The photograph is part of an early to mid-1930s advertisement
for the County and Station Hotel at the bottom of Holme
Road. It was described as a residential and fully licensed
Free House and advertised Garages, Catering and Services & Satisfaction.
The proprietor at the time was Joe Simpson, Jnr (of Nottingham).
He was succeeded by Samuel E Robinson.
In 1898 the license of The Station and County
Hotel [sic], Matlock Bath was transferred from Arthur
William Upton to Francis Hoyland,
who had previously been at the Rutland Arms. The Hoylands
were to remain at the County and Station until the end of
the First World War.
Mrs Lucy Canal Barker followed Mr. Hoyland.
Tom Motley Stokes became the licensee in 1923; he was initially
granted a temporary transfer of the licence from his
wife Winifred May who had held it in the name of Mrs. Wilson.
Matlock Bath's Police cells and police house were behind
The entrance was through an archway on Holme Road, just before
the sign board that is sticking out. Police Sergeant Joseph
Ridd (later Superintendent J. H. Ridd) was there in 1924;
he was succeeded by P. s. [Police sargeant] Cappendale. A
rather amusing story relating to an alleged theft from the
County and Station occurred in the early hours of the morning
after the Venetian Fete of 1929. Three Sheffield youths were
found asleep under some canvas in Matlock Bath by the local
policeman, presumably slightly the worse for wear. The officer
noticed three glasses beside the boys, alleged to have been
stolen from the County and Station. As the court's chairman,
Mr. Key, commented that there had been an enormous amount
of pilfering in the locality so he made an example of them
and they were fined. It is not known if the young men had
to spend any time in the cells.
In 1931 the Matlock adjourned Brewster Sessions spent some
time considering the licence of the County and Station Hotel
which had been referred for further consideration
along with that for the Devonshire Hotel. The bench
renewed the County and Station's licence but the Devonshire
Hotel was not so fortunate.
To close a trust of the late Edward Wheatcroft of Matlock
following properties were advertised for sale at the beginning
of 1932. Mr. Walter Wheatcroft, the grandson of Edward Wheatcroft
of 2 Holme Road was the auctioneer and Messrs. Heny and Heny
- The centrally located and fully licensed County and Station
Hotel, a free house, and its garages, stabling and outbuildings.
- Nos. 1, 2 and 3 Holme Road.
- Dwelling house and Police Station, Holme Road.
- Corner sale shop and dwelling house known as Sheffield
House, Holme Road.
- The Laurels, Holme Road - a stone built residence.
- The five Masson Cottages, Masson Road.
The photo in the advertisement above
could almost have been used to advertise Walter Wheatcroft's
sale as it shows not only the hotel and the entrance to the
police station but also the three Holme Road houses that
are just past the sign previously mentioned. Further up the
hill, on the left, is where Dolly Lees ran a general store
and bed and breakfast in the 1950s and 60s. This was the
Sheffield House mentioned in the auctioneer's blurb.
It should not be confused with Sheffield House on North Parade.
Much higher up the hill, on the top left of the picture
are Masson Cottages. After Mr. Simpson bought the hotel in
March 1932 an advertisement read "To be entirely refurnished
and run as a "FREE" House at CUT prices. Old friends
Noel Wheatcroft advertised valuable furnishings removed
from the County and Station Hotel as for sale at his Smedley
Street salerooms in 1936 and
three years later offered "the whole of the kitchen
requisites and a portion of the furniture that had been removed".
Also in 1939 several advertisements were published announcing
that the hotel "now offered Offilers' Ales", presumably
paid for by Samuel Robinson.
links are to transcripts or more information elsewhere on
this web site):
 See Matlock
Bath Business Letterheads, which includes both a 1934
letterhead from Joseph Simpson's time and a description
of the village and the hotel. Joseph Simpson also advertised
as the hotel's proprietor in Kelly's Directory of Derbyshire,
 Kelly's Directory of Derbyshire,
1941. He was the hotel manager in September 1939.
 "Derbyshire Times",
21 May 1898. Transfer of Licenses.
 The Hoylands were shown at the
Hotel in the
1901 census and Kelly's Directories of 1899 | 1908 | 1916.
Mrs. Hoyland and the couple's son later lived at Woodland
House on Derby Road.
 Mrs Barker advertised in Kelly's
Directory of Derbyshire, 1922.
Daily Telegraph", 19 July
1923. Mr Stokes is listed in Kelly's Directory of Derbyshire,
1925 and 1928.
 See Miscellany.
 Whilst P.s. Ridd appears in Kelly's
1925 Directory he had been promoted the previous year ("Derbyshire
Times", 29 November 1924).
 "Derby Daily Telegraph",
26 September 1929.
 "Derby Daily Telegraph",
11 March 1931. Hotel licenses at Matlock Bath. The
Devonshire Hotel became the Devonshire Cafe after this.
 The trust referred to the Will
of Edward Wheatcroft of Matlock Bath, who died at Matlock Bath
on 2 Aug 1881. Probate granted at Derby 6 Sept 1881.
 "Derbyshire Times",
9 January 1932.
 Doreen Buxton and the web mistress
have compared notes on this and we are both in agreement.
 "Nottingham Evening Post",
12 March 1932. County and Station Hotel, Matlock Bath. Purchased
by JOE SIMPSON, Jr. (late Chapel St. Leonards.)
 "Derbyshire Times", 17 April 1936.
 "Derbyshire Times", 14 July 1939.
 Derby Daily Telegraph 20 July 1939.