Denby is a village in the English county of Derbyshire that is notable as the birthplace of John Flamsteed, England's first Astronomer Royal, and the location of the Denby Pottery Company. The population at the 2001 Census was 1,827,[2] increasing to 2,190 at the 2011 Census.

Stellasphere Denby 298622 b72c2e3b.jpg
The Stellarsphere in the John Flamsteed Memorial Park
Denby is located in Derbyshire
Location within Derbyshire
Population2,190 (2011)[1]
OS grid referenceSK386470
Shire county
Sovereign stateUnited Kingdom
Post townRIPLEY
Postcode districtDE5
Dialling code01332, 01773
AmbulanceEast Midlands
UK Parliament
List of places
53°01′11″N 1°25′31″W / 53.01974°N 1.42531°W / 53.01974; -1.42531Coordinates: 53°01′11″N 1°25′31″W / 53.01974°N 1.42531°W / 53.01974; -1.42531


The settlement was listed in the Domesday Book of 1086 as Denebi. By 1334, it was a market town and held an annual fair in September. For over two centuries, ironstone and clay were being mined; coal mining started in the 1200s. Royal astronomer John Flamsteed was born in Denby in 1646.

In 1806, William Bourne leased the clay bed that had been discovered while a road was being built. Three years later, the family began manufacturing salt-glazed pottery under the Bourne name son Joseph running the operation. By the Second World War Denby had switched to producing tableware as well as industrial parts. Brown was the primary colour but the company shifted toward more attractive colours after the war. Ownership of the company remained with the family until 1942; after several owners, Denby was acquired by a consortium that was funded by Valco Capital Partners. The enterprise continues today as the Denby Pottery Company.[3]


Denby is 3 miles (4.8 km) east from Belper and 8 miles (13 km) north of Derby. Denby is home to a secondary school which is named after John Flamsteed.[4] It was once served by Denby railway station on the Midland Railway Ripley Branch.

There is a memorial garden for John Flamsteed, opposite St Mary the Virgin's Church, which features the stellarsphere which shows the position of the stars and planets overhead at the current time.

The village is commemorated in the hymn tune Denby, composed in 1904 by Charles J. Dale.[5]

Related hamletsEdit

Map of Denby in Derbyshire, showing its parish boundary, and local areas.

Denby Common is a hamlet 1 mile to the north east of Denby Village, on the outskirts of Loscoe.

Codnor Breach, another hamlet merges into Denby Common.

Denby Bottles is half a mile to the west of Denby Village.

Smithy Houses lies north west of Denby Village, along the B6179 road.

Together all four with Denby Village, along with a small southern area of Marehay in Ripley, and a small portion of Openwoodgate near Belper, lie within Denby parish.

Notable peopleEdit

In addition to John Flamsteed:

  • Henry Draycott, who became a highly successful judge in Ireland, was born here in 1510 ; he died in Ireland in 1572.

See alsoEdit


  1. ^ "Denby (Parish): Key Figures for 2011 Census". Neighbourhood Statistics. Office for National Statistics. Retrieved 17 March 2016.
  2. ^ "Denby Parish Headcounts, 2001". Neighbourhood Statistics. Office for National Statistics. Retrieved 9 December 2013.
  3. ^ "The History of Denby". Denby Parish Council. Retrieved 17 April 2021.
  4. ^ School web site, accessed 7 December 2009
  5. ^ "Tune 001204 Denby". Christian Classics Ethereal Hymnary. Retrieved 8 October 2012.

External linksEdit

  • GENUKI page
  • Photographs