>This page
Matlock & Matlock Bath Miscellany
Arms, charities, copyholders, Domesday entry, the Manor, police stations, population figures, 1832 voters, clubs & societies - and the band.
Matlock & Matlock Bath Index
About Matlock | About Matlock Bath | Find a Name | Images
Historical Records

Matlock's arms, on an enamel badge.

Designed by Robert Hall[1], the arms were shown in black & white on the cover of Ward Lock's Matlock Guide for many years. The design portrays the history of the Manor of Matlock, a Royal Demense in the time of Edward the Confessor. King John gave it to William Ferrers, but reverted to the Crown because of the seventh earl's treason. Subsequently Edward I gave the Manor to his brother, John of Gaunt.
However, in Charles I's reign it was granted by Charles I to some of the citizens of London. The following year it was sold again, this time to John Middleton, Arthur Moore, Richard Senior and George Heathcote, in trust for the copyholders. Local men submitted mottoes, with Aquæ Salubrtitas Usu chosen because it means "Health by the use of water"[2].

The owner understands there used to be a large version on the wall up the stairs in the Town Hall.
Photograph © Colin Goodwyn
More about Matlock Bath's arms

Matlock in the Domesday Book, 1086

"Domesday" was a survey of lands in England, made by order of King William the Conqueror, in 1086. The Norman Conquest of England had taken place 20 years earlier, in the year 1066.

"LAND OF THE KING" in the Wirksworth Wapentake:
"12 M. In MATLOCK (Bridge) King Edward had 2 caracutes of land without tax. Waste. meadow, 8 acres; 1 lead mine; woodland pasture in places, 3 leagues long and 2 wide.
To this manor are attached these outliers, MATLOCK, SNITTERTON, WENSLEY, BONSALL, IBLE, TANSLEY. In them 7 caracutes of land taxable. land for 7 ploughs.
11 villagers and 12 smallholders have ploughs.
Meadow, 22 acres; woodland pasture 2 leagues long and 1 league wide; underwood as much"[3].

"15 M. ... These five manors, DARLEY, MATLOCK (Bridge), WIRKSWORTH, ASHBOURNE, AND PARWICH, with their outliers, paid £32 and 6½ sesters of honey 1066; now £40 of pure silver"[3].

The Domesday volumes are held by The National Archive, Kew. The above translation, referring to Matlock (MESTESFORDE), has been extracted from: Domesday Book Series: 27 Derbyshire ed. Philip Morton[3]

The Manor of Matlock

Matlock was anciently called Mestesford and was mentioned in the Domesday Survey, as already stated above. Writing in 1877, Cox said that Matlock was not a berewick [a demense farm] of Wirksworth. "Matlock and Darley were royal manors" at Domesday. He also pointed out that there was no church at Matlock mentioned at that time, though the fragments of Norman masonry outside the Church tower certainly indicate the existence of a church in the Norman period[4].
Also see:
About St. Giles Church

"The manor belonged at an early period to the Ferrers family as part of the Wapentake of Wirksworth". It was, until 1628, "parcel of the earldom of the Duchy of Lancaster". It "was then granted to Edward Ditchfield and others, in trust for the Corporation of the City of London, by whom it was converted to three other persons, as trustees for the copyholders of the manor, and the rights have ever since been vested in the succession of such trustees[4]".
Also see:
Charters and Early Deeds
Documents Relating to Matlock, 14th Century - Leases 1376-1377
Description of Matlock in Davies' 1811 "History" (scroll down the page).

To add a little more information to that supplied both above and below, The Cross on the seal between the five doves (or Martletts) were taken from Edward the Confessor's Arms. The horseshoe is on the arms of the Ferrers family, the tricorporate lion from the arms of John of Gaunt, the axe represents the beheading of King Charles I and the arms of the City are of London between the lion's paws[2].

Other significant dates in the history of the Manor were:[5]

Letters patent granted to Edward DITCHFIELD (White's Directory records him as LICHFIELD[6]), John HIGHLOW, Humphrey CLARKE and ffrancis MOSSE, citizens of the City of London.

