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Matlock Dale: Heath Bank, around 1900
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High Tor, Switzerland View
(scroll down to bottom image for another view of Heath Bank)

Heath Bank is one of a pair of mid-Victorian detached red brick villas which face High Tor. They are not quite the same as the property to the right of Heath Bank (not in this picture) does not have the same large bay windows either side of the front door.

The first occupants of the house were almost certainly Thomas Henry Newbold and his family[1]. T. H. Newbold was a Matlock Bath solicitor and also the clerk to the magistrates at Matlock. Although he was still relatively young, Mr. Newbold resigned from his position as clerk to the magistrates in 1886[2] and retired altogether in 1888. He and his family then moved to Nottingham, where he died in 1893[3].

John Adams Wheatcroft was the next person to live in the house[4]. He was followed by David Palmer Pearson and his sister[5]. In March 1900 a complaint by the pair about the council workmen tipping road dirt onto the river bank opposite Hazel Grove rather backfired when Mr. Pearson was caught tipping household refuse onto the riverbank opposite his house[6]. Judging by state of the verge over the road from the house someone might have been tipping.

The Alcocks were at Heath Bank in 1918[7]; they were followed by the Lynch family, who moved here from Derby about 1919. Mrs. Lynch noted on another version of the card that the garden and flower garden were "uphill", behind the house - "but it is lovely"[8]. Sadly for them, one of their sons passed away here in 1921. John Alexander Lynch, then aged 27, had been a second officer in the Mercantile Marine during the First World War. Unfortunately, he was at Dunkirk when it was bombarded by shell fire from sea, land and air and his health was seriously impaired[9].

Family photo of Heath Bank, ca 1919-20, taken from the road below. It probably shows Mrs. Amanda Monica
Lynch and one of her daughters in front of the main door. Mrs. Lynch described the conservatory
on the left hand side as a summer house.

Wm. Percy Smith was living here in 1924[10] and then Mrs. Elizabeth Moore took over the 8 bedroom house, advertising it as an ideal holiday house, pleasantly situated and with good cooking[11]. She was still there when the house was advertised for sale in 1942. The adjacent properties, Dwrgwyn and Hilderstone (with Vernon Cottage) were also bing sold by the solicitors Messrs. Lymn and Lymn[12].

During the Second World War M. H. Herd, who had claimed a number of lead mines between Pic Tor and Cromford in the early 1920s, was staying at Heath Bank. He was hoping to re-open the High Tor Grotto. He was still there two years later[13].


1. "Heath Bank, Matlock Bath". No published but postal rates of Inland ½d, Foreign 1d. Not posted. Postcard in the collection of, provided by and © Ann Andrews.
2. Photograph of Heath Bank ca 1919. © Lynch family collection.
3. Advertisement from "The Matlocks, Derbyshire. Official Guide". Issued by the Come to Derbyshire Association, published 1930s. © Ann Andrews collection.
Intended for personal use only.

References (coloured links are to transcripts or more information elsewhere on this web site):

[1] Mr. Newbold advertised in Kelly's 1864 Directory and Kelly's 1876 Directory. The family can be found living at the property in the 1871 census and the 1881 census. The earliest reference to Thomas was in the 1841 census.

[2] "Derby Daily Telegraph", 27 March 1886.

[3] "Derby Mercury", 27 September 1893. Also see Strays, Surnames N (1891 census entries).

[4] "Derbyshire Times", 20 September 1890 records J. Wheatcroft at Heath Bank and he advertised in Kelly's 1891 Directory but was not there in the census for that year although his wife was living at the house. See Strays, Surnames W. The Wheatcrofts had previously lived at Masson House.

[5] David Palmer Pearson was letting apartments at Heath Bank in Kelly's 1895 Directory and Kelly's 1899 Directory. Also see the 1901 census. He married, moved to the property next door (Hilderstone), and died in 1932.

[6] "Derbyshire Times", 17 March 1900.

[7] "Derby Daily Telegraph", 18 January 1918. Announcement of daughter's marriage.

[8] From information provided by Nick Lynch. Another of their family cards of Heath Bank was posted in August 1919. John Lynch was shown at Heath Bank amongst Matlock Bath's Private Residents in Kelly's 1922 Directory. The family then moved to Hy-Brasail in Starkholmes and later bought Chindras House. There is a short biography of John Joseph Lynch.

[9] "Matlock Visitor", 8th Oct 1921.

[10] "Derby Daily Telegraph", 15 May 1924.

[11] "Derbyshire Times", 14 July 1928. Advertisement "Yorkshire Post and Leeds Intelligencer", 12 September 1931.

[12] Sale notice "Derbyshire Times", 9 October 1942.

[13] "Derbyshire Times", 14 August 1942. He was still there two years later - "Derbyshire Times", 7 April 1944.