Volume 4 : 1985 – 1989


By | Past Newsletters, Volume 4 : 1985 - 1989 | No Comments

Newsletter 185: July 1986

Sat July 26 Trip to Sutton Hoo and Orford by Sheila Woodward

Excavation is in progress again at this outstanding site of the Suffolk ship burial near Woodbridge. We were heavily overbooked for our visit last year and a rerun has been organised for those who missed it. If you would like to come again – hopefully in sunshine this year -slight variation has been planned for the afternoon to visit Orford on the Suffolk coast. Orford is famous for its 800-year-old castle keep. As this is a rerun it will probably not be easy to fill the coach, so friends of members will be welcome on this trip.

Sat August 16 Trip to Mary Rose and Portchester

This is additional to our published programme to take the large overflow from May 10. The coach is almost full – just a few seats left and no waiting list – so any latecomers please ring Dorothy Newbury (203 0950) and you might just get in.

Thur Sep 11 Evening visit to Old Bailey

Thur-Sun Sep 18-21 Exeter Weekend with Ann and Alan Lawson

The coach is now full but no waiting list. If anyone is still keen to go please ring 458 3827 or 203 0950 and we will notify you in the event of a cancellation.

Throughout August ‘Historic Hampstead 1000’ 986-1986 Exhibition at Burgh House, Hampstead

Sat Oct 4 Winchester ‘Domesday 900’ Exhibition
Sat .Oct 11 Minimart, St. Mary’s Church House

Sit Oct 18-Dec 7 HADAS Exhibition ‘One Man’s Archaeology’ Church Farmhouse Museum



There are still over 100 members who have still not paid their subs and I append below the different amounts due as at 1 April 1986

Full members £5.00
Family members

First member £5.00 plus £1 for other members

OAPS £3.00

OAPS First member £3.00 plus £1 for other members

Juniors £3.00

Schools, Corporations etc. £6.00

Please let me have your cheques as soon as possible. We don’t like to badger you, but we do need your money now.

Phyllis Fletcher, Membership Secretary
27 Decoy Avenue London NW11 OES


Thursday, July 10, 8.00-9.30 pm at Hampstead Garden Suburb Institute. Meet in the Community Room.This is an opportunity for anyone interested to look at the finds from previous field walks in the Brockley Hill area and familiarise themselves with what to look out for on future walks. We will also put on show some examples of typical Brockley Hill pottery excavated at the kiln sites, to be examined at first hand. . A special welcome to all new members!


A Centenary Conference on ‘Ancient Mining and Metallurgy’
at University College of North Wales; Bangor, April 1986

This was a stimulating and happy occasion. Between 60 and 70 people attended – Classicists, Archeologists, Engineers and Metallurgists. We really did confer, not only in the two sessions given over to communica­tions and discussions, but as much as possible in our free time.

The first session was chaired by Mr. J.A. MacGillivray, Assistant Director; BSA, the subject being ‘Recent work carried out at the Athenian Silver Mines of Laurion’. This was a survey of the surface remains of the ancient mines (mining is still carried on nearby) in particular the water cisterns and ore washeries. Possible methods of operation were suggested and the Metallurgists present were invited to criticise, which indeed they did, much to both parties’ satisfaction.

At breakfast next morning I told Mr. MacGillivray that HADAS had recently heard Professor Tomlinson talking on his work at Perachora and asked whether the large circular tank found there could possibly have been connected with mining. He was quite sure: ‘No!’ The Perachora tank was much larger and had no central pillar to support a cover. I raised the point of evaporation as covers had been found necessary to prevent this at Laurion. He thought that as the Perachora tank was used only briefly at festival times this would not be a problem, but it seemed to me a very elaborate construction to hold water just for a few days each year. As a point of interest he also mentioned that the BSA’s latest work is at the Palaikastro site in Crete, excavating a hitherto unknown Minoan palace, second only to Knossos in size.

We passed on to other Greek sites, as well as Rio Tinto in Spain, Zawar in India and then to some of the ancient Welsh mines. Duncan James gave a fascinating account of how he had ‘pot-holed’ into the copper mine on the Great Orme at Llandudno to prove that the earliest workings were not in fact Roman but prehistoric. The Victorians had confused all the evidence with their back-filling of the ancient galleries,

Peter Crew from Plas Tan y Bwlch; who guided HADAS on our Snowdonia explorations in 1979, talked on ‘Prehistoric Iron Smelting and Smithing at Bryn y Castell Hill Fort, Gwynedd’ Dr. Peter Northover from Oxford and Dr. Paul Craddock who is well known to us all as member, lecturer and guide, joined with other experts from the British Museum Research Laboratory to talk of the development of copper alloys from Chalcolithic to Byzantine times. This led to a later session. on the conflict between weapon and armour, sword and helmet, an improvement in one ‘having, ‘of necessity, to lead to new technology for the other.

On Saturday we visited the vast moon-landscape of the Parys Mountain on Anglesey. Here Copper was certainly mined in antiquity, but all traces are now lost. The mine was reopened in 1767 and by 1780 it was the largest in the world, producing 4000 tons of copper a year. Nelson’s ships were sheathed in it and so was the French Navy. Tom Williams ‘the Copper King’ knew what he was about! Following recent drilling, there are now plans to open new workings down to 1500 feet-(750 feet below sea level) mainly for zinc and lead this time. These plans, of course, depend on favourable economic conditions.



During the past month or so we have written, to a number of aviation magazines and societies with a generally favourable response (except from the Royal Aeronautical Society). It has been pleasing and interesting to discover that a lot of people have been making their own contribution to the call for preservation. ‘A co-ordinated campaign might achieve more but the volume and spontaneity of complaint is in itself Impressive. At least at the time of writing in mid-June the hangar is still standing.

At the AGM I mentioned that an expert on aircraft factories was coming to visit the Hendon/Stag Lane area with me and asked anyone interested in joining us to let me know. In the event the visit took place at very short notice in mid-June when my friend was unexpectedly despatched to London on college business, mixed business with pleasure. Apologies to anyone who would have liked to join us. BILL FIRTH


Hampstead is celebrating its millennium this year. Anyone who lives in the south of the Borough of Barnet and who reads that pearl among local papers, the Ham and High is probably well aware of the fact: but HADAS members outside the Ham and High’s orbit may not have cottoned on yet.

There have already been all kinds of junketings in connection with the millennium, and more are to come but one, which might specially interest HADAS member’s, is nearing its close. You might like to try and nip in to see it before it ends. It is an exhibition at Burgh House, New End Square, NW3, until July 6 on the Medieval Manor of Hampstead.

Starting point and highlight of the exhibition, which has been devised and arranged by QC David Sullivan and his daughter Tess, is – as one might expect – the one document which provides evidence for the date of the millennium, and shows that Hampsteadians of 1986 are right to celebrate this year. It is the record of a charter (not the charter itself, which is long since lost) but a document made later (probably before 1016), saying .that there had been a grant by Ethelred II (‘the Unready’) of 5 tracts of land in Hampstead in 986 to Westminster Abbey. The record gives the boundaries of the land in Anglo-Saxon. The excellent booklet (price £1.00) which accompanies the exhibition adds that ‘the Manor map, made more than 750 years later, in 1762, which defines the boundaries of the manor very clearly, agrees closely with the geography indicated by the Anglo-Saxon boundaries.’

It’s interesting how often Hendon crops up in the booklet; and how in medieval times Hendon seems to have been regarded as the big brother of Hampstead (in family rather than Orwellian terms). It is suggested that Hampstead may have begun life as a staging post on the trackway over the hill to Hendon, ‘a larger and probably earlier vill in the Middlesex weald to the north.’ Both places belonged to the Abbey of Westminster; both appear in Domesday, and the situation of the two is interestingly contrasted in displays on the free and unfree tenants of the manor.

A section of the exhibition deals with the monks’ farm accounts which survive at Hampstead from 1270-98 and from 1375-1412. It would be an interesting exercise to compare these with the farm accounts of the Abbey’s manor at Hendon, which exist from 1316-1416 (see Eleanor Lloyd’s paper in Trans LMAS, vol 21, pt 3, 1967, 157-163).

For one escape the Hendon manor must have been grateful: when the. Black Death reached Westminster in spring 1349 the Abbot of Westminster, Simon de Bircheston, and many of monks, fled to ‘safety’ in Hampstead ­not Hendon. The Abbey did not have a manor-house at Hampstead; but it had ‘a substantial Hall and dormitory with a farm grange attached,’ probably at the corner of Frognal and the present Frognal Lane.

The booklet describes what followed when the Abbot arrived in 1349. ‘It is likely that the village was then still free from the plague. But his arrival was disastrous. His group brought the plague with them, and on May 15 1349 the Abbot died here, together with 26 of his monks. Their bodies were buried in Hampstead; but the Abbot’s body was later taken and reburied in the East Cloister of the Abbey. The village, too, must have suffered disastrously …’

The exhibition will be open from July 2-6 inclusive, 12 noon – 5 pm. BRIGID GRAFTON GREEN

A MESSAGE FOR THE CLERKENWELL WALKERS and those who missed the walk as well. Come and join in the Clerkenwell Festival from July 11th to 20th

Friday 11th Opening Ceremony at lunchtime on Clerkenwell Green. Morris dancing ‘all round the pubs’ in the evening.

Sunday 13th. Grand Dickensian Street Fair and Charity Market (Period costumes specially welcome.) A coach and horses will ferry visitors from Ludgate Circus to the Fair.

Sunday 20th Grand Finale. Italian procession from St. Peter’s Church, Clerkenwell Road.

The Sessions House, Marx Memorial Library, St. James’s Church and. St. John’s Priory Gate will all be open to the public with displays and exhibitions. Programmes can be obtained from the Sessions House and further information from Jim Lagden or Hilary Coleman on 226 1234.



The trip to Faversham and Rochester on June 14th started in superb sunshine at the recently restored Chart Gunpowder Mill. This water-powered incorporating (blending) mill is the only building left of the many gunpowder works spaced out (for safety) for 11/2 miles along Faversham’s West Brook through the town and down to the coastal marches. Possibly the earliest gunpowder works in the country, they were nationalised about 1760, only to be re-privatised some 60 years later when the Napoleonic Wars ended and demand dropped.

Faversham’s delightful medieval architecture and quays survive because its trade volume stayed relatively constant, handling gunpowder, local bricks for London and elsewhere, and (for unclear reasons!) Romney Marsh wool: Especially noteworthy: the King’s Warehouse – 15th Century, housing the King’s weights – the ‘raison Dieu and the parish church, St. Mary of Charity, with a Roman foundation, Georgian nave, Medieval wall-paintings and misericords, and arches of almost every type known.

Paul Craddock guided us to a site along Watling Street outside the town to show us the ground plan and lower walls of a rectangular 4th Century AD Roman building subsequently identified both to East and West to form a church that fell into disuse before the Reformation. Paul likened it to St. Martin’s, Canterbury, and some churches near Cologne, all now believed to have started as Roman mausolea, to have become Christian shrines in Roman times, and probably to have a continuous Christian history right through the Dark Ages.

In Rochester we visited the Dickens Centre and Rochester Castle (1120’s), dominating the Cathedral precinct and described by Paul as the most perfect example of a Norman castle tower on either side of the Channel. Only one wall had been rebuilt in the 14th Century, after an unsuccessful siege by King John.

The best was left until last an idyllic tea provided by Paul’s wife, Brenda, in the garden stretching behind their house to the edge of the steep hill looking out over the Medway. Facing into the afternoon sun we ate and drank surrounded by flowers and espaliered fruit trees along the walls, with the smell of herbs from between the flagstones.

Lament, all HADAS members who couldn’t go. The rest of us grate­fully thank all the organizers – and the unknown person who arranged the perfect weather after six months of winter. MARY RAWITZER


This meeting takes place about twice a year and on this occasion was attended by representatives from 21 Local Societies within the old Greater London area, together with six members of the Department of Greater London Archaeology.

Harvey Sheldon representing L.A.M.A.S as well as D.G.L. showed slides of the excavation at Winchester palace and also reported that excavation had been carried out beneath the undercroft of Westminster Abbey, an 11th Century building at Kingston-on-Thames another under-croft at the Horsefair, which was not scheduled, may be moved from its present position and re-sited nearer the Thames. It was explained that to schedule a building and prevent development after planning permission had been given could be a very expensive matter. This undercroft had been located in Victorian times but subsequently lost.

