Updated 22 Apr 2012

WIRKSWORTH Parish Records 1600-1900

Return to Front Page



Photo 437



Drawn about 1890, showing the original BARTON, before it became DALEFIELD in 1906.

Used in 1932. The final name was LILYBANK (from a Lilybank Hydro Ltd letterhead).

Taken c1923. Accommodation provided for 130 guests. Hydro baths comprised Russian, Vapour, Packs, Hot Air, Sitz, Shallow, Needle and Douches etc. Terms in 1923, inclusive of Bedroom, Attendance, Breakfast, Lunch, Afternoon Tea, Dinner, Electric Light, Baths and Garage, were:
1st Floor: £4 4s 0d to 4 11 0 per week
2nd Floor: £3 17 0 to 4 4 0 per week
3rd Floor: £3 10 0 to 3 17 0 per week

Lilybank Hydro, the Ballroom. Sent by Victoria Cambridge. (see her letter on right). The grand piano was presented to Mr and Mrs Kay by a number of Lilybank visitors, April 1923.

The ballroom was 45 ft long, 34 ft wide, and 21 ft high, and was fitted with Morton's "Valtor" sprung floor. The gallery running the full width of the room, with piano, organ, and jazz drums, could seat 40. A bay window, 35 ft wide, extended into the terrace.

Plan of Lilybank Hydro, about 1923.

The Dining Room. A specimen menu (for 5 Nov 1922) was:
Breakfast: Porridge | Fried Plaice | Bacon and Eggs or Bacon and Tomatoes | Tea or coffee, Toast and Marmalade
Lunch:Scotch broth | Hot Roast Shoulder Mutton, onion Sauce or Cold roast Beef or Spiced Beef or Roast Lamb and mint sauce or Roast Veal and Ham or Ox tongue - Sweets:Canary Pudding or Rice and Semolina Puddings or Stewed Fruit and Custard | Cheese: Cheshire and Roquefort.
Dinner: Soup: ox tail | Fish: Boiled Halibut and shrimp sauce | Joints: Roast lamb and mint sauce or Roast sirloin Beef and Horseradish sauce | Roast chicken and bacon, bread sauce | sweets: Blackcurrant Tart and custard or Lilybank pudding or Wine Jelly | Dessert

See email from Ewen Cameron on 21apr2012:

Lilybank Hydro, Matlock

In 1890 George Barton opened a Hydro known as Dalefield, at the junction of Chesterfield Road with School Road. The name was changed to Lilybank in 1906, and was the last Hydro in Matlock to close in 1962. The building then became a convent school and later a residential home for old people.
George Barton and his family can be traced in the following Census records: 1851, 1861, 1871, 1881, 1891 and 1901.

See also: emails and BARTON tree

Victoria Cambridge writes:
This postcard - there were stacks of them roughly discarded in an attic room in the "Gables" part of the school. The room was full to the brim with remants from the hotel, old fancy dress costumes - old fire scuttles etc. I was only about 8 years old, but knew then that there was a facinating history to Lilybank. I had the foresight to take a few postcards in the early '70's

I slept in many bedrooms over the 3 years I was there, most interestingly in the room on the third floor just below the "turret" (left hand side of the rear of the hotel) which by 1972 had been taken down (as it was unsafe) and had been lobbed off.

The rooms were furnished in the old hotel furniture, with mahogany wardrobes - some very ornate and inlaid with compartments lined in green/pink water silk for all sorts of bygone items of clothing, such as gloves and sock compartments, stud drawers etc.

There were the old turn of the century sinks in each room.

The heating was antiquated with old cast iron heavy radiators which were incredibly ineffective. The weather was always so cold and windy - howling gales and snow in those days

The "Lilybank Hydro" signage on the roof of the building was derelict weather beaten. The odd letter was still insitu in 1972 but within a year or so had been removed for safety reasons. The Lilybank letters which had been on the walls (front of hotel on the right hand side) were also removed but you could still make the letters out as it was a lighter coloured brick underneath where they had been

The gables were very spooky and mostly used as music rooms (piano) - although there was one which was a small domitory which housed about 6 girls. The story went that the Gables were haunted by the "White Lady" - most girls rightly or wrongly were slightly afraid of the gables.

