Check out the blog post we wrote recentlyVisit the ‘Plague Village’
Follow in the footsteps of the heroic people of Eyam, who sealed off their village in the 17th century to stop the evil bubonic plague from spreading. Learn the tragic tales of those who lost their lives – and happier accounts those who survived – on a circular walk around this Peak District village.
History springs to life as you visit famous landmarks in the story of how the Plague came to the sleepy village of Eyam in 1665, a year before the Great Fire of London.
Local tailor, George Viccars, ordered some cloth from London, where the bubonic plague was running riot. When it arrived, the cloth sealed the fate of this small village as it released plague-carrying fleas. Within days, Viccars and several of his neighbours were dead. Some villages fled to safety, but most stayed put and quarantined themselves to stop the plague spreading any further
Food and other supplies were left on the village boundary, 260 people lost their lives over a 14-month period, ending in October 1666. Some survived, and their descendants still live in the village today.
You can follow this compelling story of bravery at Eyam Museum and experience several trails that take in the Plague Cottages, Eyam Church, Cucklet Delf and the tragic Riley Graves – where poor Mrs. Hancock buried her husband and six children within the space of eight days.
Start your jounrey at Eyam Hall and cherry pick from a number of walks – The Two Survivors, The Three Decisions, The Lone Mother and The Lovers – to help you discover Eyam and the surrounding countryside.
While you’re in the village, take time to marvel at the splendid architectural gem, the Jacobean Eyam Hall and Craft Centre, built in 1671 as the Plague took hold, and its beautifully-restored period garden. Pick up some gifts from the locally run craft and National Trust shops, or ponder the sacrifices made over the fascinating tale of the Peak District’s remarkable ‘Plague Village’ with lunch or afternoon tea and cake in a quaint cafe.