The West London Unit had been digging behind the Garden Centre in Uxbridge and found further evidence of Mediaeval Uxbridge and of earlier times. The excavation of the Roman Bath House and Villa at Beddington was yielding bones of Roman and prehistoric origin. The gravel site in Holloway Lane had produced part of a Late Bronze Age metal-working area. Concern was expressed that with the abolition of the G.L.C. local authorities might not give such firm support in dealing with gravel extraction projects as had recently been the case.

Enfield Society reported a Roman settlement in the Lincoln Road area alongside the route of Ermine Street. A burnt clay structure, possibly a corn drier, had been found and, in a rubbish pit, six pots which were almost complete The Putney Society is currently setting up a new Museum and Val Bot has left the Grange Museum to take up the challenging post of Curator. The next Local Societies Meeting will take place on Monday September 22nd and each Society is invited to send up to three representatives. TED SAMMES


The Committee met on Friday, June 6th. New members were welcomed and various matters discussed.

Plans for the 25th Year Exhibition this autumn are well under way. Ted Sammes is presenting One Man’s Archaeology, a personal record of his twenty five years in the Society and the widening range of his interest in Archaeology. The Mayor and Mayoress of Barnet, Councillor and Mrs. Dennis Dippel, have kindly agreed to be present on October 18th and, after a brief opening ceremony at 11.30 am, followed by a brief official reception, the exhibition will open to the public in the afternoon. It will run for two months.

Victor Jones reported the possibility of a trial excavation at Whetstone, on the site where a shop was recently burned down. It was decided to proceed with this.

Brian Wrigley agreed to maintain contact with the R.A.F. Association, who, as a non-official body, may be best able to mount a publicity campaign in defence of the GrahameWhite Hangar at the RAF Museum. It was stressed that this was still in danger, in spite of press reports suggesting otherwise.

Jill. Braithwaite, Co-ordinator of the Roman Group reported on the Pipeline Project. She and Tessa Smith had examined previous field-walking finds and would make enquiries about ploughing dates with a view to obtain­ing permission for further walks liaison with D.O.G.L.A. would be important and Jill Braithwaite agreed to represent us on the D.O.G.L.A. Liaison Committee. It was hoped that the recognition meeting (see page 2) would be well attended, especially by new members.

Jim Beard reported progress on the Watling Street site (Burnt Oak Station Carpark). The Committee thought that further documentary projects should include research into possible new sites and individual work on matters of local historical interest. Reports of this kind would be of value for the Newsletter.

Margaret Maher had been asked by a representative for some information on the West Heath Site for inclusion in the revised publication. She would confer with Daphne Lorimer about this.

The next meeting will take place on Wednesday July 16th.


Were you present when we voted on the issue of the World Archeological Congress? We were asked, you may remember, whether C.B.A. should withdraw support from the Congress, now weakened in its claim to be a World Forum by the absence of many visitors who objected strongly to the inclusion of archaeologists from South Africa. The national result is now available:

83 Societies voted in favour of withdrawal

46 Societies voted against

7 Societies abstained

So the HADAS Voting was reflected in the national returns.


The following sites have been the subject of recent Planning Applications. If permission is granted, it is possible they might be of some archaeologi­cal interest.

36 Friern Park, N12

Barrymore, Bow Lane N12
Former L.T.E. Sports Ground Deansbrook Rd. Edgware

Former Trafalgar House site,The Hyde, NW9

2 Stanway Gardens, Edgware

2 The Lincolns, Marsh Lane NW7

West Hendon Hospital Site, Goldbeaters Grove NW9

land adjacent to 2 Wellhouse Lane, Barnet

Meadowbank Cottage, The Hollies, Barnet Road, Arkley

Hollybush House, Hadley Green

Land at Arkley Hall and Arkley Rise, Barnet

12 Barnet Gate Lane Arkley

“Stocks” Hadley Green West

47 Old Fold View, Barnet

The Barn, Totteridge Green, N20


This weekend conference is being held in the New Merseyside Maritime Museum 7-9 November 1986. Accommodation will be available at special rates in city centre Liverpool hotels. Delegates will have unique access to Merseyside museums.

The conference will start on Friday evening with a key lecture to set the scene for the weekend. Saturday morning will cover techniques such as palaeopathology, settlement modelling and establishing a research design. The afternoon session looks at artifact study and analysis. On Sunday the practical problems of older material will be considered with special attention to the Faussett collection.

This Conference is being held as part of the 1986 centenary of the death of Joseph Mayer, Liverpool’s antiquarian and philanthropist. Mayer saved for the nation material excavated in Kent and meticulously recorded by the Rev. Bryan Faussett in the late 18th Century.

Details of programme, cost and accommodation are available from The Director of Continuing Education Studies, University of Liverpool. PO Box 147, Liverpool L69 3BX (Telephone 051-709 6022 ext. 2797).


Guide to the Silchester Excavations 1982-84
Michael Fulford University of Reading

This is the second guide to the present series of excavations at Silchester. The first one covered the Amphitheatre and Forum for the years 1979-81.

The black layers originally encountered by Joyce, the Victorian excavator in the Basilica, have been identified as the remains of a metal-working industry, carried out in the third and fourth centuries A.D. in what was once the town’s most imposing building.

Pre-Roman occupation has been found from the first century B.C. continuing until 55-60 A.D. at which time a substantial ditch and timber rampart was constructed. The subsequent Roman street grid runs at 450 to the ditch.

This dig is directed by Mike Fulford who has spoken to HADAS about the Amphitheatre excavation. This year’s excavation runs from June 30-August 2. Public viewing Sundays and weekends, 10 am to 5 pm. (See British Archaeological News, April 1986, pg 23).

An up-to-date guide to Silchester (Calleva) is needed, let’s hope it will soon materialise.

Beyond Stonehenge

This is the title of a new guide to Stonehenge written by Julian Richards and published by the Trust for Wessex Archaeology, price £1.50. It is designed to interest the visitor not merely in the monument itself but in its immediate surroundings. Many of the illustrations are in colour and set the scene.

Stonehenge is dealt with in its many phases and it suggests an aban­donment about 2500 B.C. shifting to other ritual sites, Conebury, Durrington Wall and Woodhenge are described. Bronze Age farming in the area is described ending at about 1000 B.C. At the end of the booklet is a map which will help the informed visitor walk the newly arranged paths in the National Trust Estate. Information boards have been placed at key points. Let’s hope the “vandals” can’t walk that far.

This new booklet is based on work carried out by the Trust for Wessex Archaeology between 1980 and 1984.


By | Past Newsletters, Volume 4 : 1985 - 1989 | No Comments

Newsletter No. 179 January 1986


Tuesday 7 Jan “Archaeology of Hedges and Woodland” by Dr. Oliver Rackham

Rackham is a Fellow of Corpus Christi College, Cambridge and a botanist by profession. As well as study in England, his work has taken him to Greece and America.

Several members have already heard him talk on this subject – a subject that has interested the Society for many years , particularly in relation to the hedge running across Lyttelton Playing Fields (which is probably a Saxon perimeter hedge) and that at Hadley Golf Course, behind which some of the troops, in the Battle of Barnet were deployed in 1471.

.; Neolithic Arran by Dr. Eric Grant

Tuesday 4 Mar. Alexander the Great & Art in the Greek East by Dr. I .Malcolm College

Tuesday 1 Apl. Recent Excavations at Perachora, near Corinth by Prof .R, A. Tomlinson

Lectures are, held at Hendon Library, The Burroughs,NW4. Coffee from 8pm. Lecture 8.30

CHRISTMAS PARTY on DECEMBER 3 report by Alan Lawson

The usual Christmas, party which took place at the Meritage Club was perhaps less.formal than of past years – nothing exotic by way of belly dancing took place. In a very relaxed atmosphere of nostalgic photo viewing, archeaograms, treasure hunts and identification quizzes some 49 members of HADAS had a most enjoyable evening with an excellent buffet, superb cheeses, good humour and friendliness. It almost goes without saying, thanks were given to the many hard working and devoted workers who made the evening the success .that it was.


DATES: September 18 – 21 (3 nights stay)

Dartmoor, Exmoor, Exeter. Anyone who is interested please contact Alan Lawson, 68 Oakwood Road, N, W.11 Telephone: 458 3827. Details later if response allows.


It’s some months since the Newsletter greeted the newcomers who steadily become HADAS members month by month. New Year seems a good time to welcome all those who have joined us since mid-1985:

Lawrence Barham of Lewisham, Derek Batten, Stanmore, Penelope Boon*, Barnet, Mr. Otto and Miss Thea* Caslaysky, Finchley, Eve Dent*, East Finchley, Roy English, Clapham,

M. French, North Fincley, J. Gregory, N. 11: P. Herreman, SW4: Dr. Hunt, Stanmore:

Graham. Hutchings Colindale: Rosalie Ivens, Golders Green: Sinead McCartan, WC1. John

Morfey, Hampstead: Paula Newton, North Finchley: Basil Olympios, Finchley: R.O’Shea, W5: Joanna Rabiger*, Golders Green; Kim Russell, Highgate: Akano Sato, NW1. Simeon Shoul, Hampstead: David Trinchero, NW6 Paul Wiggins, Ruislip.

The Newsletter wishes them all a happy membership of HADAS and “good digging” in

1986. (* indicates a member under 18).


Some development applications which have been made to Barnet Council in the last few weeks are for sites which HADAS has already noted as of possible archaeological interest. These sites have re-appeared on the planning application lists (which have recently taken to including the date of the original application, which is helpful) because in the interim, the plans had been re-described, amended or added to. We include these sites in our list for this month as a reminder.

If any/all these applications are approved by LBB, HADAS members living near any of the sites may see signs of development activity – surveyors at work, bulldozers moving in, trenches being cut. Should you observe anything of this nature, please let John Enderby know immediately on 203 2630. Sites are only worth watching from an archaeological point of view, in the early stages when the ground surface is being disturbed, so immed­iate notification is VITAL.

Here are the sites on recent application lists which appear to have some possible archaeological potential: –

167 Friern Barnet Lane, N20 4 detached houses -(outline) –

Rear of 206High Street, Barnet 2-storey, building to form 6 bedroom hotel

Former Methodist Church site,

Goodwyn Avenue NW7 18 flats in. 2 blocks

land bounded by Dollis Road;

Christs college playing fields Primary school & access.(amended outline) & properties in Dollis Park, N3

land adj. East Finchley station, Offices carparking, residential development,

fronting High Rd & rear of East new station fo,recourt, ‘access roads.

End Road, N2 (Amended outline, additions)

site adjoining 131Marsh Lane, NW7 detached house with basement .(amended plan)

site of former Blue Anchor public retail warehouse (outline)..

house, High Road, N20

Bells public house, East End Rd single storey side/rear extensions for bar/ restaurant, facilities

29 Ashley Lane,1\TW4 pair of semi-detached houses


The 20th LAMA’S Local History Conference on November 30 was, as ever, a lively and

Interesting occasion.

The conference is always worth attending on two counts – first, for the Lectures which form the main dish on the menu; secondly and perhaps equally important – for the displays put on by local societies from every part of the. London area and the opportunity these provide for society members to mingle and catch up with news of’ each other’s research.

Originally the theme suggested for the conference had been Farms and Farming in Middlesex. In the event, lectures dealt mainly with the Anglo-Saxon and early medieval

countryside. Dr. John Blair took Chertsey Abbey from early Saxon times to the 10th century as his focal point, Dr. Peter Bigmore handled landscape evidence from open field systems and ridge and furrow, and documentary evidence from estate maps and manor court rolls while John Mills’ subject was “Archaeological Discoveries in the Greater London. Area c. 400-c.1100”.

HADAS, had its usual display and bookstall arranged and manned by Joyce Slatter, Victor Jones and Brigid Grafton Green to whom the Society is most grateful. The display contained material from the HADAS Farm.Survey. ‘Bookstall sales went particularly well this year.