The dining room was attached to the kitchen and again original - very Edwardian with a stained glass door and a huge (or it seemed that way for an 8 year old) oak dresser with a mirror overmantle.

The dining room had a brass "gong" hung on the wall, which would be rung signifying meal the beginning and end of meal times. Most of our meals were taken in silence save a few - tea time when we would sometimes get cream buns (on special days) and best of all our post from our parents would be handed out

The "Day pupils Dining Room" was opposite the dining room and I think this had been used in past times as a lounge for hotel residents.

The ballroom was where was all played when the weather was bad - it had none of the furniture you can see in the postcard but had a wonderful wooden floor. The ceiling was stained glass with a simplist late art nouveau style glass. We used to set up the ballroom every Sunday morning for Mass - an altar underneath the band balcony and lots of little chairs with an isle up the middle.

We also used to stage the annual Christmas nativity and plays celebrating St Patrick's Day.

The Sun lounge at the rear was out of bounds to us girls but used by the nuns as their rest room - it was lovely in there in the few times I was invited in .... very cosy and had all the old hotel sofas and cane chairs in it.

There was the original lift just inside the hotel (to the right) with the old gated doors.

The carpet leading up the the bedrooms was plush and red. We were only allowed to use it when we returned with our suitcases for another term. Ordinarily we used the back stairs (around by the kitchen area) - the servants stairs I guess! The sound of all the girls shoes clattering down the stairs was awesome

The basement over the hotel side was totally original - it was furnished with black and white tiling in it and I think this was where the "treatments" were given. We used it every day - as our coats were hung up down there and it was our way out to the grounds to play.

Over the Gables side - the extensive cellars had huge windows overlooking the lawn terrace, and they were, painted half way up in a marroon gloss paint! As children when we misbehaved after lights out, we were sent down there for half an hour or so (in the complete dark and in total silence). It was quite sobering!

The Tennis court was used a lot by us girls, and I got the impression that at some time, it had once been a kitchen garden as rhubarb grew scantily in places and against the back wall were plums and fruit trees. There was an old derelict "summer house" up towards the courts - it was originally painted a light blue but was now faded and the paint peeling. Inside the wooden seats were loose or completely missing - we were not allowed in it

Kind regards

High Peak News, 4 Aug 1923
Lilybank is an outcome of the old and widely-known hydro, Dalefield, erected by the late George Barton.....Since the acquisition of Dalefield by the present proprietors this establishment has undergone a great transformation in many ways, until it now takes undisputed rank as one of the foremost institutions of its kind in the world-famed 'Metropolis of Hydropathy'. Since the purchase of Dalefield the proprietors, a year or two ago, acquired possession of the adjoining property known as The Gables, formerly occupied by Mrs Robert Wildgoose, to make room for the constantly growing demand for accommodation at Lilybank. Then, between the twin properties, they erected a new and very handsome structure, and designed thereon a modern ballroom, one of the most charming halls we have ever seen, brilliantly lit up by dozens of electric lights, and fitted with the popular spring floor, and luxuriously furnished throughout. This ballroom forms a connecting link between the two properties of Lilybank and The Gables, converting them into one large building. This the owners have surrounded with some beautiful grounds of very considerable extent. Within these spacious and well-kept are spaces for bowls and tennis, and these sports are freely indulged in by many votaries of the popular games. Then, inside, provision is made for the wet days when the company are prisoners indoors. Billiards, card parties, music, singing, dancing are all indulged in freely, and evidently immensely enjoyed. Meals are well and punctually provided, and the catering and cuisine are on most generous and satisfactory lines, and the attendance thereat exceptionally good. For the use of needy patients there are suites of baths for ladies and gentlemen, with competent and obliging operators. Sanitation is excellent, and perfect cleanliness exists throughout.

The manager and manageress of Lilybank around 1923.
John Sidney Kay was a bath attendant in 1901, and
Elizabeth Connor a chambermaid, both at
Chesterfield House Hydro. They married in 1902

Pewter oil lamp 21" high, Lilybank Hydro c1906, made by Walker and Hall.

