The John Thompson Inn, Ingleby
The John Thompson Inn,


Where is it? – Off the A514 at Swarkestone on the road west to Milton and Repton (SK348271)

What to do? – Visit Anchor Church, but beware that the footpath in front of the church may be flooded by the river. It is probably easiest to approach from the western side using Ordnance Survey Explorer Map: OS 245 – enjoy refreshments at The John Thompson and excellent river views – check out Foremarke Hall and St Saviours Church.

Where to eat? – The John Thompson is the only place in Ingleby that serves refreshments. Please ring 01332 862469 for further details or visit the website:

Other places to visit – Take a trip to Foremark Reservoir, a 230-acre reservoir, which provides footpaths, picnic facilities, sailing and good trout fishing – visit Ferrers Centre for Arts and Crafts, located in the Georgian Stable Block of Staunton Harold Hall, where a wide range of goods can be obtained – discover Calke Abbey, hidden away in a hollow, about one mile from its Ticknall entrance. The park is a popular place with walkers and wildlife enthusiasts. It is in the hands of the National Trust.

Anchor Church, Ingleby
Anchor Church
Foremarke Hall
Foremarke Hall


Ingleby is a pretty hamlet on the south side of the River Trent near Foremarke Hall and Milton. There are a few cottages in the settlement and other buildings. A small Methodist Chapel that only seated a dozen worshippers is no longer in use. On the western side is a well-known public house, The John Thompson. However, it is its nearest neighbour, Anchor Church, which is of most interest to many visitors.


The church is set in a sandstone crag on the banks of the River Trent one mile from Ingleby. It is a fascinating place, partly natural and partly enlarged by man. The cave was used by Sir Frances Burdett of nearby Foremarke Hall who extended it and fitted a door so that during the summer he could hold picnics there for his guests. It is now a popular spot for walkers.

A new study indicates the caves are likely to be early Medieval. Edmund Simons, principal investigator of the project and a research fellow at the RAU, said: “Our findings demonstrate that this odd little rock-cut building in Derbyshire is more likely from the 9th century than from the 18th century as everyone had originally thought.

“This makes it probably the oldest intact domestic interior in the UK – with doors, floor, roof, windows etc – and, what’s more, it may well have been lived in by a king who became a saint.’


In 1968, John and Ann Thompson converted their 15th-century farmhouse into what is now known as The John Thompson Inn. It was the first public house in the UK to be named after its owner. Large and spacious inside, it has a substantial collection of original paintings and prints on display. Most notable are watercolours of local village scenes by three generations of the Gresley family from nearby Chellaston. For many years it was the home to the longest-established micro-brewery which was set up by the family in 1977 but closed in 2021.


Foremarke Hall is an impressive Georgian mansion, built in Palladian style in 1760 for the parliamentary reformer, Sir Francis Burdett. It is now a preparatory school for nearby Repton School. The view of the hall and the ornamental lake are much admired by visitors and walkers, the hall is out of view from the Milton to Ingleby road.


Sir Francis Burdett, built St Saviours Church on the estate at Foremarke, in 1662, and many residents regard it as their local parish church. It was one of the first churches to be built in England after the Restoration of the Monarchy and the lifting of the ban on church building. The church was built to serve Foremarke and Ingleby and it is certainly worth a short diversion to take a closer look.