I'm interested in early industry in the upper Erewash Valley and am finding your site completely absorbing....
I'm very intrigued by a number of references on Robert Bradleys 'History of Mining' site to Benjamin Outram and Company / The Butterley Company in connection with their activities in Kirkby-in-Ashfield in the area of Portland Fields.
There's an entry for Portland Fields under the year header 1760, and another (1954) within the information for the Portland Pits; there are a few others scattered throughout.
In particular there are references to a blast furnace at / near Portland Fields / Lower Portland, with ironstone being mined in the vicinity and delivered directly to the furnace.
I wondered if there might be further information about this, as I would be very interested in following it up; any advice you might be able to give as to sources / references would also be very much appreciated.
Thanking you in anticipation,
First of all I am delighted that there is information in my work relating to the Portland pits that you are interested in. For a time I was a member of the committee, meeting at Jacksdale, and supplied plans and information to the Portland Path Project. Unfortunately I had to resign due to my wife's disability and awkward time schedules for meetings. However a book was produced in 2012 by Martyn Taylor - Cockayne called The Portland Path. ISBN: 978-0-9572416-0-2 which may contain information you require. Martyn lives in Jacksdale, and maybe he is in the phone book. He could help you. Another source is the Derbyshire archives at Matlock. Try them as they have a lot of info for Butterley Co. I hope this is helpful.
Regards, Bob Bradley