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Help and advice for Derby

If you have found a problem on this page then please report it on the following form. We will then do our best to fix it. If you are wanting advice then the best place to ask is on the area's specific email lists. All the information that we have is in the web pages, so please do not ask us to supply something that is not there. We are not able to offer a research service.

If you wish to report a problem, or contribute information, then do use the following form to tell us about it. We have a number of people each maintaining different sections of the web site, so it is important to submit information via a link on the relevant page otherwise it is likely to go to the wrong person and may not be acted upon.


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Archives and Libraries

The Derby Free Library and Museum, built in 1879, is a structure of red brick, in the Domestic Flemish Gothic style, and was the free gift of the late Michael Thomas BASS esq. M.P.

Jerry EVANS has a photograph of the Derby Central Library on Geo-graph, taken in March, 2008.

Malcolm NEAL also has a photograph of The Local Studies Library on Geo-graph, taken in March, 2017. You may find this Library more useful than the Central Library for your work.



  • CUNNINGHAM, Pat - Joan Waste, Derby's Martyr. Pecsaeton , 2008. ISBN 978-0-9556325-1-8.
  • AUSTIN, Michael - 'Almost Like a Dream' : A Parish at War, 1914-1919
    From the start of the First World War until the Armistice, the Vicar of St Michael's, Derby encouraged men serving in the War to write to him telling of their experiences. Their letters were published month by month in the parish magazine and they have now been assembled under the editorship of The Revd Canon Michael Austin for a wider audience. The book also includes biographical notes and pictures of several of the men.


A cemetery of 4.5 acres was opened in the Uttoxetter New Road in 1842 with one mortuary chapel.

A cemetery of 43 acres was opened on Chaddeson Hill in 1855 with two mortuary chapels.

The Nottingham Road cemetery was opened in 1855, covering 35 acres with two mortuary chapels. It was later enlarged by 24 additional acres.

All these cemeteries were and are under the management of the Derby Corporation.



The city is the heart of the Derby Registration District.


Church History

  • The Cathedral of All Saints (known as Derby Cathedral), is a cathedral church and it is the seat of the Bishop of Derby.
  • All Saints was founded about 943 by King Edmund I. The current Cathedral dates from the 14th century.
  • The cathedral was rebuilt in 1725.
  • The cathedral was enlarged in 1972.
  • Malcolm NEAL has a photograph of the street leading to cathedral on Geo-graph, taken in July, 2003.
  • Saint Andrew's church opened in 1864 and closed in 1969 and was later demolished.
  • Saint Andrew's was designed by Sir George Gilbert SCOTT, and was known as the "Railwaymen's Church".
  • Derby also has:

St. Alkmund

St. Michael

St. Peter

St. Werburgh

  • Saint John the Evangelist parish was founded in March, 1847 from the civil parishes of All Saints, St. Alkmund, and St. Werburgh:
  • Saint John the Evangelist church was erected on Bridge Street at the corner of Mill Street in 1828: Additions were made in 1871.
  • That church was restored in 1891.
  • Saint John the Evangelist church seats about 1,110:

Church Records

  • Marriages at St Alkmund's Church, 1538-1812, Marriages at St Michaels Church, 1559-1812, and Marriages at St Peter's Church, 1558-1812 are available in Nigel BATTY-SMITH's database of scanned images of Phillimore's Parish Registers.
  • Saint John the Evangelist church's register only dates from 1847:
  • David BEVIS has a photograph of the Baptist Church on Green Street, on Geo-graph, taken in February, 2012.
  • Peter BARR has a photograph of the relatively new Baptist Church on Osmaston Road, on Geo-graph, taken in March, 2012.
  • Derby also has a Roman Catholic Church dedicated to Saint Mary,
  • Malcolm NEAL has a photograph of St. Mary's Catholic Church on Geo-graph, taken in March, 2017.
  • The Friends Meeting House was on St. Helen's street.

Civil Registration

The city is the heart of the Derby Registration District.


