Derbyshire Places of Worship

We have 7 Images St Margaret's Chapel, Alderwasley (1) (99k) St Margaret's Chapel, Alderwasley (2) (104k) St Margaret's Chapel, Alderwasley (3) (93k) St Margaret's Chapel, Alderwasley (4) (109k) St Margaret's Chapel, Alderwasley (5) (123k) St Margaret's Chapel, Alderwasley (6) (76k) St Margaret's Chapel, Alderwasley (7) (161k) Above Photograph(s)
Copyright of Janet Kirk/Peter Kirk
St Margaret's Chapel, Alderwasley
St Margaret's Chapel,
Chapel Lane,
Alderwasley, Derbyshire.


This Chapel had a graveyard.

Note: any church within an urban environment may have had its graveyard closed after the Burial Act of 1853. Any new church built after that is unlikely to have had a graveyard at all.

Church History

This Place of Worship was founded in the 16th century, but we understand it was closed in 1849.

St Margaret's Church is a single celled structure, which today is in use as a village hall. Several sources date it as 16th century, but according to Kelly's Directory of 1932 it was rebuilt then (in the reign of Henry VIII).

It was built (or rebuilt) by Thomas LOWE Esq., and other principal inhabitants. However latterly it appears it may have functioned largely as a private chapel of the Hurt family, as "it is not subject to ecclesiastical jurisdiction, and has no parochial duties performed in it, nor any endowment", and its minister was paid an optional salary by Mr HURT. The family crest (of alabaster) over the entrance doorway of the chapel, features the arms of LOWE.

According to some legends, the chapel may be haunted. It may also have its own sheela-na-gig, though there appears to be some doubt of its authenticity, since they are more usually found on Romanesque buildings. It is on the front face of a large corner stone on the left hand corner of the chapel, above the level of the entrance door, and can be seen in profile on the second photograph of our set. Further information is available on The Sheela Na Gig Project website.

It was replaced as a place of worship for the parish in 1849, when a new church, designed by H.I. Stevens was built near to Alderwasley Hall. Kelly says that afterwards, St Margaret's was used as a mortuary chapel, in conjunction with "a small inclosed cemetery, the private property of Francis George Hurt esq., adjoining which is a public cemetery, on land given my Lt-Col. A.F. HURT".

The chapel is set on rising ground, and the Hurt family graves, seen on our final photograph in this set, are on a bank on the top side of the chapel. The main cemetery is over the wall, to the left of the photograph.

Needless to say, St Margaret's Chapel is now a Grade II Listed Building - see the British Listed Buildings website for details. [Other Sources: Alderwasley, on John Palmer's Wirksworth Parish Records website, and Janet Kirk]


Now or formerly Church of England.

If more than one congregation has worshipped here, or its congregation has united with others, in most cases this will record its original dedication.


This Chapel was located at OS grid reference SK3238253418. You can see this on various mapping systems. Note all links open in a new window:


I have found many websites of use whilst compiling the information for this database. Here are some which deserve mention as being of special interest for Alderwasley, and perhaps to Local History and Places of Worship as a whole.

The above links were selected and reviewed at the time I prepared the information, but please be aware their content may vary, or disappear entirely. These factors are outside my control.

Information last updated on 18 Sep 2011 at 18:10.

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This Report was created 9 Dec 2023 - 18:24:54 GMT from information held in the Derbyshire section of the Places of Worship Database. This was last updated on 13 Oct 2021 at 14:33.

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