Castleton Historical Society
Welcome to Castleton Historical Society's website.
CHS was founded in 1973 and became a registered charity in 1984. It is a membership society with around 50 members, providing a programme of events and undertaking research into the history of the Parish of Castleton.
CHS is also responsible for “The Castleton Museum”, an accredited museum housed at Castleton Visitor Centre, Buxton Rd. The Centre is a joint partnership between The Peak District National Park Authority and CHS. It is open 364 days a year and receives over 200,000 visitors a year. http://www.peakdistrict.gov.uk/visiting/ic/ic-castleton
The Museum Forward Plan for 2007/2012 gives details of the Museum's registration, objectives & aims.
HOPE/CASTLETON JOINT MEDIEVAL PROJECT EXHIBITION
Monday 29th April until the end of May in the Darnborough Room, Castleton Information Centre. Open every day from 10.00am to 5.30pm.
See what we found out about life in the two villages in medieval times – the farming and lead mining, the churches, the routes people travelled, the artefacts they left behind and much more, all discovered through test pit digging, documentary research and landscape surveying.
Castleton Garland Ceremony
Nursing & War Time displays
CASTLETON'S MEDIEVAL HOSPITAL
Archaeology Update 2011
Between 27th June & 8th July, 82 individual volunteers spent more than 260 days working on the site and came up with a number of interesting and tantalising finds. The short section of wall was extended and another very substantial wall that butts up against it, probably of an earlier date, was uncovered. Another structure, resembling a modern dry-stone wall, was also found on the site. The finds still have to be completely assessed, but amongst them are a number of large pieces of pottery identified as “Midlands Purple” late medieval ware (15th – 16th century). Other finds included two skulls and some teeth which, after analysis, were found to be human. Apart from the walls themselves, a stone from a window mullion, possibly 15th century, was found.
Interesting small finds this year were a lot of rusty nails and lead, and some human finger bones found close to a “cut” in the natural clay that might indicate foundations that have been completely robbed out of stone. In addition, burnt areas were found, one of which was then sectioned and found to have lead spill around its perimeter, as well as a piece of worked lead emerging from the section. This might represent melting down of lead from hospital-related buildings nearby.
Removing skull embedded in soil to be sent for analysis. Dig 2011
LIVES OF THE COMMON PEOPLE
The project got off to an exciting start with visits to three record offices and a training day in landscape archaeology.
Archivists at Matlock, Litchfield and Sheffield record offices gave training in researching documents; searches of the Litchfield records were particularly fruitful, uncovering a range of documents for both villages.
Following a training session on archaeological surveying, volunteers headed up the valley side north of Hope to practice some of the skills demonstrated. The aim is to record the archaeological features associated with the old routes between the two villages, which may date to the Middle Ages.
Using 2 gazebos as protection from the rain, it was possible to dig 22 test pits in Castleton as planned. The finds have not been analysed yet but possiblemedieval pottery was found at three sites in Castleton. Part of a human jawwith teeth was found near Joules Yard as well as a few other human bones. A number of gardens had sherds of 18th century slipware and glazed blackware. We found quite a few clay pipe stems, including a possibly relatively early, thick, wide-bored section from a house on Peveril Close.
The project took a stand at this years Hope Show held on the 27th August 2012. We had a small display of photographs showing the progress on the test pits in Hope and Castleton, together with a panel for the landscape survey and documentation. The documentation panel had the will and inventory of Thomas Stephenson from 1648 with a transcription which proved very interesting.
The landscape survey panel illustrated the two routes between Hope and Castleton which are being explored as part of the project. There was also a panel featuring the children from Hope primary schools getting a feel for life in medieval times. John Hudson, a potter provided a working display which kept children and adults enthralled throughout the day. The stand was considered a success.
Finds Day 2 held in Loxley Hall Hope on the 03 March 2013 presented the expert reports on the pottery finds and on the bones. Dr Chris Cumberpatch and the project team were on hand to answer visitors’ questions. The event was very well attended. There was a photographic display which included an update on the landscape survey work for the north and south routes between the villages and a continuous slide loop showing the test pit work and the landscape survey shots. The detailed reports are now being written up. More photos of the event below.
HISTORY OF CASTLETON
New Hall is one of Castleton's beautiful lost buildings. This drawing is dated approximately 1875.
The Winnats Pass Murders“In 1758 and young gentleman and lady came out of Scotland on an expedition and were robbed and murdered at a place called the Winnats, near Castleton. Their bones were found in 1768 by some miners sinking an engine pit. ..." From the Derby News” 28 April 1788. An early photo of Winnats Pass (right).
This document is a transcript of a taped conversation with Jack Beverley of Castleton describing the day in April 1926 when 5 miners blasted through into an unknown cavern.
The Bagshawe family of “The Oakes” at Norton, Sheffield were the pioneers of schooling in Castleton.
It was Bert’s desire that land should be free for all to enjoy lawfully. Making one of his annual pilgrimages to a cairn on Kinder Scout, where a fellow rambler had perished, Bert was served with a writ of tresspass and forbidden to enter the moor without permission.