Correctional Institutions

  • His Majesty's Prison was built in 1827 on a six acre site in South Street near the Friargate.
  • The prison was built to hold 380 inmates.
  • To see more about this prison go to our St. Werburgh site.
  • David SCOTT provides this announcement from the Derby Mercury of 31 March 1791: "Anne BROOKES (aged nineteen) for stealing wearing apparel, to be transported 7 years, and her mother Anne BROOKES, for receiving the same, ditto 14 years."
  • Jane TAYLOR in Redcar provides this extract from the Derby Mercury of 27 October 1803: "On the 15th inst, to Derby gaol, a girl about 13 years of age, on suspicion and also on her own confession with having on the 13th instant set fire to a barn belonging to Mr. Wm. BOOTH, of Pentridge, in this county, wherein was contained ten wagon loads of corn;."
  • Jane TAYLOR in Redcar contributes this extract from the Derby Mercury of 10 November 1803: "Committed to the county gaol since our last, Thomas CHADWICK, charged with stealing one turkey, the property of Joseph MELLOR."
  • Jane TAYLOR in Redcar contributes this snippet from the Derby Mercury of 12 April 1804 EXECUTED: "On Friday last, Richard BOOTH, aged 40, and John PARKER, aged 24, for horse-stealing, were executed on the gallows near this town, pursuant to their sentence at the late assizes. PARKER appeared very penitent, and was much affected; but BOOTH (who was six feet four inches high, and who had been condemned at three different periods) exhibited, in his conduct at the place of execution, the most hardened depravity, and died a wretched example of the fatal consequences of idleness, keeping bad company, and existing by depredations upon the public."

Description and Travel

"DERBY is a market, borough, and county town, possessing separate jurisdiction, locally in the hundred of Morleston and Litchurch: it is 126 miles N.W. from London, 56 S.E. from Manchester, 34 S.S.E. from Chapel-en-le-Frith, 33 S.S.E. from Buxton, 24 S. from Chesterfield, 16 W. by S. from Nottingham, 13 S.E. from Ashbourn, and 12 N. by E. from Burton-upon-Trent."

[Description from Pigot and Co's Commercial Directory for Derbyshire, 1835]

You can see pictures of Derby which are provided by:





Ask for a calculation of the distance from Derby to another place.

Click here for a list of nearby places.


Historical Geography

You can see the administrative areas in which Derby has been placed at times in the past. Select one to see a link to a map of that particular area.




Land and Property

Janet BOOTH notes that the Derby Mercury of 1 February 1771 that Thomas TRIMER's house in Thorn Tree Lane, Derby, would subsequently be let.


Medical Records

Derby city had a number of hospitals, asylums, sanitaria and specialized care facilities. None of these was required to archive their patient records, and what does exist may fall under the 100-year closure laws. You may find administrative and accounting records in the county archives.

The county Lunatic Asylum was at Mickleover.

The Derbyshire Royal Infirmary was on the London Road. This is now the London Road Community Hospital.

The Royal Derby Hospital, (formerly Derby City General Hospital) is one of two teaching hospitals in the city of Derby. It is on Uttoxeter Road about three miles west of the City Centre.

The Derbyshire Hospital for Sick Children was on North Street. This is now co-located on the Royal Derby Hospital site.

The Derbyshire Hospital for Women was on Bridge Street.

The Borough Infectious Hospital was on Mansfield Road.


Military History

  • The military Royal Drill Hall was on Beckett Street.
  • The Depot of the Sherwood Foresters (Nottinghamshire and Derbyshire Regiment & Headquarters of the 45th Recruiting Area were at The Barracks, Old Normanton.
  • During World War I the Red Cross established a VAD Hospital here on Duffield Road in Haye Leigh.
  • The Royal Army Medical Corps was headquartered at 91 Siddals Road. They had a school of instruction for ambulance workers here.
  • There is a photograph of the War Memorial on Geo-graph, taken in November, 2007.


The city of Derby hosted seven newspapers:

  1. Derby and Chesterfield Reporter, publ. Thursday afternoons by Walter and William PIKE.
  2. The Derby Daily Telegraph.
  3. The Derby Express, publ. 4 times per day.
  4. The Derby Mercury, publ. Thursday evenings, publ. by John Drewry & Son, 35 Iron gate.
  5. Derbyshire Advertiser, publ. Friday and Saturday
  6. Football Express, publ. Saturday
  7. Nottingham Daily Guardian

The Derby Courier was a Saturday broadsheet published in 1835.

Jane TAYLOR in Redcar contributes this snippet from the Derby Mercury of 27 October, 1803, MARRIED: "Yesterday, at All Saints church, Mr. Thomas COX, to Miss Ann LLOYD, both of this place."