- by an indenture sold to John MIDDLETON Esq., of Wannesley, NTT, Arthur MOORE gent., of Milthorpe, DBY, Richard SENIOR of Cowley, DBY and George HEATHCOTE of Cutthorpe, DBY. This was in trust for the copyholders.

1629 (14 Jan)
To make certain of the copyholders' rents, there was an agreement between the above trustees and:
William WALKER, Adam WOLLEY and others (copyholders of the manor);
Elizabeth, widow of the late Adam WOLLEY of Riber, Gent on behalf of William WOLLEY (her infant son).

Following the deaths of the original trustees, Mr Thomas STATHAM attempted to have new trustees appointed.

1700 (17 Oct)
Indenture between John THORNHILL and Ann his wife (granddaughter and heir of William BOOTH, gent, Lord of the Manor) and Thomas STATHAM. Conveyed in trust for the copyholders to Michael BURTON, Arthur DAKEYNE, Exuperius TURNER gent., and William TURNER.

1700 - 1716
Court of Chancery proceedings against the proprietors of the manor by Sir John STATHAM, knight.
An award was made in 1716 by Sir John Port and John Berresford, Esquires, respecting the rights and interests of the manor. They found the copyholders purchased the manor as originally stated, subject to the yearly reserved rent of £16 10s 3 ½d., payable to the King's heirs and successors and that part of this rent should be raised out of certain cottages and premises, together with £4 13s 5d payable by the copyholders in defined proportions. The copyholders had been mistaken in thinking they had rights to shares in the manor in proportion to the copyhold rents they paid. The manor was freehold, conveyed by deed and not surrendered by copy.

Also see:
The Wolley Manuscripts, a major collection of pre 1828 documents for more information on the manor. The reference to Sir John Statham and the Manor can be found under Wolley Manuscripts 6668, ff.279-285.
Charities (below) for more on Anthony WOLLEY.
The Lords of the Manor of Matlock are shown as land owners in Eighteenth Century Lists: Poor Rate, 1784 (part 1) (as Matlock Lords) | Eighteenth Century: Century Lists: Poor Rate, 1784 (part 2) (as Matlock, Lords of the Manor).
Nineteenth Century Lists: Manorial Records, Extracts from 1851 A sample of what is available at the DRO.

List of Trustees for the Copyholders (1716 - 1903)[5]

Trustees for the copyholders were recorded after the settlement of the dispute with Sir John Statham (above) was settled, although the list is incomplete.

1738 - Bache THORNHILL and others.
1760 - Francis RADFORD and others.
1769 - Alexander BARKER, Brooke BOOTHBY, Francis HURT, William MILNES, Bache THORNHILL.
1785 - Brooke BOOTHBY, William MILNES, Bache THORNHILL.
1798 - Philip GELL, John HOLLAND, Francis HURT, Bache THORNHILL, John TOPLIS.
1827-9 Bache THORNHILL, Esq.; Philip GELL, Esq.; and Miss TOPLIS (Lords and Lady of the Manor) - see Glover's Directory.
1830 - Bache THORNHILL.
1871 - William Pole THORNHILL.
1899 - John Gilbert CROMPTON Esq.; Rev Fielding Arthur Wolfe Hamilton GELL.

The Court Leet and view of Frankpledge - with the Great Court Baron - were held half yearly (alternately at Matlock and Matlock Bath)

Stewards included:
1852 - Mr. James MILNES, solicitor of Bridge Chambers, was the Steward - see White's Directory, 1852.
Thomas Henry NEWBOLD, solicitor, Matlock Bath - see Kelly's Directory, 1864
1903 - Mr. James POTTER, solicitor of Bridge Chambers, was the Steward.
1928 - Mr. James Speakman POTTER, solicitor of Bridge Chambers, was the Steward, having been appointed by Rev. F. A. W. Hamilton GELL in 1923 in succession to his late father who held the position fur nearly 36 years.

Nineteenth century expansion, population and councils

Matlock and Matlock Bath expanded enormously during the nineteenth century.

"In 1821 there were 605 houses in the parish, occupied by 609 families, and 2,920 persons"[5] . By 1841 "the population [of Matlock] ... including Matlock Bath, Matlock Bank, Matlock Bridge, Riber, Scarthin Nick and Starkholmes, amounted to 3,782 souls, and the area in acres to 4,750"[1848].

