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ABBEY INN

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A 15th century building, probably the Abbot's Lodgings, part of the remains of Darley Abbey, an Augustinian Priory removed from St Helens, Derby. The stone building is of two storeys with three square-headed windows. To either side are four buttresses with offsets and the roof is of old tiles. The building belonged to the Derbyshire Archaeological Society for many years. It was roofed following a bequest in the 1920s and a one of the stone buttresses was enlarged, but movement continued and the side walls were shored up with heavy timber shores in the 1950s. This was followed by the installation of a main sewer down the centre of the road resulting in sideways movement of the ground adjacent to the building under pressure from the shores - the outer wall to the street having settled against the shores over 400mm out of plumb. The shores blocked half the road but it was clear that their removal would precipitate the collapse of the wall. The property was a liability to the Society. The solution was to find a use which would fund the building's repair. Research was required. Sometime after the dissolution of the Abbey the village was developed by the Evans, mill owners who had put covenants on all their land preventing the sale of alcohol. The only land that they had not bought was the small piece containing the only remaining section of the Abbey building. This led to its re-use as a public house, still the only one in the village. Michael Wood purchased the building form the Archaeological Society to convert it into a public house, now known as 'The Abbey' . The problem of the bulging wall was solved by temporarily jacking up the roof, inserting flat jacks into the buttresses and jacking the wall back 250mm, lowering back the roof and tying in the wall plate. The original external steps to first floor level were retained, with new railings, giving access directly into the upper bar which comprises the full volume of the original hall.

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