Letter 12

Continued from Letter 11

May 6th 1938.


Going down Bath Street on the west side, was the Old Harrow Inn, the landlord was Joseph Aldred. He had two sons, Joseph and Aaron. The next Inn was the Poplar, an old countrified-looking house with poplar trees in front of it. Mrs. Ebbern, the landlady had two sons, and two daughters. Tom married Mary, the youngest daughter of John Birch, joiner. The youngest daughter became the wife of Samuel Robinson, youngest brother of Robert Robinson, who was schoolmaster at Cossall for many years.

The last Inn on the west side was the Rutland Arms. This Inn up to about 1844 was a small countrified public house.


In 1844 or thereabouts a warm mineral spring was discovered at the side of the Rutland Arms, and this was expected to become a great asset to Ilkeston.

A Bath House was built, the grounds laid out, even the street which up to this time had been called the ‘Town Street’, had the honour of having it changed to Bath Street. The Rutland Arms was rebuilt and enlarged, and all was in readiness for the great number of visitors that were expected to take advantage of Ilkeston’s noted waters. For a time it seemed likely that Ilkeston would eventually become a Spa – might even rival Bath and Buxton – but unfortunately for the Promoters of the scheme, the spring disappeared, owing, it was believed, to the workings that had been started in the neighbourhood.

In 1858, it was reported that the Alkaline Carbonated water had been recovered, so the buildings were restored and accommodation increased. Dr. A. Beardsley, of Cotmanhay, wrote a treatise and the Baths were again advertised, but Ilkeston failed in its rivalry to become a Spa. The Baths were closed. The Bath House became a private house, and was let to Mrs. Bostock, a widow with two daughters. Ruth, the eldest, married Bob Henshaw, a miner, and lived in a small white-washed cottage, built on the bank on the East side of Bath Street. Ruth died after a few tears of married life. Mary, the youngest, was still at home.


The Rutland Arms Hotel, as it was now called, had for its landlord Mr. Thomas Hives. His first wife died leaving him with two daughters. Ellen, the eldest, married Henry MacDonald, Grandson of Henry Carrier, founder of H. Carrier & Sons. The younger daughter who was at home, was a good pianist. Mr. Hives second wife was Miss Gelsthorpe, of Nottingham.

On the east side of Bath Street. on the edge of the Common was the Mundy Arms, kept by Mr. H. Clay. His eldest daughter married Gilbert Wilkinson, Pork Butcher. Annie became Mrs. Potter and lived sometime at the Park. The youngest daughter married George Barker, Draper, Bath Street. The next Inn was the Durham Ox.

The Brunswick Hotel was not built until later and for some considerable time was a ‘White Elephant.’ Its first landlord was Mr. W. Jones. Unfortunately Mr. Jones succumbed to a short illness. The family left the hotel. William, the eldest son, married Miss Paling, the eldest daughter of Fred Paling, auctioneer, South Street, Emmie became a schoolmistress, her youngest sister living with her. Eddie Jones married Miss Betsy Lowe, third daughter of Mrs. S. Lowe, Grocer, South Street.

The Prince of Wales in Bath Street was a very small public house. The landlord was Mr. Green, who had one daughter and a son. Arabella was housekeeper, and John, who married Ellen(?) Smith of Mount Street, was in the business. John’s wife did not live very long after her marriage.

Continued in Letter 13