|The Cross, Bonsall (1), four postcards
This lovely coloured postcard, from a
photo by C. F. Hartle of Bonsall, was sent by Hilda Margaretta
May Walker, Ann's great aunt,
in 1908 to her mother Margaret Jane (Jennie) Walker (nee
The Walker family lived in the village for years before moving
to Manchester and the Cross stands in front of the grocer's
shop they ran.
Another relative was very much involved in the village
life of Bonsall during the last century. Robert Clay (1799
the Bonsall miller. He was responsible for taking water
into the village and on the well outside the church yard
in Church Street there is a memorial to him from the grateful
people of Bonsall. He was also one of the churchwardens
involved with the restoration of St. James' Church that
was completed in 1863; the work was paid for by public
subscription. Robert Clay gave the church a new pulpit.
His tomb in the churchyard has recently been relatively
Glover, in 1833, describes Bonsall as being "set
in a romantic valley amidst abrupt limestone rocks, and watered
by a beautiful trout stream".
He doesn't mention the Cross but Adam, writing a few years
later, remarked that "There is an old Cross in the centre
of the Village which is a curious object".
Bonsall Cross is the tallest cross in Derbyshire and the first
date on it is 1620 - which may be the date that it was first
repaired. It was here that, during the Napoleonic Wars, the
French prisoners-of-war were allocated to the local farms.
Farming apprentices were also hired here at the village's annual
'Wakes'. The street's unmade road, of crushed limestone, is
This second, somewhat battered, image of the Cross was taken
from the bottom of Church
Street, with the High Street going off to the right and Yeoman Street to the left. It
was sent by
Hilda to her mother, possibly around 1925 as she refers to two nieces
who were with her.
Hilda owned a cottage at Slaley.
The card was sent with instructions that it had to be kept
also that Mrs. Slack had provided "some lettuce, 2
boilings (?chicken), some beans and
I have both the coloured (above) and sepia versions of this card.
What is especially interesting is that the buildings behind the
Cross, at the very top of Yeoman Street, were clearly demolished
between when the above photograph was taken in 1892 and
when the picture for the card below was taken. The third image
also shows the top of Yeoman Street, but the buildings on the
right have changed. The property on what is the corner
of Yeoman Street (extreme right) has a shield above the front
door at first floor level, with the date 1896 and the initials
G.K. on it.
the back of this card is a message from Sarah & A to one
of the web mistress's relatives.
An extract reads:
"We have managed to make a move to Rose Cottage, Town
which is about 4 minutes from the subject of this view".
Please get in touch if you know who Sarah & A were.
This third view was taken from the bottom of Church Street at the
junction with the High Street. On the right of Yeoman Street
are several business premises. The shop behind the car is the
Co-Operative Society Limited, next door is the West Yorkshire
Bank and the shop with the sign advertising Tea with Hovis is
Westerman's Quality Stores. There are tins of food piled up in
the window and a sign inside the store advertises Vim.
A schoolboy is sitting on the steps of the Cross and behind
him, to the left, is the King's Head public house.
Harry Bunting was the publican at the time. The King's Head, according
to the post war writer Nikolaus Pevsner, "was
established in 1677. The house has traditional low three-light
mullioned windows, and two irregular gables".
Note the stone steps outside the pub's door which were used to
Although we have to allow for artistic interpretation, The King's
Head is shown amongst the group of buildings behind the Cross in
the image below.
|My fourth view of Bonsall Cross is from a
painting by Henry Hadfield Cubley who lived in Matlock Bath
between approximately 1887 and 1908 and painted many Derbyshire
scenes. Children were frequently photographed, or in this case
painted, sitting on the steps.
The woman with the red head scarf is undoubtedly Mrs. Cubley
and one of their daughters is patting the dog. The card's sender
have often heard father and mother speak of this cross, I suppose
you will know it quite well".
Elsewhere on this web site:
in Kelly's 1891 Directory
1828-9 Directory, with Matlock, Matlock Bath and Darley includes Bonsall names
1831 Directory, with Matlock and Matlock Bath, includes Bonsall names
1842 Directory, also with Matlock and Matlock Bath, includes
Frank Clay, artist. Examples
of the work of a Derbyshire artist. Frank was Ann's father
Postcards in the collection of, provided by and © Ann Andrews.
"Bonsall Cross", Postcard is one of the "Canterbury" Series
J. H. S. D. Photo by C. F. Hartle, Bonsall. Posted 1908 (re scanned
2. "Bonsall Cross, Matlock" is one of the Valentine's Series,
No. 17504, first registered in 1892. Postal date cannot be read,
but possibly 1925.
"Bonsall, The Cross", no obvious publisher.
4. "Bonsall Cross, Derbyshire",
published by Raphael Tuck & Sons "Oilette" [Regd.]
Art Publishers to their Majesties the King and Queen. Postcard
1684. These postcards had the usual side bar for the card's title
and message that was part of all postcards produced in the first
decade of the twentieth century but has been omitted to present
a slightly larger image. Posted on 9 Dec 1907 in Sheffield by
M A Moxon and sent to Miss S Woodhouse, Heanor.
Written, reasearched by and © Ann Andrews.
Intended for personal use only.
References and notes:
 Both born at Newtown,
Montgomeryshire, Wales. Seven Walker children were
born at Bonsall, including the web mistress's grandmother.
Richard Arnold Walker, the eldest son, was killed
at Gallipoli. He is unfortunately not named on Bonsall's
War Memorial, despite having been born there. The
web mistress has long felt that his exclusion from
the list of names was a disappointing decision made
by the then vicar. Instead, he is commemorated with
on his parents' headstone in a quiet Salford churchyard.
 Robert Clay was born at
Bonsall and died there.
 Glover, Stephen (1833) "The History
and Gazetteer of the County of Derby ..." Edited by T. Noble.
pub. Derby and London.
 Adam, W. (1840) "The Gem of the
Peak" London; Longman & Co., Paternoster Row MDCCCXL
 Pevsner, Nikolaus (1953), "The
Buildings of England, Derbyshire", Penguin Books.
 There is more information about Henry
Hadfield Cubley and further examples of his work in the Matlock
section of this web site. Start with his