By Rita Quail (nee Cope)
I often wondered as a child why Mrs and the Misses Dallimore sat for the services in the choir stalls up in the chancel. It was handy for Mrs Collinson later, as she could nip out through the little door to see to baby Peter (or was it Andrew) outside in his pram. We in the choir sat in the pews just in front of the organ. I loved singing in the choir, especially on special occasions when the church was full. Canon Dallimore loved “Christians Awake” so at Christmas we seemed to have it every service for weeks and I was sure there were at least ten verses, but on looking in my old Ancient and Modern hymn book there were only six, as now. Seven o’clock Communion on Easter Sunday morning was one of my favourite services but it was hard reaching the high notes of “Jesus Christ is risen today” and “Jesus lives” that early in the morning. We used to have a Choir Sunday, when we sang anthems, solos and descants that we had practised for weeks at Tuesday night choir practice, Mr Clay being organist and choir master. Some of the collections on that day helped to take us on our Choir Trip every Whit Monday. Then there was the Harvest Festival. The church was always full at evening service, people sitting up in the chancel and chairs all down the aisle. The scented air of all the fruit and vegetables, flowers everywhere, the sheaf of corn standing in the corner by the reading desk, the loaf of bread on the altar, each window decorated with fruit and flowers and the frame that Georgie Parkin and others used to put up under the arch and decorate with corn and crab apples, and huge bunches of grapes hanging from the top, and all the people singing “Come ye thankful people” and “We plough the fields and scatter the good seed”, all at the top of their voices joyfully and thankfully praising God Almighty for his bounteous goodness to us his people. Yes, that’s my happiest memory of Kirk Hallam Church.
The Two Hallams
By a local resident
Sammy-Ville, as Kirk Hallam was referred to sometimes in the 1920’s at Derby and Nottingham Cattle Markets. Freddy Bower, the local drover, probably started it. He lived in an old house (the oldest now) on the Bird Croft in Little Hallam. The reason being, four farmers, Samuel Parkin farmed Vine Farm, Samuel Wilkinson farmed Poplar Farm and Samuel Rice farmed Spring Farm. Sam Rice was born in the next house below the old Church of England school. His family had been sextons at Kirk Hallam in an unbroken chain for 400 years. There was also my uncle Samuel Parker at Little Hallam Farm which was in the occupation of William Parker, his father, who lived there until his death (he is buried in Kirk Hallam churchyard). The defacto farming was carried out by Sam and his sister Annie Mary Parker (Nina). The Parker male side has died out but one of them once married and changed his name to Newdigate. They trace back to Horsley and further back to Hassop. I started school at Kirk Hallam. Reverend John Edward Dallimore was the Vicar. We called him, irreverently, Jeddy, his initials being J.E.D. Early on in the war he became a Canon and worked in the Cathedral Office at Derby. He walked up to the Toll Bar at Ilkeston six days a week to catch the Felix bus and on his return visited parishioners. His stipend was only £120 a year, I believe, so he had to have another occupation.
There is a legend in our family about how Kirk Hallam church came to be put where it is. I got it from my Grandfather, William Parker, whose Great Grandfather, John Galland Challand farmed Little Hallam in his day. The white habited monks, Premonstratensians, started to build the Abbey at Dale and they were a long time building it. During this period the Abbot used to detail a monk to walk down the footpath from their fish ponds by the Spring in the Spring Field, to hold a service in the Mistress of the day’s front room. A year or so on he wanted a little chapel built so it was arranged to build one. Of course, the monks influenced the choice of place, near the Abbey so they did not have so far to walk. On that dry knob west of the spring for burials, and on the other side of the Nutbrook, the Abbot and the monks were pleased with the position. At Kirk Hallam Church of England school, we all had slates with wooden borders. Lines scratched in fours across. We started making pot hooks and letters bounded by these, rather like musical score sheeting. Mrs Bramwell was the teacher and a girl helped her. We took a bucket daily to the Spring and filled it with a panikin, being careful not to stir the spring, which was in a brick housing, and so take back mud. This bucketful did the school all day for drinks, and washing of hands. Some names I can remember of my fellow pupils are David and Helen Maltby from the Bird Croft, the Phillips of Kingsway, Billy Parkin of Bunkers Hill, Dorothy and Marjorie Parkin of Ladywood Farm, the Pheasant girls, and John Allsopp. Have you heard of the story of the ghost of Ladywood that turned the Grey Mare white?
From The Parish Box
Copy of the ecclesiastical survey, taken in the 26th year of King Henry the Eighth, by which it appears the Vicarage of Kirk Hallam was then valued at £4 9s 5d per annum. Viz ‘The Mansion & Glebe at £1 8s 4d. The Tithes of Hay, Lambs and Wool at 23 shillings. The Oblations and Offerings at 32 shillings and 11 pence. And the Tithe of Pigs, Ducks, Hemp and Flax at 5s 2d.’ Upon examining the Bailiff’s or Minister’s Accounts in the Augmentation Office respecting the Tithes appertaining to the impropriate Rector it was found that the Rectory had been granted away by King Henry the 8th in the 36th year of his Reign to Francis Leeke Esq. Being then of very small value viz. Only £2 13s 4d arising from the Tithe.
