The Grave of Sir Joseph Whitworth

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Written and Photographs by: David Minshall

St Helen’s church at Darley Dale

Sir Joseph Whitworth died on the evening of Saturday 22 January 1887, aged 83, at Monte Carlo. He was buried on Wednesday 2 February 1887 in the churchyard of the 12th century St Helen’s church at Darley Dale, Derbyshire.

The remains of Sir Joseph Whitworth, Bart., of Stancliffe Hall, Derbyshire, were interred yesterday in a vault in the old parish churchyard at Darleydale. In spite of the dreadful state of the weather there was a large attendance at the funeral. The principal part of Sir Joseph’s later life was spent at his Derbyshire seat, occasional visits being made to his extensive works at Openshaw, Manchester, and his town residence in George-street, Westminster. An express train on the Midland Railway brought a great number of friends from London. The funeral and the arrangements altogether were of the plainest and simplest character.

(London Standard, Thursday 03 February 1887)

The Whitworth vault is pictured below. Sir Joseph Whitworth (1803-1887) is interred in the central vault and to the right is his wife, Lady Mary Louisa (1829-1896). The vault to the left is that of Mary Orrell Higginbotham (d.1889), only daughter of Mary Louisa by her first husband Alfred Orrell.

The Whitworth grave

On Saturday 1 September 1894 a monument from the inhabitants of Darley Dale was presented to Lady Whitworth, in token of the esteem felt for the memory of the late Sir Joseph Whitworth, Bart.