Mayfield Heritage Group 

A Talk on The Early History of Burton Abbey

On the 15th November 2017, Fran Carlisle from Mayfield Heritage Group will be giving a talk on The Early History of Burton Abbey at The Church Rooms in Mayfield.

The event begins at 7.00pm and the entrance fee is £3.00 on the door and includes refreshments.

Burton Abbey around 1661

Burton Abbey was founded in the 7th century by an Irish Saint called Modwen or Modwena and it was one of the earliest Christian establishments in Staffordshire. Until that time the region had been strictly pagan. Sadly the first Abbey was destroyed by the Great Heathen Army between 876-7 which had overwintered just downriver at Repton.

An image of Wulfrun who was Wolfric Spot’s mother.

In 1002 the abbey was reestablished by a Saxon nobleman called Wulfric Spot who was the son of Wulfrun. During its colourful history, the abbey frequently suffered poor management and many of the excesses that eventually led to widespread dissatisfaction with the monastic system by the general public. Nevertheless, it was at the heart of Staffordshire throughout a very long period of its development.


Please come along on the 15th of November and hear this very intriguing story.

For further details


Call Sharon on 07828 233359

‘Before the bells were hung: Joseph Simpson of Mayfield’

On the 27th September 2017, Ben Simpson from Wolfson College Oxford will be giving a talk on Joseph Simpson of Mayfield.

The event begins at 7.00pm and the entrance fee is £3.00 on the door.

Joseph Simpson 1890

Ben Simpson is the great-grandson of Joseph Simpson – one of the Simpson Brothers who built Mayfield Mill and converted it into one of the most up to date cotton mills in Britain. The Simpson family built The Terrace, Weirside, Meadowside, Oxmead, Holme Bank and Doveside. They lived at Mayfield House for a short period until Sunnyside and Fieldhead were built as their residences. The Simpson family was very influential and reshaped Mayfield from (c)1860 through to (c)1936

‘Before the bells were hung’ is a reference to three additional bells that were donated and hung in the village church to commemorate the death of Joseph Simpson. There is a plaque in the chancel of the church remembering Joseph Simpson.

Plaque of remembrance for Joseph Simpson who died in 1901


For more information contact: 

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 theses photos bring to memory and we will share your stories and comments online.

To see the full set of photos please click here 


An Afternoon with Tomas Moore

Thomas Moore’s Cottage, Slack Lane, Upper Mayfield

The Thomas Moore event was a success with everyone enjoying the tale of Tom Moore’s time spent in Mayfield along with some excellent singing and poetry readings. The sun came out and only the threat of the wind to blow the gazebo away gave a slight concern.  A big thank you to all that attended and the members of the Heritage Group that helped to stage the event. It was a good afternoon.

A fuller review of the event will be posted shortly.

What Robert Burns is to Scotland Tom Moore is to Ireland and the Heritage Group is delighted to invite you to an enchanting afternoon in the wonderful

Thomas Moore (28 May 1779 – 25 February 1852)

surroundings of Moore’s Cottage, Mayfield; the house which Tom and his family occupied whilst in Mayfield from 1813 to 1817. The enchanting afternoon will consist of a summary of Moore’s life until he left Mayfield, interspersed with his poems and beautiful songs.  Thomas Moore an Irish poet, singer, songwriter, and entertainer,  is now best remembered for the lyrics of”The Minstrel Boy” and “The Last Rose of Summer“. He was responsible, with John Murray, for burning Lord Byron’s memoirs after his death.”

Find out more about this incredibly talented man and enjoy refreshments of Pimms and canapés to complete the experience. Entrance will be by ticket only as space is limited and tickets cost £10 per person. Due to cancellations 4 tickets are now available.

For tickets please contact:  Fran Carlisle Tel: 01335 345831 or Sharon Amy 01335 664079

Click for Google Map of Tomas Moore’s Cottage location



The Medieval Okeover Family

Okeover Hall – Mappleton

Mayfield Heritage and guests were treated to a most interesting and informative look into the history of our neighbours the Okeover family on Wednesday 14th June. It was presented by Peter Watson admirably assisted by his daughter Zarina. We were also pleased to welcome Sir Andrew Walker Okeover who had given Peter assistance with his research.

For a write-up of the event please click here Medieval Okeover Presentation June 2017


Mayfield Heritage Group Meetings – all welcome

Next Meeting:  Mon 6th November 2017  at 3.30 pm      

Church Rooms, Church Lane, Mayfield  DE6 2JR   

Meeting times are changing in October 2017

Since May we have been holding our monthly meetings at 7.00pm each month due to the lighter nights. As we move into Autumn, in October we will be reverting back to our afternoon start time of 3.30pm each month. 

 The times of the meetings  on the following dates

Monday, November 6th                 3.30 pm
Monday, December 4th                 3.30 pm

For further details contact:

Old Hall Farm – Middle Mayfield

Old Hall Farm in Middle Mayfield has recently been acquired by Mr Phil Hague. The group visited the house last December to have a tour of the property and get an idea of Phil’s plans along with Phil is committed to improving and enhancing Old Hall Farm to emphasise its architectural and heritage importance. The Mayfield Heritage Group will be tracking this work with Phil as it proceeds through the planning and development process. The progress of this work will be regularly featured on our website. 

For more information click here



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.


 Photos of Mayfield in the past