Ilam, a village and a parish in Staffordshire. The village stands in a picturesque vale, under the high limestone ridge of Bnnster, in the valley of the Manifold, 1 mile W of the foot of Thorpe Cloud and the entrance of Dovedale, and 5 miles NNW of Ashborne. It is a place of great beauty, contains a highly-decorated hexagonal cross, erected in 1840 to the memory of Mrs Watts Russell, and has a post office under Ashborne; money order and telegraph office, Fenny Bentley. The civil parish is made up of the townships of Ham, Castern, and Throwley, with the extra-parochial district of Musden. Acreage, 3571; population of the civil parish, 246; of the ecclesiastical, 228. Ham Hall was erected in 1823 on the site of an old mansion, and is a noble edifice in the Tudor style, with a Norman tower. The rivers Hamps and Manifold find an egress from their subterranean course in the Hall grounds. The vale of Ham abounds in beauty and romance, forms a great attraction to tourists through Derbyshire, and is said to have been Dr Johnson's Happy Valley in his " Rasselas." A grotto near the hall, still known as Congreve's Grot, was the place where Congreve wrote his " Old Bachelor," and part of his " Mourning Bride." The living is a vicarage in the diocese of Lichfield; net value, £280 with½residence. The church was beautifully restored in 1856 by Sir Gilbert Scott, has a saddleback western tower, and contains an ancient font, S. Bertram's shrine, and other curious monuments. The old church had an ivy-covered tower, and was very picturesque. A small Gothic chapel stands over the burial vault of the Russell family, and contains a monument, with group of statuary, by Chantry.
The following is a list of the administrative units in which this place was either wholly or partly included.
|Ecclesiastical parish||Ilam Holy Cross|
Any dates in this table should be used as a guide only.
Directories & Gazetteers
We have transcribed the entry for Ilam from the following:
- Samuel Lewis' A Topographical Dictionary of England, by Samuel Lewis, seventh edition, published 1858. (Ilam (Holy Cross))
Land and Property
A full transcript of the Return of Owners of Land in 1873 for Staffordshire is online.
Online maps of Ilam are available from a number of sites:
- Bing (Current Ordnance Survey maps).
- Google Streetview.
- National Library of Scotland. (Old maps)
- old-maps.co.uk (Old Ordnance Survey maps to buy).
- Streetmap.co.uk (Current Ordnance Survey maps).
- A Vision of Britain through Time. (Old maps)
Newspapers and Periodicals
The British Newspaper Archive have fully searchable digitised copies of the following Staffordshire newspapers online:
- Staffordshire Advertiser
- Tamworth Herald
- Lichfield Mercury
- Staffordshire Sentinel
- Wolverhampton Chronicle and Staffordshire Advertiser
Villages, Hamlets, &cCastern