We’re delighted to hear that the University Extra-mural Department; has had second

thoughts about its Thursday evening public lectures in archaeology. Back in the autumn there were no plans to run them this winter. Now we learn that, a series of ten public lectures on “Bog Bodies and Ancient Man Preserved’ will start at the Institute of Archaeology on Thursday, January 16, from 7-8.30pm. Here is the full programme, which sounds most interesting:-

Jan 16 The Preservation of Ancient Human Bodies Don Brothwell

Jan 23 Archaeology of British &’European Bog Bodies R. Turner

Jan 30 Lindow Man an Ancient Body from a Cheshire Bog Ian Stead

Feb 6 The Manchester Museum Investigations Dr. R. David

Feb 13 Diet & Food Remains in Ancient Man. Gordon Hillman

Feb 20 Forensic Aspects of Ancient Bodies Dr. I. E West

Feb 27 Histopathology & Health in Early Man Dr. E. Tapp

Mar 6 Bogs & Burials; Aspects of Parasitism in Early Man Dr. A. Jones

Mar 13 Investigation on New World Mummies Don Brothwell

Mar 20- The Determination of Age & Sex in Early Man Dr. T. Mollison

A ticket for the series costs: £15, but you can pay £2 at the door to go to an individual lecture. Cheques for the series should be sent to Miss Edna Clancy, Extra Mural Department, 26 Russell Square, WC1B-5D0′.

The Institute of Archaeology announces a programme of some thirteen. 5-day courses for next July and August. The subjects are: protection of archaeological sites, identification of Plant remains, drawing of finds, field techniques, archaeological evidence for disease, civilisations of ancient America, surveying, Roman London, identification of Roman coins; geoarchaeology, stone tool technology, underwater Archaeology and the identification of animal bones.

In addition there will be a number of 5-day courses on conservation, ranging from conserving photographs to making high quality replicas of museum objects.

Anyone who would like information about either the archeological or the conservation courses should write to James Black, Summer Schools coordinator, at the Institute of Archaeology, 31-34 Gordon Square, WC1H OPY


After all Ted Sammes contributions to last month’s Newsletter wasn’t as we thought

it might be – the last word on onions The tear-jerking saga continues…..

This month’s instalment comes from Anne Lowe, mother of one of our junior members Christopher Lowe. She sends us the following quotation from “Food in England”, that lovely book by Dorothy Hartley; who died last November in her-’93rd year:

“Scallions – now a name given to bolted onions, but a perennial plant that grows clusters, and can be used for all plain cooking purposes; they stay in the, ground all the year round. Holsters are the Welsh version of these, rather smaller, and with very marked spring growth these make the best tansy that I’ve ever had, made by a farmhand

Take holsters in spring, chop them finely, and fry in bacon fat. When they are soft,

drain off any fat and pour on enough beaten egg to cover, add pepper and salt and chase

them round till blended – and; then ‘leave ’em’be till set, ‘not let ‘em boil, mind, or the egg will be a-whey, just set it nicely.’ .Then turn on to a hot plate, and it is excellent”

The drawings on the opposite page include Welsh Holtzers (this time spelt with a ‘z’) with the comment ‘good for rough winter cutting’. Miss Hartley was an accomplished artist, as well as a writer – so much so that her obituary in The Times last November ended with the line ” she loved drawing her heaven must surely include a friendly life-class.”


A distinctly Chinese air hung over some of the conversations at the HADAS Christmas party. One member – schoolmaster AUBREY HODES – was just back from his stint teaching English at Hua Qiao University, Quanzhou (from where you may remember, he wrote some interesting reports for the Newsletter). ALEC JEAKINS, on the other hand, is about to go to Far Eastwards early next year, as the production manager for a film on science which will be shown in China and Hong: Kong. With one coming and one going, it’s not surprising that a lot of talk about China was whizzing around Hendon, NW4.

Next year’s visit will be a return performance for Alec, his mother BETTY JEAKINS says.. He’s recently made one film for the BBC out there, which caused him to understand just what royalty feels like – wherever he went his public went too – following, whispering and staring:.

Dorothy Newbury tells us of another HADAS member who has recently been in China ­COLIN EVANS. We don’t often see him nowadays because he is based in France; but not long ago his firm sent him to the `Far East on a combined business and pleasure trip.

And talking of HADAS members far afield, the new address the Society has for long­time member VINCENT FOSTER, who was a keen digger and member of the main Committee in the 1970s, is Quebec, Canada – a far cry from his former home at Finchley.

VALENTINE SHELDON, an enthusiastic HADAS supporter for the last six years, has another hobby besides archaeology. In her own quiet way she is a highly successful fund­raiser for her pet charities. This year she set herself the target of raising £100 for the proposed North London Hospice, and achieved it by November. Her method? It’s all done with a needle. Miss Sheldon is a demon seamstress: she sews for love, but asks her clients to contribute whatever they think her work is worth to the charity of her choice.


The current exhibition at Church Farm House Museum on the Welsh Harp, is well worth a visit from anyone interested in the history of our area; or, for that matter, in its natural history. There are some good exhibits on Victorian naturalists, bird watching and angling, including the display of a magnificent, mean-looking stuffed pike, weighing 201bs 12oz, caught in the Harp over a century ago..

Angling tournaments, Ice-skating championships (“Where can you find 350 acres of ice? Why, at Warners Welsh Harp’), drowning fatalities – the Harp was famous or notorious for all of them in the last century.

Built in 1837 by the Regents Canal Company to provide extra Water for the capital’’s canals, and extended in 1851 , the Welsh Harp, named for the famous pub which stood at its eastern end beside the Edgware Road, was much more than a mere water-supply it, was a recreation ground and a focus for Victorian family enjoyment.

Another aspect of the Welsh Harp cropped up recently too. At the LAMAS conference of Local Historians on November 30 the Wembley History Society were selling their booklet The Welsh Harp Reservoir 1835-1985.

This covers the reasons – mainly chronic water shortages – for the decision to build the reservoir, its detailed construction, how the water was, and is now, controlled and a history of the Welsh Harp pub and the family who owned it, particularly William Perkins Warner. He was a veteran of the Crimean War, who owned and ran the Welsh Harp from- 1858 to 1889.

He made it a sporting and social centre “one of the most cosy and comfortable places to be found in London”. There was a museum- containing both Military and natural history objects – a billiard room, a ballroom and in the grounds, a bowling green, a skittles saloon and a shooting enclosure. Kingsbury race course (described angrily by a local resident as ‘a carnival of vice’ and suppressed in 1879) was nearby and the pub was the headquarters of one of the best known angling societies in Victorian England the Old Welsh Harp Angling Society. A day-ticket for taking Jack or Perch cost 2s6d (12p); a day-ticket for bottom fishing is (5p). Adjoining the tavern was a large concert hall where many well-known music hall artists performed, including Albert Chevalier, who used to sing his coster ballads.

The booklet ends with a section on the ballads which helped to make the Welsh Harp famous. The words of five of them are given. Here is one –


(sung to the tune of ‘The Cork Leg’)

Dedicated to W P Warner, written by Tom

Erica of ‘.The; Sportsman’

Published in the Hendon & Finchley Times of July 10,1880

A song I’ll sing you of a place

Where you’ll always meet a smiling face

Where every comfort can be found,

Whether inside or in the ground.

The waiters there are all so neat,

To be waited on it is a treat:

And where they give you the best meat,

And with cheery welcome always greet.

The prices, too, are quite as low
.As anywhere that you can go.
The host himself is always there
With jolly face and talent rare.

His popularity he does share

With Mrs Warner, who’s ‘all there’ .

She always greets us with a smile

After we’ve trudged the weary mile.
While something nice she gets us then
We find out John, that best of men
From cellar he brings out the best
To place before his welcome guest.
And when we’ve dined, why out we go
And on the lake we take a row:

Then back we come to thank our host

And find him there at his old post.
We’ve had our fun, so off we rush
In Woodruff’s Hendon Omnibus
To London City where we live.
Before we go our hand we give

To the best of landlords true,

By all respected, and one of few

Who never gets done and never does you

At the old Welsh Harp at Hendon.

The exhibition at Church Farm House Museum continues until February 9th. The Wembley History Society booklet – a good buy – costs 55p (plus 20p post and packing) from Stuart Johnson, Hon. Secretary, Wembley History Society, 117 Church Lane, Kingsbury, NW9 8JX.


The Council for British Archaeology’s Nonconformist Working Party has recently published a 60-page, well-illustrated booklet called “Hallelujah” .on how to record chapels and meeting houses. This fills a gap in their how to record publications we have already had from them a booklet on how to record graveyards, an illustrated glossary on recording a church and a guide to recording old houses.

The booklet is aimed, according to its introduction, particularly at individuals and local societies, and the part they can play in what is described as ‘a much neglected part of our national heritage’. We know of at least two HADAS members who in the past have shown particular interest in recording local nonconformist buildings, but we haven’ t heard much from them recently – perhaps this new publication will inspire them to fresh efforts.

Further details about it are, available from the CBA, 112 Kennington Road, SEll 6RE.

News also from CBA of two forthcoming conferences in which they are involved.

In collaboration with the Society for Landscape Studies they are organising a weekend conference on Religious Sites in the Landscape at the Institute of Child Health, Guilford Street, WC1 on Feb. 21-23, 1986. Speakers will include Professor Martin Biddle, Dr TC Oarvill, Dr. CS Briggs, Leslie Grinsell and others. Subjects will range from the prehistoric to the middle ages, from menhirs and druids to 11th century Christian church builders.

Fee for the weekend is £20, which includes tea and coffee but not lunch. Apply to Lyn Greenwood at the CBA.

On March 21-23 next, CBA and the Museum of London are jointly holding their 4th conference, on the theme ‘the rebirth of towns in the west, A.D700-1050” This will be an important conference, and it is hoped that there will be papers by speakers from all over Europe. As the Newsletter goes to press, CBA promise that further inform­ation will be available by the end of 1985 – so give them a ring on 582 0494 if you want further details of this.

The final lecture of the winter Wednesday Lecture season arranged by the Libraries Department will be on Wednesday 26 February at Hendon Library. MICHAEL ESSEX-LOPRESTI will be speaking about The Regents Canal, A narrow boat enthusiast, he keeps his own vessel on the canal and also conducts walks along the canal-side on summer Sundays. His lecture will feature architecture as well as wild-life and will be illustrated by slides and archive film of horse-drawn narrow boats. The lecture begins at 8.15pm and will last about 1e hours.

Newsletter-212-November 1988

By | Past Newsletters, Volume 4 : 1985 - 1989 | No Comments

Newsletter 212: November, 1988 Editor: Brigid Grafton Green


There’s only one possible lead story for this month’s Newsletter – and it ought to be written in letters of gold, not dull old everyday ink: we had a Minimart last month and it made a profit of £1200. Yes, do savour that: twelve hundred pounds. That’s £300 more than last year; it’s well into four figures for the first time; and it’s a 25% advance in 12 months.

The Minimart is a co-operative effort: everyone in the Society who can puts their bit into it, so our corporate thanks are offered to all helpers, whether they heave heavy tables, make mouth-watering quiches or tot up the takings. But top credit for this year’s magnificent result must go to Dorothy Newbury (without whom there would be no Minimart on the scale to which HADAS has become accustomed). Her record of steadily rising profits year by year is one that blue-chip companies like ICI or Glaxo might well envy.


Tues Nov 1 1988 Special General Meeting at 8 pm at Hendon Library, followed by lecture “Excavations at the Mint” by Peter Mills, who is known to many of us for his work with the North London Section of the Department of Greater London Archaeology. He has led excavations at Westminster Abbey as well as at the Mint, which is the subject of this lecture.

Tues Dec 6
Christmas supper at St Georges Shakespearian Theatre, Tufnell Park Road, N7. We have had an excellent response for this and have reached the maximum number that can be catered for, plus a short waiting list.

Departure times for this will be

Finchley Central 6.10 pm

Hendon Quadrant 6.15

Golders Gr. Refectory 6.25

Royal Oak Temple Fortune 6.30

Will members who have booked please let Dorothy Newbury know C203 0950) their required pick-up point.


Nov 19/20 Pot and Potter: practical residential weekend at Rewley House, Oxford*

Sat Nov 26 11am-6pm, Museum of London. 23rd Local History Conference.

Theme: From the Armada to the Glorious Revolution – Change and Growth in London 1588-1688. Lectures and local society exhibits, including a HADAS display on the Hendon ice-house. Tickets £3.50 from Miss P A Ching, 40 Shaef Way, Teddington TW11 ODQ 

Wed Dec 7 LAMAS lecture by Ralph Merrifield on the Archaeology of Ritual (subject similar to his book published last year, The Archaeology of Ritual and Magic). Lecture 6.30, Museum of London, preceded by coffee/sherry 6.00. Members of affiliated societies (HADAS is one) welcome.

