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Matlock: Willersley Castle, about 1931
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Arkwright
Arkwright & His Cotton Mill



Willersley Castle, 1927




Past Matlock & Matlock Bath photographers



Following the Castle's purchase by the Wesley Guild movement from the Arkwright's in 1927, an architect was appointed to make some changes as the property was to be converted into a guest house with accommodation for 100 visitors and would be open all the year round. When the plans were revealed they showed he had taken considerable care to preserve the distinctive features of Willersley[1]. An obvious external change was the addition of a new and larger entrance, which is shown on this post card (compare this with the sale brochure photograph, linked on the right).

Amongst the visitors in the late 1920s was a party of thirty Nottingham young Methodists who discovered that dancing was not allowed at the Castle so they complained to their minister. He was not unsympathetic and wrote to the Wesley Guild secretary suggesting that prohibiting dancing at the property was out of date, and that the embargo ought to be removed. Mr. J. Allen's reply was that the decision rested with the directors of Willersley Castle, and that he personally favoured their decision. This was definitely not the answer the young Methodists had hoped for[2]!


"Willersley Castle, Cromford, Matlock". Chas. Colledge, Smedley Street, Matlock. Posted 4 Oct 1931 in Derby and sent by Jack to his mother, Mrs. J. Du Den, in Jersey
Postcard in the collection of and provided by and © Ann Andrews.
Researched, written by and © Ann Andrews.
Intended for personal use only

References:

[1] "Derby Daily Telegraph", 9 January and 2 February 1928.
[1] "Derby Daily Telegraph", 21 January 1929.