Bakewell Old House Museum


A museum hidden away in the heart of the Peak District, this Tudor house has many stories to tell. Built during the reign of Henry VIII, the building was originally a tax collector’s cottage. Ralph Gell of Hopton, near Wirksworth, had taken over the collection of tithes (the tenth of all produce that was due to the church) and needed a house for his steward, Christopher Plant. Subsequently, the house was made much bigger and converted into a gentleman’s residence during the reign of Elizabeth I. In 1777 Richard Arkwright – founder of the modern factory system – divided the Old House into five cottages for workers at the mill. They provided adequate accommodation, but by the 1950s the cottages were condemned as unfit for human habitation. Scheduled for demolition, the house was saved by the Bakewell & District Historical Society who converted the house to its current use. Ten rooms to explore packed with curious items that have been donated over the last sixty years.