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Matlock Bath: Woodbank (Cromford Court), 1912, exterior
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Three close up photographs of the building's exterior, and one from some distance away, taken not long after the Co-operative Holidays Association leased the mansion in May 1911. Their lease was for five years[1].

The first two images were taken at a similar time but were published by two different postcard companies. The impressive grand entrance doorway at the rear of the house and facing the hillside was approached through an elaborately carved stone arch on which there are two shields, though ivy is beginning to cover the one on the left. Neither seems to bear arms. The large window on the right of both these images features in another picture, of some soldiers in WW2.

The cards sender wrote the following: "Woodbank Sept 1st... Have had two splendid days on the Moors over Masson on to Winster and then above Riber & Ashover. This is our front door which is at the back!"

In 1915 Woodbank was said to be a "large, artistic and beautifully situated house"[2]. A sale's advertisement in 1917 described the property as sumptuously appointed, with a long carriage approach, heated conservatories (partly seen here) and motor garage. Its grounds were said to be charming[3].

Possibly taken a few months after the top image
as the trees in the background have less leaves on them.
The plants in the window boxes above the door
are more mature, too.

This side of the Woodbank looks over the valley towards Cat
Tor, with Masson Mill in the valley immediately below, and
illustrates its elevated position with flights of steps
between the various levels of the grounds.

The message on this card reads "A near view of Woodbank, as seen from the other side
of the Derwent
". A pencilled additional note says:" Woodbank, Matlock Bath (CHA Centre),
where I acted as Sec Nov 2012
Later pictures from the same vantage point show more trees around the main house.

There is more about Woodbank (Cromford Court)


1. [Untitled. Woodbank, Matlock Bath] Photographic postcard. No publisher. British card. Posted in 1915 at Matlock. © Ann Andrews collection.
2. Untitled but "Matlock Bath, Woodbank", Photographic postcard published by Hirst, Photo, Birch Vale, via Stockport. Another card of this view was posted in 1912.
3. Untitled but "Matlock Bath, Woodbank", probably the same publisher.
4. [Woodbank]. Published by Hirst, Photo, Birch Vale, via Stockport, Ref: M. J. Written and posted the same day, 10 Nov 1912, at Matlock Bath. © Ann Andrews collection.
Images 2 and 3 in the collection of, provided by and © Ken Smith.
Research provided by and © Ann Andrews.
Intended for personal use only.


[1] "Derbyshire Times", 6 May 1911.

[2] "Derbyshire Advertiser and Journal", 12 February 1915

[3] "Derbyshire Advertiser and Journal", 20 and 21st April 1917.