Landlords of Peak Hotel
1809-1828 Robert Schofield Watson
1828-1839 Deborah Watson
1839-1887 Benjamin Watson
1887-1890 George Mitchell
1890-1891 Alfred William Goodall
1891-1893 Mary Hannah Unwin
1893-1894 George Walker
1894-1914 William Johnstone
1914-1926 Florence Cooper
1926-1934 Benjamin Riley
1934-1948 Charles Alfred Viccars
1948-1952 Francis Booth Bradford
1952-1953 Ernest Brunt
1953-1954 Phyliss Brunt
1954-1961 Henry Rethaby
1961-1966 Cyril Berry-Greensmith
1966-1970 Ronald Blake
1970-1980 Graham Wilfred Swallow
1980-1998 Paul Holwell
1998-2001 John Ernest Jowett
2001-2002 Kevin David Jellis
2002-2003 David Elliott & Theresa Ann Stanley
2003-2009 Karry Finney & Steve Baker
2009-2010 Timothy Lee Jones
2011-2012 Lee Griffin
2012-2014 Anne Marie Harris
2014-Present Richard John Samuel Ellison
The Watson Family (1809-1887)
Peak Hotel first opened as an inn in 1809, with innkeeper Robert Schofield Watson, who was a butcher by trade, and kept a shop down a little alley across the road from the inn. He also owned the field opposite. The property was leased from the How family, from which the lane outside takes its name. Back then, the inn was known as the "Board". In the same year, their son Benjamin was Christened at the village church on Christmas Eve. At this period, there were only 7 alehouses in Castleton. Robert Schofield Watson died here September 16th 1828 aged 46. A fortnight later the youngest son, Richard also died, aged only 11. Robert's widow Deborah then kept the inn, while her sons William and Benjamin took over at the butchers. The name of the inn then changed to "The Heart", where it became popular with visitors. In 1839, Deborah relinquished the running of the pub to her son Benjamin and his new wife Harriet. They had two children; Francis and Robert. Alas, Harriet died May 6th 1844, aged only 23. Benjamin remained at the inn with his children and changed the name to the "Butcher's Arms" following the death of Deborah, his mother in December of 1846, where he then purchased the inn from Elizabeth How, who still owned the inn at that time.
On the tithe map, Peak Hotel is described as a house, barn and garden, a cottage and croft (across the road) and butchers shop. In 1847, his brother William died and Benjamin never remarried, so his sister in law, Martha became the housekeeper. By the time 1861 rolled around, both of Benjamin's children worked as butchers in the shop. Fast forward ten years, and Benjamin Watson was a butcher, innkeeper and farmer of 16 acres! He eventually sold the property to Greaves & Co, Norfolk Brewery, Sheffield in 1887 for £650 and two years later saw rebuilding and alterations take place, costing £2000, with stabling for 50 horses and a butchers shop, complete with a outside balcony to give it a Swiss style effect. While all this was taking place, a 5ft sword of the Cromwell period was found in a stream nearby.
It was officially renamed the Peak Hotel on 23rd October 1890 with a grand reopening on May 13th 1891, where the brewery held a dinner for 50 of their workers.
Benjamin Watson died April 5th 1896 aged 82; he lived to see the railway come through the district two years earlier, and the influx of visitors the trains brought to the Hope Valley.
By the 1930's Duncan Gilmour's Brewery of Sheffield had brought the inn and later sold it to Tetley's.