About this image
Photo shows Mary Ward in about 1955. Mary worked at Thornhills until she retired.
Thornhills Country Produce was once a major employer in Great Longstone, with a workforce of 450 working in their egg, poultry and dairy processing works. There have been Thornhills in Great Longstone since 1665, and they still farm there. Records show that in the 1790s, Robert Thornhill regularly had cheese brought from Longnor by packhorse, probably to be resold around Longstone. A record of 1796 refers to 12cwt being delivered from Bakewell to Longstone and then on to Sheffield, and within a 7-day period the following year Thornhill paid for three tons of cheese to be taken from Longnor to Ashford. Between 1814-18 he was also selling cheese to Matthew Furniss of Chesterfield. Memorials to the Thornhills are prominent inside the village church. Thornhill House, their one-time family home is now a residential home for the elderly. An enterprising business park has in recent years has taken over the former premises of Thornhills Country Produce.