Honour for the man who made Matlock

John Smedley of John Smedley Knitwear.
John Smedley of John Smedley Knitwear.

Textile entrepreneur and champion of hydrotherapy, John Smedley, is to have a blue plaque unveiled in his honour.

The plaque will be unveiled by the leader of Derbyshire County Council and cabinet member for culture, Cllr Andrew Lewer, at Smedley’s former hydropathy hotel– now home to the authority – on Tuesday, March 5.

Nominated by Peter Wild on behalf of the Matlock Civic Association, this is the fourth blue plaque to be put up by the county council this year to celebrate the important people and places of Derbyshire.

Cllr Lewer said that John Smedley was a worthy recipient of the honour and he was glad that the people of Derbyshire had voted for a man who was ahead of his time.

He said: “John Smedley is best known for the high-quality knitwear company that he transformed into the successful business it is today. He was a model employer when model employers were comparatively rare and paid employees generously.”