“STONY MIDDLETON, a chapelry in the parish of Hathersage, hundred of High Peak, county Derby, 5 miles N.E. of Bakewell. The village, which is small, and chiefly inhabited by lime-burners and miners, is situated on a branch of the river Derwent in Middleton Dale. Lord Denman has a seat here surrounded by plantations which break the monotony of the otherwise dreary pass of 2 miles long.
The living is a perpetual curacy in the diocese of Lichfield, value £90, in the patronage of the Vicar of Hathersage. The church, dedicated to St. Martin, is an octagonal edifice rebuilt in 1759. There is a place of worship for Unitarians. The charities produce £23 per annum, of which £3 belongs to Turie's school.”
from The National Gazetteer of Great Britain and Ireland - 1868
Note: There is also a Middleton by Youlgreave and a Middleton Wirkswoth in Derbyshire.
The parish had a Reading Room erected in 1898, which was enlarged and reconstructed in 1910. I have no history of that Reading Room after 1910.
The Derbyshire County Mobile Library, Route N, stops in Middleton on the Main Street in the early afternoon on Firdays.
You may also want to spend some time in the Stoney Middleton Heritage Centre. Be sure to click on the "ancestry" option on their web page.
- Stoney Middleton - A Working Village. Published in 2002 with the assistance of a Millennium Award, this booklet encapsulates life in Stoney Middleton over 2 centuries - a "must" for the Stoney Officianado. There are tales of village "characters - "Holy Joe" - Joe MASON, Churchwarden, who used to ring all 3 church bells by himself (the third one with his foot!) and a field named "Jinnie's Piece", so called as Jane GODDARD (nee SWIFT) used to sit there to scare the birds! It also records dates when many of the cottages in the village were built. It is on sale in village shops price £5 and during the Well Dressings 20th to 27th July.
The churchyard being rather small, a new cemetery was laid out about a quarter mile north-east of the church and opened in October, 1878.
Neal THEASBY has a photograph of the Snowdrops in the cemetery on Geo-graph, taken in March, 2018.
Stephen RUFFLES has a photograph of the Cemetery at Stoney Middleton on Geo-graph, taken in February, 2018.
Roger TEMPLE has a photograph of the Lych Gate to the cemetery on Geo-graph, taken in October, 2007.
Graham HOGG also has a photograph of the St Martin's Lych Gate on Geo-graph, taken in October, 2014.
- The parish was in the Tideswell sub-district of the Bakewell Registration District.
- The table below gives census piece numbers, where known:
Piece No. 1851 H.O. 107 / 2150 1861 R.G. 9 / 2543 1891 R.G. 12 / 2777
- The Anglican parish church is dedicated to Saint Martin.
- Legend has it that the first Chapel at Stoney Middleton was founded in the 15th Century by Joan EYRE, formerly Joan PADLEY, heiress of Padley, and wife of Robert EYRE, a minor land owner, to give thanks for his safe return from the Battle of Agincourt (1415). This building was, apparently a normal church in plan, but now only the tower survives of that original building. If the legend is true, however, its founding predates 1463, the date recorded for Joan's death - she and husband Robert (d. 1459) are commemorated on a memorial brass inside Hathersage Church.
- The nave of the Church is octagonal in plan, built in 1759 to replace the earlier nave which was destroyed by fire in 1757.
- A clock was placed on the Church in 1898, when the church was repaired.
- Alan HEARDMAN has a photograph of St. Martin's Church on Geo-graph, taken in September, 2008.
- Pam FRAY has a photograph of the Church tower on Geo-graph, taken in April, 2015.
- The Anglican parish register dates from 1715 and is in fair condition.
- The church was in the rural deanery of Eyam.
- Rosemary LOCKIE provides Some Memorial Inscriptions on her website.
- The earliest Parish Register for Stoney Middleton begins in 1715, and covers the period until 1812, and includes Baptisms and Burials, with Marriages up till 1754 in a single book. Baptism Registers are available covering the period 1813-1843, and 1844-78; and Burials 1813-1862; and there is a full complement of marriage registers from 1754-1947. These registers are all available for searching at the Derbyshire Record Office on microfilm and coverage dates are current as of January 2001 (thanks to Janet Kirk).
