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  • Whitwell

    Click image for larger versionName:	Whitwell_war_memorial.jpgViews:	1Size:	16.7 KBID:	1276877


    Click image for larger versionName:	Whitwell_quarry_from_village.jpgViews:	1Size:	16.9 KBID:	1276878​Whitwell is a parish in the north east corner of Derbyshire, on the borders with both Nottinghamshire and South Yorkshire. It has at various times been classed as being a Nottinghamshire village. It consists of the hamlets of Steetley, Belph and Bakestone Moor and the villages of Hodthorpe and Whitwell.

    The parish includes a part of Creswell Crags SSSI, due to the unique range of flora. There have been iron age, bronze age and roman archaeological finds in the wood, but this is hardly surprising as the well known Creswell Crags site is only about 2 miles distance as the crow flies.


    ​There have been a number of quarries in the parish, with stone being used to build the local church, a number of the stately homes in the area as well as Welbeck Abbey, the Houses of Parliament and York Minster.

    The photo above shows the quarry from the village. The Quarry at Steetley, first sunk in the middle ages, was used for mining Dolomite which is used in the steel industry, at one time producing 50,000 tons a year. This was the foundation of a large quarrying company, called Steetley plc, which has now become part of the LaFarge group. Lafarge still have a quarry in Whitwell.

    Click image for larger version  Name:	Whitwell community centre.jpg Views:	1 Size:	18.6 KB ID:	1276884

    Click image for larger version  Name:	Whitwell_pit_wheel.jpg Views:	1 Size:	22.1 KB ID:	1276879

    Click image for larger versionName:	St_Lawrence_Church_Whitwell.jpgViews:	1Size:	20.0 KBID:	1276881
    St. Lawrence Church
    Click image for larger version  Name:	Former_Roman_Catholic_Chapel,_Whitwell.jpg Views:	1 Size:	20.5 KB ID:	1276882
    Former Roman Catholic Chapel
    The conman who stole my life (Carol Bird.)

    Charles Manners Sutton, who was rector of Whitwell from 1786 to 1792, went on to become the Dean of Westminster and later the Archbishop of Canterbury.

    The Roman Catholics in the village walked up the road to the edge of the parish to worship at their own chapel. This is now part of a hotel and restaurant.

    Click image for larger versionName:	Whitwell_public_elementray_school_plaque.jpgViews:	1Size:	17.8 KBID:	1276883Click image for larger version  Name:	Plaque Joe Davis.jpg Views:	1 Size:	16.1 KB ID:	1276880Looking at government papers relating to education from 1819 and 1833 it would appear that approximately a tenth of the population of Whitwell were children of school age.
    The first school in the parish was a Sunday School started in 1802. By 1810 a further school had been started.

    By 1818 there was a school in which approximately 40 children were taught, twenty five of these being subsidised by the Duke of Portland, the Parish and the Rector. There were also four day schools accommodating sixty eight children, a Sunday School supported by voluntary contributions and also a day and a Sunday School for girls which was maintained entirely by the Duchess of Portland. It would appear that there were also some poor children in the parish who were not being educated at this time.

    By 1833 there was an infant school for 16 children of both sexes paid for by their parents, five daily schools, one containing about 30 pupils of whom six were paid for by the Duke of Portland, six by the Rector and the remainder by their parents, another contained eighty females and was supported and wholly maintained by the Duchess of Portland. The three other schools contained 10 females, 20 females and 12 females respectively all paid for by their parents. Additionally there was a Sunday School where tuition was free.

    By 1835 the "National" School had been set up in the Old Hall. This was a church school and strongly supported by the Duke of Portland. There was also a School at Belph.

    By 1857 these schools had been joined by a girls boarding school.

    By 1863 the attendance at the boys school was in the region of 50 boys, despite the population having risen to 1483. This seems to be in stark contrast to the attendances in 1819.

    In 1872 a new National School building was built, with separate rooms for the infants, the girls and the boys, the boys having to use the room above the girls room.

    Barbara Dodds
    Further reading and useful links
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