Bretby is believed to be the site of a major battle between the Danes and kingdom of Mercia in AD880.
This manor (Bretebi) was in the Domesday Book in 1086.
In Newton Solney and Bretby Ælfgar had seven carucates of land to the geld. There is land for six ploughs. There the king has one plough and nineteen villans and one bordar with five ploughs. There are 12 acres (49,000 m²) of meadow, woodland pasture two leagues long and three furlongs broad.
In 1209, Ranulph de Blondeville, 4th Earl of Chester granted the manor of Bretby to Stephen de Segrave who built a church and a mansion there. There was also Bretby Castle which was destroyed during the reign of King James I of England to make way for the construction of Bretby Hall.
In 1585, Thomas Stanhope bought the manor house which was known as Bretby Hall and from then on was the home of the Earls of Chesterfield. This house had a formal garden that rivalled the garden of Versailles in the 1640s. Lord Carnarvon sold the property to pay for the Tutankanhem expedition. The Hall became an orthopedic hospital in 1926 until 1997 when the Hall was sold again and converted into private apartments.
Today the village is centred by a village green. Overlooking the green is a residential house which records that it was called ‘Bradby School’ when it was built. A stone records “BRADBY SCHOOL/OPENED FOR THE ADMISSION OF SCHOLARS/OCTOBER 20TH 1806.”
The school building is a grade 2 listed building.
Further historical information can be obtained in this PDF (1.5MB) from South Derbyshire District Council.
A picture from 1918. The names listed are F North, A Carver, TW Wain, F Cotton, A Dow, ?Rev G Davies:
And from the Victory Parade of 1945 on Bretby Green: