Derbyshire Places of Worship

We have 5 Images St John the Baptist's Church, Tideswell (1) St John the Baptist's Church, Tideswell (2) St John the Baptist's Church, Tideswell (3) St John the Baptist's Church, Tideswell (4) St John the Baptist's Church, Tideswell (5) Above Photograph(s)
Copyright of Andrew McCann/Rosemary Lockie/Alf Beard
St John the Baptist's Church, Tideswell
St John the Baptist's Church,
Commercial Road, SK17 8NU,
Tideswell, Derbyshire.


This Church has (or 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 before 1193, and we understand it is still open.

Kelly's Directory of 1932 describes Tideswell as a town and parish 2½ miles north from Miller's Dale station on the Ambergate and Manchester section of the London, Midland and Scottish railway, 7 north-north-west from Bakewell, 7 east-by-north from Buxton and 157 from London. The town was then supplied with water from springs on Tideswell Moor; gas was supplied from works on the Buxton road, the property of the Tideswell Gas Company, and electric light by the Derby and Notts Electric Power Company.

The church of St John the Baptist is "a cruciform building of stone, belonging almost exclusively to the Decorated style of the latter half of the 14th century, consisting of an unusually large chancel, clerestoried nave, aisles, transepts, a south porch with parvise, and a lofty embattled tower at the west end, with battlemented turret-like pinnacles at the angles, terminating in crocketed spirelets". The tower contains a clock with chimes and 8 bells, the 4th of medieval date, the 2nd, 3rd and 5th dating from 1659 and the 7th and 8th from 1929. The chancel has 3 stone sedilia and a crocketed piscina, and on the north side are two low arches. The ancient stone reredos, which stands 5 feet from the east window and is flanked on either side by canopied niches with crocketed pinnacles, extends completely across the east and and has a door on the north side leading to a sacristy. There is also an elaborately carved oak reredos immediately above the communion table.

The stained east window was inserted in 1876 by Cecil G. Savile Foljambe esq. (afterwards earl of Liverpool) in memory of his 1st wife Louise (Howard), d.1871, and of the Foljambe family, who were great benefactors to the church and the Lady chapel in the 14th century. The chancel arch is filled by an elaborately carved screen of open tracery, with coved head; it was reduced in 1824, but was successfully restored by Mr J.D. Sedding, architect of London, the cost defrayed by a bequest of £300 by Mr. Harrop for the purpose.

The innermost bay of the south transepts was anciently the "Meveril", or as it is now called, "De Bower chapel". In its south wall is a high canopied niche, with a piscina beneath it. The adjoining chapel, being a continuation of the south aisle, belonging to the manor of Litton or Lytton, and to the family of that name. Both these, as well as the other chapel in the north transept, were once enclosed by wooden parcloses which have lately been renewed. The portion of the north transept corresponding to the Litton chapel appears to have belonged to the manor of Wheston (the transept proper forming the Lady chapel or Guild chapel [of St Mary], and having a piscina in the eastern wall); an ancient stone pulpit is said to have stood here, but it is more probable that there was a means of access to the rood screen; it was removed in 1824, when a new western gallery was built.

The return to the Religious Census of 1851 (HO 129/449/3/21/25) for "St John's (St John Baptist) Ancient Parish Church of Tideswell" recorded 1200 sittings, all free, and an estimated congregation on March 30th of 18 in the morning, 72 in the afternoon and 100 in the evening, with 79 Sunday Scholars in the morning, and 110 in the afternoon. The average figures for church services over the previous 12 months were roughly double, but the Sunday School figures were about the same. The return was completed by John Kynaston M.A. Vicar of Tideswell, who gave his address as "Tideswell Vicarage, Derbyshire".

The parish records begin in 1635. In 1932, the living was a vicarage, in the gift of the Dean and Chapter of Lichfield, and had been held since 1929 by the Rev. R. Fletcher Edwards hon. C.F. Kelly's Directory also mentions St John's Institute, erected in 1894, mainly from John Harrop's bequest. It was then used for reading, recreation and the holding of classes. Also mentioned is the Oddfellows' Hall (formerly Bagshaw Hall), in the Market square, erected in 1872. It was presented by John Bagshaw esq. of Tideswell to the "Humane Friendly Indefatigable Union Society", established in 1764, its object being the relief of sickness and the payment of funeral expenses of members. It is a fine building of limestone in the Italian style; the hall itself, used as a picture house, is about 60 feet long, 36 wide and 21 high, and has a gallery supported by five arches. [Note: both St John's Institute and "The Picture House" are now Listed Buildings]

There may be more information available by by selecting one or more of the accompanying images on the right.


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 Church is located at OS grid reference SK1526075760. You can see this on various mapping systems. Note all links open in a new window:

Information last updated on 5 Feb 2015 at 11:48.

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This Report was created 29 Nov 2023 - 02:46:12 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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