The second VR video is up now and its about Eyam
The text is below
Hi and welcome to our day trip to Eyam 360 video
Eyam village is in Derbyshire between Buxton and Chesterfield and is famous for cutting itself off from the rest of the world in 1665 when bubonic plaque broke out in the village. These actions are believed to be why the Black Death didn’t spread North
lI will tell you more as we walk around but first the important bits – this is the main carpark and you can see a museum on the right with the rat on the weathervane and the toilets on the left.
There are two car parks, a pay and display and a free parking one with an honesty box
Depending on what you are watching this on you will be able to look around as we tour the village either by panning your phone or using the on-screen arrows
As you walk down from the car park turn left at the end of the road – if you fancy drinks or snacks now is the time to get them from the shop on the corner as I didn’t see much else around the village
So, back to the story, the legend is that the plague was brought to the village in a pile of patterns or clothes from London.
The tailor’s assistant George Vicars opened the package and noticed that the clothes were damp and put them in front of the fire to dry. This activated the fleas eggs in the cloth and the fleas carried the plague
Certainly, Vicars was the first to contract the disease and was the first to die 4 days later. It is recorded in the history and antiquities of Eyam of 1842 that The putrid state of his body rendered immediate interment necessary, and he was buried in the churchyard the following day, September the seventh.
This was the start of the terrible plague that would decimate the village. By the first of March, 1666, the plague in Eyam had killed 56 villagers. In April and May there were only 13 Deaths and it was hoped that the worst had passed.
Unfortunately the warmer weather of June brought the plague back with a vengeance and 19 more villagers died
Some villagers decided to flee the village but the rector Mompesson made the decision to cut off the village from the rest of the outside world with the help of the Earl of Devonshire, then at Chatsworth, They also decided to stop burials in the church. Victims were to be buried quickly and on their own property.
Provisions for the village were brought to the boundary stones and payment left with coins soaked in vinegar
You can still see the stocks on the green. The stocks were erected for the punishment of minor offenders by the Barmote Court, which still sits each spring at the imposing Mechanics Institute which we will get to a little further along
Opposite is Eyam Hall, built in 1672, just six years after the plague and has been the Home of the Wright family for eleven generations,
This is the sheep roasting site which is used in the last week of August during Carnival Week: the streets are garlanded with colourful bunting as the annual whole Sheep-Roast takes place and the village is has thousands of visitors. My husband has been wanting to go to this since he was a lad so maybe we will experience a sheep roasting and bring the camera along to record it for you
Now we come to the first of the plague cottages the first is rose cottage. Outside is a plaque listing the details of the victims
Then the oddly named plague cottage This is where the George vicars lived. Again there is another plaque listing the details of the victims – just one person survived in this house
Then Bagshaw house which was the home of the Siddall family – only a boy of three survived from what looks to be a family of 10
Then the church – as you enter, we can see the war memorial dedicated to those from the village who lost their lives in the first world war. This is a lovely kept church.
The oldest and most striking feature of the churchyard is the eighth-century Celtic cross. One of the best preserved examples in the country, it is decorated with a mixture of Christian and pagan symbols. It may have originally been a wayside preaching cross.
Nearby is the table tomb of Catherine Mompesson the wife of the Rector who didn’t survive the plaque.
On the south wall of the church is a remarkable sundial, built by William Shaw and dated 1775. On a sunny day it not only shows the time quite accurately in half hours, but it also indicates the time in places worldwide.
Over the road from the Church is the Mechanics Institute
For the final tale from Eyam, you would have thought that the rector who survived the plague would have been a national hero and people would be singing songs about him. Well no actually in his next parish he was shunned because of his association with the black death and was made to live in a hut outside of the village – people are never grateful