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Idridgehay

Idridgehay is a small residential community, situated on the main Duffield to Wirksworth road in Derbyshire.

Fifty years ago Idridgehay was a working village earning its living from the land. Today all the small farms are gone and farm houses have been converted into 'desirable' country residences. Part of the village is in a conservation area and contains most of the older stone built houses which lie on the steep hill to the west. Included is South Sitch, a two-storey cottage with 1621 GMM engraved in its north side.

There are virtually no clubs or societies in Idridgehay as such and the Parish Council meets at Turnditch Parish Hall. St James Church provides the community hall, enquiries should be made to the Wirksworth Team Ministry on 01629 824707 The former school hall, often a useful substitute for a village hall is now a private house and the large Victorian vicarage, which might have provided a room occasionally, was demolished after the last war because of structural damage caused, when a land mine fell nearby.

A disused quarry in the grounds of Alton Manor may have supplied the stone for many of the houses in the parish as it did for the manor house itself. This was built by George Gilbert Scott in an Elizabethan style, after he had declared himself a fugitive from Darley Dale, where he had previously lived, because the coming of the railway 'made it no longer fit for a gentleman to live there'. The Midland Railway's Duffield-Wirksworth branch passed close to the Manor a year after he died in 1866.

Idridgehay village is more fortunate than many of its size in having not only a bus service but also a village shop. The Black Swan, formerly a pub, built about 1840, is now a restaurant. The last regular passenger train between Duffield and Wirksworth halted at Idridgehay in June 1948. The stations main building is still standing, now converted into private housing. The Ecclesbourne Valley Railway now operates the line and heritage trains stop at Idridgehay station once again. (See the railway's website at www.e-v-r.com for details)

Idridgehay's most prominent building is St James Church, designed by Henry Isaac Stevens of Derby and consecrated in 1845. George Turner the Victorian landscape painter from Barrow on Trent is buried here as is Sir Peter Hilton, a former incumbent of the manor house.

St Jame's Church
St Jame's Church"
Former school house
Former school house

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