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Matlock : The Bridge
Matlock : Twentieth Century Photographs, Postcards, Engravings & Etchings
 
Postcard F_38513, Matlock : The Bridge, copyright Bette Atkinson
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Matlock Bridge & Bank, 1903-04



Matlock Bank
Summer 1904



Matlock Bridge & Bank, 1909



Matlock
Looking towards Hackney



Matlock - Various Scenes from the Early 20th C



This lovely Edwardian coloured card is of Matlock's stone bridge over the River Derwent, shortly after it was widened in 1903/4. The stonework looks new and it is interesting to see the low wall curving round in front of the shop on the far right of the card. Pictures of the mediaeval bridge before it was widened show that there were neither pavements nor quoins so that people could view the river[1], so crossing the bridge would not have been easy for those on foot if a horse and cart went past.

Just beyond the bridge is Crown Square and there were then shops on both sides of the road on that side of the bridge. Those on the right, at the Parkhead, were demolished during the 1920's with work commencing in February 1926[3]. A large brown sign advertising R. Orme & Co., Family Grocers, Wine & Spirit Merchants can be seen on the end building closest to the bridge (on its right). Orme's eventually moved to the shop opposite the [former] Crown Hotel, on the corner of Crown Square and Bank Road but is no longer in Matlock. You can just make out the shape of one of the trams in Crown Square[3]. Immediately to the left of the tram, if you look hard, is the very edge of a building. This was the covered side entrance way of the Crown Hotel, which projected out over the pavement of Bank Road. The tram shelter is also in the Square; it is almost merged with the heads of the two people who are standing in the middle of the bridge. There are trees shown on both sides of the bottom of Bank Road. There are also two signs on the premises on the left hand side of the bridge. The one on the building closest to the bridge, just below its roof, reads Boot Mercer and further along is some white lettering that belongs to a Boot Warehouse.

In the foreground on the left can be seen the wrought iron gates of what is now a bank. The gates were replaced and the entrance way was redesigned when Williams Deacon's Matlock branch acquired the rather grand portico gateway in 1920[4].

Colin Goodwyn comments that the telegraph pole really is a monster, for it must go down behind the wall to the garden!


The postcard "Matlock : The Bridge" is one of the "Celesque" Series, published by the Photochrome Co. Ltd, London and Tunbridge Wells (F_38513).
Kindly provided by and © Bette Atkinson.
Unfortunately, whilst there's a birthday message on the back of the postcard there is no postmark and not even a stamp to help to date it. The owner has another card which would appear to be taken about the same time and this has an Edward VII stamp on it.
Researched, written by and © Ann Andrews, with additions by Colin Goodwyn. Intended for personal use only

References (coloured links go to more on site information):

[1] There is a picture of the bridge before it was widened in "The AutoChrome Album of Matlock & District". Scroll down the page.

[2] From the "High Peak News"

[3] Bank Road & the Steep-Gradient Tramway Matlock boasted it had the steepest tramway in the world

[4] From the Royal Bank of Scotland's branch history (no date)

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About Matlock Bridge