Jane TAYLOR in Redcar provides this announcement from the Derby Mercury of 1st July, 1802: DIED: "On Sunday morning last, aged 34, Mrs. SAXELBYE, wife of Mr. Thomas SAXELBYE, of this town."

Jane TAYLOR in Redcar offers this article from the Derby Mercury of 8 July, 1802: DIED: "On Wednesday last, aged 66, Mr. William HOLLIWELL, of this town, watch maker."

Jane TAYLOR in Redcar provides this announcement from the Derby Mercury of 18 November, 1802: DIED: "On Friday last, Mrs. CALLOW, wife of Mr. Charles CALLOW, jun. of this place." Charles was buried the next year in December, 1803.

In the same issue: DIED: "This afternoon, aged 45, Mrs RADFORD, wife of Mr. Francis RADFORD, of this town, butcher."

Jane TAYLOR in Redcar offers this clipping from the Derby Mercury of 2 December, 1802: DIED: "On Friday the 26th ult. of the scarlet fever, after an illness of ten days, Mrs. STRUTT, aged 33, wife of Joseph STRUTT, Esq. of this place;- And on the following Sunday of the same disease, her infant daughter, aged 18 months. They were buried in the same grave.- To describe the excellencies of this inestimable Lady is no part of our pretensions, we only presume to lament in the common cause of grief; in her the orphan has lost a mother, the widow a protector, the distressed a sure hope. She fed the hungry, and clothed the naked, she dried the tears of distress, and brought joy to the house of grief; to be acquainted with her was to esteem her; ever sincere in her friendship, the benevolence of her heart was only equaled by her excellencies, as the affectionate companion of an amiable and disconsolate partner, and a tender mother to whom her loss can only be conceived."

In the same issue: "On Thursday last, Mrs Anne CLOWES, of this town, aged 75."

Jane TAYLOR in Redcar provides this announcement from the Derby Mercury of 23 December, 1802: DIED: "On Monday last, aged 69, Mrs. Elizabeth BOOTT, relict of the late Mr. Francis BOOTT, of this place."

Jane TAYLOR in Redcar provides this announcement from the Derby Mercury of 12 May, 1803: DIED: "On Thursday last, at her house in St Mary's Gate, in the 72nd year of her age, Mrs. WHITBY, relict of the late Richard WHITBY, Esq. of this place."

Jane TAYLOR in Redcar provides this announcement from the Derby Mercury of 9 June, 1803: DIED: "Thursday last, after a short illness, Mr William YATES, formerly an iron gate maker of this town, aged 72."

Jane TAYLOR in Redcar contributes this snippet from the Derby Mercury of 13 October, 1803: DIED: "Yesterday, of an apoplexy, Mrs. WHEELDON, aged 36, wife of Mr. George WHEELDON, merchant, of this town; much regretted."

Jane TAYLOR in Redcar provides this announcement from the Derby Mercury of 27 October, 1803: DIED: "On Saturday last, 63, Mr. James TOMLINSON, of this town."

Jane TAYLOR of Redcar provides this extract from the Derby Mercury of December 1, 1803: DIED: "Thursday, at his father's house in North street, at the age of six years, Master Richard HINGSTON, whose death was occasioned by swallowing a brass nail, which, by entering his wind pipe, brought on suffocation. A serious caution to parents, to discourage, as much as possible, the putting of any sort of plaything in the mouth." Editor's note: I could not find this death in Derbyshire.

Jane TAYLOR of Redcar provides this snippet from the Derby Mercury of December 15, 1803: DIED: "On Thursday last, Mr. Francis BRENTNALL, of this town, grocer, in his 47th year."

Jane TAYLOR in Redcar contributes this snippet from the Derby Mercury of December 29, 1803, DIED: "On Saturday last, aged 59, Mr. Charles CALLOW, of this place, Calico Manufacturer."

Jane TAYLOR of Redcar has this extract from the Derby Mercury of 5 January 1804. DIED: "Yesterday in the 34th year of his age, (after a long and painful illness, which he bore with Christian patience) the Rev. James NEWELL, Particular Baptist Minister, of this place."

From the same issue, Jane reports: DIED: "On Monday last, aged 63, Mrs. MORTON, relict of the late George MORTON, of this place."

