Eckington is a historic market town in North East Derbyshire, England. It is 7 miles (11 km) northeast of Chesterfield and 8.5 miles (14 km) southeast of Sheffield city centre, on the border with South Yorkshire. It lies on the B6052 and B6056 roads close to the A6135 for Sheffield and Junction 30 of the M1. It had a 2001 population of 11,152, increasing to 11,855 (including Bramley, Renishaw Marsh Lane and Troway) at the 2011 Census.
Eckington town centre
|Population||11,152 (civil parish, 2001)|
|OS grid reference|
|Sovereign state||United Kingdom|
Ten Roman coins discovered in December 2008, near Eckington Cemetery may be evidence of a Roman settlement or road in the area. The oldest of the silver and copper coins is from the reign of the emperor Domitian (AD 81 to 96) while the others are from the reigns of Trajan (AD 98 to 117) and Hadrian (AD 117 to 138).
George Sitwell, son of George and Mary was baptised in 1601 in Eckington. George's father died whilst he was a child but as an adult he acquired the freehold of land in Eckington and exploited it by mining iron ore. In 1625, he built Renishaw Hall which is now owned by Sir Reresby Sitwell's daughter, Alexandra and her family.
Sitwell exploited the minerals beneath his estate, chiefly iron and built a blast furnace at Plumbley a mile north west of Eckington in the 1630s with his mother's second husband, Henry Wigfall. In 1652 Sitwell built a furnace at Foxbrooke, close to Renishaw, which became the core of the largest ironworks in Derbyshire. Sitwell made saws at Pleasley and in 1656, installed a rolling and slitting mill at Renishaw to supply the rod iron used by numerous local nailmakers.
During the Industrial Revolution coal and iron ore were mined and local streams, such as the Moss Brook, were harnessed to provide power for factories. The Sitwells built a large foundry and ironworks. Scythes, sickles and nails were made in the town for local use and for export. The Moss Brook was dammed to provide water power at eight sites including ChapelWheel, Carlton Wheel and Fields Wheel, to grind the blades. The remains of an old forge and drift mines exist in the valley. Eckington had a coal mine in the eastern part of the town, one of the very few in the country which is still operated.
Eckington covers an area of 2,089 acres. The geology is the coal measures containing coal and ironstone. The Chesterfield Canal and Midland Railway passed through the parish. The Moss Brook is a tributary of the River Rother.
The oldest school in Eckington is Camms CE Primary School. In 1702, Thomas Camm endowed a schoolhouse and a schoolmaster to teach 24 poor children in the parish. In 1832, Robert Harrison moved the school to a new building which cost £600, and it was moved again to its current location on Castle Hill in 1975.
Eckington School is a large comprehensive school, attracting pupils from the surrounding areas of Killamarsh, Renishaw, Beighton, Ridgeway and Mosborough. Despite being closer to several Sheffield residential areas the admissions policy favours pupils from Derbyshire feeder schools. Eckington Grammar School in Halfway became Derbyshire's first comprehensive school in 1957, changing its name to the Westfield School, and since 1967 has been controlled by the city of Sheffield.
Located on the border between South Yorkshire and Derbyshire, Eckington and other towns such as Killamarsh, Mosborough and Ridgeway have their own local accent, a cross between the Sheffield (as opposed to Yorkshire) and Chesterfield accents.
Eckington bus station serves Eckington and is on Pinfold Street. It has four stands and two rest stands. The major companies using it are Stagecoach Chesterfield, Stagecoach Mansfield and TM Travel. It was served by a station. This was closed in the 1960s.
Notable people from Eckington include:
- Ann Alexander, financier, was born here in the 1770s.
- Walter Bussey, footballer
- Herbert Henry Elvin, trade union leader
- Joseph Gales, Sr., politician and journalist
- Joseph Gales, Jr., journalist and Mayor of Washington, D.C.
- Joan Hinde, trumpeter
- George Sitwell, Ironmaster was born here in 1601
- Paul West, poet
- Zoë Baker, swimmer
- "Neighbourhood Statistics". Office for National Statistics. Retrieved 3 January 2015.
- "Civil Parish population 2011". Neighbourhood Statistics. Office for National Statistics. Retrieved 21 March 2016.
- "Sheffield Star 13 December 2008". Archived from the original on 20 December 2008. Retrieved 13 December 2008.
- Domesday Book: A Complete Translation. London: Penguin, 2003. ISBN 0-14-143994-7 p.1340
- who held several manors including some in Derbyshire given by the king. They included Eckington and lands in Barlborough, Whitwell, Stretton, Ashover, Ogston, Crich, Wessington, Ingleby, Wirksworth and Hathersage
- Sales of land in Eckington to George Sitwell and Henry Wigfall, National Archives, Retrieved March 2010
- Philip Riden, 'Sitwell, George (bap. 1601, d. 1667)’, Oxford Dictionary of National Biography, Oxford University Press, 2004 accessed 2 March 2010
- Lewis, Samuel (1848), "Eckington St Peter and St Paul", A Topographical Dictionary of England, British History Online, pp. 139–144, retrieved 7 June 2012
- Conserving the Moss Valley and its wildlife, Moss Valley Wildlife, retrieved 8 June 2012
- Camms School History Archived 6 June 2009 at the Wayback Machine
- Derbyshire schools admissions policy Archived 27 September 2007 at the Wayback Machine
- Eckington Swimming Pool Archived 2 July 2008 at the Wayback Machine
- Eckington Library
- "Alexander [née Barber], Ann (1774/5–1861), banker and bill broker | Oxford Dictionary of National Biography". www.oxforddnb.com. doi:10.1093/ref:odnb/53243. Retrieved 14 July 2019.
- Parish council
- Inside-Eckington Website
- Eckington in the Domesday Book
- Eckington Methodist with St Luke's church
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