which consists of the villages of Crich, Fritchley and Whatstandwell

Family history notes of Stuart G. Flint

The following notes have been submitted by Stuart Flint as a result of his exploring this site.

Burials at Wingfield Park Cemetery:
Thomas Shaw of The Bent Farm Ashleyhay – his father was John Shaw of Wirksworth who, with Peter Bowne of Pentrich, later Crich, were partners at Bowne & Shaws Quarry Middle Peak Wirksworth. Peter Bowne was already General Manager at The Butterley Co Quarry Crich

Thomas Hoades, with Charles Hanson of Wirksworth, purchased Browns Wood, Lea Bridge in 1700 from my kinsman John Spateman of Roadnook Hall and Farm Washington (Wessington) – John's sister Mary married Henry Wigley of my kin. Browns Wood is where Wood End House was built by Peter Nightingale son of Peter 1st.

Mary Brown of your writings on this site (born early 1800s) was heir of Mary Brown the illigit. daughter of Peter Nightingale 2nd who married into the Swettenham Family. My wife's 6X Grandfather Benjamin Pearson's son – Benjamin Pearson – was Nightigale's Agent in 17882/3 when Nightigale built the first phase of Lea Mills. Benjamin senior was Sir Richard Arkwright's Agent at Cromford Moor Sough and Bonsall Brook but he died in 1784. HIs son Benjamin was also Agent at first to Arkwright but then transferred his allegiance to Nightingale In the 1820s Pearson junior founded a Silk Thread Mill near Bradwell North Derbyshire. His sister Elizabeth marrying Joshua Street. (they were my wife's 5X Grandparents). The Streets were also my kin of Bolehill and Cromford. Benjamin Street, son of Joshua, married Sarah Morris of Alderwasley (they were my wife's 4X Grandparents).

(Do not despair I have a reason for making this list)

Ambrose and Harriett's daughter Emme Blackham married George Fox of Woodseats Farm, Willersley Lane, Cromford owned by Arkwrights; the neighbouring farm being Castle Top Farm leased by Henry Taylor, father of Allison Uttley, which was also leased from the Arkwright Estate. Now I get to the point of the list. George Fox's brother Luke Fox is listed on your web site by Glyn Waite as Station Master at Whatstandwell Station and in 1877 he took over from Samuel Hodgkinson at Wirksworth Railway Station as Station Master. Luke's son, Alfred Fox, married my kinswoman Sarah Matilda Brittan daughter of Thomas and Mary Brittan (nee Colledge).

My wife's Gr Gr Grandmother Mary Slack, sister to W T N Slack, married Joseph Evans of Middleton. He was a member of the Grand Jury Wirksworth Barmote Court when my Gr Gr Uncle Samuel Joseph Sheldon was Deputy Barmaster of Wirksworth Soke & Wapentrake and Barmaster of Crich Liberty.

On your site you have a Plan of Matlock and District Weslyan Methodist circuit for 1905 On the plan it gives the various church officials. Wirksworth shows my kinsman Samuel Killer he was a joiner/builder and heir of my 3X Uncle William Killer who founded Killers Hopton Wood Stone Quarry, My Gr Gr Grandfather, Samuel Flint, son of John and Elizabeth Flint (nee Colledge) married Mary Killer, sister to William. Their daughter, Martha Flint, married Samuel Killer joiner /builder, their son being the Samuel of the plan on your site.

The Piggins are also my family from as far back as the 1690s. A William Curson, my 6X Grandfather, married into the Piggin family. Elizabeth Piggin of Crich was born approx 1900 and her father (verger at St Marys Church) was my Aunt Doris Walker's secretary at John Smedley Lea Mills. Aunt Doris was a Departmental Manager over some 200 women. Aunt Lizzie Piggin lived with my mother's Walker family at Manor Fields Middleton 1930s up to her demise in her early 1960s.

