THERE isn’t a village in the Ashbourne area that can’t boast a long and fascinating history. The people that have made up the communities we all live in today might be gone, if not forgotten, but the landscapes and architecture change very little over the years.
With this in mind, we turn to the Peak District village of Parwich, which is set out on its own unlike some of the rural settlements in Ashbourne which have main roads running through them.
This relative isolation means Parwich is one of the quietest villages in the area but, while it lacks a main artery cutting across it, it still has a beating heart and one of the strongest feelings of community spirit of any rural location in the Derbyshire Dales.
The pictures on these pages represent half of a small collection lent to us by News Telegraph reader Vernon Webster who lives in Chellaston. His wife, formerly Brenda Brown, used to live in Parwich.
In our main picture, the scene looks up Main Street towards The Memorial Hall and the telephone exchange with the bus shelter on the left, the old pump shed and The Green is on the right.
Villagers of the time stand watching the photographer and vehicles can be seen in the distance - roads were much smaller then and there were less cars and lorries around than there are in this day and age.
An inscription on the picture suggests that the photograph might have been taken in the 1930s. Could this be right? Also, does anyone recognise any of the people in the picture.
Also in Mr Webster’s collection is a picture of Parwich Hall, an 18th Century mansion in the village which was owned by the Cockaynes of Ashbourne until they sold it in about 1603 to Thomas Levinge of Norfolk. His great grandson, Richard Levinge, was Speaker of the House of Commons in Ireland and became the first of the Levinge Baronets.
And our third picture shows Parwich School, which has changed very little in its appearance since the picture was taken