Welcome to the history of The Old Hall, a 16th Century building steeped in history. Hope is mentioned in the Domesday Book of 1086 as having a church, although the present church opposite the hall actually only dates back to the 14th Century.
The name Hope means "an upland Valley" - an accurate description of this Peak District village! From the Anglo Saxon era until the reign of Charles 1st, large parts of North Derbyshire were a royal hunting forest. The original part of the Old Hall was built by Thomas de Balgi, who married an heiress whose vast dowery included large estates within the area.
As of 24th September 1984, The Old Hall was awarded the position of a Grade II Listed Building. This means the building is recognised as being of "national importance" and "of special interest, warranting every effort to preserve it". The Old Hall is also recorded on the official register (The List of Buildings of Special Architectural or Historic Interest), which legally protects it from demolition, extension or significantly altered without permission.
The Balguy Family
The Balguy family dates back to Edward 1st (1272-1307). In 1577, Hope or Hoope as it was known then, had 7 ale houses within its parish.
Home to the Henry Balguy and his family in 1608, he is affectionately described as a yeoman farmer and Gentlemen. Henry was succeeded by his eldest son, also named Henry, who was a thrice married attorney, gaining on each occasion considerable wealth. Henry Balguy II was then appointed High Sheriff in 1681, when he was also known to have kept a private bank by way of storing his money in an oak chest. There is a story of a woman who had a strong desire to inspect his hoard of gold, but when invited to help herself to a handful, found the coins so firmly wedged in that she couldn't remove a single one!
Henry Balguy II died in 1685, and there is a small brass plate in his memory in his chancel of Hope Church, where you can find his arms and effigy in pointed hat, doublet and breeches.
The present hall was rebuilt by John Balguy in 1703, it is also noted that he obtained a weekly charter in 1715 for a weekly Saturday market, and four fairs, where a cattle market was then held within the grounds. After an outbreak of foot and mouth disease, the market was unfortunately forced to close, but it was later reinstated in 1843.
The will of Mary Balguy can be seen hung in the bar area. Also on display is the inventory of the goods and chattels of Henry Balguy.
From Hope Hall to The Old Hall
In December 1272, permission to start building Hope Hall was given by the newly appointed King Edward. This was the knocked down in the early 1500s and a new building erected in its foundations. These now ancient foundations can still be seen in the cellar underneath the bar.
The original stable yard and coach house were to the rear of the building, and the remains of the gateposts which were once the entrance to the courtyard and orchard, can still be seen. This is where the lodge to the hall stood and which later on, became a smithy.
In 1719, a licence was granted by King George 1st, and the Hope Hall was opened as The Stone Daggers. September 14th 1876, saw it officially renamed as The Old Hall Hotel. Locals had always referred to the Inn as "Old Hall". Overtime, the name stuck, and this name has been retained to this day. In its quaint old rooms, an interesting feature were the oil paintings inserted into the panels, one of which represented "Danae in the shower of gold".