Dec 9/11 What Can We Learn from Human Bones? Residential weekend at Rewley House, Oxford*

Fri Jan 20 One-day conference, 10am-5pm at Soc. Antiquaries, Burlington House, Piccadilly, on the Archaeology of Rural Wetlands. Speakers on the Somerset Levels, Fenland Project, estuarine environments and river valleys*

*Further details from Brigid Grafton Green 455-9040

WALK ROUND A MELTING POT MICKY COHEN enjoys the last outing of 1988

For the last outing of the season Muriel Large took us on a fascinating walk round Stepney – once a village on the outskirts of the City of London, where people went to refresh themselves and follow country pursuits. Only later did the stews and opium dens replace the countryside, attracting Dickens who was looking for local colour and the toffs of the day who were looking for thrills. Over the centuries Stepney has received waves of immigrants – a racial melting pot.

We started at the Royal Foundation of St Katherine, a leafy oasis in a commercial area, now a retreat and conference centre. Originally founded in 1147 near the Tower, the Foundation moved in the 18c to Stepney to make way for St Katherine’s Dock. The chapel blends Gibbons carving, 14c choir stalls and a lamp which was the gift of Henry III with modern sculpture and painting.

On to Cable Street, scene of a famous battle between Mosleyites and locals in 1936, now somnolent with old cottages upgraded to Yuppy standards and modern Council blocks. The devastation of the war has made way for the new.

Passing an attractive row of early Victorian almshouses, we walked through the large graveyard of Stepney parish church, St Dunstans, the site of multiple burials during the great Plague in London. The largely 15c church is medieval in feeling and full of light (the glass was destroyed during the war). There is some modern glass – above the altar a controversial figure of Christ in a red cloak. The greatest treasure is a 10c Saxon cross set in beneath the window – a carving which was found weathered outside.

“Stepping Stones,” an urban farm, provided a delightful venue for tea and cake. We managed to fit into tables and chairs designed for 8-year-olds! After tea we passed Stepney Green and some beautiful Georgian buildings on our way to the Whitechapel Road. There the Trinity Almshouses, designed by Wren, surround a quiet courtyard garden – a gem hidden from the bustle behind a wall. Finally although we did not visit, Muriel told us about the house in a narrow street nearby where Lenin, Trotsky, Stalin and Litvinov met to found the Comintern, watched over by Scotland Yard and the Tsar’s police.

Muriel pointed out so many historical associations in the area during her informative talk there is no space to list them all. Among the notables Captain Cook lived in the Whitechapel Road, Dr Barnardo left London Hospital to work with destitute children in the district and William Booth founded the Salvation Army – a statue commemorates him. A most enjoyable afternoon.


Famous men have their monuments and their biographers: the poor “perish as if they had never been.” But by studying parish settlement examinations and removal orders it is possible to draw thumb-nail sketches of some of the humble folk of the l8c.

What was a settlement? The Settlement Act of 1662 limited parish help to those persons born in the parish or those who had owned or rented substantial property in it. “Foreigners” could be removed from a parish even if they had not sought poor relief. A removal could not be made unless the person had been ‘examined’ before two magistrates and then made the subject of a removal order. In Hendon folk were examined in the vestry room at the Greyhound Inn, and in Finchley at the Queen’s Head next the church. The conditions of settlement were later widened to include (a) anyone who had been a contracted ‘servant’ for at least a year; (b) or who had served as a parish officer, and (c) or had served an apprenticeship in the parish; and in 1795 Parliament ordered that folk could not be removed from a parish or even examined until they asked for relief.

Presumably part of the purpose of the 1662 Act was to restrict the movements of potential revolutionaries; the upheavals of the Civil War were a recent memory. Whatever the purpose the results seem to have been frustration and misery all round. Parishes spent time and money on investigating settlements, in removing the old, the sick and orphaned children and in fighting legal battles with other parishes trying to enforce removal orders on them.

Men too old to work were sent away to villages they had not seen since they were children. A widow with a young family was dumped fifty miles away because her husband had been a farm worker there before he married. In 1709 Hendon overseers of the poor spent 5s (25p) sending “Oul Richeson into Essex” to “find out about his settlement:” later they removed him for 10s7d (53p) “for horse hire for him and ourself and to bring his horse back.” In 1787 it cost Hendon ratepayers £2.12s.6d (£2.63p) to move a sick Irishman to Parkgate, then a small port on the river Dee in Cheshire, for repatriation to his native land; and they even paid £22.15s.3d (£22.76p) to transport four orphan children to the parish in Shropshire where their father had been born.

One Finchley record proves how far parish officers would go to dispute a settlement. Finchley officers had removed a pauper family to Horsley in Gloucestershire. At Quarter Sessions Horsley disputed the removal because they denied that the pauper had been legally married to the mother of his children and argued therefore that Horsley was not responsible for her and the children. Finchley sent the constable to Farnham in Surrey – presumably because that was where the marriage was said to have taken place – to inspect the parish registers.

There is, alas, no record of the outcome of the case. It is one of the frustrations of this kind of research that the documents don’t always finish the story off, and you are left in eternal suspense about what happened. But I would be long sorry to be without records like this, even though they have shortcomings. Examinations and removals may have been – indeed, they often undoubtedly were – tragic for the poor and bothersome for parish officials, but they are often pure gold for local historians trying to put flesh on the dry bones of names in local records. For four parishes of our Borough in the l8c – Hendon, Finchley, Edgware and Friern Barnet – the Local History Collection holds records of a number of settlements from which much can be gleaned.

How else would we know why two Eastbourne girls, Ann Lever and Abigail Earl, were marooned in Finchley with their newly-born babes in 1780? Ann had been a contracted servant, a dairymaid, at £3.10s.0d (£3.50p) a year. She had been “delivered of a child on Finchley Common;” the child’s father was John Reddle, a private soldier in the 2nd Queen’s Regiment of Foot. Abigail also had followed John Morris of the same regiment and had also been abandoned with her baby when the troops marched away.

In 1762 James Wilson turned up in Hendon. He had been born “in Flanders.” His father lived in Wearmouth, Sunderland, and worked “on the keels,” but Wilson didn’t know where his father had been born. He himself had been “a stroler” all his life. The connection between Jordan Bland and Friern Barnet parish is not clear. Jordan was examined in 1803: born in 1771, in Weddington, Essex, he had joined the Navy when he was 14 years old. He had served in HMS Invincible – 74 guns – for two years and then in the Fleet transports Polly and Isabella. In 1801 he began work at the New Rope Ground in Limehouse “till he was taken ill the other day.”

In 1781 Sarah Burton was removed from Witham in Essex to Finchley,

The removal was by stages: the first move was to Stratford le Bow “being the first town in the next precinct.” Sarah did not know where her husband, John Burton, was – “for he goes about the country mending chairs.” She had married John in Morpeth in Northumberland in 1779 and had a baby daughter. John’s uncle, a Finchley chimney sweep, said that John’s father had been a brick-layer in the parish, but the son had never served an apprenticeship nor been a contracted labourer.

Wholesale examinations before 1795 sometimes netted respectable parishioners. One can almost hear the indignation of Alexander Nelson, a gardener, when he was examined in 1763. He had been born in Musselburgh “in the Kingdom of Scotland.” He had been hired by Mr de Ponthieu of Mill Hill in 1753 as a living-in servant at £15 a year. In 1758, when he married Margaret Johnson, he had warned his employer “to get someone else” because as a married man “his wages would not do.” Mr de Ponthieu solved the problem by hiring Margaret as his cook at £10 a year.

Also surprisingly Isaac Messeder – whose name will be familiar to many HADAS researchers — was examined in 1767. Isaac said he was a 53-year-old carpenter and surveyor. Proofs of the latter occupation are the meticulous notes and plans of the Manor of Hendon which he had made in 1754. His field book survives in the archives of Barnet Library Services, where it is usually referred to in conjunction with James Crow’s huge plan (it is 106″ x 64”) of “the Mannor and Parish of Hendon,” made in the same year – the work of Messeder and Crow both being part of the survey of the Hendon estate of Henry Arthur, Earl of Powys, the then lord of the manor.

Isaac said he had been born in Aldenham but had been brought up by his uncle in Green Street, Ridge. Although he had never been apprenticed to his carpenter uncle nor been a contracted servant to him, he had lived there till he was twenty years old. When he lived in Hampstead in 1765 he had paid 14s (70p) a year poor rate on the house he had rented. All his five children, aged between 28 years and 20 years had been born in Hendon.

I called this article “The Annals of the Poor” but you will already have realised that the rest of that quotation does not apply. Settlement records are far from “short and simple.” I hope to talk about them in two instalments – this present one, to whet your appetite; and another next month, as a second helping.


The Minimart certainly gathers HADAS members together from all points of the compass. It was a pleasure this year to welcome two former Committee members from far away. From the west came VINCENT FOSTER, who joined the Society back in 1974 when he was working for his banking exams from his home in Finchley. Now – long a fully-fledged banker – he is a paterfamilias (we saw a photo of his delightful daughter), living in Quebec and still valuing his HADAS connections. He was back for a brief holiday with his parents in Finchley.

From the north came DAPHNE LORIMER, also in London on a flying visit, to shop and to stock up with the latest computer know-how – she and Ian have installed one and are now ‘into’ computers in a big way. But she had time not only to visit the Minimart but to do some sterling work on the Food stall, which she used once to organise.

Also at the Minimart – though from Chipping Barnet, not far-distant parts – was another long-time member whom we see all too rarely nowadays – BRIAN WIBBERLEY, with two of his youngsters. He brought with him, as always, some of Rosemary’s delicious cooking for the Food stall. It included various honey confections as well as bottled honey. We noticed that the jars carried a printed label, “WIBBERLEY HONEY,” so we suspect that among their many other activities the family has set up a bee-keeping enclave, which raises the pleasant picture of bees buzzing round the Wibberley garden in the middle of bustling Barnet.

The September Newsletter mentioned that ALAN HILL, a longtime HADAS member, had become Hon. PRO to the Prehistoric Society. Now there’s more news about his activities. A few weeks ago his autobiography, In Pursuit of Publishing, was published. It tells the story of his work at Heinemann’s, building up that firm’s Educational Books department – an occupation which took Alan (and often his wife Enid, also a HADAS member) many times round the world and into some unexpected (for a sedate publisher) situations.

Usually we report with pride when a HADAS member has ceased to be “Mr” and become “Dr” – because it means that he has survived the gruelling process of producing a thesis on some esoteric subject and has earned a PhD. Today we report the reverse process – someone who is now proudly a Mr instead of a doctor. PAUL O’FLYNN has passed the arduous examinations for a Fellowship of the Royal College of Surgeons and can now – as all surgeons do – proudly claim the title of Mr O’Flynn FRCS. Our warmest congratulations to Paul and to his wife Michaela, who has helped him through his years of study.

Congratulations too to the Newbury family this month – not so much to Dorothy, who we so often congratulate, but to her son CHRISTOPHER who has recently become a proud father. Christopher has been a strong HADAS supporter since he was 14: he solves many of our more abstruse technical difficulties and on his expertise depends the safe arrival of your Newsletter every month: he is in charge of all its production problems. The latest Newbury, Alexander James, was born on Sept 11 in Hendon to Christopher and his wife Laura, weighing into life at 71/2 lbs. His proud grandma described him as “a perfect babe” and I was reminded that September 11 was a Sunday and that “the child that is born on the Sabbath day is bonny and blithe and good and gay.”

The saga of the canny sheep of Islay is a long running one in these pages. These preternaturally clever animals (a total reversal of the “silly sheep” of normal practice) first appeared in the Newsletter several years ago, when HADAS member MAIR LIVINGSTONE reported on their ability to negotiate a tricky stone stairway and so enter a Scots churchyard where no sheep was meant to enter, Dr Livingstone reports that they have now, however, had their come-uppance. She told Argyll county council about their goings-on, and how the finely carved recumbent stones in the 10c churchyard were being disfigured by small sharp hooves. This summer she was delighted to see that a device of fine wires now prevents ovine trespass while still permitting human entry. It is thought that the sheep have probably retired to lick their wounds (entirely metaphorical) and plan the next phase of their campaign.