1841 Census, Parish of Matlock: Distribution of Occupations. Examines the occupations of those living in Matlock and District at the time of the 1841 census, highlighting some interesting distribution patterns across the seven Enumeration Districts.

In 1838 William Adam noted that the inhabitants of Matlock Bath numbered about 500, but he did not say whether this included children or was based on the adult population of the village. Nor would the number have included Scarthin's residents[7].

There was an increase of about one thousand people every ten years between 1861 and 1891.

"The population in 1861, including Matlock Bath, Matlock Bank, Matlock Bridge, Riber, Scarthin Nick and Starkholmes, was 4,252, in 1871 was 5,220 and in 1881 was 6,093"[1891].

By 1891 the population numbered 7,131, but in 1894 the creation of the new parish of Matlock Bath caused a "reduction" in these numbers.
Read about the Parish in an extract from Kelly's 1891 Directory

Population of the Matlocks (to 1931)[8]
1801 2,354
1811 2,490
1821 2,920
1831 3,262
1841 3,782
1851 4,010
1861 4,252
1871 5,220
1881 6,093
1891 7,131
1901 7,798
1911 6746 + 1802[1912]
1921 7060 + 1823[1928]
1931 7151 + 1755[1941]

The ecclesiastical parishes of Matlock in 1901 were recorded as - St. Giles (pop. 2,441) and Matlock Bank (3,276). There were 5,979 in Matlock civil parish and Urban District. Matlock Bath's civil parish and Urban District had a population of 1,819 and the ecclesiastical parish 1,550[1908].

By 1911 there were 6,745 people in Matlock; the population was divided between the ecclesiastical parishes of St. Giles (2,510) and Matlock Bank (3,896 - including 431 in two of the hydros). Matlock Bath's population in 1911 was 1,802, although the population of the ecclesiastical parish was somewhat smaller at 1,551[1916].

From 1894 Matlock and Matlock Bath had separate Urban District Councils. Matlock UDC met in the Town Hall and the UDC for Matlock Bath and Scarthin Nick held meetings in the Council Chamber, which was at first located in upper rooms on the Parade but later in the newly built Pavilion. The two joined together again in 1924 to form the Matlocks UDC.

Local Boards, Magistrates and Public Officers of Matlock Bath and Matlock in 1891.
Officials etc in Kelly's 1908 Directory
Officials etc. in Kelly's 1912 Directory
Officials etc. in Kelly's 1916 Directory

If you'd like to have a rough idea about how the inhabitants came and went there are some very basic statistics about a few in 1901
See Did you know ...?
Histpop - The Online Historical Population Reports Website, providing access to hundreds of official documents relating to the history of civil registration and the taking of the censuses.

Charities left to the Church and Church Schools

These were bequeathed to the church in Wills and were to be distributed by the Rector and Churchwardens.

William WALKER (1631)[9]
He left a rent charge of 10s [10 shillings] yearly for ever, to be paid out of his estate called Hillock Croft in the parish of Matlock.
Lists Through the Centuries: The Seventeenth Century: William Walker's Charity, 1634-35

George SPATEMAN, Yeoman of Tansley (1647)[9]
He left £80 [80 pounds] to the use of a school in Matlock, and £20 [20 pounds] for the benefit of the poor in the parish. Will dated 16 Oct 1647 held at TNA (PROB 11/202/73).
These two legacies were laid out in the purchase of a house and lands in the parish of Alfreton in 1650. This property was exchanged for a messuage and lands of 5a. 3r. 5p. at Matlock.
See Schools (Matlock Town)
Lists Through the Centuries: The Nineteenth Century: Matlock School Charity, 1814.
Lists Through the Centuries: The Nineteenth Century: Petition of behalf of Thomas Bunting. Applicant for the post of master, 1835.

