A Miscellany of Local Life in Years Past
1. The Village Rat Catcher was from Chalford Hill where he was also Chimney Sweep by day and Fish and Chip man by night!
2. Drawing water from the Far Oakridge Spring below Iles Green House in the early 1900's. Lord Robertson, Chairman of British Railways, lived at Iles Green House in the 1960's.
3. Lizzy and Annie Peacy outside of their Grocers and Bakers shop at Hillcroft
4. Colin Minchin of Bournes Green, the local newspaper seller
5. Agnes Hunt milking the 'house cow' which provided the family with milk
6. An unknown lady 'in service' wearing the uniform of the time
7. Sammy Tranter, the Oakridge Chimney Sweep on his rounds in the 1920's. Sammy was a sweep during the day and ran a fish & chip shop in the evenings. Sammy was well known for his generosity with the latter in hard times.
8. These Oakridge women are tying up bundles of faggots with slender ash or hazel sticks which were used in place of rope. The bundles were then used like staddle stones to keep the hay rick away from the ground and to provide a system of drainage.
9. A Wedding at Trillis, 1896
Standing, left to right: Mr Elliot, Aunt Emily, Aunt Aida and Great Aunt Mary
Seated: Gran Curtis, the wedding couple, Grandpa Cook, Gran Cook, Grandpa Curtis
Seated, each side in front of the bride: Uncle Albert and Aunt Green
History group Notes : The Cook - Curtis Wedding at Trillis 1896
In 1881 census Edward Curtis, woodcutter, aged 32 and his wife Elizabeth were living at Trill is with daughters Mary Ann, Ada born 1878 and Bertha born 1881.
In 1901 census Edward, woodcutter, and Elizabeth appear with children Albert Edward born 1887, farm labourer aged 14 and Gwendoline aged 10.
Edward's parents were Ira and Ann Curtis. Ira was a labourer and a trustee of the Methodist Chapel.
Albert Edward died of pneumonia in 1918 aged 31 in Greece - details in N Thornicroft's book "Rural Sacrifices"
In this photograph the annotater details Aunt Gwen who would then be 5, Uncle Albert who would be 9, Aunt Ada who would be 21, Aunt Bertha 15 and Gran Cook who is probably Mary Ann Curtis just married to Granpa Cook. Gran Curtis would be Elizabeth and Grandad Curtis Edward.10. Bread Deliveries by Donkey, Pictured at Rack Hill Chalford around 1900
11. Families liked to dress their children in 'frills' for special occasions, most of which were made by members of the family.
12. This stone trough on the Farm Lane entrance to the village is commonly called the Holy Well, though the well itself is close by in the garden of Lydays Close and this is an outfall. This well posed Edwardian photographer's scene is c. 1910.
13. Drawing Water from Holy Well, early 1900's.Mrs Addy uses a yoke to make the carrying easier.
14. The path which connects the Broadway, near the Old Mill to Chapel Lane. The path is known as 'Back of Ollis' . The Old Mill House is behind and this pleasant stroll is c. 1910.
15. Preparing to collect water from Holy Well, early 1900's
16. Taking a drink from Holy Well, early 1900's
17. Possibly Mary Gardiner outside of her Cottage in Chapel Lane, c. 1905.
18. Coming up from Drivers Wood c. 1920. A common chore for country people, collecting wood to keep the home fires burning.
19. Picnic Party in Church Fields, before 1910
20. c. 1905-15. A village custom. It was common practice for villagers to keep a pig or two in a sty in the garden to be fed on household scraps, and 'meal' if it could be afforded. It would be killed in the autumn, usually by one villager renowned for his pig-sticking skills, the hair burnt off on a straw bonfire (see next Photo) and, finally, it would be carried into the shed on a makeshift bier to be dismembered and salt-cured for the family table for the winter.
Here, the deed having been done, John Peacey (left) and John Bateman (right - pig-sticker) carry the carcase in. This annual event gave rise to the following:
21. c. 1905-15. A village custom. It was common practice for villagers to keep a pig or two in a sty in the garden to be fed on household scraps, and 'meal' if it could be afforded. It would be killed in the autumn (see previous Photo), usually by one villager renowned for his pig-sticking skills, the hair burnt off on a straw bonfire - here is the bonfire!
22. James Lewis, the last Hayward on the common, was born in 1798 and lived at Bournes Green. Hayward, or "hedge warden" was an officer of an English parish dating from the Middle Ages. He was in charge of fences and enclosures and a herdsman in charge of cattle and other animals grazing on common land. The Hayward was chosen by the Lord of the Manor or elected by the villagers to lead the sowing and harvesting, to impound stray cattle, and to supervise hedging and temporary fencing around hay meadows. The Hayward's symbol of office was a horn, which he blew to give warning that cattle were invading the crops.
23. A Working Oakridge Well, c. 1970
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