Building record MDR7523 - Icehouse, Chatsworth House, Chatsworth

Type and Period (1)

  • (Stuart to Victorian - 1700 AD to 1900 AD)

Protected Status/Designation

Full Description

Sealed up. Located next to pond. Large with shute hole. Now used as a horse jump. (1) The ice house is covered by earth and has been sealed up. It has its own pond for winter flooding. (2, 3) One of two ice-houses at Chatsworth which are intact but disused. Both of them are brick-built and cut in loam over carboniferous shales. This one lies in the park, 800m north of the house by the ice pond, which was flooded in season. The structure is 1.5m high above ground level and has a depth of 7m. The diameter is 5.5m and there is a dished and slatted floor, under which lies the drain. It has a short entrance passage with an inner and outer door. The clever arrangement of the sloped chute to carry the ice straight from the pond into the hole in the dome still remains. In addition there are further drains from the chute and at the edge of the pond, obviously to take away excess water from the pond and meltings from the ice when the ice-house was being filled. This icehouse has been bricked up since its survey and is now being used as a horse jump (1984). The drains belonging to both ice-houses empty into the river Derwent and not back into their respective ponds. One of the ice-houses was built in 1693 and the other in 1841. It is reported that the last time they were used for their original purpose was as late as 1938 or 1939. (4) This feature is largely buried and comprises a mound next to a pond. At the downslope side is stone retaining associated with the entrance. Immediately north of this is a small vertically-retained platform of similar height to the main mound, while the area outside the entrance to the west and south comprises a sub-circular sunken area, at a similar level to the entrance, defined by an internally-retained bank at its edge. Immediately to the south of the ice house is an ice pond. The first estate map to show the ice house was drawn sometime between 1824 and 1831. It is not known when it was built, but the adjacent pond may have been constructed in the late 1750s or 1760s. If so, this might also be the date of the building of the ice house here. (5)

Sources/Archives (5)

  • <1> Index: Perkins, R.. 1983. Peak Park Treasures: E160. E160.
  • <2> Map: PPJPB. Peak Park Archaeological Archive- Ice House Survey.
  • <3> Unpublished document: Perkins, R. mid 1980s. Derbyshire Icehouses.
  • <4> Bibliographic reference: Beamon, S P & Roaf, S. 1990. The Ice Houses of Britain. p 236.
  • <5> Unpublished document: Barnatt, J (PDNPA). 2000. The Chatsworth Estate Historic Landscape Survey, Chatsworth Park: Archaeological Survey 1996-7. p 22, Feature 2.13.



Grid reference Centred SK 260 710 (18m by 17m) (Approximate)

Related Monuments/Buildings (0)

Related Events/Activities (1)

  • EDR3855

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Record last edited

Mar 14 2020 9:51PM

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