Local Industries

Industrial activities that have shaped the village and its people

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  • A working man’s life in the 1940’s

    Peter hall

    I have been asked to write this little bit of history by my nephews David and Colin Hall, as my father was their grandfather. My story is written with great respect for the workmen of the past, and the conditions they worked under in our village. I am telling the story about my father and… Learn more

  • Besom Making

    Besom Broom Making

    Besoms were used by everybody for sweeping up, they were the only type of broom available prior to more modern bristle brushes being introduced. Stoney Middleton has been known for its besom making and 100 years ago the workshop of William Jupp was above the smithy. Many people will not have heard the term besom, however everyone will… Learn more

  • Boot Making

    Boot making at William Lennons

    Boot making in Stoney Middleton was first recorded in 1797 at Pine View, a small cottage off High Street. By the turn of the last century (1900) the tradition of boot making had expanded into family concerns, and became a major industry for the village. The Stoney Middleton factories only produced mens heavy duty working boots including boots for… Learn more

  • Candle Making

    Candle making

    Local candle making was important for and for a long period candles were the main form of lighting for everybody. They were of specific importance to an industrial village like Stoney Middleton, providing the only light for lead miners deep underground and lighting the many boot making factories of the village. Miners would be unable to… Learn more

  • Fluorspar Production

    Cavendish Mill

    Fluorspar is a critically important industrial mineral which has been mined and processed in Stoney Middleton for hundreds of years and is today the only producer in Britain. Fluorspar is a mineral (calcium fluoride) found with limestone having been deposited within the fissured rock during volcanic activity many thousands of years ago. It is found… Learn more

  • Lead Mining

    Lead Miners

    People have mined lead in the Peak District for thousands of years including the Romans, as evidenced by the discovery of several Roman pigs (blocks of lead) found in the area. Lead mining remained a major industry in the area until its decline the 1850’s. Early lead mining There had always been lead mining in… Learn more

  • Lead Smelting

    Lead Smelting Cupola at Stoney Middleton

    Lead Smelting is a process where lead is extracted from Galena (lead sulphide) or lead ore. Galena is found in limestone in rakes (seams or veins). Once mined the lead is extracted from the ore by heating it known as smelting. Stoney Middleton Dale had ideal conditions for smelting, it had steep slopes necessary for the draft required for the fires, while Dale Brook provided power to drive the bellows… Learn more

  • Lime Kilns

    Lime Kilns

    Lime kilns were a major feature of the village until the 1960’s. There are remains of three kilns left in the village including the parish kiln used by farmers for lime to spread on their fields. Burning lime was a very unpleasant activity producing much smoke and poisonous fumes. The practice oddly described in ‘Whites… Learn more

  • Limestone Quarrying

    Quarrying

    Limestone has been quarried in Stoney Middleton dale for centuries, a principle industry and employer during the last century. Thousands of tons of rock have been removed to produce vital minerals and metals and to simply provide stone for construction.The village had many quarries along The Dale, spreading from Darlton quarry (opposite Lovers Leap Garage)… Learn more

  • Paint Mill – processing Barytes

    The Dale Rock Mill

    The lead mining industry in Derbyshire declined in the late 18th century. However the discovery of other minerals found within the land, and spoil heaps from earlier miners, provided a new lease of life for Stoney Middleton Dale. Stoney Middleton Dale (across the road from Castle Rock) is the former site of the Paint Mill and latterly… Learn more