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Well dressing was revived here in the 17th century by Mary Twigg. It started as Garlands of flowers being hung at wells as a thanksgiving because the wells did not run dry in the severe drought of 1615. Nowadays, it is far more elaborate with each well having up to twenty people, mainly from the village, building large frames used to hold a picture composed of natural materials such as flower petals, moss, lichens, bark, and wool.

The six wells in Tissington are the first in the year to be dressed. This occurs in May on Ascension day. They always have a religious theme and only once have two wells been decorated with a similar design. On Ascension day a procession visits all the wells, starting at the Hall Well. When the throng reach each well, the well is blessed by the Bishop of Derby.

The Yew Tree well is interesting because it is only since the 1970s that is has water all year round. Before then, the water was pumped to a small reservoir above the village which then supplied the whole village with mains water. During the week of the well dressing, the Yew Tree well was actually filled with water from this reservoir! Nowadays, the well is no longer used to fill the reservoir, and so has water in it all year round.

Well Dressing dates for 2016 are Thursday 5th May to Wednesday 11th May.

There is also Tissington Hall, a pleasant village duck pond, and access to the Tissington Trail.

Tissington Hall is the family home of Sir Richard and Lady Fitzherbert and is open to the public on selected days each year. In 2016 the dates are 29th-31st March, 2nd May, 9th-11th May, 30th May and 1st-29th August (closed 18th August). In addition, groups (e.g. walking groups, WI, historical societies) can be taken around at any time of the year by prior arrangement. Personal tours under the "Invitation to View" scheme will take place on 4th April, 11th April, 3rd May, 6th June, and 20th June 2016.

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Well that's the legal stuff sorted.

Should you decline to comply with this warning, a leather winged demon of the night will soar from the deep malevolent caverns of the white peak into the shadowy moonlit sky and, with a thirst for blood on its salivating fangs, search the very threads of time for the throbbing of your heartbeat. Just thought you'd want to know that.

Last Updated : Friday, 01-Feb-2019
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