Mayfield Heritage Group Meetings – all welcome

Following the refurbishment of the Church Rooms, we have now moved back to holding our meetings there. We have also changed our meeting times for the autumn/winter period and will begin our meetings at 10.00 am.

Next Meeting:  Mon 2nd March 2020  at 10.00 am       

Church Rooms,  Mayfield  

New Activities and Events at Mayfield Heritage Group

Although we haven’t had a lot of snow this winter it has seemed a long drawn out affair as usual. However, during the short days and long nights the Heritage Group has been working on some new ideas and projects for 2020. Below is an outline of the main ideas we are working on

More Memories of Mayfield Book

We have been beavering away at the new book since our launch last April. The memories are stacking up but we could do with more memories from you to include in the book. We are looking for details on any memories from 1939 to the present day. Do you have any memories of the carnival that was held in the village? Any particular school memories? Community farming activities such as harvesting? Work memories or sporting memories? 

We are also planning another ‘get together’ event in late spring-early summer.

We are keen to hear from you and you can contact us via the [email protected] email address or via our contact form

A Long-Awaited Reprint of Memories of Mayfield

Whilst we have been working on the More Memories of Mayfield book we have had a lot of requests for copies of our original book, ‘Memories of Mayfield’. Unfortunately, we ran out of copies a year or so ago but we are now in a position to order a reprint of the book. 

The final price of the book hasn’t yet been determined as we are in talks with a printer who will reprint the book. However, we would like to gauge people’s interest in purchasing a copy of the book. We will launch a list or survey soon where you can register your interest in buying the book so that we can get an idea of the potential purchases. In the meantime, if you want more information then send us an email at [email protected]

Windows and Doors of Mayfield

We are close to launching our Windows and Doors of Mayfield poster. It’s currently having the finishing touches made to it and we will be looking to print copies in the near future, we’ll update you soon on this.

Mayfield Windows and Doors Poster

Mayfield Tree Planting Initiative

The Heritage Group has launched an initiative to get more trees planted around the village. We feel that this should be a whole village project and we are currently in talks with The Woodland Trust, MARNA, the Parish Council, Mayfield Wildflower Group and other interest groups to get this moving. We feel it will be an exciting project that can bring the village together to create an enhanced environment for everyone.

Group Talks

As the days lengthen and people feel more inclined to venture out in the evenings we are starting a set of group talks which will be beginning in spring 2020.

We have plans for a historic talk on the prominent Greaves Family of Mayfield. An entertaining talk on the characters in the 19th century “Mayfield Poachers Gang”  and the two trials that were held to find the guilty parties. These and additional talks will begin in May and June of this year.

Mayfield Historical Walks

Due to an increase in interest, we are going to re-enstate the historical walks around Mayfield. Pat Smith and the group will take groups on walks around the four ‘villages’ of Mayfield starting with the ‘Terrace, St John’s Church to Mayfield Hall’. These walks will be at different dates over the spring and summer so stay in touch for more details.




Donation of Free Gardener’s Sash Seen in Photograph

Many of you will be familiar with the photo showing a group of the Free Gardner’s of Mayfield outside the Queen’s Arms. We were contacted by Peter Wood whose great grandfather William Wood is shown in the photo wearing a sash. Peter has been kind enough to donate the sash that William was wearing in the photo to The Mayfield Heritage Group.

William is the gentleman highlighted in the lighter coloured jacket.


Here is what Peter wrote about his Great Grandfather in the photograph.

“My great grandfather William Wood is in the light-coloured jacket and bowler hat, second from the right in the row in front of the railings. I have no definite date for the photo, I have assumed it was around 1900, my great grandfather was born in 1848 and died around 1920. The boy second from the right in the front row has a family look about him but my grandfather (Sam Wood) was born in 1877 so if it is him then the picture is earlier than 1900. William Wood worked at Buxton’s Quarry at Upper Mayfield as a ‘stone mason’ but in various other references he was described as a bricklayer and part-time chimney sweep, so a versatile character! He lived in Foundry Yard, as did my grandparents. I also have photos of him and his wife and also a quite faded one of him in working clothes probably at Buxton’s Quarry.”

William Wood’s Free Gardener’s Sash

The sash that William was wearing is still in excellent condition and the colours are still vibrant as you’ll see in the photograph. We are planning on creating a permanent display of the sash.

We are grateful for Paul’s donation of his grandfather’s sash and several photographs of Mayfield in the early 20th century

Priest Holes Found during Old Hall restoration

A Priest Hole was found on Friday 25th January 2019 whilst replacing badly worn floorboards in the loft at Old Hall in Mayfield. You may be aware that we have been following the restoration work taking place at Old Hall and this is exciting historical news.

The image below shows light entering the false chimney flue via the hatchway from the priest hole.
A view up the fireplace chimney toward the priest hole
The entire left hand flue constructed in the inglenook of the Tudor parlour is false and was made solely for the purpose of the priest hole.
Looking at the priest hole from the loft above
The flue being capped off with a flagstone located beneath a passageway in the loft adjacent to the chimney breast.
The inglenook fireplace below the priest hole
Access to the priest hole from the flue was most probably via a short removable ladder and the hatchway covered over by an oak board to hide it from view.
For more information on the restoration of Old Hall in Mayfield please click here.


The Old Hall, Middle Mayfield

Restoration Project – Update Summer 2018

There have been some exciting updates on the restoration of Old Hall in Middle Mayfield.

Click on this link to see what’s been happening.

The Old Hall Rear Elevation After Restoration
The Old Hall Rear Elevation Before Restoration


Photos that will bring back memories.

Picadilly Lane, Upper Mayfield 1965

We have been contacted by a lady in Switzerland called  Verena Buser who stayed with her husband at the Sunnyside Hotel in 1965.  She and her husband took many photos around Mayfield and Ashbourne between 1965 and 1989. She has kindly sent the Group a selection of photographs from those years and we would like to share them with you. Sunnyside Hotel was run by the Hanbury family in 1965 and Verena has fond memories of her time spent there. Her husband was working at the Nestle factory in Ashbourne for a few months. Hopefully, the photos will stir up some great memories you have of Mayfield, Ashbourne, and Derby. Please click on the thumbnail below and it will enlarge the selected photo. Let us have feedback or stories that these photos bring to memory and we will share your stories and comments online.

To see the full set of photos please click here 

cropped-mhg-logo-e1460639581181.jpg The Mayfield Heritage Group ensures that the wealth of historic buildings, stories, and traditions of Mayfield are preserved and celebrated.  We welcome anyone with an interest in Mayfield Heritage to join our monthly meetings, where we discuss the latest projects. We have a growing list of talks and visits that we arrange that are open to members and non-members. Please see the list of events on the right-hand side of this web page or go to Future events diary. To read the reviews of our visits please select Reviews of Talks and visits 

Have you ever wondered what the origins of the name ‘Hanging Bridge’ are? To find out more click on the image below.

Coloured view of Hanging Bridge
A coloured view of Hanging Bridge, Mayfield

We welcome contributions of articles, photos and memories of Mayfield in the past. If you would like to share your articles, photos or memorabilia then please get in touch.

View from Hanging Bridge in 1860 showing Frank Wright’s corn mill and the mill workers’ cottages below Lichfield House”
View from Hanging Bridge in 1860 showing Frank Wright’s corn mill and the mill workers’ cottages below Lichfield House”
Early Corn Mill and view of Bowmer Bond Mill C1796 – Looking from Hanging Bridge

The Heritage Group visits many places of interest and we particularly enjoy showing our village to visitors: click here for more information.