Kirk Hallam Old School
By Bill Johnson
In 1872, Francis William Newdigate paid for a school to be erected in Kirk Hallam. As the population of Kirk Hallam was then around ninety people, of whom about ten would have been children, the school accepted pupils from other villages, in particular Little Hallam and Mapperley. Evidence of the original building can be found on the date stone reading ‘FWN 1872’ over the front porch. The building was extended in 1898, evidence of which was a copy of the ‘Ilkeston Advertiser’ from that year, found in building rubble under the floor. Unfortunately, this newspaper disintegrated as soon as it was touched. A second extension, this time with a flat roof, was made later; the date is not known but the extension can be seen on a plan dated 1917. When the road was widened in 1963, part of the front yard was lost; to compensate for this a cottage at the rear of the school was demolished and the area paved over. Most of the Newdigate land, which covered West Hallam, Kirk Hallam, Mapperley, Stanley, Dale Abbey, and part of Ilkeston, passed to the ownership of Albert Ball in 1913. Albert Ball’s son, also named Albert, was awarded the Victoria Cross in the 1914 war; a statue of him stands in Nottingham Castle grounds. In October 1917, the school was sold to the Church. This was to the Diocese of Southwell, Derby not becoming a Diocese until 1927.
By the 1960s, Kirk Hallam had grown to an extent which made the school building inadequate, and the school closed in 1965, being replaced by a new building five hundred yards nearer to Derby. The building was retained for Church purposes, but fell into bad repair because of a lack of proper maintenance. By 1978 the building was almost a ruin, and was offered for sale. The present owner saw the opportunity to convert the building to a house of special character, and the result is what you now see. The objective throughout the conversion, and since, has been to retain the external appearance as far as possible, also to make the maximum use of existing materials. Examples are the replacement of damaged brickwork using matching bricks from demolished outbuildings, the use of part of an old fireplace as a doorstep, and the foundations of the old cottage now form part of a rockery. A number of people who attended the school have said that the school had a happy atmosphere. It is hoped that some of that happiness remains, to be shared amongst all who visit the building now.
From The Parish Box
Annual Report Of School Inspector - 31st January, 1894
Kirk Hallam C. E. School (Derby)
“The children were rather talkative; otherwise they were in very fair order. The work was uneven. The style of Reading and Recitation in the second and third standards, some of the Writing and the Arithmetic in the second standard were good. On the other hand intelligence in Reading and Repetition has not been trained, Spelling in the second and third standards is very inferior, and Mental Arithmetic generally and sums in the fourth standard were poor. English above the first standard was of no value and no grant can be recommended for this subject. The first class of infants did fairly well, but the other classes are still backward. Needlework among infants and the first standard should improve. On account of faulty instruction in Spelling and English the school is declared inefficient.”
Killers V Cowslips
By Joyce Sivills (Nee Stirland)
What a football match that was. It was played down Parkin’s fields, shortly after the War, and was a charity match for Alf Syson who had been ill. All the village turned out that Sunday morning to watch. The Cowslips were the local young women and girls, and the Killers (the men) all dressed up. My brother Geoff was a matador, brother Harry dressed like a girl (very pretty) and my husband, Ray, dressed in pyjamas, one leg cut off, a skull cap on, and an aluminium hot water bottle around his waist. Dennis Collington had on a lovely dress and bonnet. Most had lace around their shorts and wore funny hats. Bill Barrowcliffe was referee and Mrs Wright, the Mayoress, kicked off. Don’t ask me what the score was, I can’t remember. (Joyce, see next item; Ed) I wonder if anyone can remember the two ponds on Ladywood Road. One followed the road, and the other, a large round one, was at the bottom of our garden, at No. 112. It was surrounded by willow trees, which my three brothers and younger sister were always climbing, making believe they were cars, ships, planes, etc. The times one or the other fell in, coming home wet through and stinking of pond water, to my Mam’s disgust. During the War, my future husband was stationed at Kirk Hallam for a while. The camp was next to Mr and Mrs Keeling’s house at the end of the village and Joyce Keeling and I were good friends and we loved dancing. When I met Ray he could not dance a step and we used to go down Parkin’s fields and I would teach him the Barn Dance, Veleta, Military Two Step and all the old dances. Then on to the 6d hop (old money) in the Parish Room, dodging the middle pillars, with Tommy Seagrave, the postman, as M.C.
From A Local Newspaper
Football - As She Is Played By The Cowslips And The Killers
KIRK HALLAM COWSLIPS, a women’s team, beat Kirk Hallam Killers, the men’s team, by four goals to two goals and a try in a comic football match at Kirk Hallam last night. When the two teams lined up for the kick-off, which was performed by the Mayoress of Ilkeston (Mrs. D. Wright) it was seen that the men were clearly out-numbered, the Cowslips having 15 players compared with the Killers 11. Turning out in fancy dress, the Killers had a big handicap, for referee Bill Barrowcliffe ruled that the men were not to run while on the field. While being very strict on the Killers, Mr. Barrowcliffe made every allowance for the inexperience of the Cowslips and turned a blind eye whenever they picked up the ball.
A daring Killer tried the same trick near the half-way line and the referee promptly awarded a penalty to the Cowslips. The killers saved the situation by nominating 10 goalkeepers! On another occasion Mr. Barrowcliffe awarded a goal to the ladies because the Killers’ goal-keeper prevented a forward from scoring.
After half-time the referee relaxed his control on the game and the Cowslips at once started to play Rugby football. The Killers followed suit and scored two Association football goals and one Rugby football try. When the men again attacked the Cowslips, two goal-keepers carried the goal posts off the field. There was a brief interlude as three ‘casualties’ were piled into a garden barrow, wheeled to the touch-line and unceremoniously tipped out on to the grass. The event was organised by the Kirk Hallam Get-Together Club to help a Kirk Hallam man who has been unable to work for the past two years owing to illness.
Killers; Geoff Stirland, Harry Stirland, Geoff Watson, Ray Sivells, Albert Quail, Bob Cooper, Alfred Hitchcock, Alan Lomax, Dennis Collington and Peter Hallam.