Several of these benefactors are listed on the Benefaction or Charity Boards displayed inside St. Giles Church
Go to on site transcript

On 2 Feb 1805 two closes of inclosed Matlock School Land near Riber were advertised as being To Let to the Best bidder. They were the Water-Ox Close and the Rye close and were then in possession of Widow Sowter. Three years later, on 2 Feb 1808, a Dwelling House near Mullet Hill, with garden and 3 pieces of Meadow land (the Bachelor's Meadows), were being auctioned on a 14 year lease. James Smith and his undertenant held them at the time. The 1847 Tithe map at the Derbyshire Record Office, now indexed by Grenville Smith, shows them listed with the owners being the "School Trustees of Matlock Boys".

Thomas JOHNS (1667)[9]
He gave £2 p.a. [2 pounds per annum] to the poor and four Bibles to the value of "Twentie shillings a yeare upon every second day of february " (£1 in old money) to be distributed by the minister, churchwardens and overseers for ever. This was to be paid out of lands called Janckin Flat, Causeway Meadow and Dick Lands (Ditchylands), situated in Matlock.
Bryan[5] states that up to 1827 the two latter fields were in the occupation of Mr. Adam Woolley.
See Pre 1858 Wills, Surnames J.
Thomas Johns also bequeathed forty Bibles to named individuals, although these were not charitable gifts. Whilst he stipulated that there were to be 40 bibles, he listed only 37 recipients.
See Lists Through the Centuries: The Seventeenth Century: Thomas Johns' Will - Bible Recipients, 1668.

Anthony WO[O]LLEY (1668)[9]
He left a further 5l. [£5] per annum towards the maintenance of the free school at Matlock, and directed that a piece of land should be set apart by his executors for that purpose (see Pre 1858 Wills, Surnames W). Whereupon two pieces of copyhold land were conveyed upon trust to Mr. John WO[O]LLEY and Mr. John SOWTER. In 1817, the Lyson's recorded there was an annual income of 43l. 14s [£43 14 shillings] and White's[6] gives the annual income as £36 p.a. [£36 per annum] - £30 to the school master; £2 for incidental expenses; £4 to the poor.
About Riber
The Wolley Manuscripts
, a major collection of pre 1828 documents

Daniel CLARK (1724)[9]
He gave 10s [10 shillings] yearly for ever, to be paid out of his estate in the parish of Matlock. "John Wolley & Geo. Sowter & to their heirs siccessfully to gether with ye Overseers of ye poore for & time being to be Distributed to twenty of the poorest famileys that Receeve no worldy pension from ye overseer
but are lawful inhabitants in the pshe of Matlock". (Will of Daniel Clark, see Pre-1858 Wills Surnames C - G)
Bryan states that "in 1828 this sum was paid in respect of lands held by Mr. Wigley Hayward HODGKINSON"[5].

Joshua BRADLEY (1738)[9]
He left a rent charge of 10s [10 shillings] a year out of land called Allcock lying in Matlock Bank.
See Pre 1858 Wills, Surnames B.

Thomas GARRETT, Esq. of Middlesex (1791)[9]
He left £100 [100 pounds] to be invested in the Government funds, the dividends to be given to 20 poor housekeepers not receiving parish relief and to be distributed annually on St. Thomas's Day. In 1857 this bequest was standing in the names of the Reverend Philip GELL, Mr. Adam WOOLLEY and Mr. John NUTTALL. Bryan[5] records GARRETT as "of Hornsey".

Reverend Francis GISBORNE, Rector of Staveley (1818)[9]
In his will written in 1818, confirming a deed of the previous year, he left £5 10s p.a. [5 pounds 10 shillings per annum] for warm clothing to be given to the poor of 100 parishes and chapelries in Derbyshire. Will dated 7 Sept 1821 held at TNA (PROB 11/1648/64).
[Note: Bryan records the sum for Matlock as being £7 3s[5]]

Robert CLAY (1874)[10]
In his will signed on 14 May 1873 and proved at Derby the following year, Robert Clay bequeathed "unto the Rector and Churchwardens of the parish of Matlock aforesaid the sum of One hundred and forty pounds Upon trust to invest the same in the Public funds of Great Britain and to apply and Expend the interest dividends and annual income thereof for ever thereafter in the purchase of bread or clothing or bread and clothing to be impartially distributed annually on New Years day among such of the poor and needy inhabitants of the said parish of Matlock as the Vicar and the Church wardens for the time being of the said parish shall select for that purpose".
Robert Clay was the 1C5R [first cousin five times removed] of the author of these pages and there is a little more information about him.
See The Andrews Pages Picture Gallery (Derbyshire section), which includes several pages about Bonsall, where Robert lived for most of his life.