Trains are much in the HADAS news. First Christine Arnott popped off to China on one and now PHYLLIS FLETCHER returns from Canada with her train story. It concerns a momentous 2-day journey from Seattle to Phoenix, Arizona, via Los Angeles by American Amtrak train. “Each compartment of an Amtrak train carried about 50 people,” she writes, “with an attendant who looked after our every need and kept the place as clean as a new pin – even using a carpet sweeper each day. There was a ‘trash bag’ for rubbish and you could get iced water from a little machine. Snack bars and a restaurant served excellent meals – British Rail please note both the food and the cleanliness! There was an observation area where you could sit watching the beautiful scenery through Washington State, then climbing through 21 tunnels in Oregon State, then California with huge areas of fresh fruit, vines, herbs and vegetables, and at last the Pacific Ocean. What a thrill to be beside the Pacific, especially as the train wound a long way round, passing such names as Burbank, Santa Monica and Beverly Hills. At Los Angeles I waited three hours, then boarded the Phoenix train. It was now dark so did not see much of the scenery. When I arrived at Phoenix at 7 am it was 100 degrees. What with the fine scenery and so many interesting people to meet on board I enjoyed the train journey much more than flying. Incidentally, we passed Mount Helen, which is said to be responsible for the bad summers we have had recently after it erupted a few years ago – so on your behalf I glared at it,”


The terminal buildings and apron on the south side of Northolt Aerodrome were built at the end of WW2 for use by RAF Transport Command, whose operations gradually gave way to the civil aircraft of the European Division of BOAC (as it then was). They remained in use as a terminal for BEA and other European operators until 1954 when the last BEA internal flights remaining at Northolt were transferred to Heathrow.

The buildings have continued to be London’s Military Air Terminal and include a Royal Waiting Room used when members of the Royal Family fly by the Royal Flight from London.

It is no longer economic to keep these buildings, which are standard RAF huts, in good repair and they are to be demolished in 1990 and replaced. Clearly this is a historic aviation site and a visit has been arranged for a Friday afternoon in April 1989, The actual date will not be known until nearer the time when the RAF know what movements are planned in April 1989. Photography will be allowed.

Anyone wishing to join this visit should apply, enclosing a stamped addressed envelope for return of visit instructions, to

Bill Firth 4-9 Woodstock Avenue London NW11 9RG

Applicants should give names of participants and car registration numbers. Numbers are strictly limited and will be dealt with on a “first come first served” basis. The actual date and joining instructions will not be available until quite near to the date of the visit.


In the August Newsletter we carried a piece by Brian Wrigley on his reactions to Colin Renfrew’s important book, Archaeology and Language. In it Brian enquired why the Near Eastern homeland from which domesticated plant and animal species spread across Europe had to be “proto-Indo-European-speaking” rather than “proto-Semitic-speaking.” He did not feel that Professor Renfrew had made the point clear.

Dorothy Newbury has been sending Professor Renfrew copies of HADAS Newsletters containing comments by various members – and the August issue went off to Cambridge as usual. Professor Renfrew – who must have few spare moments in his day – has most courteously acknowledged all these comments, and his reply to Brian’s points will interest many members:

Thank you for your letter and for the new copy of your Newsletter.

Brian Wrigley’s comment seems to me a very relevant one. I too feel, that the need to review the whole subject emerges much more clearly from the present situation than my own specific proposed solution.

In response to his specific point, the matter can be explained if we imagine that before the development of farming a proto-Indo-European language was spoken in Anatolia with other very different (and perhaps Semitic) languages in Mesopotamia and surrounding areas.

There was great scope for expansion of the farming economy into the temperate lands of Europe, hence the Indo-European expansion. But further south the “fertile crescent” was geographically more circumscribed (mainly due to the arid environment).

In geographical terms there was simply not the same opportunity for the expansion of a farming economy.

I hope that gives at least the outline of an answer to his very reasonable point.


The following sites, the subject of recent planning applications, could be of possible archaeological interest. Members living in the vicinity are asked to keep an eye on them and report anything unusual to John Enderby on 203 2630.

Northern Area

52/54 High Street, Chipping Barnet extension to Listed building

96 Gallants Farm Road, East Barnet erection of detached bungalow

51/53 Wood Street, Chipping Barnet alterations/extension to Listed building in Conservation Area

30/34 Prospect Road, New Barnet erection 28 new housing units

29 Union Street, Chipping Barnet demolition of Listed building in Conservation Area

Central Area

2 Waverley Grove & 128/130 Hendon Lane, N3 erection 22 flats with parking

Western Area

Fiesta Cottage, Edgwarebury Lane, Edgware side extension

West Acres, Tenterden Grove, NW4 4 detached houses

Land adj. 6 Neeld Cres, NW4 detached house


There was nearly a crisis with last month’s Newsletter – we were within a whisker of there being no October number at all.

The members who saved the Newsletter’s bacon – together with its record of never missing a month – were Anne Lawson and Dawn Orr, the latter tapping away on her typewriter all night in order to produce a copy for reproduction. We seize this chance of thanking them both publicly for their noble effort.

That brings us to another point. We desperately need offers from members who, in an emergency, would be prepared to type the Newsletter. This is a long-standing need – we first voiced it about 12 years ago – but it is not so daunting today as it once was. Today we don’t need typists experienced in cutting stencils, because the Newsletter is no longer stencilled. Anyone who would be prepared to do a quick, reasonably accurate occasional job of straight copy-typing would be greatly welcomed. If you feel you could help, please ring Liz Holliday on 204 4616 (evenings/weekends) and put your name down on the list. Emergencies, by the way, don’t often crop up – you probably wouldn’t be asked to help more than once a year.


Following the report in last month’s Newsletter of the find of a Belgic coin at Brockley Hill, I can now confirm that the coin dates from the reign of Cunobelinus (c10-40AD). The British Museum has identified the reverse design as that of a sphinx (Type = Mack 237) and the coin is made of base silver (not bronze as first thought) under a brown surface patina.

The coin could have circulated until the Boudiccan revolt of AD61. Until this time, British Celtic coinage was allowed to circulate freely along with Roman coins, so the find of a Celtic coin at Brockley Hill need not imply pre-Roman settlement of the site, although this remains a possibility.

Another very worn coin found at Brockley Hill at the same time and in the same location (TQ175939) as the above has been identified by the British Museum as an as of the Emperor Domitian, AD81-96. Both coins have now been duly recorded by Helen Gordon, and the Museum of London has been notified of the finds.


is the pertinent question asked by Phyllis Fletcher, our Membership Secretary; and she goes on

Have you a guilty conscience? Or do you sleep easy o’nights?

I ask because more than 50 members have not yet paid their subscriptions, which were due last April 1.

If you are among the forgetful 50, you’ll find a separate reminder with this Newsletter. Please deal with it at once. I’d hate you to find your Newsletter cut off in its prime – and that’s what may happen if I don’t hear from you soon. What a threat to chill your blood!


This is an apology which the Post Office, not the Newsletter, should be making. The report on the October lecture (Peter Huggins on Waltham Abbey excavations) should have appeared in this Newsletter: but sadly it has missed the deadline, although posted (carrying above maximum first class postage) in time to meet it. On the Post Office’s behalf, apologies.

FROM BARNET TO DOCKLANDS JOHN ENDERBY adds another chapter to the tale of a 19c sack-lift

In the October Newsletter I reported the rescue, from certain destruction, of massive metal winding gear from the site behind 62 High Street, Chipping Barnet; and I added that this had been offered to the Docklands Museum.

They were happy to accept it, and now I can report that the transfer of the equipment has gone unusually smoothly. David Dewing, Senior Assistant Keeper of the Museum, and a team of helpers have collected all the machinery for restoration and future installation as an exhibit.

If all goes well the Museum will open sometime in 1992 (not 1990 as previously reported). It will provide visitors with a wealth of information on the story of the development of the Port of London from its Roman origins to the present day. The Museum would be glad to know of any further items of industrial archaeological interest that may come to light within the Greater London area.

Jennie Cobban, who appealed for help with a possible excavation at the rear of 62 High Street has asked me to say that, unhappily, protracted negotiations have broken down and that the development has now advanced to the stage when trial trenching would serve no useful purpose. However, she will be reporting on her research into this site and on discoveries recently made at 58 High Street – a known late medieval building of some importance – in the December Newsletter.

A HADAS LEGACY TO ORKNEY DAPHE LORIMER discovers an unexpected result of our visit 10 years ago to Orkney

Those members of HADAS who went on the great Orkney trek may be interested to learn that their trip left its mark on the archaeology of the islands.

When HADAS visited the Round Church and Earl’s Bu in Orphir, the farmer, Mr Stevenson, on whose land those monuments lay, opened up the entrance to an underground passage for HADAS’s inspection. Via the then secretary of the Orkney Heritage Society, Sue Flint, this fact came to the ears of Chris Morris, who was excavating the approach road to the Brough of Birsay (he acted as our guide to the Brough). Chris and his fiancée (now wife), Colleen, who was doing her PhD on Viking coastal settlement, examined the entrance to the passage; and Colleen has been back every summer (grants permitting) to dig it ever since.

The tunnel was sealed beneath Norse midden deposits which subsequently yielded a rich harvest of seeds, as well as animal and fish bones. The tunnel proceeded in a north-west direction into a large chamber, probably a souterrain. Since all the soil from the midden was put through a soil flotation unit, it was only this year that the roof could be completely taken off the passage and its excavation completed!. An exit was discovered to the chamber which continued westwards and other walls were found – right at the end of the dig.

Bone artefacts (one with runes on it) and steatite which were found were probably Norse, but the dating of the chamber is not certain. Colleen considers that the whole mound (which is considerable) on which the present day farm buildings stand, is man-made – an Orkney Tell, in fact J

This year the dig was run as a training dig for first-year students from Durham University, but local volunteers came for training as well. Chris is Senior Reader in Archaeology at Durham; and Colleen, who did extra¬mural lecturing in Durham, has now taken up a 2-year post at University

College, London: she speaks warmly of the merits of the Amateur Archaeologist.


This exhibition at Verulamium Museum is a welcome and unusual chance to see some 35 Romano-British mosaics in miniature.

They are presented in watercolour, and are executed in great detail. They are the work, over many years, of David Neal of the Central Excavation Unit of English Heritage. In their preparation much detailed study of each piece must have been undertaken. This is a great chance to compare mosaics from the north of England with those of the south and west. At the same time the rest of the museum is open to view and one can compare the detailed painted drawings with the mosaics in the museum.

The mosaics exhibit remains open until the end of December. Opening hours Mon-Sat 10 am-5.30pm (4pm from November); Suns from 2 pm. Entrance fee payable. TED SAMMES

or should that be An Orr’s Eye View? Anyway, this piece is by DAWN ORR

That happy HADAS habit, the annual Minimart, took off to a flying start with a fine day and excellent stock. The Newbury elastic-sided garage disgorged its treasures into elastic-sided cars, which moved in stately caravan along Sunningfields Road, led by John Enderby – at least I knew I was in the right road when I saw him.

At the hall, a noble company of carters and heavers had responded to Dorothy’s plea for “more men”, and all those wonderfully organised boxes and bags were speedily distributed and unpacked. Inevitably, a few bits and bobs arrive on the day …

“What on earth is this?” “What price …?” “Try 50p!” “Good heavens! What would anyone use that for?” …. and so on we pressed, more and more welcome friends arriving to help, until …

“Would you like a cup of coffee?” (just at the right moment!)

If we made a Video someday, the soundtrack would run something like this:

“Has this saucepan got a lid?” “Will this do for a kitty?” “Has anyone seen the other bit of the Bible?” “Who wants a pinny with a pocket?” “Try those briefcases with the shoes” (Leather goods? Yuppie wear?) “Has this lid got a saucepan?”

“May I take your lunch order?” (More kind thoughts)

And then at last the whistle blows, the merry hubbub of preparation ceases: “Stand by your stalls!”

And so the customers troop in – some at first diffident, others seasoned bargain-hunters diving straight at their goals. The decibels rise and it’s lip-reading time – have I just nodded prematurely to a query on half-price? Panic … relief … satisfaction … £2 in the kitty and an unhinged sandwich toaster has been lumbered off. More tempting wares find room, but nobody succumbs to the five demijohns which remain firmly dominant for the duration … Isn’t anyone recently retired enough to want to make wine?