- There are Bishops' Transcripts (BTs) covering the period 1663 to 1864, but according to the catalogue, years 1669-70, 1686-90, 1702-07, 1712-13, 1774-5, and 1862 are missing (but see above for 1702-7); and I personally found the period 1758-62 unreadable. As I understand it, batched entries in the IGI have been entered largely from the BTs, so although those transcribing for the IGI may have had greater success (or perseverance!) than I did over the 1758-62 period, it is nevertheless possible that if you are looking for an event during 1758-62, or 1774-5, you may have better luck with the parish register, than with the BTs or IGI. The years missing from the BTs prior to 1715, are alas lost forever.
The original BTs are held at the Lichfield Joint Record Office, but have been microfilmed, so the film should be available on loan via your local Family History Center. There are two films - #0428943 (1663-1812), and #0498132 (1813-1864).
- The church seats 250.
- The Wesleyan Methodists built a chapel here in 1829.
- Neil THEASBY has a photograph of The Wesleyan Reform Chapel on Geo-graph, taken in March, 2018. There is more history of the chapel at the Wesleyan Reform Chapel website.
- Civil Registration began in July, 1837.
- The parish was in the Tideswell sub-district of the Bakewell Registration District.
"STONEY MIDDLETON is a chapelry, in the parish of Hathersage and hundred of High Peak, five miles E. from Tideswell, and four and a half N. from Bakewell. The houses forming the village are singular in their appearance, being scarcely distinguishable from the grey rocks which impend over them, and from which they appear to have been hewn. The church here is a small edifice, of octagonal form, remarkable for its neatness, erected principally at the expense of the Duke of Devonshire. It is dedicated to St. Mark: the living is a perpetual curacy, in the gift of the Vicar of Hathersage; the present incumbent is the Rev. Edward Parker. The lime works in this neighbourhood employ many of the inhabitants. The chapelry contained, in 1821, 635 inhabitants, but at the last census (1831) the number returned was only 479."
- "TO MANCHESTER, the Champion (from Nottingham) calls at the Moon Inn, Stoney Middleton every day at twelve o'clock; goes through Chapel-en-le-Frith, Whaley, Disley and Stockport.
TO NOTTINGHAM, the Champion (from Manchester) calls at the same Inn every day at twelve, goes through Baslow, Chesterfield and Mansfield."
[Description from Pigot and Co's Commercial Directory for Derbyshire, 1835]
Graham HOGG has a photograph of Stoney Middleton on Geo-graph, taken in 2010.
Stoney Middleton has a spring at the foot of a hill. The spring has been able to maintain a flow of water even when other springs have stopped flowing due to a drought. In dry summers, people from surrounding parishes would often come here just to get water. The Dale Brook flows through the parish, becoming the Stoke Brook before it empties into the River Derwent. The hills in the parish abound with Lead.
Alan HEARDMAN has a photograph of a street scene in Stoney Middleton on Geo-graph, taken in September, 2008.
- Rosemary LOCKIE provides a transcription of the Stoney Middleton entry from Pigot & Co's Commercial Directory for Derbyshire (1835).
- Ann ANDREWS provides a transcription of the Stoney Middleton entry from Kelly's Directory of the Counties of Derby, Notts, Leicester and Rutland (1891).
- Ask for a calculation of the distance from Stoney Middleton to another place.
You can see the administrative areas in which Stoney Middleton has been placed at times in the past. Select one to see a link to a map of that particular area.
- Graham HOGG has a photograph of the Roman Baths on Geo-graph, taken in October, 2010.
- Note that the Roman Baths are not be Roman at all. However traces of the Roman occupation have been found in the parish.
- Neil THEASBY has a photograph of the Parish boundary stone on Geo-graph, taken in March, 2018. The stone played an important role in history in 1666 as Neil reveals in his description.
- Neil THEASBY has a photograph of the Moon Inn and posting house on Geo-graph, taken in June, 2012.
- J. THOMAS also has a photograph of the Moon Inn on Geo-graph, taken in May, 2014. We will assume that the ladder is not for the inn-keeper to sneak in on an early morning.
- Basher EYRE also has a photograph of the Moon Inn on Geo-graph, taken in July, 2015.
- Monica STAGG has a photograph of the Old village cross on Geo-graph, taken in July, 2015. This was very likely a "preaching cross" where any religious views could be expressed.
