Pictures of Eyam
The glorious Peak District has many handsome stone villages who have carved for themselves a place in history. Eyam, was naught but a tiny hamlet when in 1665 a clothes chest was delivered to a cottage. It came from London which at the time was riddled with the Plague. In no time at all, once the chest was open, plague germs spread and almost two thirds of the village population was wiped out! The fact that the remaining villagers were saved is due to the foresight of the local rector, William Mompesson and his predecessor, Thomas Stanley, who led the villagers into isolation and held church services on a nearby crag, in the open air until the village was free from decease. An annual commemorative service for those who died is still held in this spot. The cottage where the tainted clothes were delivered can still be seen.
Setting its chilling history to one side, this is a village with a lot to offer. It is hidden away in a matchless location above the limestone peaks of Middleton Dale. Its long village street is dotted with cottages from the 17th and 18th-century and its pub, the Miners Arms, dates from 1630. The name of the pub is indicative of the lead and mineral mining industries of the area, and interestingly the pub is supposed to be haunted.
Eyam Hall has dominated this little village for centuries. It was the home of the Wright family for over 300 years. It is now open to the public who can view a fascinating collection of family memorabilia including furniture, paintings, costume and other personal items. It is a comfortable house, evocative of times past, where you can almost feel the presence of the people who had loved and cared for their home for centuries.
In the churchyard of the village church you can see a Saxon Cross of the 7th-century. It is believed to be the best preserved of its kind in the Peak District. You can also see the graves of villagers who died from the plague. Inside the church there is a display of the story of the plague and its effect on Eyam. The church has medieval wall paintings, and fonts from the Norman and Saxon periods.
From the village there are sweeping views over the surrounding countryside, and at nearby Eyam Moor you can see stone circles and an ancient burial mound, it is an ideal vantage point with views extending across the Derwent Valley.
Nestling in its high upland position the village of Eyam throbs with life and in spite of its sad history, it is a lovely relaxing place to visit.
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