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North Parade, Matlock Bath, 1908
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Sanger's Circus, 1900

Promenade Gardens 1915

Matlock Bath North Parade, 1908, with the shops and businesses of Derwent Parade further along the road. The Methodist Church spire can be seen further along the Parade and the houses on the left are Fountain Villas. The railings on the right protected those strolling along the Promenade although they were really designed to keep people out. They were installed over the winter of 1905-6, following the Matlock Bath Improvement Act coming into force[1], and are higher and more ornate than those placed along the roadside when the Promenade was first developed (see The Parade).

Some of the Fountain Villas properties were either boarding or lodging houses and others were private homes. During the 1870s and 1880s Helen Elizabeth & Frances Julianna Peall ran a "ladies' school" in one of the houses (No.3)[2] and a few years after this card was posted Miss Fanny Picken, principal of a girls' school, was living at No.1. Amongst the people living here in 1908 were Mrs. Elizh Bridgett, Mrs. Elizabeth Robinson who later moved to Brunswood Terrace, Miss Annie Lymn and Frederic Charles Lymn - the solicitor & commissioner & clerk to Matlock Bath & Scarthin Nick Urban District Council[3].

Several Monkey Puzzle trees or Chile pines (Araucaria araucana), which are native to the Southern Hemisphere, were and still are grown in Matlock Bath. Of the two trees shown in this picture, the larger one is no longer growing but the other tree remains, with two further specimens close by[4]. There was another on the Promenade near the War Memorial.

The card was posted in Matlock Bath on 3 May 1908 to Miss Blacham at Chesterfield from L Exford, probably Laura Exford who was born in Chesterfield and living there in 1901. "This view is just above my shop".

"North Parade, Matlock Bath". Valentine's Series, Famous Throughout the World - No.17456 (IV). Printed in Great Britain.
Postcard in the collection of, provided by and © Ann Andrews.
Researched, written by and © Ann Andrews.
Intended for personal use only

References (coloured links go to on site transcripts):

[1] Following the Royal Assent being given to the Bill, the Matlock Bath Improvement Act became law on 4 August, 1905. The Council were then to charge an entrance fee for non-resident visitors to the Promenade.
[2] See references to them in the 1871 census | the 1881 census | Kelly's 1876 Directory. Also see Matlock & Matlock Bath Public Notices & Announcements, 1867.
[3] "Kelly's Directory of Derbyshire" (1908) pub. London
Also see their school on Matlock Bath: North Parade, late 1870's (2)
[4] The monkey puzzle trees of today - one is next to the tree shown in this picture and another in the next garden.