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Introducing Hermits Cave and woods, Church and graveyard - + Others

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Dale Abbey

 A more peaceful and pleasant spot than Dale Abbey is hard to find in the whole of Derbyshire. Yet it is less than three miles from the suburbs of Derby to the west, and even closer to a vast area of housing and industrialisation on the eastern side.

The story of Dale Abbey, or Depedale as it was originally known, begins when a Derby baker had a dream -- the Virgin Mary appeared and told him to go to Depedale, to live a life of solitude and prayer. At that time it was a wild and marshy place and the hermit carved out a home and chapel in a sandstone cliff.

Hermit's Wood - Derbyshire, England

Located near Ilkeston in Derbyshire is an ancient area of woodland. One of the most common phenomena said to occur is strange banging noises, often accompanied by a change of normal to a very oppressive atmosphere. Witnesses claim they begin to get the overwhelming sensation of not only being watched but also followed. In addition, people have reported the apparition of a monk or some other hooded form. For the most part the ghost is generally seen at night time rather than during the day. Whether or not this spirit is also responsible for the change in atmosphere is unclear.


Tradition tends to blame the paranormal phenomena on a location within the forest that was once a hermit's cave. Legend states that a monk, probably from the nearby Abbey of Dale, hung himself at this location and continues to haunt the area.


DALE Abbey has always been famous for its hermit's cave but not many people know the story of the highwaymen who was converted to Christianity on a visit to the village in the 12th century.

Legend has it that Uthliglas and a group of bandits set up camp near the hermitage and, in the night, Uthliglas, had a vision of a golden cross rising from the sky.


He told his fellow robbers that the land around the cave was a holy place where they could find God and change their ways. They laughed and went on their way but Uthliglas found the hermit and became a reformed character.


The Well

The well still exists. It appears to be in a direct line with the cave, found high in the woods. The well lies within the private garden of Church house, although it can be easily seen in the winter from the field in which the footpath below the church passes through, as well from the church yard.  The well is a delightfully rustic one and certainly contains old stonework if not from the hermit’s time than the period of the Abbey. It is an oval structure with eight stones around the mouth, a three foot rectangular stone covers half of the well and has a semi-circular cut placed in the middle. Mossy steps lead from the higher end of the garden into the little dell where the well arises. The well has been dressed in the early 2000s but has now disappeared into obscurity. Indeed, some believe that it is does not exist in the first place…



Dale Abbey Hauntings