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Heanor & District Local History Society


There had been a hall at Shipley since at least the 13th century. It is known that Sir Edward Leche, the Lord of the Manor, built a hall there in 1630s, a tall gabled house. In 1713 the Hall was passed to Sir Edward's granddaughter, Hester Miller, who married Edward Mundy, who was part of the Mundy family of Markeaton.

By 1749, Edward Mundy had pulled down the old Hall, and built his new mansion. This was itself to undergo major changes:

The Miller Mundy's made their money from coal production, and, in the end, that was to be the downfall of Shipley Hall. In 1922, the then owner, Godfrey Miller Mundy, sold the estate to the Shipley Colliery Company, a company set up by his forefathers. Up until this time, the Miller Mundy family had made sure that the colliery company had left a huge pillar of coal untouched underneath their Hall, but now the company had no compunction in mining this seam. Within a short time, the Hall was suffering the major effects of subsidence.

In 1943 the Hall was demolished, and the Shipley Colliery Company was nationalised at the end of the second world war. The estate was later (1970s) bought by the Derbyshire County Council, who established a Country Park on the site. It is still worth a visit, and many remnants of the old Hall and the estate buildings are still visible.

Postcard of Shipley Lake, early 20th century.

Another lake view, this one dated 1914.

For more views of Shipley Hall and Park, look at the gallery of old postcards, and the Alfred Seaman stereoscopic photographs. Also see our pages on Britannia Park and the Craftsmen of Britannia Park to see what happened to some of the estate in the 1980s.

Perhaps unfairly, Godfrey Miller Mundy is not well-regarded locally, being seen as the person who gave up the family seat, and the local traditions that went with it. The following is a poem which is attributed to a miner from the Shipley Collieries:

Shipley Then And Shipley Now

By D.A. Mackie (1924)

On this sheet just over leaf,

you’ll find a truthful poem.

And for the truth my job I lost,

so now the streets I roam.

But I’m quite proud of what I’ve done,

for I have made amends,

For deep within my soul I feel,

I’ve made a thousand friends.

Now friend’s I hope you’ll pardon me,

should you be asked to buy

This sheet whereon a poems wrote,

whose word will never die,

So when you’ve bought one,

frame it and hang it on the wall,

For remembrance of the Squire,

and once the glorious Shipley Hall,

And keep this too for a remembrance-

this poem you have bought-

And thinking of the Squire,

don’t forget the canny Scot.

BEGONE! Be gone!, the cruel hands

His pits that used to be the best,

That laid to waste these precious lands.

Have suffered also with the rest.

Your actions have aroused humanity

The gangers were but schoolboys then

On seeing this, vast, cruel calamity,

But now it’s changed, they need strong men;

The beauty spot is now in ruin,

The gates then were high and wide

And all it’s natural state you’ve strewn,

But now the ponies tear their hide

For lust of money, worldly gain,

And wagons then ran smooth and fine

It makes one thing that we’re not sane

But now they’re seldom on the line;

To let your evil hand destroy

The gaffers they have changed likewise,

God’s handiwork we all enjoy.

Their brains they do not utilize,

The rabbits, flowers and bees,

But the deputies are like us lads

The splendid oaks and elm trees.

They can’t afford to buy kneepads,

Have now deserted this estate-

For they have lost a lot of power

For scarcely one, has missed its fate.

And just like us they’re turning sour,

And in these grounds they laid to rest,

Contractors too, look sad and pale,

The workers friend- they loved the best.

And can’t afford to buy good ale;

For when alive his joy was aye So

this is Shipley now and then

To give his workers decent pay.

And many thoughts I’d like to pen

He’s gone, and hundreds feel the blow

But if there’s something I’ve forgot

For when in need to him they’d go Please,

remember I’m a Scot.