A Gate-Post Eye’s View In Derbyshire

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I took these photos a week ago as we were exploring the footpaths around Callow Barn. I have no idea why old Derbyshire stone gate posts often have holes at the top of them. I have considered that they might have once been used as slots for a wooden bar, but then why at the top; what function would it perform? The holes would have taken much effort to drill too. And so in the absence of knowing, I used this one to peep through. Looking up the path to Offerton Moor, and down the path towards the River Derwent, Hathersage and Stanage Edge and Higger Tor.

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And just so you can get a gist of the gate posts, here’s a one in the garden of Callow Barn where we were staying. There’s a sturdy iron hinge embedded on the left hand side of it, aligned with the hole, presumably to take a gate, so making my notion of a pole-bearing slot unlikely. Explanations welcome.

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Lens-Artists #14 Windows This week Ann-Christine gives us windows as the theme. Please pop over to see her wonderful examples.

30 thoughts on “A Gate-Post Eye’s View In Derbyshire

  1. I guess it depends on the height but I was just doing some reading about it, based on your post, and it does seem they were used for crossbars:

    https://www.woodlands.co.uk/blog/woodland-activities/gateposts/

    The picture here shows a relatively rare arrangement where the gatepost has holes drilled out to take the horizontal rails of the gate – these are sometimes called “heave gates” for obvious reasons. This arrangement totally avoids the need for hinges but only works where there are deep enough horizontal holes so that the gate can be moved enoug

    I’m guessing that in the old days they were used to keep cattle from crossing even one bar at the right height would represent a passable barrier at least in the short term. Or at least enough to have them choose a different path if one was open to them. It certainly wouldn’t be good for long term cattle management.

  2. Whatever it’s intended function Tish, I like your creative use very much. And I imagine generations of children probably also took advantage of it as a spy-hole.

  3. Seems to be of a height to at least impede a bovine with escape on her mind, on the other hand it’s certainly a Portal to The Other Side … of who knows where. πŸ˜€

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