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Monument record MDR9537 - Whitehall Paper Mill & Peak Forest Tramway sidings (site of), Whitehall, Chapel-en-le-Frith

Type and Period (5)

  • (Georgian - 1781 AD to 1800 AD)
  • (Post Medieval - 1540 AD to 1900 AD)
  • (Georgian - 1781 AD to 1800 AD)
  • (Georgian - 1781 AD to 1800 AD)
  • (Georgian - 1781 AD to 1800 AD)

Protected Status/Designation

  • None recorded

Full Description

The Whitehall Paper Mill was established by John Ibbotson in c. 1800 and was served by the Peak Forest Tramway. Dams, weirs and an octagonal brick chimney on a stone base still survive [in 1984]. Other buildings are mainly modern. (1) The mill is said to have been erected in 1781. Local directories record John Ibbotson there from 1825, to be succeeded by members of the Hughes family from 1842. The mill was enlarged in 1821 and again in 1836. It had about 100 employees in 1840 and in 1848 must have been sufficiently active for there to be a Paper Mill Tavern in Chapel-en-le-Frith. The mill was again extended in 1866 and in 1879. However, by 1896 the mill is described as 'not in working order, to let, sell, etc.' The paper for the first issue of the 'London Illustrated News' is said to have been made here, and also the largest sheet of paper ever made up until that time (1830). (2) In the early 1800s John Booth purchased some land and in 1806 erected a paper mill. The mill continued as a paper mill through several owners, but was later purchased by John Welch who converted it into a bleach and dying mill. It continued with the Welch family until 1945 when the firm became a public company (Bernard Wardle and Company Limited). On April 28 1947 a fire destroyed the finishing end of the factory together with the making-up and finished goods warehouse. The company finally closed down completely and land and buildings were sold for other uses. Only the works reservoir remains of the earliest works site, while the only remains of the sidings are sleeper stones. (3) Site of the Whitehall Paper Mill, now the Stephanie Works. The 1st edition OS map appears to show buildings on both sides of the track, but substantially more on the present day location of the works, by the side of Black Brook. There is no evidence of any of the small sidings which are indicated on the OS map. It is possible that two of the buildings, by the side of the track, could be older as they are constructed of gritstone and do not look new in style. (4-6) The buildings are mainly modern, but there is a truncated octagonal chimney surviving from the early 19th century mill. There is also a stepped weir for regulating water to the mill pond. White Hall is also adjacent. The works were originally a paper mill established by John Booth. It was used for paper making by the Slack family, but in the 1870s was converted for bleaching and printing textiles including silk screen printing. From the 1920s until closure in the late 1980s, the business was known as Wardles. The site was at one time served by the Peak Forest Tramway, the track of which runs past some early stone buildings. (7)

Sources/Archives (7)

  • <1> Bibliographic reference: Fowkes, D. 1984. Derbyshire Industrial Archaeology - A Gazetteer of Sites. Part I. Borough of High Peak. p 15.
  • <2> Article in serial: Schmoller, T. 1994. 'Some notes on Derbyshire paper mills, part 1', The Quarterly. Issue no. 9 (January), pp 1-5.
  • <3> Index: Lamb, B. Index Record for Industrial Sites, Peak Forest Canal. BL 20.
  • <4> Archive: Jessop, O. 2003. Cromford & High Peak Railway and Peak Forest Tramway Survey. ARCUS 738b. Feature number: 13.
  • <5> Photograph: ARCUS. 2003. Cromford & High Peak Railway and Peak Forest Tramway Survey, Project 738b. Digital photograph. pp 22-25.
  • <6> Map: Ordnance Survey (OS). 1882. OS County Series, 1st edition, scale 1:2500 (c. 25" to one mile). VIII.12.
  • <7> Bibliographic reference: Fowkes, D (ed.). 2004. Derbyshire Industrial Archaeology: A Gazetteer of Sites, Part I, Borough of High Peak (second edition). pp. 19.



Grid reference Centred SK 03573 82129 (283m by 130m) (Approximate)

Related Monuments/Buildings (0)

Related Events/Activities (1)

  • EDR1790

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External Links (0)

Record last edited

Oct 17 2014 9:09AM

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