Soon it’s collection call and HADAS’s own securicor service escorts Dorothy on her rounds. “Mind out for any pick-pockets!” she advises. “One of ‘them’ will distract you while his mate nicks the lot!” “Can’t tell me anything about ‘them’ Ma’am! I was a copper, y’know.”

The pinny pockets grow heavy and the kitties are overflowing as the stalls begin to clear. The SOLD piles, held “just for a minute, dear!” shrink – they form an awkward corner, but what can you do when the customers have paid?

Suddenly a 2-foot high patron gives forth an enormous yell, which no amount of soothing from his pretty mother will assuage. Over the din I discover that he is an enthusiastic member of the Play Group and had rushed up the stairs, thinking that he was coming for an extra session … imagine his dismay at the unaccustomed invasion of surging adults and all their noise! He wailed all the way downstairs again, but finally quietened down in the lunch room.

At last it’s time for lunch for the workers – value and pleasure in generous measure. Query: if 200 meringues were laid end-to-end – how long would they last? Answer: Not long! And Brigid’s carefully packed boxes didn’t last long either – nobody mentioned diets! They simply melted in many mouths amongst the cheerful gossip, and after a wonderful boost it was back to the fray, picking up a scarcely worn skirt and as-new black shiny shoes on the way. (Wore them for the rest of the afternoon – instant fit!) Gasped at a beautiful statuesque Vogue-like lady gliding off in a long 50p skirt, and another with an armful of allsorts – she comes every year to buy for her relatives at home in the West Indies.

Whistle tells us “Half-price Now!” – real bidding for bargains. An anxious member comes seeking a mysterious plastic bag full of wrought iron, which he has decided he wants back again. Best persuasions had failed to sell it, so he was lucky, though 50p lighter. Another member bought the box of spotlights – maybe we shall see these items again in some HADAS guise – even if it’s the next Minimart?

Which reminds me – this “one day of the year” is certainly unique, both in fun and purpose – but now that we have the “Sales and Wanted” slip in the Newsletter, the fund-raising effort and the thrill of the purchase and the sale can continue all year round. In no time at all that very grand total of £1200 will be on the upward move …

Do I hear a tinkling call from Downing Street? A special AWARD FOR ENTERPRISE? Yes, ma’am … we’d be delighted!

News from the Borough Archives & Local Studies Department


The medieval, and later, history of Edgware is particularly complicated because the township was split between different manors and parishes. The primary evidence can therefore be hard to unravel, and this is reflected in the standard authorities, up to and including the Victoria County History of Middlesex.

The department has recently acquired photocopies of the pages from the Hospitallers’ cartulary in the British Library (MS Cotton Nero E VI vol 1 ff.80-83v) relating to their estates in Edgware. The cartulary was compiled: in the mid-15c but the ten items which it includes date back at least another hundred years. Although it is cited in the standard authorities, the full extent of the information which it provides has not been realised.

The first five items trace the descent of a house and acre of land from the time when the Hospitallers granted it away to Hugo de la Hegge in the late 13c or early 14c until it returned to them in the will of Sayer de Stevenage, chaplain of Edgware, in 1375. The deeds make it absolutely clear that although Sayer was chaplain of St Margaret’s, Edgware, the house was on the Little Stanmore side of the Edgware Road, in the parish of St. Lawrence. The VCH (vol iv, pl64) seems to suggest that it was the vicarage house next to St Margaret’s.

The will of Sayer is as follows:

In the name of God amen, on Thursday in the feast of St Matthew the apostle (21 September)1374 I Sayer de Stevenach chaplain make my testament in this form. First I bequeath my soul to God the omnipotent and to all the saints and my body to be buried in the parish church of Edgware. Item I leave to the light of the blessed Margaret there half a mark. Item to the fabric of the church of Whitchurch 3s4d. Item to the church of Hendon 2s. Item to the church of Elstree 2s. Item I give and bequeath my house with garden, dovehouse and meadow to the prior and convent of St John at Clerkenwell. Item I bequeath my black book or breviary with a sufficient portion of my other goods to a suitable priest to celebrate (masses) for my soul for a full year. Item I bequeath to Emmot the wife of Nicholas atte Wode the two best cows with the best pitcher and small pitcher and the best salt-pan (patella). Item I bequeath to the said Emmot 10s of gold or silver. Item I bequeath to Sayer Ounde six silver spoons. Item I leave the other spoons to the said Emmot. Item to Sayer Presgate 2s. Item I bequeath to each of my sons (filiorum) 6d. The residue of my unbequeathed goods I bequeath to Walter Baker and Nicholas atte Wode whom I appoint my executors that they may arrange and dispose for my soul as seems to them most expedient.

The will, which was proved in January 1375, seems to have led to an immediate dispute, and in July the Official of the Archdeacon of Middlesex summoned the two custodians (churchwardens) of Edgware and Sayer’s executors to attend a hearing. Unfortunately we are not told the grounds of the dispute or the verdict.

In 1395 the prior again granted out Sayer’s messuage, but this time instead of alienating it on a permanent basis he only granted it out to farm for 20 years, to the then farmer of the whole manor of Edgware Boys, “Two years later the whole manor, including the chapel of Edgware, was let out on a new farm for 10 years. The farmer had to find and maintain a suitable chaplain for St Margaret’s, and keep both the manor buildings and the chancel of the church in good repair.

It was presumably because of the impending farm that the manor was surveyed, and the resulting Extent is the next item, unfortunately rather too long to be reproduced here. It lists 12 fields of arable, totalling 235 acres, 4 meadows totalling 7 acres, and 14 acres of Boysgrove. Three tenants were holding houses with gardens, one tenant a cottage and another a toft, garden and croft. The manor also had all the tithes. Annual outgoings were a rent of 7s7d on 100 acres of land originally purchased from Roger Stronge; 33s4d to the chaplain of Edgware together with a suitable house and garden, and altarage; 6d at Easter for consecrated bread; 3s4d for bread, milk and cheese at Boys on rogation days (presumably for sustenance to those beating the manor bounds); and another 3s4d in bread, wine and wax for celebrating masses.

The cartulary does not tell us when or how the Hospitallers acquired their manor of Edgware Boys. No earlier reference to it as a manor has been found than in the farm of 1395 recorded above. The VCH (vol iv p157) states cautiously that it may have originated from a known grant of land made in 1231/8. An Extent of the main manor of Edgware which was made in 1277 records 7s7d rent due from the Hospitallers of the Wood (Public Record Office SC 11 296, published in LAMAS Transactions NS vol vii, 1933). The 1397 Extent of Boys (a corruption of bois or wood) makes it plain that this was the 100 acres added by purchase and not, as the editors of the 1277 Extent wrongly assumed, the full manor. This is not, however, proof either way since a completely separate manor would not have been mentioned.

The cartulary also fails to provide a firm early date for St Margaret’s. Again, though, it gives the earliest that we have, in the implication that Sayer de Stevenage was already its chaplain in 1362. It is interesting that the uncertain status of St Margaret’s, whether a chapel (of Kingsbury), or a full-scale parish church, which was long-continuing, is reflected here. 

The photocopies have been given the reference number MS 13259, and a detailed list which includes translations of both the will and the Extent is also available at the department.

And a news flash from the Borough Archives:
a map for Finchley and Holders Hill is now available in the Alan Godfrey edition (price £1.20 from libraries). As well as the whole of the sheet for 1895 it includes, on the back, the eastern half of the next edition, surveyed in 1912.


Leafing through the current issue of The Local Historian (it’s for May, 1988, because the magazine has had an editorial upheaval and is running late) we came on three beautifully reproduced plates. The captions read:

Hendon Vicarage

Mr & Mrs Sneath, Mr Sneath’s brother and Miss Barber outside 24 Sunny Gardens, Hendon, Good Friday 5 April 1901

Edgware c1890

The pictures illustrated the first article in a new series which Local Historian is running on Local Photographers and Their Work. The photographer featured is James Barber; he was Ludlow-born, but did most of his work in Hendon from the 1880s to the 1920s. The originals (as was mentioned briefly in the June Newsletter) are in LBB Archives, housed in 7 albums or among a group of loose prints. Negatives have recently been made of the whole collection.

Pleasant that this new series should kick off with an LBB subject.


David Whipp and Peter Mills have left the Department of Greater London Archaeology in order to set up as independent consultants to developers. Roy and Leslie Adkins made a similar move last year to Somerset, it looks as if independent consultancy could become a growth area for professional archaeologists – but one doubts whether that process will be in the best interests of archaeology as a means of obtaining maximum information about the past.

Meantime their move has necessitated a change in the North London Section of DGLA. Laura Schaef has replaced David Whipp and she will be assisted by Robert Whytehead and Mike Hutchinson.



Whisky and archaeology don’t usually go together – unless it’s a wee dram at the end of a hard day’s digging. But it’s thanks to Glenfiddich whisky, which operates the “Living Scotland” awards, that the excavators of what has been described as “one of the most extensively excavated Roman forts in Britain” have been able to provide visitors to the site with a beautifully produced full colour guide. The fort is Elginhaugh, near Dalkeith, a first century fort on the crossing of the River Esk by Dere Street. The fort was built and occupied during Agricola’s campaigns in Scotland (77-84 AD) and not for much longer than that.

Discovered by air-photos during the 1979 dry spell, the excavators, from Glasgow university, have been able to wring a lot of information from the site, not only for the Roman occupation but also for Bronze Age, Neolithic and Mesolithic phases (nothing much in the Iron Age). The booklet they published with their whisky award can be obtained from Dr Henson, Dept. of Archaeology, University, Glasgow G12 8QQ, for £1 plus 30p postage.

It is interesting that the first three articles in the October History Today are on archaeological subjects. Ten years ago I don’t believe that would have happened. Historians are becoming much more archaeology conscious.

The first article discusses English Heritage’s excavation of formal gardens at Kirby Hall in Northamptonshire. Brian Dix, in charge of the dig, is pleased with the “sophisticated 17c flower pots” which have been found. They boast “an intricate drainage system consisting of a hole at the bottom with more holes punched into the side of the vessel just above the junction with the base.” Shades of the days when I started in archaeology – most of my finds were greeted with “oh, that’s only flower pot – you needn’t keep that.”

The second story seems even stranger, because it concerns a material which we would not expect to have much measurable impact on the archaeological record – blood. The article describes excavations on the site of an Augustinian monastic hospital at Soutra, 17 miles south of Edinburgh, in occupation from 12c-l6c. There the remains of an estimated 300000 pints of blood (among other infirmary waste) have been found. The dig aims to recover the “physical residues of medical practice and evaluate them against documentation.” The blood has survived because of poor drainage, which resulted in the soil being saturated. Exotic plant material – including pollen of cloves imported from Zanzibar and the Spice Islands – also survives, thought to be evidence of herbal remedies.

There is documentary evidence that blood-letting was practised among Augustinians between seven to 12 times a year. The process finished, according to medieval manuals, when the patient was on the point of unconsciousness – estimated at 3 to 4 pints in a normal healthy adult. Blood-letting, it was thought “strengthens the memory, dries up the brain, sharpens the hearing, curbs fears … produces a musical voice … and gives a long life.”

The third article deals with a subject mentioned by Ted Sammes in his “Miscellany” in the September Newsletter. History Today’s representative, like Ted, had been to one of the Ancient Monuments Laboratory Open Days and had been hooked by the huge range of articles that the Laboratory handles. He instanced some of them: from a single pollen grain found in the intestines of a Lindow Moss bog-body and now under microscopic examination; to “an awful corroded chunk of glob … a Saxon horse’s bit with part of the horse’s mouth still attached.”

Volumes published this year in the Shire Archaeology series include Life in the Ice Age by Anthony J Stuart and Brochs of Scotland by J N G Ritchie. Both are worth adding to your bookshelf. Stuart summarises present thought on climate, dating and vocabulary in periods where received opinion is constantly changing – the Middle and Upper Pleistocene. Ritchie’s volume includes a chapter on Orkney and Caithness and some fine photographs of Gurness and Bu Brochs on Orkney. Each costs £2.50 – from booksellers or direct from Shire.

If you watched Thames Television’s Living Memories programmes in September you may like to know there is a free booklet to go with them – write to PO Box 1322 London NW1 3H2. It is fact-packed – how to start on oral history, what equipment you need, what it costs, how to plan a session, how to interview. There is a booklist, addresses of groups operating in in London and facts about the London History Workshop sound and video Archive.


