MORTON, a parish in the hundred of Scarsdale, county Derby, 3 miles N.E. of Alfreton, its post town, and 1 mile S.E. of the Stretton railway station. The village, which is of small extent, is situated near the line of the Midland railway, and is wholly agricultural. The parish comprises the joint township of Brackenfield and Woolley-Moor. The land is chiefly in pasture, and the surface elevated.

The living is a rectory* in the diocese of Lichfield, value £360, in the patronage of St. John's College, Cambridge, and G. Turbutt, Esq., alternately. The church, dedicated to the Holy Cross, is a structure with a square embattled and pinnated tower containing three bells. The church was rebuilt in 1850. The interior of the church has some monuments. The parochial charities produce about £2 per annum. There is an old chapel at Brackenfield dedicated to the Holy Trinity.”

from The National Gazetteer of Great Britain and Ireland - 1868


Archives & Libraries

Morton is served by the Mobile Library on route 5, with four stops in the Village on every fourth Wednesday late mornings.

The Alfreton Library is an excellent resource with a Local History section and a Family History section.



  • Mike SPENCER has provided a partial extract of burials found in the parish register. Your additions and corrections are welcomed.
  • Alan WALKER has a photograph of the Lychgate on Geo-graph, taken from inside the churchyard in March, 2007.
  • Alan WALKER also has a photograph of the Western end of the Churchyard on Geo-graph, taken in March, 2007.


  • The parish was in the Ashover sub-district of the Chesterfield Registration District.
  • The table below gives census piece numbers, where known:
Piece No.
1841H.O. 107 / 195
1851H.O. 107 / 2147
1861R.G. 9 / 2525 & 2526
1881R.G. 11 / 3428
1891R.G. 12 / 2758

Church History

  • The 1086 Domesday Book advises us that there was a church here during the Survey.
  • The Anglican parish church is dedicated to the Holy Cross.
  • The church tower was added around 1400.
  • The church, except for the tower, was rebuilt in 1850 in the Decorated Style.
  • The church seats 150.
  • Nikki MAHADEVAN has a photograph of Holy Cross Church on Geo-graph, taken in September, 2006.
  • David BEVIS also has a photograph of Holy Cross Church on Geo-graph, taken in March, 2015.

Church Records

  • The Anglican parish register dates from 1575, but early parts are in bad condition.
  • Marriages at Morton, 1575-1812 are available in Nigel BATTY-SMITH's database of scanned images of Phillimore's Parish Registers.
  • The church was in the rural deanery of Alfreton.

Civil Registration

  • Civil Registration began in July, 1837.
  • The parish was in the Ashover sub-district of the Chesterfield Registration District.

Description & Travel

"MORTON, a parish and pleasant village, 3¼ miles N. from Alfreton, and 1¼ miles S.E. from Stretton Railway Station, and contained in 1851, 257 inhabitants. The church, dedicated to the Holy Cross, is a neat stone edifice in the decorated style. The living is a rectory; the Rev. Thomas Lund, B.D., incumbent."

[Description from Harrison, Harrop & Co.'s Directory & Gazetteer of Derbyshire, 1860]

The parish covers just over 1,250 acres and lies 7.5 miles south of Chesterfield and 4 miles north of Alfreton.

The railway came to Morton in 1862.

Tony BAKER reminds us that Morton is the Centre of England in this photograph taken in May, 2010.

Alan WALKER provides us with a photograph of the Vuillage Hall on Geo-graph, taken in May, 2010. If you are visiting, stop in when the Hall is open and ask to see the schedule of forth-coming events. Or you can check online at the Parish Council website. The Village Hall, on the western end of Main Road, often has a schedule of current events that visitors can enjoy.

You can see pictures of Morton which are provided by:







Roman coins have been found in the parish, dated to 210 A.D.

A large Collery was opened here by the Clay Cross Company in 1863.

Neil THEASBY has a photograph of The Sitwell Arms on Geo-graph, taken in December, 2015.

Propritors of the Sitwell Arms are listed in Directories as:

1891Geo. MOSLEY, farmer
1895Geo. MOSLEY, farmer
1899George MOSELY, farmer


You can see maps centred on OS grid reference SK408601 (Lat/Lon: 53.1365, -1.39159), Morton which are provided by:


Military History

  • The War Memorial was raised in 1920 and is across the street from Holy Cross Church at the western end of Main Road.
  • Alan WALKER has a photograph of the War Memorial on Geo-graph, taken in March, 2007.
  • On 8 April 1941 the German Luftwaffe dropped incendiary bombs on Pit Lane, Station Road and Morton Colliery.

Military Records

  • Alan WALKER's photograph, mentioned above, is captioned with a complete list of names of the fallen from World War I and II.
  • There is also a complete set of names on the Derbyshire War Memorials site.
  • Alan WALKER has a photograph of a Commonwealth War Grave on Geo-graph, taken in March, 2007. This is the grave of Eric W. P. STAMPER, who died just before the end of the war in November, 1918.


Jane TAYLOR in Redcar shares this notice from the Derby Mercury of 2 July, 1801: "MARRIED: A few days since Mr. John OLDHAM, of Morton, to Miss Hannah BOWN, of Matlock, both in this county."



Jane TAYLOR in Redcar contributes this snippet from the Derby Mercury of 29 March 1804 "DIED: On the 4th instant, Mr. OLDHAM, of Morton, in this county, having survived his wife only one month."


Politics & Government

  • This place was an ancient parish in Derbyshire and became a modern Civil Parish when those were established.
  • This parish was in the ancient Scarsdale Hundred (or Wapentake).
  • In August, 1882, this parish was reduced in size to enlarge North Wingfield Civil Parish.
  • In March, 1883, border re-alignments reduced this parish to enlarge Pilsley Civil Parish and Woodthorpe Civil Parish.
  • You may contact the local Morton Parish Council regarding civic or political matters, but they are NOT staffed to do family history searches for you. Council meeting at held at the Village Hall.
  • District governance is provided by the North East Derbyshire District Council.

Poor Houses, Poor Law

  • Bastardy cases would be heard in the Alfreton petty session hearings.
  • The Rev. Francis GISBORNE's charity of £5 0s. 10d. yearly, left in 1818 was for clothing.
  • As a result of the 1834 Poorlaw Amendment Act reforms, this parish became a member of theChesterfield Poorlaw Union.


This hamlet was a small place for centuries. with a population of less than 100 until the town of Sheffield started to grow. The population grew in the 1840s as railway workers built trackways in the area.



The first school opened here in January 1863. It was a one roomed stone building known as the Old Dames School, near the church.

That first school was replaced in 1884. The current school results from a 1927 rebuild. The school building was extended in 2010.