In Crich Parish Church (where my 5X Grandfather Peter Simpson, born 1695, married Elizabeth Curson 1719) is the tomb of Godfrey Beresford who was an Aide to The Earl of Shrewsbury. The Beresfords are of my Grand parentage. Peter Simpson being heir of the Blackwall Beresford Hassall Bassett Gell Wigley Simpson family. Peter's daughter Millicent marrying Samuel Colledge – whose daughter Elizabeth married John Flint in 1789.

John Crofts of Tansley (mentioned on the site):
John Crofts was born 1815 at Wooley Moor and married Elizabeth Britland of Cromford, daughter of Jesse Britland, a weaver. John's sister Emily Crofts, born 1831, married Henry Flint in 1856 – they were my Gr Grandparents. John and Emily were the children of David and Susanah Crofts (nee Birch) of Wooley Moor and Brackenfield – David was a Master Wheelwright at Sir Richard Arkwright Masson Mill.

John Crofts, strange as it may seem, started out in his work life as a foundry worker but by 1846 was an Elementary School Master at Tansley, in the 1850s he was teaching at Somercotes and by the end of the 1860s at Bonsall Free Grammar School. In the 1870s whilst my Grt Grandmother Emily was her way to visit John at Bonsall, by way of Bonsall Wood from Middleton where she was staying with family, she fell into the weir at Bonsall Mill and drowned.

John Crofts' children all became school teachers their sons and daughter also in education both as Head Teachers and as School Inspectors..

In one of my previous e mails, re Thomas Shaw who was buried at Wingfield Park Cemetery, I forgot to mention that his wife was one of the Gregory family of Timber Merchants of Tansley.

Timothy Spencer of The Cliffe Tansley, born in Ashover Parish, he a was a miller and baker married Anne. Their children:
James Spencer married Pheobe Lane of Wheatcroft, James sold land to Peter Nightingale 1st at Wheatcroft for the sum of 287 pounds and 10 shilings.
Timothy Spencer born 1722.
Mary Spencer married John Smith of Tansley. Their daughter Mary married Thomas Smedley Hosier of Wirksworth. Thomas and Mary Smedley's son – John Smedley – was Peter
Nightingale's General Manager at Lea Mills and when Peter died he took over the Mill.

Thomas Dodds was born at Crich to John Dodds on 9th September 1715. He had a long term affair wth Anne Kendlall which resulted in Anne having a child out of wedlock. Dodds as soon as he knew this ended their relationship and on August 8th, 1754 married Pheobe Wheeldon of Crich, daughter of Thomas Wheeldon.

Dodds' brother Gervaise Dodds married Elizabeth Alsibrook daughter of Robert Alsibrook of The Hollins (some records say Crich others Holloway). When Gervaise died his share of the family fortune went to Thomas Dodds who by the 1760s was declared bankrupt. Gervaise Dodds' widow, Elizabeth, married Peter Nightingale, son of Thomas and Katherine Nightigale (nee Bowler), as his 3rd wife. Peter Nightigales' 1st wife, Anne Cheetham, had a son Peter who was the founder of Lea Mills along with Benjamin Pearson (who was Nightigales' agent – previously agent to Sir Richard Arkwright).

My grandfather, William Flint, was killed at Killer Bros Quarry 1905 when the face collapsed whilst he was chaining a wedge of Hopton Wood Stone away from the face driving the steam crane. The Killer quarry hardly ever used explosives as the stone was used for building and for monumental work. In the 1920s it was Hopton Wood Stone which was used by The War Graves Commission for all the European War Graves sites. The Preston End Workshops at Middleton were used and masons, many coming from Lancashire came to live at Middleton they etched all the names on the memorial stones. Crich Stand Memorial stones were originally quarried and etched at Hopton Wood.

The mason who last etched the names was Colin Julian of Middleton, Grt Grandson of Bert Petts who, with brother John James Petts, founded Petts Monumental Masons. Bert Petts was one-time overseer at The Preston End when the War Graves Commission had the contract with Hopton Wood Stone. The Petts family originated from Crich, as did the Jeffries of their kin.

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