Above: This 1890 map shows how close Stubbin Farm was to the gunpowder mill which lay in the valley below. The blue shaded area shows Fernilee Reservoir today (click to enlarge).

Stubbin Farm

The ruins of Stubbin Farm are well hidden, lying beside a junction of footpaths on the western side of Fernilee Reservoir; where the shoreline path rises up to meet the woodland track.

The only records I’ve managed to discover (with the help of Gail and Mike) are the census returns shown below which reveal that William and Jane Wilson lived here with their four sons in 1871, and that the eldest, George, had moved out before 1881.

William worked at the nearby gunpowder mill, and also farmed 15 acres of land. Two of his sons – Mathew and Thomas – are both listed as coal miners at one of the many local pits in the valley.

A newspaper dated June 28th 1890 carries a gruesome report of an accident on the Bunsal Incline involving 11-year-old John Wilson. I wonder whether he could have been related to the Wilsons of Stubbin Farm. According to the article, John was killed whilst playing on the line when some trucks became detached; three of them running over his body.

Surname First name Born Relationship Occupation Birth place
1841 Census
Wilson George c1791 Farmer Cheshire
Lomas Isaac c1811 Agric. labourer Cheshire
Gaunt Sarah c1826
1851 Census
Wilson George c1786 Head Farm labourer Taxal
Wilson Stephen c1782 Brother Infirm Taxal
Wilson David c1779 Brother Farmer pauper Taxal
1861 Census
Wilson George 1784 Head Farmer of 13 acres Taxal
Wilson David 1796 Brother Farm labourer Taxal
1871 Census
Wilson William 1815 Head Gunpowder maker Cheshire
Wilson Jane 1822 Wife Derbyshire
Wilson George 1854 Son Labourer Derbyshire
Wilson Mathew 1855 Son Labourer Derbyshire
Wilson William 1858 Son Scholar Derbyshire
Wilson Thomas 1860 Son Scholar Derbyshire
1881 Census
Wilson William 1815 Head Labourer at Gunpowder Works (15 acres) Derbyshire
Wilson Jane 1822 Wife Derbyshire
Wilson Mathew 1854 Son Coal miner Derbyshire
Wilson William 1855 Son Farm tenant Derbyshire
Wilson Thomas 1860 Son Coal miner Derbyshire
1891 Census
Wilson Jane 1822 Widow Farmer Fernilee
Wilson William c1860 Son Railway servant Fernilee
1901 Census
Wilson Matthew c1857 Head Farmer & labourer at powder mills Fernilee
Wilson Elizabeth A c1861 Wife Rainow
Wilson Fred c1885 Son Cartridge wrapper at powder mills Fernilee
Wilson William c1886 Son Cartridge wrapper at powder mills Fernilee
Wilson Jane c1889 Daughter Fernilee
Wilson Charles c1891 Son Fernilee
Lowe Charles c1886 Father in law Labourer at powder mills Rainow
Lowe Martha c1883 Sister in law Rainow
Lowe William C c1892 Rainow
1911 Census
Wilson Matthew c1855 Head Farmer & labourer at powder mills Fernilee
Wilson Fred c1885 Son Cartridge wrapper at powder mills Fernilee
Wilson William c1886 Son Cartridge wrapper at powder mills Fernilee
Wilson Jane c1889 Daughter Housekeeper domestic Fernilee
Wilson Charles c1891 Son Carter Fernilee
Lowe William Charles c1892 Nephew Powder mill labourer Rainow