kids encyclopedia robot

Bolsover facts for kids

Kids Encyclopedia Facts
Quick facts for kids
Bolsover Castle from Stockley Trail.jpg
Bolsover Castle overlooking the residential areas of New Bolsover & Castle Estate
Bolsover is located in Derbyshire
Population 11,673 (civil parish)
OS grid reference SK475706
Civil parish
  • Old Bolsover
  • Bolsover
Shire county
Country England
Sovereign state United Kingdom
Postcode district S44
Dialling code 01246 / 01623 / 01773 / 01909
Police Derbyshire
Fire Derbyshire
Ambulance East Midlands
EU Parliament East Midlands
UK Parliament
List of places
53°13′49″N 1°17′15″W / 53.2304°N 1.2875°W / 53.2304; -1.2875

Bolsover is a market town and the administrative centre of the Bolsover District, Derbyshire, England. It is 145 miles (233 km) from London, 18 miles (29 km) from Sheffield, 26 miles (42 km) from Nottingham and 27 miles (43 km) from Derby. It is the main town in the Bolsover district.

The civil parish for the town is called Old Bolsover. It includes the town and the New Bolsover model village, along with Hillstown, Carr Vale, Shuttlewood, Stanfree, Oxcroft, and Whaley. Its population at the 2011 UK Census was 11,673.

Bolsover, along with several nearby villages, is situated in the north-east of the county of Derbyshire. It is the main town in the District of Bolsover, which is an electoral constituency and part of Derbyshire.

Bolsover is seeking city status in the Platinum Jubilee Civic Honours.


The origin of the name is uncertain. It may be derived from Bula's Ofer or Boll's Ofer, respectively the Old English for Bull's Ridge or Boll's Ridge (the ridge associated with a person named Boll), alternatively in the 1650s it was referred to as 'Bolsouer'.

Bolsover is mentioned in Domesday Book, named as Belesovre, where it is described as the property of William Peverel (or "Peveril"). The description refers to the villans, the ploughs, 8 acres (32,000 m2) of meadow and woodland pasture, which is given as two leagues by a league.

William was possibly an illegitimate son of William the Conqueror. Bolsover became the seat of the Peverel family, and in the 12th century a keep was built. The present castle was erected in 1613.

In 1657 William Cavendish produced the book 'La Methode et Invention nouvelle de Dresser les Chevaux' which he produced in exile in Antwerp during the Cromwellian Protectorate. This was translated in 1743 to 'A General System of Horsemanship in All its Branches' this covered the dressage of horses, at his 'Bolsouer', Welbeck and Antwerp stables and there are etched prints existing showing the 'Monsieur le Marquis a Cheval' amongst many other views of the town. The etches are attributed to Abraham van Diepenbeeck a pupil of Van Dyck.

The district of Bolsover is notable for three sites of historical importance: Bolsover Castle, Creswell Crags (home to Britain's only known Palaeolithic cave art) and Creswell Model Village, an example of early twentieth century design from the Model village movement.

Two railway lines once served Bolsover, but both were early casualties. The Midland Railway (later part of the LMS), arrived first with their north-south running "Doe Lea Valley Line" from Staveley to Pleasley, opened in September 1890 and thus enabling a through service between Chesterfield and Mansfield to be operated, but services were withdrawn as early as September 1930 . The Bolsover railway station on this line was known as "Bolsover Castle" in its latter days.

The other line was the highly ambitious west-east running Lancashire, Derbyshire and East Coast Railway, later part of the Great Central Railway and subsequently the LNER. Only the middle section from Chesterfield to Lincoln was ever built, opening in March 1897 (the Bolsover station was "Bolsover South"), but the section between Chesterfield and Shirebrook was brought to a premature demise in December 1951 by the deteriorating state of its biggest engineering feature, the 2,624-yard (2,399-metre) Bolsover Tunnel which ran beneath the limestone ridge on which stands the castle. The tunnel was mostly filled in with colliery waste in 1966-67, and both ends sealed off. Today both portals are visible, the eastern portal at the end of an unusually deep sheer-sided cutting in the village of Scarcliffe and the western portal is just to the south east side of Bolsover.

In chronostratigraphy, the British sub-stage (formerly 'stage') of the Carboniferous period, the 'Bolsovian' derives its name from a geological exposure at the River Doe Lea, Bolsover.


The major industry of the area used to be coal mining, but this has declined throughout all of Britain. The two main collieries closed in 1993. Markham Colliery, west of the town, closed on 2 July 1993. Bolsover Colliery, one of the five mines owned by the Bolsover Colliery Company closed on 7 May 1993. The Bolsover Colliery Company was one of the companies in the original FT 30 list of companies. The other main employer was the Coalite and Chemical Company, which produced smokeless fuel and chemicals from coke and was founded in 1937, and moved its main headquarters from London to Bolsover in 1952. It was closed in 2004 after a decline in demand for solid fuel, which had left the company and its many subsidiaries deeply in debt. Its production of chemicals used to produce Agent Orange in the Vietnam War and its environmental impact on surrounding communities of Duckmanton, Shuttlewood, New Bolsover and Bolsover itself had rendered it a controversial company.

Another significant local employer was The Bolsover Hosiery Company Ltd, which was established in 1951 by Bolsover Urban District Council. The main factory site on Oxcroft Lane employed approximately 500 people at its peak in the late 1990s. It underwent a succession of takeovers, eventually becoming part of Courtald's Textiles. The company was taken over by the Sara Lee conglomerate and the factory closed in 2000 with the loss of approximately 350 jobs.


Bolsover Colliery F.C. used to play in the FA Cup. Current club F.C. Bolsover, founded in 2013, played in the Northern Counties East Football League for the 2018/19 season.

Notable people

  • Steven Blakeley – actor
  • Charlie Elliott MBE – English cricketer
  • Peter Fidler – explorer, mapmaker, and surveyor of the Hudson's Bay Company
  • Bill Leivers – ex-professional footballer
  • Ross McMillan – professional rugby hooker for Coventry RFC
  • Mark Morris – author
  • Richard O'Dwyer – computer programmer, creator of, whom the United States sought to extradite over alleged copyright infringement
  • Dennis Skinner – longstanding MP for Bolsover

Images for kids

See also

Kids robot.svg In Spanish: Bolsover para niños

kids search engine
Bolsover Facts for Kids. Kiddle Encyclopedia.