Photographs of Smalley in Derbyshire, England

This page features pictures and historical information about the following:
Smalley. This is located in Derbyshire.

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• Photos of Smalley, Derbyshire, England
Smalley is located six miles north-east of Derby on the A608 and A609 meet. Heanor is the nearest town which is about a mile north of Smalley. The name originates from "Smael leah" which meant narrow clearing a tranquil spot, surrounded by forest.
As you enter Smalley from the south you will find two old watering troughs on the left side of the road. These are easily missed as they are lower than the level of the road. These were once used by cattle being driven to Derby cattle market by drovers.

In 1610 the Richardson family bought the Smalley farm estate, with coal workings under the local clay. In the 18th century the brothers founded a Colliers' Charity, which benefited the village miners, and also endowed a free school for twelve poor boys which was built in 1721.

The parish church of Saint John the Baptist houses a chime of five bells. They were given by the rev Charles Kerry, who was born in Smalley, and whose tomb is in the shade of the ancient yew in the churchyard.
A bell-tower was built to house this gift in 1912. This chime of five bells is the heaviest in England!
The largest bell weighs over 40cwts. The church was built in the 18th late century on a much earlier site. In the wall of the porch is inserted a 7th century Saxon Cross.

The Round House built in the 18th century, once one of Smalley's most distinguishing features, was a toll house. Toll Houses were erected when local authorities were made responsible for the upkeep of the roads that passed through their parish. The Smalley one was demolished in 1956.
To view a photo of it on the picturethepast website click HERE

Stainsby Hall has been the home of the Sitwell family since 1785. The old house was demolished in 1971-72 and replaced by a Spanish-style ranch.

On Bell lane you will find smalley dam, Bell lane is so-called because of the bell-pits where once miners dug coal for Abbot of Chester in medieval times before Henry VIII took away the lands of the monasteries. The house on the corner of Bell lane stands on the site of the first Bell inn where miners quench their thirst.

The Smalley Dam was created at the end of the 18th century by John Redford, of nearby Smalley Hall, the High Sheriff of Derbyshire. During the 20th century it became silted up after years of neglect. The Smalley Community Project took on the task of its restoration and removing of silt. Gradually the area, presented by its owner to the village in 1990.

In the main part of the village lookout for a milepost on the ground, this is an original cast-iron milepost put in position in 1764 when the Derby-Mansfield road turnpiked. There are estimated to be 7,000 milestones in the UK, 250 of which are to be found in Derbyshire.

Smalley has two village pubs, The Bell inn and the Nag's head, both located on Main road.

For a local map of the Smalley area click HERE
For a aerial photo with overlayed map click HERE

If you would like to buy a newly published book on Smalley
then please visit the website HERE for more details.

Photo Description : Smalley village view
Image Reference No. : DP-130603SMALL-01
Date photo taken : 13th June 2003
Other Information : This is a view looking north on Main street.
On the left of the photo is Smalley church hall. The building was formerly the girls and infants school, built in 1848 by the national society on land given by Degge Sitwell of Stainsby. It has been used as the village hall since 1968, when it was given to the church by the late Mrs H.R. Edwards of Smalley Hall.

Photo Description : The Radford cottages
Image Reference No. : DP-130603SMALL-02
Date photo taken : 13th June 2003
Other Information : These fine looking stone cottages on Main road were erected by the Radfords of Smalley.

Photo Description : Saint John the baptist church
Exact Map Location : Click HERE
Image Reference No. : DP-130603SMALL-03
Date photo taken : 13th June 2003
Other Information : Smalley church is dedicated to St John the baptist. The present building dates from the 18th century with later additions. The tower was erected in 1912 to house the five bells given by the Rev Charles Kerry. In the churchyard stands a Yew tree which is estimated to be 700-800 years old, beneath which lies the grave of Rev Charles Kerry who died in 1908.

Photo Description : Smalley Baptist Church.
Image Reference No. : DP-130603SMALL-09
Date photo taken : 13th June 2003
Other Information : This Baptist church was founded in 1790, enlarged in 1820 and a gallery added. The Baptistery was constructed in 1852. A schoolroom was built in 1903. Until the Baptistery was built, candidates would have been baptised at Smalley Dam!

Photo Description : Smalley village school, war memorial
Image Reference No. : DP-130603SMALL-04
Date photo taken : 13th June 2003
Other Information : Smalley village school was built in 1721 as a free school for the children of the local mining community.
The slate plaque on the front of the school reads "John and Samuel Richardson Brothers of this Towne gent. Founders of this charity schole for twelve poor scholars. Erected Anno Domini 1721"

The war memorial (left side of image) was erected in 1919 by the old boys of the school in memory of past scholars who fell in the first world war. The names of those who died in the second world war were added later.

The village Post office (far right of image) can be seen, this is one of the smallest post offices I have been to but very friendly.

Photo Description : The Bell Inn pub
Image Reference No. : DP-130603SMALL-05
Date photo taken : 13th June 2003
Other Information : The Bell Inn is a Freehouse with accommodation and is located next to the school on Main Road in the centre of Smalley village. You can see the school on the left side of this photo, the post office is between the pub and the school.
This pub was built in 1842 and replaced the older Bell inn at the corner of Bell lane.

Photo Description : Nags head pub
Image Reference No. : DP-130603SMALL-06
Date photo taken : 13th June 2003
Other Information : The Nag's Head pub is located in the north of the village on Main road (A608 to Heanor). It was built in 1903.

Photo Description : Smalley dam, conservation area.
Exact Map Location : Click HERE
Image Reference No. : DP-130603SMALL-07
Date photo taken : 13th June 2003
Other Information : 200 yards down Bell Lane is Smalley Dam and conservation area. John Radford snr had it landscaped some time in the late 18th century and the family used it for fishing and boating. The dam is currently in the process of restoration.
On my visit here, the water was teaming with Blue Azure Damsel-flies (Zygoptera) and Broad-bodied Chasers (Anisoptera).
There were also several moorhens wading around the waters edge.

Photo Description : A Damselfly at Smalley dam.
Exact Map Location : Click HERE
Image Reference No. : DP-130603SMALL-08
Date photo taken : 13th June 2003
Other Information : This is a Damsel fly that landed just long enough for me to take a photo of it.
Damsel Flies are rather poor flyers and they never get far from the waters edge so its very easy to spot the vivid blue of their bodies as they dart around this area.

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