaley. Bonsall was formerly a market town; and a market cross, erected in 1687, consisting of a pillar surmounted by a small ball, is still standing.
Limestone is abundant in the neighbourhood. Lead and zinc are obtained, and many of the inhabitants are employed in working the mines, and in smelting the ore. The manufacture of hosiery and frame-work knitting is carried on, and combs are made here. The living is a rectory* in the diocese of Lichfield, of the value of £201, in the patronage of the bishop of the diocese.
The church, which stands on a rock overlooking Bonsall dale, is dedicated to St. James. It is an ancient building, with a tower and handsome spire. In the interior, over the pulpit, is a painting representing Moses and Aaron reading the Commandments.
There are chapels belonging to the Baptists, Wesleyans, and Primitive Methodists, and a free school for 50 children, founded in 1704 by William Cragge and Robert Ferne, having an income from endowment of about £100 per annum; also parochial schools for girls and infants. There are some other charities of small amount. Some traces of the Roman road to Manchester, which crossed this parish, may still be seen. Bonsall is within the honour of Tutbury, in the duchy of Lancaster."
"SLALEY, a hamlet in the parish of Bonsall, county Derby, 2 miles N.W. of Wirksworth."
[Description(s) from The National Gazetteer of Great Britain and Ireland (1868)
Transcribed by Colin HINSON ©2003]