This tower on Stanton Moor in Derbyshire's Peak District is altogether magnificent.
But what is it? A folly? A rather grand winding shaft for a long disused lead mine?? The tower of a church which has since disappeared (there's one of those in Hornsey, more details on request)???
Well, it's altogether better than that. This tower was built in 1832 to celebrate the Great Reform Act, the first step - more of a big leap - towards making Britain a representative Parliamentary democracy.
It's known formally as Earl Grey Tower - he was prime minister of the Whig/Liberal government which passed the act (and yes the same guy gave his name to Earl Grey tea) - and was built by one of his supporters. But this Grade II listed gritstone tower is generally known by the much more resonant name of the Reform Tower.
I've seen Reform banners, and indeed have a Reform plate ... but a Reform Tower, that really is grand!!
If you are on the look-out for the tower - and in spite of its height, it is easy to miss - it's close to the Nine Ladies stone circle.
Andrew Whitehead's blog
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