There were further bequests in the early twentieth century:

Catherine L. C. LEACROFT (1907)[11]
Miss Leacroft, late of Dale Cottage. Matlock Dale, left £50 6s. 3d. to be invested, and the interest expended in coal to be distributed annually amongst six poor and deserving widows living in the Parish and distributed by the Rector and Churchwardens.

Sarah TOMLINSON (1924)[11]
W. N. Statham records that she left £200 to the Rector of Matlock upon Trust, to invest in Trustees' securities and to apply the annual income thereof at his discretion for the relief of the poor residing in the Parish.
"The late Miss Sarah Tomlinson who died on July 10th, at Brook Side, left to the rector of Matlock to be invested, and the income given to the poor the parish, also to the Church Missionary Society and £25 to the rector"[12].

Matlock Voters

Parliament passed the Reform Act on 7 June, 1832 and so more men in the country were eligible to vote for Members of Parliament. At that time Derbyshire was split into two Divisions - North and South - and Matlock (including Matlock Bath and Scarthin Nick) was in the Southern Division under the Wirksworth Polling District.

On Tuesday 18th December, 1832 and Wednesday, 19th December, 1832 the first elections took place. Voters were able to chose between three candidates to represent them:

The Hon. George John VERNON
Sir Roger GREISLEY, Bart
The Right Hon. Lord WATERPARK

Not all residents qualified to be a registered elector and some of the electors did not live within the parish. For example, T. WILSON's place of residence was given as Hulley-place, London but he was eligible because he held freehold property in Matlock Bath, though in the event he did not vote. Amongst other absent voters was John Charles MAYNARD of Harlsey Hall, Yorkshire who qualified because he held a one-eighth share of Matlock Old Bath, Matlock Bath. In total, 166 copyholders and freeholders in the parish were eligible to vote and many of those who did cast both of their votes. Abanathan DAFFIN of Starkholmes, with a freehold in Riber, voted for both VERNON and WATERPARK. In contrast, Joshua TOMISSON, a freeholder in Matlock Bath, voted for GREISLEY. So did Rev. H. SIM, living in Matlock Rectory, who was eligible because of his occupation.

If Matlock alone had elected the candidates, the outcome would have been somewhat different : WATERPARK was the favourite in the parish with 115 votes, VERNON polled 74 and GREISLEY trailed the field with a mere 30 votes. However, the final result for the Southern Division was:

VERNON - 3048

Lists of the electors of Matlock, and whom they voted for in several elections in the nineteenth century, can be found in various Poll Books. If you are interested in an ancestor who may have been eligible to vote in Matlock in 1832, please email me, to find out if they did.

Additional Miscellaneous Information

Matlock Bath Police Station
In the late nineteenth and early twentieth century there was a sergeant who had four police constables under his leadership based at Matlock Bath Police Station. The police station was in a little house at the rear of the County and Station Hotel, at the bottom of Holme Road. As the photograph on the right shows, the big round archway on Holme Road led through to the police station where there was a small cell with iron bars.
In 1932 the public were given the opportunity to buy the police station when it was offered for sale by public auction; it was part of a block of property that had been previously been held in a trust. The Lot was withdrawn. By an odd co-incidence, the local police ball took place on the same day.

There is more about the property sale on the County & Station Hotel, Dale Road, 1900-1930.

Those with ancestors who were in the Police Force may be able to learn more through records held at the Derbyshire Record Office.
Also see:
Names in Nineteenth Century Lists : Keeping Law and Order.
Matlock Bath Today (1) - another picture of Holme Road.
  Matlock Bath's original Police Station was through the arch
Matlock Bath's Former Police Station.
Photograph © Jim Phelan, published with kind permission.

