Flypast ~ Squaring The Circle


I suppose it’s rather bizarre, but three Septembers ago I arranged a family gathering in the very buildings where my Derbyshire great, great grandfather  once kept his horses, oats store and cheese press along with all the usual 19th century small farm paraphernalia. Of course by 2018 the said buildings had been transformed into very smart holiday accommodation which we were renting for a week’s holiday, and by then too any actual family connection with the place and the nearby farmhouse had long been severed; back in 1892 in fact, when the Fox family left Callow Farm after nearly 200 years there.  

But then there are other kinds of connection, less tangible, but in some ways more visceral – the place, the landscape, the knowledge that past family members had lived and worked here, had been born and died here, their mortal comings and goings marked in the records and gravestones at St. Michael’s church down in the valley at Hathersage:



The header photo was taken from the barns early one morning, looking across the Derwent Valley to the high moors above Hathersage. Here’s a daylit view:

Across Derwent Valley

And here are the barns:

P1080339 resized

And Callow Farmhouse, now a private home quite separate from the barns, but once home to the Fox family c1700-1892:


You can read more of this story at an earlier post:

So what did Great Great Grandfather George Brayley Fox keep in his barns in 1892

Past Square #17


32 thoughts on “Flypast ~ Squaring The Circle

    1. Ah-ha! No more than an aircraft vapour trail. But then on the other hand, I think it is more or less above Carl Wark, an ancient stone palisaded earthwork, possibly Iron Age.

  1. Fantastic to get together in the birthplace of your family. That’s when one realizes how far back we all go…
    (And it must have been a giant smoking rings lying on the hills) 🙏🏻

      1. Exactly. Recumbent. How so very English of you. I would have said ‘reclining’. My English has become so Americanized…
        (And the giant is dressed in green of course… with a point felt hat à la Robin des bois…)

      2. Sadly no giant traces in Shropshire, though one was apparently responsible for making our nearest local hill, The Wrekin. There’s a famous hill giant in Dorset in the SW – at Cerne Abbas.

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