- Be sure to ask about the Boot and Shoemakers' Strike of 1918.
- Neil THEASBY has a photograph of the Main well dressing in 2018 on Geo-graph, taken in July, 2018. That event was a commemoration of the 1918 strike.
Stoney Middleton Hall was the property of Lord Denman in 1912 and stood on grounds of about 4 acres. The Hall was occupied by Thomas SHAW that year.
You can see maps centred on OS grid reference SK230754 (Lat/Lon: 53.275089, -1.656554), Stoney Middleton which are provided by:
- Google Maps
- StreetMap (Current Ordnance Survey maps)
- Bing (was Multimap)
- OldMaps (Old Ordnance Survey maps.)
- Old Maps Online (Other old maps.)
- National Library of Scotland (Old Ordnance Survey maps)
- Vision of Britain (Click "Historical units & statistics" for administrative areas.)
- English Jurisdictions in 1851 (Unfortunately the LDS have removed the facility to enable us to specify a starting location, you will need to search yourself on their map.)
- Magic (Geographic information) (Click + on map if it doesn't show)
- GeoHack (Links to on-line maps and location specific services.)
There are a number of photographs of the War Memorial on Geo-graph.com, including:
- Alan HEARDMAN's War Memorial in the churchyard, taken in September, 2008.
- David SMITH's Stoney Middleton war memorial, taken in August, 2017.
- Basher EYRE's War Memorial in the churchyard, taken in July, 2015.
- John NUGENT, who flew with the Dambusters, is noted on this War Memorial.
- There is a list of the names on the War Memorial on the Roll of Honour site.
- Rosemary LOCKIE provided the data above, all from her own website: War Memorial - Stoney Middleton.
- Here are the names of the men lost in World War I:
A. D. MILLS, in his "A Dictionary of English Place-Names", 1991, tells us that "Middleton is a very common name". So one should take note and ensure that they are researching in the correct village.
Jane TAYLOR in Redcar provides this notice from the Derby Mercury of 3 March 1803: "DIED: On Sunday last, at Stony Middleton, in this county, after a very long illness, in the 63rd year of her age, Mrs. DENMAN, the wife of Dr. DENMAN. One of his Majesty's Justices of the peace for the county."
- In 1851, William JUPP aged 46 had arrived in Stoney Middleton from Slaugham in Sussex, having been preceded by other Broommakers - the JACKSONs (James, 50 and John, 45) and a William JOHNSON in 1841, coincidentally, or otherwise also originating from villages in Sussex.
A besom is a traditional broom, typically with a Hazelwood handle and a brush of twigs. They have become associated with Wican traditions.
"By 1901 William JUPP's old besom-making room was used for storage by a firm of shoe makers."
[quote from Peakland Heritage item].
- This place was an ancient Chapelry in Hathersage parish in Derbyshire and became a modern Civil Parish in December, 1866.
- This parish was in the ancient High Peak Hundred (or Wapentake).
- The parish council maintains a website for the village.
- District governance is provided by the Derbyshire Dales District Council.
The history of Stoney Middleton Village School dates from 1835, one of the earlier schools in the area, predating nearby Eyam and Grindleford Schools. The school was enlarged in 1845 and a classroom added in 1893. The present building is situated part-way up the High Street, on the corner where it meets "The Dale Mouth". The School Motto:-
"Train up a child in the way he should go and when he is old he will not depart from it."
"Blessed are they that hear the word of God and keep it."
is inscribed on stone tablets which date from the school's foundation. Over the years, the inscriptions have become eroded, but in the late 1980s the tablets were restored. On 23rd November 1990, a Double Celebration took place at the school to pay tribute to the retiring Head-Mistress (who had started teaching at the school in 1952), and to inaugurate the stone tablets after their restoration.
Mr. Thomas E. COWEN, who wrote a History of the Village of Stoney Middleton (1910) was an earlier headmaster of the school.
Stoney Middleton also had a "Dame School", kept by a Mistress Oldfield, but now - of course - closed. It seems likely this "village academy" would have been attended only by the children of "better-off" parents, who were able to afford to pay for their child's education.
Roger TEMPLE has a photograph of Stoney Middleton Junior School on Geo-graph, taken in October, 2007.