History of the Parish
From: Kelly's Directory of the Counties of Derby, Notts, Leicester and Rutland
pub. London (May, 1891) - pp.95-98
CLAY CROSS is an ecclesiastical parish comprising the townships of Stretton, Clay Lane and Woodthorpe, formed 6 Feb. 1852, from the civil parish of North Wingfield, a small portion of Stretton, however, being in the parish of Shirland. Clay Cross is 5 miles south from Chesterfield and 139 from London, in the Chesterfield division of the county, Scarsdale hundred, a sub-division of Alfreton petty sessional division, Chesterfield union and county court district, rural deanery of Chesterfield, archdeaconry of Derby and diocese of Southwell. Here is a station on the Midland railway, which passes through the iron works by a tunnel 1 mile 140 yards in length.
The "Local Government Act, 1858," was adopted here 14 May, 1875, and the township is governed by the Clay Lane local board of nine members and well lighted with gas and supplied with water by the Clay Cross and Waterworks Company.
The church of St. Bartholomew, built in 1851, is an edifice of stone designed by Mr. Stevens, architect, of Derby, and consists of chancel, clerestoried nave of four bays, aisles, south porch and a western tower with spire containing 6 bells: vestries were subsequently added and the chancel altered at a cost of £700, under the direction of the late G. E. Street esq. R.A. : there are three stained windows, one of which, erected in 1880, is a memorial to Mr. H. Howe, engineer, and another, placed in 1878, is a memorial to Mrs. C. Binns : there are 500 sittings: the church and churchyard were closed to interments 1878-9. The separate register dates only from the year 1851 ; all previous entries relating to this place are in the parish registers of North Wingfield. The living is a vicarage, average tithe rent-charge £39, net yearly value £286, with residence and 3½ acres of glebe, in the gift of the rector of North Wingfield, and held since 1888 by the Rev. Henry Sharpe Oldham A.K.C.L. The church of St. Barnabas, situated at Danes Moor, and erected in 1883 as a chapel of ease to the parish church, is a building of stone, consisting of chancel with vestry, nave, south porch and a belfry, added in 1887: there are 220 sittings. The Catholic chapel, dedicated to St. Patrick and St. Bridget, was erected in 1862 and enlarged or rebuilt in 1882.
There are also Baptist, Wesleyan, Primitive Methodist, Free Methodist and Methodist New Connexion chapels at Clay Cross; Methodist New Connexion and Primitive Methodist chapels at Danes Moor, and a Methodist New Connexion chapel at Handley.
There is a cemetery of about 4 acres, with two mortuary chapels, the site being a gift from W. G. Turbutt esq. of Ogston Hall; it is under the supervision of a burial board of nine members. The Clay Cross Institute and Public Hall has an excellent library and is provided with a good supply of papers and periodicals.
The Clay Cross Colliery and Ironworks Company employ about 3,000 hands. The Clay Cross and District Ploughing Association holds matches annually, in October. The principal landowners are Major W. G. Turbutt J.P. of Ogston Hall, Joseph H. Dixon esq. and the Clay Cross Company. The soil and subsoil are clay and loam; chief crops, wheat and oats, with some land in pasture.
The area of the parish is 3,926 acres, and township of Clay Lane 1,313; rateable value, £15,311; the population in 1881 of the township was 6,347; of the parish. 7,794, and local board district, 6,879.