Matlock Police Station on Bank Road was built in 1893; it had three cells and a house for the inspector or sergeant, later for the divisional superintendent. The building was enlarged a few years later.

Matlock and District Operatic Society was founded in 1906. In 1907 they produced "Erminie" in Matlock's Victoria Hall, which was in grounds adjoining Smedley Street, and the following year performed Gilbert and Sullivan's "The Mikado".
The Society's papers (1907-75) are held by the Derbyshire Record Office Ref: D1572

After 100 years as Matlock Amateur Operatic Society it was decided to change the Society's name to reflect what the group performs today.
Matlock Musical Theatre, formerly Matlock Operatic Society, announced their closure in September 2019.

More about the Society:

1930 - full cast

Other groups who enjoyed singing:

Prize Choir
Ladies' Choir 1959

Matlock Brass Band was attached to the Volunteers when it started in the mid nineteenth century and the players wore uniforms. The cornettist, trainer and leader was John Naylor of Sutton-in-Ashfield and George Knowles gave considerable support and helped financially. By 1894 the bandmaster was H. Holmes. They won quite a few prizes in the 19th century. For example, in 1863 the Matlock Volunteer Band won the second prize at the Leamington Brass Band Concert[13]. They also performed at local events, such as the ceremony to "Turn the First Sod" for the Matlock Bath Pavilion and Gardens Company Limited project in 1882. The Matlock Volunteer Band appeared by kind permission of Captain Arkwright[18].
Matlock Brass Band is online.

Selection of Bandsmen in the Vernon Lamb Archive:

Scottish band
Scottish Band
4982, Matlock Band
Matlock Band

Matlock Cycle Club members used a cycle track in the latter part of the nineteenth century. It was supposedly in the grounds of the Olde Englishe Hotel, though the 1903 Ordnance Survey map of Matlock shows an oval, presumably the track, at the very end of Olde Englishe Road and seemingly not in the hotel's grounds by then. It was just behind the buildings at the end of Dale Road and on the opposite bank of the river from Knowlston Place.
Matlock Cycle Club is online
The Vernon Lamb Archive, Cycles & Cars has a number of pictures of pre-1914 cyclists, although they were not necessarily members of the Cycle Club.
The original cycle track is shown on an early 20th century postcards:

Matlock Golf Club opened in 1907 at Cuckoostone Grange, Matlock Moor. The course was established mainly for the pleasure of the visitors who came into the district[14]. At a discussion the previous year Mr. Goodwin of Rockside Hydro said that Henry Challand, who was unable to attend the meeting, stated that Smedley's and Rockside would give financial support for the scheme and other hydros would follow suite[15]. The 18 hole course course, which was 5,500 yards round, was first used in May 1908. The formal opening was postponed to the middle of August by which time a club house was to have been added. Tom Williamson, a Nottinghamshire professional, had laid the course out. Rather optimistically, the Derby paper stated that it could be "reached quite easily through the medium of the Matlock Cable Tramway"[16].

Horace Loveday was the first Hon. Secretary[1908] but was succeeded by Henry Towle, a retired station master. Mr. Towle can be found in that post in both 1912[1912] and 1916[1916]. He passed away on 31 July 1929, aged 81[17]. At the outbreak of the First World War it was acknowledged that Mrs. John Goodwin had worked had to make the ladies' section a success in her role as its secretary[14].
See Newspaper Cuttings, 1914 (competing in the Devonshire Cup).

In 1925 Mr. John Kay of Lilybank Hydro raised the matter of the club being closed on Sundays at the club's A.G.M., stating that it kept visitors away.

Matlock golf club
From Smedley's Hydro brochure, about 1939

Matlock Bath Golf Club opened in 1903, so pre dated the one at Matlock. The course of nine holes was on land between Upperwood and Ember Lane and the links were informally opened on 10th May when a number of members were present. The Captain, Mr. H. M. Peacock, and Mr. Broome from Holloway opened the links. The tees and greens had been laid out by the golf professional, Mr. Cross[19]. Teas used to be served in a lean to erected on the side of the clubhouse. The links were officially opened by the local M.P., Mr Victor C. W. Cavendish, on 23rd May[20]. The ground was said to drain so well, thanks to the limestone underneath, that it could rain for a fortnight and once it stopped players could almost instantly play a round without their feet getting wet[21].

