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The text on the postcard reads:
"Willersley Castle was built by Sir Richard Arkwright, the owner of large cotton mills in Cromford. He came to Cromford in 1777 and purchased the Manor of Willersley in 1782. He soon saw the possibility of building a worthy mansion at Willersley, and had a site cleared at the cost of over three thousand pounds - a substantial amount in those days. The Castle was almost completed in 1788 when the building was burnt out. Unfortunately Sir Richard never lived in the house he had planned, for he died in 1792 just before the Castle was completed for the second time. It remained in the possession of the Arkwright family until 1927, when it was purchased by the Wesley Guild and opened as a Holiday Guest house in 1928. It stands in 70 acres of lovely ground, and, viewed from Scarthin Nick across the river, it forms one of the fairest sights in Derbyshire."
Text taken from information at www.wirksworth.org.uk:
Willersley Castle (now a Grade II listed building) stands on the south side of a commanding eminence, that forms the eastern boundary of the Derwent in its course through Matlock Dale: the river flowing at the foot of the hill, in a grand sweep eastward.
The castle consists of an oblong, square building, with a circular tower rising from the centre of the roof, and a semicircular tower projecting from the front on each side of the entrance; and two wings, with a round tower at each angle: the whole structure is embattled, and the exterior walls are of white freestone.
It was built in 1789/90 for Sir Richard Arkwright, who had purchased the Manor of Willersley in 1782. He was the cotton manufacturing entrepreneur, who had built his first cotton mills at Cromford about 1770. His work for the British cotton industry earned him a personal fortune and a Knighthood in 1786. He employed the Welshman, William Thomas, as his Architect, who designed a picturesque house in classical style to suit the grandeur of its commanding position on the hills overlooking the River Derwent.
While it was still being built, and the Arkwrights were living at the Rock House across the river at Cromford, the new house was completely gutted by fire on the night of 8th August 1791, and Sir Richard died a year later before he had ever lived in it. However, it was rebuilt (to designs by Thomas Gardner and the locally-born Edward Blore) and enjoyed by his eldest son, another Richard Arkwright, and then by his third son Peter and his descendants. However, Peter Arkwright's great-grandson did not wish to live there, and it was sold in 1928 to the Wesley Guild. It opened to the public in 1929 and in 1991, was run as a conference and holiday centre, still by the Wesley Guild although then trading under the name Christian Guild Holidays.