Heanor has existed for a millennium
or more, but has changed much in its layout over the years - the focus on the
town-centre is only a century old. In the nineteenth century, Heanor consisted
of a number of groups of habitations, many of which had their own name. Almost all
of these names are now totally forgotten by the local people, and in another
generation, will be gone forever.
Peacock Town, King's Town, Bogard Town, New
America, Fishponds, Housley Town, are a few of them. As well as parts of the
district having their own name, many streets have had other names, which
sometimes were better known than their correct titles.
This page touches on just a few of
was a row of cottages at Heanor Gate, standing in the fields at the
back of Heanor Laundry. It included the home of John King, who was the
inventor of the Kings Patent Detaching Hook, a safety device for use on
the winding gear in the mining industry. It was first used at Pinxton
Colliery, and is now in use all over the world, having no doubt saved
thousands of lives.
The 1900 Ordnance Survey map shows the Great
Northern Station at Heanor Gate, the Laundry, and, behind it, a block of
cottages which were, presumably, Kings Town.
Fishponds is the name given to the area
off Loscoe Road between Watkinson Street and Park Street, stretching back
as far as Douglas Avenue. As far back as the late 18th century there were
three or four (man made?) fish ponds on this land, and, as can be seen
from the 1900 OS map, some of it remained still at that time.
The Puzzle or Packman's Puzzle was
the name given to the collection of streets off North Street, Langley
Mill, which includes West Street, Orchard Street, Regent Street and
Hampden Street. This is one of the oldest residential parts of Langley
Mill, these small terraced houses being developed from the 1860's onwards.
Prior to being given street names, each row of houses had its own name,
such as Williamson's Row, Taylor's Row and Erewash Row.
How the area became known as Packman's Puzzle is open to discussion - one
theory is that the numbering of the properties in this mass of terraced
houses was so confusing for door-to-door salesmen (packmen). A related
explanation (which was passed to us by a former resident) is
that when the packman appeared
in the area, each house would signal next door by banging on the wall, and
the packman was puzzled as everyone knew he was there before he even
reached their house. Since the term packman could be used for anyone going
door-to-door, including debt-collectors, another possibility was that the
packman was confused as to why nobody was ever in when he visited (using
the same signalling system as mentioned!)
In the 1880's, the Criterion Hotel, a temperance establishment, was opened
on West Street, but does not appear to lasted twenty years. It had been
planned to extend the residential area across the other side of North
Street, and reference has been found to a proposed East Street, but this
never materialised, and that side of the road became totally
photograph of Victory Celebrations on Hampden Street in 1945.
Glew Lane (sometimes
shown, as in the OS Map of 1900, as Glue Lane) was originally the main
road from Codnor Castle to Derby, via Smalley. It was used until the 16th
century for the carriage of coal from the pits of Sir John Zouche of
Codnor Castle, to the town's markets. The lane passed over Kidsley (or
Kiddersley) Park and joined what is now the main Derby Road in Smalley.
Kidsley Park was owned by Sir Henry Sacheveral of Morley Hall, and, in
1550, a bitter dispute took place between the two men. Zouche refused to
continue paying a levy of coal to Sacheveral for use of the road, and in
retaliation Sacheveral closed Kidsley Park to all traffic. The dispute
rumbled on for decades, finally coming to a head in a court case in 1580,
when Sacheveral won the right to seal Kidsley Park.
In the intervening years, a new route had built up, albeit further and
more of a trek, having to go from Eagreaves at Loscoe, up into Heanor,
then via Heanor Wood (Tag Hill) to Smalley. This too was closed for a few
years, in 1577, but the court case of 1580 ordered that this route should
be "allowed for men to pass with all manner of carriages." The
route from Tag Hill had been a narrow bridleway, but, because of the
events of the 16th century, this is now the main road into Derby from the
area. If it weren't for this dispute, the road layout in the area would
have been totally different today!
Glew Lane itself can still be followed for the first part of the route
from Smalley, as a bridleway.
Glew, rather than Glue, is thought to be the correct spelling in view of
their having been an earlier land dispute between Sir George Zouche and
John Glew, the churchwarden of Codnor.
The 1900 OS Map shows Glew Lane at Loscoe
This page could be, and may in
the future be, greatly extended!
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