Above: This 1907 map (click to enlarge) shows where Errwood Farm once stood. The blue shaded area shows the twin reservoirs today. I’ve also marked the position of the main car park.
Above: An old photo of Errwood Farm superimposed on the same spot today (click to enlarge). My thanks to George for sending it.

Click here to view a ‘then and now’ fade of the old and new photos.

Above: This photo is one of very few I’ve found of the farmhouses that were demolished in 1934. It’s possible to find some remains if you walk from the main car park towards Fernilee Reservoir, go though the small gate, and then head diagonally left up the slope.

Errwood Farm

The first recorded tenant of Errwood Farm was Daniel Rose in the 1851 census. But it was his son-in-law, Thomas Swindells, who seems to have been the farmer. Errwood Farm was one of the largest on the estate, and the family could afford a servant, Sarah Capwell.

Gerald Hancock, author of ‘Goyt Valley Romance’, thought that Samuel Grimshawe’s son – also called Samuel – may have stayed here whilst supervising the construction of Errwood Hall in the early 1840s.

The Swindells were followed by the Ferns family. And then the Hibberts and the Brocklehursts.

John Hibbert was recorded living here in 1891, together with his younger brother, Joseph, and sister, Ellen. By 1901 he was living by by himself. And in 1911, following his parent’s death, he had moved back to Bunsal Farm to join is brother and sister. John’s brother was Thomas Bennett Hibbert (see ‘Tracing TB Hibbert‘).  

I’m not sure if the Brocklehursts were the last tenants of Errwood Farm. I received a message some time ago from Sarah Dugdale who thought her grandparents, George and Edith Dugdale, may have lived here with their three children. (Click for details.)

Page updates:

Gail has managed to track down the press clipping above dated 2nd August 1929 showing that the Dugdales were advertising holiday lets at Errwood Farmhouse for 2 guineas a week. So it’s likely they were the last tenants before the farmhouse was demolished in the 1930s.

15.3.22: Click here to read about the years Errwood Farmhouse served as a Youth Hostel.

SurnameFirst nameBornRelationshipOccupationBirthplace
1851 Census
Rose Daniel 1777 Head Agricultural labourer Wildboarclough
Swindells Thomas c.1800 Son in Law Farmer Kettleshulme
Swindells Martha 1808 Wife Bollington
Swindells William 1845 Grandson Taxal
Swindells Hannah 1849 Granddaughter Taxal
Swindells Jonathan 1850 Grandson Farmer Taxal
Capewell Sarah 1831 House servant Taxal
1861 Census
Swindells Thomas c.1800 Head Farmer 80 acres Kettleshulme
Swindells Martha 1808 Wife Bollington
Swindells Hannah 1849 Daughter Taxal
Swindells Jonathan 1850 Son Taxal
Swindells Elizabeth 1853 Daughter Taxal
1871 Census
Fern John 1811 Head Farmer 70 acres Hartingdon
Fern Mary 1812 Wife Alstonfield
Fern James 1836 Son Stone Mason Alstonfield
Fern Hannah 1838 Daughter Biggen Hartingdon
Fern John 1850 Son Hartingdon
1881 Census
Fern Mary 1812 Head Alstonfield
Fern James 1836 Son Stone mason Alstonfield
Fern Hannah 1838 Daughter Biggin
1891 Census
Hibbert John 1867 Head Farmer Bonsal Hartington
Hibbert Joeseph 1869 Brother Farm servant Hartington
Hibbert Ellen 1872 Sister Housekeeper Hartington
1901 Census
Hibbert John 1867 Head Farmer Bonsal Hartington
1911 Census
Brocklehurst James 1852 Head Farmer Alderley Edge
Brocklehurst Sarah Jane 1852 Wife Mottram St Andrew