By | Past Newsletters, Volume 4 : 1985 - 1989 | No Comments

ISSUE No 225 Edited by Liz Holliday DECEMBER 1989


Tuesday, 02 January 1990 PRESIDENTIAL ADDRESS by our new President

Dr. Ralph Merrifield, entitled THE ARCHEAOLOGY OF RITUAL & MAGIC.

Dr. Merrifield wonders if members will have recovered from Christmas and New Year festivities, but we have assured him that we will all make a special effort to come to meet him (even if still suffering from hangovers!).

Tuesday, 6 February Lecture to be confirmed


WHETSTONE by Percy Reboul & John Heathfield

FOUND: a green wool scarf with silk pattern reverse was found after the November lecture. Phone 203 0950 to claim,


A Place in Time, the Society’s most ambitious publishing venture to date, was well and truly launched at Hendon Town Hall on Thursday,16 November in the presence of The Worshipful the Mayor of the London Borough of Barnet, Councillor Mrs. Dot Benson, our new President, Dr. Ralph Merrifield, Society members and guests.

After welcoming guests and members, our Chairman Andrew Selkirk introduced the authors and outlined the contribution they had made before each was presented with a copy of the book by the Mayor.

Following the presentations, the Mayor spoke of her pleasure in being associated with the launch of A Place in Time and complemented the Society on its production. It was, she said, a splendid example of co­operation between members of the Society and staff from the Libraries Department and the use of funds from the Edward Harvist Charity. She wished the Society and its latest publication well. In reply, DR. Merrifield thanked the Mayor and said how delighted he was to be introduced to the Society on such an auspicious occasion. He considered the book to be an editorial triumph, for although it was written by a committee it read as a cohesive whole. Dr. Merrifield found the naps particularly fascinating and had used then to locate the various archaeological finds and features within the Borough in relation to the house where he was born in Child’s Way, Temple Fortune.

The publication of A Place in Time was, Dr.Merrifield believed, a fitting record to mark the first twenty-five years of HADAS’ activities within the Borough.

Thanks must go to Percy Reboul and Dorothy Newbury who arranged the occasion, Ann Lawson and John Heathfield who organised and served the refreshments and Alan Lawson who coped with the rush of sales.

‘A PLACE IN TIME’ tells the story of human settlement and activities in the area now covered by the London Borough of Barnet from earl­est tines up to the Battle of Barnet in 1471.

The book has been edited by Borough Archivist, Dr. Pamela Taylor and the text, maps, photographs, drawings & index contributed by members of the Society.

Brigid Grafton Green has provided an introduction to HADAS’ first 25 years; Victor Jones, Myfanwy Stewart and Pamela Taylor wrote the chapter ‘Framework,Geology and Settlement’. The second chapter, ‘The Stone Age’ is by Myfanwy Stewart, followed by Brian Wrigley’s contribution about ‘The Bronze and Iron Ages up to the Roman Conquest’. Helen Gordon wrote the next Chapter ,’The Roman Period 43-410AD’ and Ted Semmes and Pamela Tayor collaborated to produce the final chapter on ‘The Middle Ages’. The excellent naps were drawn by Eunice Wilson and Jane Pugh and Freda Wilkinson compiled the index. Barnet Museum, Dr.E.R.Robinson and the Libraries’ Archives and Local Studies Department all provided generous advice and help.

A grant from the Edward Harvist Trust publication.

Copies are available from Alan Lawson, 68 Oakwood Road,NV11 6RN (telephone 458 3827), price f4,50 plus 50p postage and packing. A PLACE IN TIME will make an ideal Christmas present, so rush your order to Alan now, to avoid disappointment!


At its Foundation Day Ceremony on Thursday,12th October, the University of London conferred honorary degrees on seven eminent people. The ceremony was presided over by H.R.H. The Princess Royal, the University’s Chancellor.

Amongst those so hono­ured was Ralph Merrifield who was admitted to the degree of Doctor of Literature, D.Lit. Members will remember that Ralph Merrifield was elected President of HADAS at the AGM this year.

The University of Lon­don has kindly provided us with a copy of the Oration which was written by the Public Orator:-

“Your Royal Highness and Chancellor, 1 present Ralph Merrifield.

London, Ma’am, is like an iceberg: there is as much below ground as there is on top. But public awareness of London’s subterranean culture is spasmodic, prompted by events like the Great Fire, the Blitz. or that transformation of the City which we have learned to call Big Bang. When the mosaic Bucklersbury Pavement is uncovered outside the Mansion House, as in 1869; when the Temple of Mithras is revealed in the City, as in 1954; when the foundations of Shakespeare’s Rose Theatre are dug up on the South Bank, as in 1989 – then London has woken up to its heritage below ground, But all the time – not just on famous occasions – learned moles are at work, the archaeologists of London, patientit sifting the rubbish of 2000 years in pursuit of historical truth. During the last four decades their leader has been our third Honorand tonight, Ralph Merrifield.

Mr.Merrifield is not a university man: his only formal contact with universities has been a London External Degree taken in Brighton 54 years ago. He is first and last a museum man: first in Brighton, then at Guildhall, finally in the Museum of London; and museum studies are rooted not in books or manuscripts, but the objects themselves – in Merrifield’s case, objects buried in the muddy clay of London. He is not himself what the experts call a dirt archaeologist; he is an interpreter, a synthesizer of other people’s discoveries; and inevitably so, since many finds have been fragmentary and random, turned up by spade of bulldozer in an ever-changing city. His role has been to encourage, to photograph, to catalogue, to explain: helmets and spoons, daggers and pins, coins, shoes, bottles, beakers, medallions and Jugs -all recorded dispassionately, sometimes with a dusty sense of humour. The famous leather bikini, for instance, thrown down a well in the City sometime during the 1st century A.D., and now in the Museum of London: these nether garment she tells us, probably belonged 1900 years ago to a young acrobat or dancer, “but the circumstances in which she lost them in the well can only be guesses”; then he adds: the knot that tied them, “incidentally, is a granny”,

Since William Stukeley drew the first, tentative plan of Roman London in 1722, knowledge of our capital city between the arrival of the Romans in AD.43 and their departure in the early 5th century, has increased inexorably. Diet, religion, dress, technology: these are now everyday concerns for historians armed with digital computers and carbon-dating calibrators. Before long, ground-penetrating radar may be able to pinpoint remains which at present lie hidden in the earth. The techniques change, but the conceptual process – turning evidence into hypothesis and hypothesis into history – remain the same, “Hypotheses,” notes Merrifield sagely, “do no harm unless they come to be regarded as established truth.” One of his own hypotheses – dating to the year AD.60 the gruesome hoard of sculls found in the bed of the river Walbrook – is now itself under scrutiny: perhaps that particular massacre was not the fault of Boadicea after all. In this way, historians clamber up on the shoulders of their predecessors, and the name of Merrifield takes its place with those of Roach-Smith, Pitt-Rivers and Mortimer Wheeler in the role-call of London’s archaeologists.

“Our knowledge of Roman London,” wrote Merrifield in 1965, “resembles a jigsaw puzzle with most of the pieces missing.” The fact that so many of those pieces are now no longer missing is due in large part to the patient work of Ralph Merrifield.

Your Royal Highness and Chancellor, I request you by the authority of the Senate to admit Ralph Merrifield to the degree of Doctor of Literature, Honoris causa.”

On a personal note, I first met Ralph in the early 1960s when the London Borough Secretaries Group was formed. This Group brought together the various Societies in London north of the Thames,

who were at that time carrying out excavations under great difficulties. Ralph became President of LAMAS in 1974 & held that position until 1977.

For many years he has chaired the Working Party for London Archaeol­ogy, and only resigned in October this year to take up another post.He retired as Deputy Director of the Museum of London in 1978, but his great interest in archaeology continues ­particularly Roman London tinged with folklore superstition. His writings on these subjects are considerable. All-in-all, a well-earned honour.

News of Members

Miss Ningo, quite a regular on our summer outings, has not been on any this year – and no wonder. We have learned that she had a accident to her foot way back in May and is still incapacitated.

Freda Wilkinson was on a study weekend at Oxford in November with several other HADAS members and when crossing a dark, Wet Street was knocked over by a reversing car. It was some while before she was taken to hospital and she is now home again with her leg in plaster supporting a crushed shin bone. Unfortunately she was unable to attend the launch of the Society’s book. If any member phones her, do wait for a long time as she is barely mobile.

Best wishes to both casulties for complete recovery.

Deirdre Barrie was unable to type last month’s Newsletter as she was in considerable pain from “typist’s shoulder”. Dawn Orr nobly stepped into the breach at the last minute, earning editor Micky Cohen’s heartfelt thanks. We are pleased to hear that Deirdre is now fully recovered and back at work.

Miss Sheldon was one of the more or less silent majority of HADAS members- no less valuable than the more vocal among us. An appreciative listener at winter lectures, an active participant in the summer outings and valued contributor to the Minimart, she has now retired to live among friends in Yorkshire. We wish her Joy in her new home and a good local history society.

Mary Rawitzer and the indefatigable Dorothy Newbury braved the wet of a Saturday morning in November to attend a car-boot sale in an attempt to dispose of some of our better Minimart left-overs. As there were only six other cars there and even fewer customers, they did well to take 412! They may try again in the spring. Any offers of assistance?

THE PREHISTORY OF GREATER LONDON Lecture report by Jean Snelling

Dr,Nick Merriman, Assistant Keeper in the Prehistoric and Roman Department of the Museum of London, gave us a blessedly lucid (and audible) lecture on November 7th,

He spoke of human presence in the middle and lower Thames valley over 500,000 years, first in the long glacial and interglacial periods and then during the more domestic time-scales before the Romans came.

Flint tools from Boxgrove, Sussex give evidence of man before the first great glaciation within this period – the Anglian of c.475,000 350,000 years ago. Ice-sheets 1000 feet thick then pushed boulder clay as far south as Finchley and stretched from Wales to France, displacing the Thames from its former St.Albans-East Anglian line.

The warmer Hoxnian interglacial followed for about 14,000 years, during which time Acheulian handaxe industries appeared, as at Swanscombe, Kent.

A second glacial period from 300,000 led us to consider the Thames gravel terraces which became so attactive to hunting peoples, A warm spell with high sea levels produced a sluggish river which filled its bed with gravels as it ambled towards the sea. A cold spell with ice-sheet caused the sea level to drop and the pelting river cut narrow

deep channels through the gravel, as it tumbled to the sea. (We enjoyed a drawing of boggy prehistoric Trafalgar Square, with a straight-tusked elephant splashing around the terrace and a hippo peeping from the Thames!). The deepest of the Thames terraces now lies below the present river, filled with gravel holding mammoth bones. Islands of gravel, such as Thorney (Westminster), provided areas for human settlement in later times.

The long cold Devensian period from c.60,000 years ago allowed Neanderthal men with their Mousterian handaxes to thrive, until the ultimate glaciation of 25,000-13,000, when Britain was uninhabited. The subsequent recolonising probably saw the suppression of the Neanderthals by modern men, for the transition cane too quickly for evolution to be possible.

From c.12,000 Britain was a permanently settled peninsula of north­west Europe. Some settlers had a temporary site at Uxbridge around 10,000 years ago,(occupied twice in late Paleolithic-early mesolithic times), where wild horse and reindeer were butchered. Other hunters used HADAS West Heath site intermittently. The North Sea gradually spread south over the land bridge with Europe and the Channel severed the Thames-Rhine connection. During the following 6,000 years the Thames basin began to fill with farming cropmarks – most of them are now buried beneath brick earth or river-bourne alluvium, and their discovery is now largely by chance.

Evidence of Neolithic activities in the lower Thames valley include, the causewayed enclosure at Staines; stone axes found under silt on Bermondsey island and a possible man-made landing platform there, formed of brushwood; arrowheads found beneath a Roman warehouse floor at Courage’s Brewery, Sothwark and a small farm settlement at Stanwell,Middlesex, with a double cursus monument similar to one known at Springfield, Essex.