Jane TAYLOR of Redcar offers this tidbit from the Derby Mercury of 22 March 1804. DIED: "On Sunday se'nnight, Mr. Thos.. CHAPMAN, of the Buck in the Park, in this town. He was one of the Corps of Derby Volunteers, and on Thursday last his remains were interred with military honors." and: "Yesterday, Mr William KIRK, of this place, turner and chair-maker, aged 65."

Jane TAYLOR of Redcar contributes this clipping from the Derby Mercury of 28 June 1804. DIED: "Yesterday se'nnight, the Rev. Robert STRETTON, of this town, aged 30." And, "On Saturday last, aged 34, Mr. Levi BARBER, pawn broker of this town."

Jane TAYLOR of Redcar provides this snippet from the Derby Mercury of 2 August 1804. DIED: "Yesterday, after a very short illness, Mrs. STRUTT, of this town, aged 74."

Jane TAYLOR in Redcar has this announcement from the Derby Mercury of 17 October, 1804: DIED: "On Thursday last, after a long illness, aged 35, Mrs SIMPSON, wife of Mr. Robert SIMPSON, of this town."

In the same edition - "DIED: On Sunday last, in the 35th year of her age, Mrs COLLUMBELL, relict of the late Mr. David COLLUMBELL, of this place."

In the same edition - "DIED: On Monday last James SPARKS, of this place, fell from a hay loft, upon the pavement, and was so much bruised that he survived only a few hours."

Jane also offers, from the 27 December 1804 edition: "DIED: On Wednesday last, Mr Thomas ELEY, of this town, in his 73rd year of his age, who with an ample fortune had retired from business a few years ago.-He was a true Christian man of strict integrity, and never ceasing friend to the poor."


Politics and Government

  • The town was anciently an amalgamation of several ecclesiastical parishes in Derby county.
  • In 1898, all the small Civil Parishes in the town were incorporated as a Municipal Borough.
  • This parish was in the ancient Morleston and Litchurch Hundred (or Wapentake).
  • You may contact the Derby City Council regarding civic or political issues, but they CANNOT do family history searches for you.

Poor Houses, Poor Law etc.

  • The parish of Derby itself had Large's Hospital which was five apartment almshouses for Clergymen's widows in Friargate.
  • Bastardy cases would be heard in the Derby petty session hearings at the county Hall every Friday at 11am.
  • There is an index of Derby Bastardy Papers held at the DRO on the Yesterdays Journey website. Select "Bastardy Papers" on the left side, then "Derby" from the list of parishes displayed.
  • With the passage of the Poor Law Amendment Act reforms of 1834, this parish became the center of the Derby Poorlaw Union.
  • The Derby Poorlaw Union workhouse was completed in 1878 and was situated about 1.5 miles from the town on the Uttoxeter road. It was a large brick structure in four blocks.


"The grammar school at Derby is believed to have originated as a school attached to the collegiate church of All Saints, but by the mid twelfth century it had been transferred to the care of the newly founded abbey of Darley... Occasional references to a schoolmaster occur in (the fifteenth century), but we have no firm information as to the site of the original school... The refoundation of the school dates from 21 May 1554, when Queen Mary, in return for a payment of £260 13s. 4d., granted the corporation of Derby a number of properties formerly belonging to Darley Abbey and to the College of All Saints, as well as the Church of St Michael... and the endowments of several other suppressed chantries and gilds for ... the foundation of 'a Free Grammar School, for the instruction and education of boys and youths in the said town of Derby for ever to be maintained by the Bailiffs and Burgesses of the same town ...' It is believed that, not long after this grant, the corporation built a new school building adjacent to St Peter's churchyard, where the school continued to flourish until it moved to St Helen's house in 1863.

"Apart from the grammar school for boys, the nuns of the priory of King's Mead - who were mostly daughters of the leading county families - ran a boarding school for young ladies which likewise perished at the Dissolution."
  • The Derby Technical College in Green Lane, founded in 1890, provided hands-on training in the mechanical sciences, physics, chemistry and biology. It even included a school of art.
  • The Public Elementary School on Ashbourne Road was built in 1879.
  • The Public Elementary School on Brighton Road was built in 1891 and enlarged in 1905.
  • The Public Elementary School at Firs Estate was built in 1877 for 655 senior boys and 350 junior boys, 389 senior girls and 350 junior girls.
  • The Girard Street (Council) School was built in 1873 and enlarged in 1895 to hold 899 children.
  • The Special School for Defectives on Normanton Road was erected in 1903 for 80 children.