Matlock Bath links
From the Royal Hotel brochure, about 1908

Matlock & District Rifle Club
The Club started in 1900 although there had been a Rifle Volunteer's Shooting Club in the nineteenth century that was formed following public meeting on 27 Dec 1859, when Sir Joseph Paxton was in the chair. Its next meeting was on 10 Jan 1860, when Sir Joseph became its captain, S. Prince was the lieutenant and Robert Chadwick the ensign. By April the same year its headquarters were at The Queen's Head Hotel. In the July 10 members of the Brass Band (see Brass Band above) enrolled but outgoings outstripped income, particularly over the band's uniforms. The club had outstanding debts of £60, which was more than they had in hand, so it was decided to call in the money that was owing. In the 1870s they met on Cawder Meadow, and held an annual shooting match.

The branches of the Rifle Club were initially at Matlock, Matlock Bath, Tansley, Cromford, Darley Dale, Lea and Holloway. In 1900 the president was Mr. F. C. Arkwright, the secretary Mr. W. Jaffrey and Mr. Doar was its treasurer. By Christmas that year over 250 members had joined in the district. The ranges were on Cuckoostone Moor. In 1912 Matlock Rifle Club and the Midland Railway Rifle Club were "the two crack clubs of the county".

By 1932 Colour-Sergt. Henry Carder Wall, who was by this time 80 years old and had been a member of both Clubs, must have been greatly saddened when he said that "Rifle Shooting is a dead letter in Matlock today". He had won many trophies in his time, and was said to be one of the finest rifle shots the Midlands had produced. It was Mr. Wall who had trained Harry Douglas, one of the best shots in the world at that time and then the captain of the England team. Club members John Moss, G. W. Knowles and George Douglas were still competing in 1939 and Harry Douglas was once more amongst the winners at at Bisley in the July.
See Newspaper Cuttings, 1900.
1914 Rifle Club images
in the Vernon Lamb Archive:


National Reserve, Matlock Branch
The local branch of the National Reserve was formed in 1912.The force was said to be strong in Matlock in November that year. F. C. Arkwright, in a speech at Matlock Town Hall, said the Reserve "had no arms or equipment and he didn't know what use they would be, but they had put their names down and would do their best".

Ninety five members of the branch were present when certificates were presented at the Queen's Head in April 1913. As the Chairman, Mr. Arkwright, pointed out, it was a simple register of names; when the names were given in each person declared that they would be ready to be called up if required. There were to be no uniforms. Amongst those who received certificates at this time were Henry Clay, Joseph Francis Clay, W. Buckley, J. A. Wall, Arthur Bannister, J. H. Housley, John Land, George Hodgkinson and J. Travis. Some recruits were too old to serve as they were over 55, although the chairman declared that they would still try to volunteer.

When Queen Mary passed through the Matlocks on her way to Derby in December 1913 it was expected that a detachment of the National Reserve would be one of the groups lining the route.
Visitors to Matlock Bath - Queen Mary, 1913

In 1914 Captain F. C. Arkwright was Commanding Officer and the Secretary was Quartermaster H. Clay. In the September ten members of the Reserve went to Derby and were accepted for service, with Corporal Knight and Sergt. J. W. Marriott acting as instructors to Lord Kitchener's recruits. J. W. Knowles, John Land and B. Wall had rejoined the Territorials and Private Dockerill was with the 4th North Midland Howitzer Battery.

There is a report of those participating in the Empire Day Parade 1914 and other details elsewhere on this site.
Matlock's National Reservists & the Call-up Card


National Reservists
& Call Up card


Matlock Town Football Club - "The Gladiators" - started in the nineteenth century (1876) and they originally played on the Hall Leys.

A traffic free Causeway Lane, Matlock, in the 1950's
The photograph (left) shows an almost traffic free Causeway Lane in the 1950's, with the football ground on the left hand side of the road behind the hedge.
In 1901, when the team still played on the Hall Leys, they played Grimsby and the visiting football team were staying at Jeffs' Poplar Hydro - see the census entry for that year.

