At The Sign of
YE OLD BLACK HORSE
Reprinted, by permission
of the Ilkeston Pioneer
of July 14th, 1905
Within a couple of miles of Ilkeston is an old Hostel which stands in the centre of a village that has a very respectable history, so far as length of year is concerned. Mapperley is situated on an eminence, and the surrounding country is of an undulating character on each side. Picturesquely looming in the landscape is a quartette of windmills that were important factors in days gone by when the wealth of a district was calculated by the ancient assessors of taxes in furnishing material for the army or the maintenance of the State. Professor Jas. E. Thorold Rogers, in his. "Economical Side of History", devotes a chapter to "Self-government in the Village", and referring to these old mills he writes "The only houses of any pretension in the village were the Lord's the parsons and the miller's, who by prescription took toll of all the inhabitants who were bound to grind at his mill, who is a busy and according to current report not an overscrupulous personage in his dealings with his fellow villagers. Time has made havoc with three of those mills, and they stand as dismantled wrecks of their former glory. The sails of the remaining one may be seen sweeping round any day when the winds blow free. Twenty years ago all the four mills were in full working order.
From the vantage ground of Mapperley Hill there lies stretched around the Shipley estate of 5,550 acres; one of the finest and richest estates in the County of Derby. In the distance stands 'Ilkeston on the Hill', and to the right of Ilkeston is Kirk Hallam, and West Hallam, and nearer to Mapperley lies Stanley Common. Each of the respective districts is rich in material for antiquary, archaeologist, and student of history, and the searchers after common or uncommon objects. Shipley is mentioned in Doomsday Book (compiled about 1080), and an interesting illustration from the famous Chronicle is given in Trueman's "History of Ilkeston", concerning the Shipley estate, now in the possession of Mr. A.E. Miller Mundy, J.P; D.L., who is also the squire of Mapperley, and under his supervision the village has undergone a thorough renovation beneficial to the health and comfort of the residents. A plentiful supply of beautiful fresh water has been provided, a new drainage system has been laid down and the roads have been thoroughly overhauled. Mapperley with its population of 200 souls is considered a very healthful district. It is a pleasant village for the visitors who extensively patronize the modernised ancient township in goodly numbers during the summer season.
Whereas the value of the square mile of 'Halum’ in the time of Edward the Confessor and of William the Confessor was 20 shillings per annum, by Edward, the Ist's time some 120 acres in Kyrkehalam, held by Peter the elder are worth that sum today to the King of England. Kirk Hallam is already a part of a great, mighty country; even its hamlet of Mapperley interests King and Bishop and Judge. Oxford bears its name, and his majesty’s Judges there frown, it may be, one of its timid cottagers.
On the morrow of Ascension Day, 1247, Richard, son of Richard, appears against Robert, son of John Ingtram, re a plough land in Maperly . . . and the said Robert did not come, and Ivo de Maperly and Gilbert de Hoved are ordered to produce him.
At this time Mapperley was worth a whole dog kennel to the King. Richard de Sandiacre is accustomed to hold the town of Mapperley by the service of finding a house for dogs. King Henry seized all the English lands of those Norman nobles who had tried to prevent his succeeding to his father's throne, and did give these lands of rebels to his faithful men, and among them were lands in Mapperley — a maple meadow.
At this day, A.D. 1247, Mapperley could boast of its own chapel — at least its Lord could, as shown by the following document. This is an ordinance made by the Authority of the Rev. Father in Christ, Alexander Bishop of Coventry and Lichfield, between the Abbot of Dale and the Rector of the Church of Kirkhalam of the one part and Hugh of Stretley and Matilda his wife on the other. Hugh is to be allowed to have his own chaplain within the walls of his house at Mapperley to celebrate mass there when one or both of them shall be present, but he and his wife are to attend the parish church of Kirk Hallam on High days unless prevented by sickness. The chaplain is to do fealty to the Vicar of Kirk Hallam, and is not to allow anyone else to listen to him except Hugh and Matilda and their household. All the other inhabitants of Mapperley are to attend the parish church, and to take their offerings there. Traces of a chapel, perhaps a successor to the building mentioned above, are still to be found built into a wall of a house near to the church in the village.
The present church was erected in 1851, but it was not till 1870 that Mapperley became a separate parish, instead of being a chapel of ease to Kirk Hallam Church, where baptisms, marriages and funerals had to be conducted. The font out of the old private chapel of Hugh and Matilda, is in the garden adjoining "Ye Old Black Horse," Mapperley. Many demands and requests have been made by antiquarians and archaeologists for possession of the old relic. Probably the font will become the property of Mr. E.M. Mundy, of Shipley Hall, who had the old chapel restored, and he will have the font surmounted on a suitable pedestal resting near its original home. There is the hope expressed that Mr. E.M. Mundy may by mutual arrangement with Mr. F. Newdegate-Newdegate M.P. (the present patron of the Church) becomes the patron of Mapperley Church, in which he, the squire of Shipley, takes a keen interest, in the form of supporting the financial maintenance and upkeep. Such a transference of the patronage would be received with favour by the villagers.
The old villagers speak of Mapperley as having been an old market town, even before Ilkeston possessed the privilege of holding a market. Old ruins in the wood are alluded to as the remnants of castle, with distinct traces of an old moat. Referred again to Trueman's "History of Ilkeston," The ancient records of burglaries and murders provide the information that the townships of Mapperley, Shipley, Smalley and West Hallam are in mercy because they did not tell the coroner about the foresaid John, who had killed a man. Ralph the son of Robert of Chaddesdan, killed Richard son of William of Mapperley at night and immediately after the deed he placed himself in the Church at Spondon, and there before the coroner he abjured the Kingdom. His goods are worth 3s. 4d.
In 1650, Kirk Hallam is a "Viccaridge" worth £8 per annum. Mapperley is a member and lies remote, and may be united to West Hallam. The tithes of Mapperley were squabbled over. Previous to 1596 the tithes had not been paid for many years. In 1779 a lawsuit respecting them was settled by arbitration. In 1735 the burial fees were one shilling and a wedding cost 2s. 6d. A tythe pig was valued at I/-. Payments were made for a mare and foal 2d for a borrowing cow, Id. for a garding, Id. for a chimney and smooke Id. a penny apiece for offerings, for each house 2d. for eggs 2d. Park Hall pays 16s. Of course such sums of money would be worth considerably more in the modern coinage".
To Nonconformists Mapperley is interesting as the place where the Rev. John Crompton, M.A., died (the ejected Vicar of Arnold in 1669). The record is extant that so far back as 1342, Richard, son of Ivo de Maperly, granted lands in Mapperley to Geoffrey de Herdeby. The Venerable Father, the Abbot of Dale, once found it necessary to summon the Lord of West Hallam for making a park there and thus depriving the oxen and sheep of their wonted sustenance.