Some of  the “Plague Cottages” at Eyam

Some of the “Plague Cottages” at Eyam

Wed 20 July - Burnsall to Eyam

The drive down from Yorkshire  turned out to be a bit of a disaster - we got lost more times than we could count!

But we did manage to achieve several objectives, visiting first Skipton (for Anne to buy a replacement for her damaged camera), then Haworth (the Bronte sisters), Halifax ("Last Tango in ... "), and Slaithwaite (pronounced slew-it, or similar, home of Shaun, who works in Peter Ramshaw Optometry in the new Belrose shopping centre).

We stopped for a well-earned drink and meal at the Sir William in Grindleford, before finally arriving at Memorial Cottage in the village of Eyam (pronounced eem), our home for the next week.


Thur 21 July - Eyam

Eyam is famous for the events of the Plague in 1665/66, when 260 people died over a 14-month period, and the village magnanimously quarantined itself from the outside world to prevent the Plague spreading. It had arrived courtesy of an infected bolt of cloth bought from London by the local tailor. Geraldine Brooks' novel 'Year of Wonders' is based on the event.


Memorial Cottage is a Grade II listed, period stone, terraced holiday cottage lying a few minutes walk from the centre of the village. Eyam is a beautiful unspoilt village set high among the moors in the north of the National Park between Bakewell and Castleton. The village has a museum, hall, several shops and a good pub, the Miners Arms.


Fri 22 July - Chatsworth House

Chatsworth House, the seat of the Duke of Devonshire, has belonged to the Cavendish family since 1549.  It is one of the grandest stately homes in England.  It was easy to see the huge maintenance job - and expense! - involved in its upkeep.

Flash photography was not allowed, so the handheld indoor shots leave a lot to be desired.


Sat 23 July - Bakewell and Haddon Hall

Bakewell is renowned as the home of the tarts which bear its name, but could be equally famous for the seemingly unusually large number of pubs in the town.


Haddon Hall was a must-see on account of the fact that we have in our possession a Minton dinner set by that name, clearly inspired by the flower gardens here.  The origins of the manor house date back to the 11th century, although most of the buildings are later.  The Chapel in particular was amazing.

Haddon Hall is so picturesque that it has been used as a location for numerous films, notably Zeffirelli's Jane Eyre.


Sun 24 July

Today was spent in and around the village of Eyam, including the Jacobean-style Eyam Hall.


We ended with a pub dinner at the Chequers Arms, not far away.



Mon 25 July

This morning I took my tripod across the road to the church.  A couple of ladies working there said it was OK, but after a while the number of shots I was taking seemed to make them doubt my story about being a tourist from Australia taking non-commercial souvenirs for personal interest.


Tue 26 July - Tideswell

The village of Tideswell lies about 20 kms west of Eyam.  Its most notable feature is the church of St John the Baptist, known as "the cathedral of the peak".  It originated in the 14th century, when Tideswell was a prosperous lead-mining town.


Wed 27 July - Eyam to Manchester via Buxton

Buxton is famous as a spa town, something it holds in common with Harrogate.  But this wasn't a good time to be visiting, with many of the important buildings shrouded over for cleaning and/or renovation.  In any case, we didn't have a lot of time to spend here. 

But Anne was able to catch some lovely photos of some very approachable squirrels in the park.


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