By 1916 Matlock Cricket, Football & Athletic Club (Alfred Wrigley, hon. sec.) was based at the grounds
[1916]. The Hall Leys Recreation Grounds are on the right, with Riber Castle dominating the skyline.
About Riber Castle

There is more about the football club:

Football stand
on the Hall Leys
See stand on
3rd image down
Matlock & District
Sports club
letterhead (1922)
1931-2 team
Officers, 1950s

Photograph of Matlock's "arms" kindly provided by and © Colin Goodwyn.
Photograph of the archway on Holme Road through to the old Police Station kindly provided by and © Jim Phelan.
Photograph of Causeway Lane kindly provided by and © Bernard Gale.
Information researched by and © Ann Andrews.
Intended for personal use only.

References (coloured hyperlinks are to transcripts elsewhere on this website):

[1] "The High Peak News", 18 August 1906. Article about the Matlock coat-of-arms or "seal" which had been designed after much thought by Robert Hall who had also registered the design to himself. Researched by Colin Goodwyn.

[2] "Derbyshire Times",18 August 1906. Gleanings of the Peak.

[3] The Domesday volumes are held by the Public Record Office, Kew.
The translation quoted above, referring to Matlock (MESTESFORDE), is from: "Domesday Book Series: 27 Derbyshire" ed. Philip Morton from a draft translation prepared by Sara Wood (1978), Phillimore & Co. Ltd., London and Chichester © Mrs. Susan Morris, 1978, ISBN 0 85033 165X (case) - ISBN 0 85033 166 8 (limp).

[4] Cox, J Charles (1877) "Notes on the Churches of Derbyshire Vol II" Chesterfield: Palmer and Edmunds, London: Bemrose and Sons, 10 Paternoster Buildings; and Derby, p.518.

[5] Bryan, Benjamin (1903) "History of Matlock - Matlock, Manor and Parish" London by Bemrose & Sons, Limited.

[6] White, Francis (1857) "Directory of Derbyshire" (Matlock names onsite)

[7] Adam, W. (1838) "The Gem of the Peak; or Matlock Bath and Its Vicinity. ..." London; Longman & Co., Paternoster Row ; ... Mawe, Royal Museum, Matlock ; .... This was the first edition of his guide.

[8] Figures for 1801 - 1901 from "The Victoria History of the English Counties. A History of Derbyshire Vol. II", p. 204. Constable & Co., Pall Mall, London (1907) : (Ed. 1970) University of London. ISBN 0 7129 0447 6. The remaining years extracted from trade directories.

[9] Lysons, Rev Daniel and Samuel Lysons Esq. (1817) "Topographical and Historical Account of Derbyshire" London: Printed for T. Cadell, Strand; and G. and A. Greenland, Poultry.

[10] Information extracted from personal papers of web mistress.

[11] "History of Matlock Parish Church", W. N. Statham, (1925). Printed by Geo. Hodgkinson..

[12] "Derby Daily Telegraph",, 4 December 1924.

[13] "The Derby Mercury", Wednesday, 15 July, 1863.

[14] "Derbyshire Courier", 24 October 1914.

[15] "Derbyshire Times", 10 Mar 1906.

[16] "Derby Daily Telegraph ", 20 May 1907.

[17] "Derby Daily Telegraph", 3 August 1929.

[18] "Derby Mercury", Wednesday, 12 July, 1882.

[19] "Derbyshire Times", 14 May 1903.

[20] "ibid.", 30 May 1903.

[21] "Derby Daily Telegraph", 25 February 1930. Progress of Small Clubs in Derbyshire, by Putter.

[1848] "The Post Office Directory of Derbyshire, Leicestershire, Nottinghamshire and Rutlandshire", Kelly and Co., London (1848)
[1891] "Kelly's Directory of the Counties of Derby, Notts, Leicester and Rutland" (May, 1891), London
[1908] "Kelly's Directory of Derbyshire", 1908
[1912] "Kelly's Directory of Derbyshire", 1912
[1916] "Kelly's Directory of Derbyshire", 1916

There are online
19th century directories
20th century directories