DERBYSHIRE HERITAGE Derbyshire Peak District - higger-tor


This unique 18th century building, built around 1780, with an unusual conical-shaped roof was once the lock-up. It stands alone in the corner of a field not far from the Cundy Graves north east of Lane Farm. It has just two rooms one up one down. A chimney was built in later years for a fireplace on the ground floor when it was converted into a dwelling and is said to have been inhabited until just prior to the Second World War.
A lot of its history is open to conjecture and is mostly derived from word of mouth although it does appear that the windows have been barred.
As a lock-up is it reputed to have been used to keep prisoners overnight whilst in transit to other gaols or court hearings.
In the Civil War prisoners were said to have been held in the lockup prior to being taken to Sheffield gaol.
Often lead miners whose offences could not be dealt with at the Barmote Court were kept briefly being transported to Derby assizes.
One local tradition says that was used as a pest house. Pest Houses were commonly-owned buildings on the fringes of villages where those struck down with the plague or other infectious ailments could be re-housed until the illness took its course and they either recovered or died. An early form of quarantine really and for Curbar this would have been the ideal spot. Close enough to keep an eye on but far enough away from the main body of the population to avoid contagion. Since it was built around 1780 then it is unlikely that it would have been used to house bubonic plague sufferers but could have taken anyone suffering from a number of ailments which fortunately we don't see very often today such as leprosy or cholera.
It is known that it was used as domestic accommodation. A sailor known as Francis Pelly lived here and a local deaf-mute named Ebenezer Barratt, known locally as Yebby was the last permanent resident.
The building was condemned as unfit for habitation in 1935.

It is a Grade II listed building.

from British Listed Buildings -
Description: Lock-up 250 Yards North East of Lane Farm

Grade: II
Date Listed: 12 July 1967
English Heritage Building ID: 81536

Lock-up. Late C18. Coursed rubble gritstone with a conical roof of stepped
squared masonry on a square ground floor base. Single bay, two storeys, with
a plain doorway with massive surround to the south with plain surrounds. North east
elevation has external ashlar stack with stone chimney pot.

curbar lock-up
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