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Birchover

Birchover in the Peak District is a lovely quaint village to visit, from the outskirts of Stanton Moor the village street descends gently, walking along here you will pass some beautiful fine old cottage buildings sheltering under the tree lined ridge. They were built from the pinkish stone collected from Stanton Moor quarries between the 17th and 19th century and you will notice the buildings facing different directions as they try to find level ground. There has been a more recent development that has taken place on the lower side of the street and a strict code has been followed to make sure it harmonizes with the rest of the village.

It is said that originally the village was sited at Uppertown this is on the road to Winster, the farm standing beside the road many years before used to be an inn. The village and the Norman church today are no more, and the stones used to construct these can be found scattered around field walls and cottages within the neighborhood. If you look outside of Uppertown farm you will still see the stocks, these were restored by Mr J C Heathcote in 1951, it is said that they may not be in their original position.

Mr J C Heathcote and his son both lived at Birchover and were noted by the locals as amateur antiquarians, it is thanks to the father and son that between them after excavating the tumuli on Stanton Moor they built a fascinating museum at the old village post office. It was later when Percy Heathcote passed away that the collection was later transferred to the Sheffield West Park Museum.

At the bottom of the street on the corner you will find “The Druid Inn”, the restaurant was given a score of ten out of ten in 2002 in an article in the “Sunday Times Newspaper”. It has been said that the inn was named after the Druids who apparently at the nearby Rowtor Rocks practised their rites. It was through the fascination by the local Reverend Thomas Eyre who decided to carve seats into the rocks, this was to enable his friends to sit down and admire the view. Tradition has it that he also built a small chapel further down below the rocks where he sat in his seat on the rocks whilst composing his services.

There are many wonderful history stories connected to Birchover in the Peak District, at the western side of the village by the roadside you will find the Millenium stone this is to represent the production of millstone in the area which was part of the villages industry. These millstones were exported all over the world and were made from local gritstone. On the stone at the base is a carved motif and it also has a circular core, this represents a copy of a Romanesque carving, the carving was found in a wall at Uppertown, it is here in the late 11th or 12th century where a church used to exist.

In 1907 a village hall was opened this was for men only, the men were provided with newspapers to broaden their horizons. Many years later in 1999, following a total refurbishment the reading room has been equipped with computers. This is now an official center of the BBC’s Web-wise campaign, offering local residents the chance to experience sessions on the internet. Many other local events for the community take place in the hall.

Courtesy of Peak District Tourism.co.uk


Chris Sabian, Peak District View - 2009-01-09 14:45:30





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