Speaker: Doreen Buxton
The talk traces the story of Matlock Bath from a private bathing place fed by a rather cold mineral spring at Matlock Wood at the end of the seventeenth century to a rural spa called Matlock Bath, with three bathing establishments able to accommodate about four hundred and fifty visitors, at the turn of the eighteenth. By then it was spoken of alongside Bath, Buxton and Tunbridge Wells but for many visitors it was the attractions of its scenic setting which tipped the balance in its favour. When the railway arrived in the 1840's, Matlock Bath had to reinvent itself at rather short notice. It became a destination for day trippers whose needs and expectations differed from those of its staying guests. Gradually the Victorian north end of the village was developed and slowly the day visitors' practical needs were addressed. The Arkwright family added the High Tor Grounds to the Georgian pleasure grounds, Lover's Walk and the Heights of Abraham; the survival of all three has served to restrict building development in the valley and still contributes hugely to Matlock Bath's sense of place.
Doreen claims no qualifications to attach local historian to her name, only a very long interest in the Derbyshire area in which she grew up, Matlock Bath and Cromford in particular. Attending local history evening workshops many years ago, led to working as a volunteer jack- of -all trades for the Arkwright Society at Cromford Mills when more focussed research became a passion. In collaboration with Christopher Charlton and on behalf of the charity, the Derwent Valley Mills World Heritage Site Educational Trust, the results have been recorded in two books Cromford Revisited and Matlock Bath, a Perfectly Romantic Place.
Industrial Archaeology Section
Related upcoming events
05/01/2024 19:30 - 05/01/2024 21:00
Speaker: Gary Lock – SPEAKER ON ZOOM
Within a few miles of the iconic Uffington White Horse chalk figure are three hillforts dating to the Iron Age and Roman periods. This talk will explore the similarities and differences between these sites based on a programme of excavations revealing something about the lives of the people who constructed and used the enigmatic White Horse.
Gary Lock is Emeritus Professor of Archaeology at the University of Oxford. He has taught and researched the Iron Age for many years specialising in hillforts of which he has excavated five and was Co-Director of the important Atlas of Hillforts of Britain and Ireland Project.
26/01/2024 19:30 - 26/01/2024 21:00
Speaker: Derek Latham
Derek is an architect, town planner, landscape architect, conservationist and urbanist, who ran his own practice, Lathams, in Derby for 35 years. His clients ranged from community groups to royalty, charities to corporate companies, individuals to local authorities, and a range of heritage bodies. He now chairs the Derbyshire Historic Buildings Trust and the Derwent Valley Trust. As a founder member he is still active with both the Institute of Historic Buildings and the Academy of Urbanism, and is Visiting Professor at the University of Derby. He is also a Director of Great Northern Classics, the proposed centre of excellence for training heritage vehicle repair skills. Fifteen years ago, he set about pushing the boundaries when building his own home, an Ecohouse designed to fit its context utilising materials from site and other techniques to reduce carbon footprint both embodied and in use.
02/02/2024 19:30 - 02/02/2024 21:00
Speaker: Emma Brownlee
One of the most unusual forms of burial found in early medieval England is the use of a bed on which the deceased is laid to rest. Several of these burials have made the news recently: the Harpole treasure excavated near Northampton in 2022, and the Trumpington bed burial, whose facial reconstruction made international headlines in June 2023. The burials found in England all belong to women, and all date to the period of Christianisation in the seventh century. Yet bed burials are not confined to England. They appear across Europe, but take quite a different form on the continent. This talk will combine information from the burials themselves with new scientific evidence, to consider what they can tell us about connections across early medieval Europe in a time of social and religious change.
Dr Brownlee is a research fellow at Girton College, University of Cambridge, where she focuses on how grave good use and burial rites vary across Europe in 5th to 8th centuries AD.
09/02/2024 19:30 - 09/02/2024 21:00
Speaker: Julian Henderson
Organised by the Archaeological Research Group
16/02/2024 19:30 - 16/02/2024 21:00
Speaker: Trevor James
Historic inn names, dating from before the eighteenth century, can provide potential clues, helpful to an understanding of the local history of any neighbourhood. They are almost a form of oral history and certainly can help us understand the priorities of the people of past times.
23/02/2024 19:30 - 23/02/2024 21:00
Speaker: Brice Bozier
The Victorian gasworks building for the Sudbury estate has recently been rescued and restored with the aid of a significant grant from the National Lottery Heritage Fund, but all the original equipment was lost. Learn how Sudbury Gasworks researched their missing gas producing retort benches and how in 2018 they started with a team of apprentices at JCB on the journey to recreate them, using old and cutting edge techniques and taking trips to the North, South and West! The speaker Brice Bozier is a Trustee of Sudbury Gasworks who works at JCB Rocester as a controls engineer. Apprentice trained himself, Brice has a background in electrical, mechanical, electronic and software engineering, and he will be supported for the presentation by one or more of the apprentices who were involved.
01/03/2024 19:30 - 01/03/2024 21:00
Speaker: James Wright – SPEAKER ON ZOOM
Every single hamlet, village, town and city in the British Isles has a story of secret passages running beneath the landscape. The tales speak of hidden tunnels connecting the castle and the monastery, or the hermitage and the pub, or the church and the manor house. Often these are supposed to be escape tunnels, sometimes they are connected with smuggling or treasure, on other occasions the given reasons for their existence are somewhat salacious and scandalous. The folklore of Britain’s subterranean landscape is ubiquitous, but is there ever any archaeological evidence for these yarns? What are the underlying truths? Can the stories ever tell us something about how people think about their communities and heritage?
Archaeological Research Group
08/03/2024 19:30 - 08/03/2024 21:00
Speaker: Sarah Howard
15/03/2024 19:30 - 15/03/2024 21:00
Speaker: Tony Wilmot
This talk will summarise the phenomenon of the Roman amphitheatre as experienced in Britain and will concentrate on contrasting the evidence from the amphitheatres of Chester and Richborough, both of which have been excavated within the last 20 years. It will cover variations in amphitheatre construction between the legions and the civilian centres and evidence for the nature of arena events and the behaviour of spectators. Tony Wilmott is a senior archaeologist at Historic England and has worked as a professional field archaeologist for 46 years. During this time he has excavated on many sites, mainly, but not exclusively, of Roman date. He is particularly known for his work on Hadrian’s Wall and at Richborough, and for excavations on the two amphitheatres of Chester and Richborough. He is the author of The Roman Amphitheatre in Britain and is currently working on a fully revised edition.
Joan D-Arcy Lecture - The Seizure of Church Goods in Derbyshire 1552-3: a later act of Tudor Reformation destruction23/03/2024 14:00 - 23/03/2024 16:00
Speaker: Dr Richard Clark
On 15 January 1553 the government of Edward VI put in place arrangements to seize the goods of churches throughout England and Wales. It had ordered these goods to be listed by each parish in the summer of 1552. The seizures in Derbyshire took place in May 1553 as Edward VI's health began to decline and concerns about the royal succession grew. The talk will be based on the records, covering large parts of Derbyshire, which were produced to enable and administer these changes.
These were edited by the speaker and published by the Derbyshire Record Society as Church Goods in Derbyshire 1552-1553 in 2022. They complement the doctoral studies on the impact of the Reformation on the Deanery of Derby by the late Joan d'Arcy.
The Library will be open from 1.00pm and there will also be books for sale. A break for tea after the lecture will be followed by half an hour of short presentations on ‘Highlights from the Derbyshire Archaeology Society's Archive’.