Photo taken:c1935

Click on photo for enlargement (on CD only)
Have any more information about this photo? 
Please e-mail the author on:


Ewen Cameron  writes 21apr2012:
I have a book “The Poetical Works of Longfellow” which has the inscription 
as per the attached.
I understand that ‘Dalefield’ was renamed ‘Lilybank’ in 1912.
The inscription implies that George Bernard Barton was born May 10th 1847 
and at the age of 49 was a Justice of the Peace in the local community.
I hope this may be of interest to you.
Ewen Cameron,  

Alan Barber wrote:
I am looking for any further information of my ancestors as listed below, in
particular BARTON from Matlock. Annie Mary BARTON and Peter Blake BARBER are
my grandparents, then her parents etc etc.
The BARTON family built Dalefield, lately known as Lilybank Hydrotherapy
resort in Matlock.
Any information (or if by a miracle photos) would be very much appreciated.
Alan Barber
New Zealand

Husband John Blake Barber 
Birth Nov. 1, 1877 Ilminster Sommerset England 
Death Oct. 19, 1961 Auckland New Zealand 
Burial Waikumete Cemetary Auckland New Zealand 
Other Wives 
Parents Peter Blake Barber and Mary Ann Elisabeth Barber (Nee Davis) 

Wife Annie Mary Barber (Nee Barton) 

Birth Jan. 10, 1883 Matlock Derbyshire England 
Death Oct. 2, 1959 Auckland 
Burial Waikumete, Auckland, New Zealand 
Other Husbands 
Parents George Barnard Barton and Deborah Barton (Nee Swift) 

Husband George Barnard Barton 

Birth Jul. 4, 1847 
Death Dec. 31, 1908 Beechwood Chesterfield Road Matlock tbc 4 Jan 1909
dod tbc 
Burial St Giles Matlock Parish Church 
Other Wives 
Parents George T Barton and Martha Barton (Nee Brillington) 

Wife Deborah Barton (Nee Swift) 

Birth Sep. 21, 1848 
Death Dec. 2, 1897 
Other Husbands 
Parents Anthony Swift and Deborah Swift (Nee Berisford) 

Husband George T Barton 

Birth Jun. 1, 1819 
Death Mar. 22, 1875 
Burial St Giles, Matlock 
Other Wives 
Parents Bernard Barton and Hannah Barton (Nee Ford) 

Wife Martha Barton (Nee Brillington) 

Birth Apr. 4, 1824 
Death Sep. 1884 
Other Husbands 
Parents George Ballington and Elizabeth Ballington (Nee Bradley 

Husband Bernard Barton 

Other Wives 
Parents William Barton and Ann Bridget Barton (Nee ? ) 

Wife Hannah Barton (Nee Ford) 

Death Oct. 13, 1846 
Other Husbands 
Parents Anthony Ford and Hannah Ford (Nee ?) 

Husband William Barton 

Birth 1761 
Death 1796 
Burial St Werbughs, Derby 
Other Wives 

Wife Ann Bridget Barton (Nee ? ) 

Death Feb. 15, 1811 tbc 
Other Husbands 


    1761 Anne William 1790 Bridget Anthony Hannah BARTON=====v=====WRIGHT FORD=====v===== X 1796 | 1811 | | | 1790 1846 Bernard 1813 Hannah George Elizabeth BARTON=====v=============FORD BALLINGTON=====v=====BRADLEY | | | |--------------------| | | 1819 1824 George T 1844 Martha Anthony Deborah BARTON=====v=====BALLINGTON? SWIFT=====v=====BERRISFORD 1875 | | | |-----|------| Mary 1847 | | Peter Ann George 1848 1832 Blake 1873 Elizabeth Bernard 1871 Deborah Charles BARBER=====v=====DAVIS BARTON=====v============SWIFT SWIFT | 1908 | 1897 | | | |-----|-----| | | | 1877 1883 1879 John Annie George Blake 1909 Mary Thomas 1901 Hannah BARBER=========v========BARTON BARTON=====v=====McMUNN | |

Compiled, formatted, hyperlinked, encoded, and copyright © 2006, All Rights Reserved.