This week I spent a few days visiting friends in Sheffield, and included a day out in the beautiful Peak District, in perfect autumn weather. See my photos in this Facebook album. During this day I paid a brief visit this week to my ancestral home. No, not the one in this first picture, which is Chatsworth House, Derbyshire, although I greatly enjoyed walking around its grounds. But the house I have in mind dates from the same period. The first house at Chatsworth was built in 1552, but the current house dates from around 1700.
The house I really want to talk about here belonged to and was probably built by my ancestor Arnold Kyrke, and an inscription “AK 1559” gives its approximate date. This house, Whitehough Hall, is not far from Chatsworth, at Chapel-en-le-Frith, Derbyshire, and is also surrounded by the beautiful scenery of the Peak District. The house is now known as The Old Hall Inn, and offers meals and accommodation. But it was closed when I was there, during the day, so I cannot offer any recommendation except to say that it is a beautiful spot.
A cousin of my father’s researched our family line and proved our descent from Arnold Kyrke, although not directly from the colourful characters mentioned in the history of the inn. So, although my recorded genealogy is neither as long nor as illustrious as that of my fellow blogger Jeremy Pierce, I can trace it back through 14 generations:
- Peter (1955-)
- John (1907-1995)
- William (c.1870-1948)
- Thomas (1835-1908)
- Peter (1805-1875)
- Henry (1783-1848)
- Thomas (1750-1811)
- Thomas (1707-??)
- Thomas (1679-??)
- Thomas (1623-??)
- Arnold (??-c.1640)
- Arnold (??-1622)
- Arnold (builder of Whitehough Hall)
Indeed I have names for a few generations even before that, although no other details.
Perhaps the Kirks have come down in the world a bit, for this rather more ordinary house should soon be my home. But then I am not concerned, for this one is more than adequate for my needs as a single man, and my true home is not on this earth but is my inheritance from my heavenly Father.