The Bronze Age initiated the rich metal work found in the Thames, possible thrown there as offerings to gods or as funeral gifts. Other finds include the ceremoniously buried aurox, wounded by six arrow­heads, in west London; the remains of a collared funeral urn found under the General Post Office; the probable rectangular cooking-pit, with its mound of burnt stones from a streamside at St.Saviour’s Dock, Southwark and above it, an ard-marked soil surface prepared for subsequent hand digging and planting. This is the earliest sign of agriculture yet found in the lower Thames valley. There are also enclosures and trading places near Heathrow and close to Southwark bridge, a circular ditch on ploughed land containing late Bronze Age pottery and cremated human bone with flint, from a burial on the flood plain – perhaps indicative of others undiscovered. At Beddington in Surrey, a Bronze Age settlement continued into the late Iron Age.

From the Iron Age there was the temple at Heathrow, now destroyed; the hillforts at Wimbledon and. Ivinghoe Beacon and Ilford’s great Uphall Camp, as large as Maiden Castle, now embracing a suburban housing estate. The Iron Age population of England before the Roman incursion would have equalled the country’s population in medieval times.

In closing, Dr.Merriman observed that chance is the arbiter of archaeology in the Thames valley. If the London Docklands conceal another Flag Fen, will anyone ever find it?



We have now finished work on site, having reached what appears to be a natural layer of sand, deep in four spaced-out places in the areas we have opened. Quite a lot of detailed analysis of our information remains to be done before a full report can be made, but a the moment the main points of interest are:

1. We have exposed a Tudor-style brick-on-chalk-block foundation, which could have been the footing of the “missing” bay of the timber-framed building. Those who have studied the building have suggested that it appears likely to have originally had a further bay at the back.

2. There is evidence of small-scale iron-working, slag, cinder, charcoal, etc fn situ and the wide spread of evidence of burning associated with this continues beneath the Tudor-style footings, indicating that it was an earlier use of the site.


Our small dedicated forces from Whetstone have now turned immediately to this site. A trial trench 12 metres by 2 metres has been opened, exposing quite a lot of past (but recent) building work. However, exploration of a test pit made recently by the building contractors shows a number of underlying strata which may be of more interest. We are not sure how much time we shall be allowed, or indeed how long the weather will be kind, so our small digging team will certainly welcome any new (or old!) recruits. If you’d like to join in please get in touch with Brian Wrigley (959 5962) or Arthur Till (368 6288).


The first newsletter of this newly-formed body has now been received, reporting the inaugural meeting and election of Committee – the first Chairman being our very own Andrew Selkirk.

The objects of the new Council as expressed in its Constitution clearly shows its interest to HADAS and its members. In furtherance of its main object – educating the public in the study of archaeology – the Council wants to:

explore and promote ways in which amateur archaeologists and local archaeological societies can contribute more effectively, including rescue archaeology;

support the Congress of Independent Archaeologists, holding regional congresses, seminars and workshops;

act as a clearing house for independent archaeology, compiling databases of need and capabilities of societies and individuals, to match up needs and capabilities and provide information.

Prehistoric Course report

In association with the Prehistoric Society, the University of Oxford Department of External Studies arranged a week-end Conference on Palaeolithic Art to take place 10-12 November.

For the first time, members of other archaeological and historical societies were invited. The conference was very well attended and Judged to be an unqualified success.

The speakers came from Britain, America, Italy, Germany, France and Spain and there were contributions from those who had worked in Africa, Australia and Russia and so we were given a wide range of ideas to discuss and contemplate with them.

To accompany the lectures we were shown slides of mobiliary art, cave paintings and tectograms. Various questions were raised, for example: what is the significance of the well-known Venus figurines and why do we interpret figures in engravings bearing certain marks as female unless they are depicted in a hunting scene? Did men carry out the drawings and paintings of animals and strange patterns and are they of magic or religious significance? Were the often spacious cave entrances meeting places where families with children could congregate (this idea being conjectured on the evidence of foot marks and smaller hand prints) and if so, were the inner depths of the cave reserved for ceremony and ritual activities?

It was interesting to hear about a cave on the White River in the Ural Mountains, not yet fully excavated by Soviet archaeologists, which may prove to be a link with well-known European caves.

Dr. John Coles gave a lively and amusing summary on Sunday morning and he showed slides of rock engravings taken on a recent visit ti Sweden by the Prehistoric Society.

The conference was very comfortably housed in Rewley House, the headquarters of the Department of External Studies.

CONSERVATION FAIR Report by Christine Arnott

A good deal of interest was expressed by visitors to the HADAS information stall at the Conservation Fair organised by the Barnet Group of the Herts & Middx Wildlife Trust at Church House, Barnet recently. We displayed flints found during field walking and the details of the “Ice House” identification and excavation at Hendon, sold publications and dispensed membership forms. Thanks to Bill Bassey, who collected and later dismantled the display, Audrey & John Hoosen, Jean Snelling and Phyllis Fletcher who supplied visitors with plenty of archaeological information, HADAS made a good contribution to the day.

VOLUNTEERS URGENTLY NEEDED by the British Museum Quarternary Department, to help sort, index and pack their “back room” collections. Please contact Dr.Jill Cook, Franks House, 38-46 Orsman Road, N.1 (739 5264).

BOOKSHELVES & 2 UPRIGHT CHAIRS URGENTLY NEEDED for the HADAS Library, to replace those lost in the Avenue House fire. Ring June Forges (346 5078)


By | Past Newsletters, Volume 4 : 1985 - 1989 | No Comments


November 1989 EDITOR:
Micky Cohen


should have been Jonathan Cotton, but he has written to say his wife is expecting their first child just around this date. He has very kindly arranged for Dr Nick Merriman to take his place. Dr Merriman is Assistant Keeper in the Prehistoric and Roman Department of the Museum of London. HADAS is known to him through our nine-year Mesolithic excavation at West Heath, Hampstead. He has visited Margaret Maher to see the first-phase West Heath collection and discussed the possibility of its going into the Museum of London when they change their Mesolithic display. We look forward to renewing our acquaintance with him on November 7th.

THURSDAY NOVEMBER 16th HADAS Book Launch “A Place in Time” at Hendon Town Hall, 8.00 p.m. for 8.30 p.m.(See separate application form and details enclosed.)

SUNDAY NOVEMBER 19th Walk with Herts and Middlesex Wildlife Trust along the Mutton Brook. Meet at Henly’s Corner at 10.30 a.m. Details in October Newsletter.

TUESDAY DECEMBER 5th Southwark Cathedral and Christmas Dinner at “The George”.

This is now full up, with a short waiting list. Any further applicants are welcome to be added to the list, and anyone who has to cancel please let Dorothy Newbury know as soon as possible. (Tel: 203 – 0950)

TUESDAY JANUARY 2nd Presidential Address on “The Archaeology of Ritual and Magic” by our new President, Ralph Merrifield. Details in October Newsletter.

MINIMART – OCTOBER 7th Dorothy Newbury

We have reached our aim of making the four figure profit once again – £1,070 in fact. This is due to the efforts of so many of our members and friends who gave excellent goods for sale, came on the day to buy, helped transport goods there and back again, baked for us, and sold at the stalls. A very, very great effort which produced excellent results. And, as usual, it was a fun-day,too! (With special thanks to Dorothy – Ed.)


Our Treasurer, VICTOR JONES, is away touring New Zealand, and we hope, enjoying a well-earned rest. Victor is a willing horse, and not only Treasurer. He does so much for the Society, digging, exhibitions; and is always ready to fetch and carry for all of us.

Our Membership Secretary, PHYLLIS FLETCHER, has had a nasty confrontation with a motor-bike in Camden Town. She was rushed to University College Hospital by ambulance and after a long wait was pronounced shocked and badly bruised but no bones broken. And true to Fletcher stoicism she made her own way home by tube and bus. She assures us it wasn’t caused by chasing after anyone for their over­due “sub.” – the road was clear and the bike just came round a corner and bowled her over. We wish her a speedy recovery.

This is not news, says DOROTHY NEWBURY – just a plea to anyone who may have found her favourite red jacket (20 years old) invariably worn on outings so you can see her. Has she left it in anyone’s house or car or cafe and someone doesn’t know whose it is? She just can’t remember where she wore it last!

One of our Vice-Presidents and leading authority on the Hendon area, TED SAMMES, has had an extra digit added to his telephone number. Several members have been complaining that they can’t reach him. The number is now: 0628 – 604807.


Many HADAS members will be sad to hear of the death on 13th October of a long-time friend and colleague in the world of North London local history – JOHN COLLIER, who was for ten years until the end of 1987, Hon. Secretary of the Mill Hill Historical Society. During that time he had many links with HADAS, co-operating with us in such campaigns as that for more blue plaques; only last August he rang up to alert us to the coming closure (and possible demolition) of the Inglis Barracks at Mill Hill.

For the early years of his Secretaryship, his society was called as it had been since its foundation in 1929 – the Mill Hill and Hendon Historical Society. It was John who faced with our young and vigorous Archaeological Society, founded more than 30 years later, decided most generously that HADAS should be left a clear field in Hendon, because in the early eighties we were doing much work there and in 1983 persuaded his committee not only to drop the words “and Hendon” from their title, but also to arrange to lodge with HADAS a number of `the Mill Hill Society’s papers which were concerned solely with Hendon.

John was a good friend and man of unexpected depths. In 1986 he published the traditional “slim volume” of poems called “Early and late”. He had written poetry all his life as a relaxation: the first poem in the book was over half a century old. It will be a great pleasure to his friends to have that volume to remember him by.

Lecture: Tuesday 3rd October 1989 by Christine Arnott

The opening lecture of the winter season was given by Roy Friendship-Taylor, Chairman of the Upper Nene Archaeological Society. He spoke of the twelve years he has been concerned with the excavations of a Romano-British villa at Piddington, Northants – digging every weekend and two weeks each August.

The Society has found evidence of late Iron Age settlement initially, with a simple structure on the site, succeeded by its Romanisation, and culminating in a pretentious, “winged” corridor villa. After the late 3rd and early 4th century, it deteriorated into a largely derelict “squat”.

The villa was originally re-discovered in 1781 by limestone quarriers, who, according to brief contemporary records, uncovered a Mosaic about 50 feet square. Finding a skeleton with a spear and nearby a gold ring, their subsequent frantic hunt for treasure resulted in the wholesale destruction of the mosaic, the under­lying hypocaust and an adjacent room.

Somewhat later, in 1979, there were further threats to the site; a projected 24 inch water main, an ecclesiastical user of a metal detector, and deep ploughing. Neither of the first two disturbed vital evidence, but the threat of the plough remains.

Piddington village lies six miles south-east of Northampton, not itself a Roman town, but Towcester, Stony Stratford and Watling Street, with their Roman associat­ions are nearby. The villa site is in a gentle flat landscape, with the land dropping towards the Nene valley. No trace has as yet been discovered of the speculated Roman Road 172a to Piddington.

The evidence for occupation at the site begins about A.D. 1. Later, after the Claudian conquest of A.D. 43, there are finds of many imported wares – particularly military findings that suggest the presence of a nearby cavalry unit. About this time also there is evidence of copper smelting – hearths have been found and a number of crucible fragments – it is suggested that a range of tacks and nails was produced there.

The wall plaster remains found all over the site indicate the fine nature of the material and that the walls had originally designs in green and cream on a polished red surface. This well-decorated villa supports the evidence for a wealthy owner.

A number of finds have been identified as foreign imports. For instance, a distinctive bright pinky-red colour used on the wall plaster was produced by “cinnabas”, a pigment known to have been an expensive luxury import from northern Spain. Another distinctive colour is the bright blue-green made from coloured glass. We can imagine that with plum-red external wall plaster, plum-red, purple-brown, and white moulded plastered limestone columns – topped by blue and cream roof tiles on the lean-to roof – the villa must have been a colourful sight.

Marble fragments have been identified as coming originally from the Aegean, Sparta, Egypt and Portland in Dorset; also the black carboniferous limestone from Belgium. Imported pottery finds of “terra rubra” (Central Gaul) “terra nigra” (Rhineland) “terra sigilata” (Samian or southern Gaul) are further evidence of overseas contacts.

We were shown slides of the bath-house and the heating thereof. In the beginning, charcoal was used, but later coal was introduced. Among many slide of the excavat­ions we saw the herringbone tiled flooring of the corridor. This must have been extremely well laid judging by its condition today. We also saw slides of the many artefacts uncovered, and were introduced to the riddle of the strange calcite gritted was finials or lamp chimneys set at one end of the roof. There was a wealth of information given to us during the lecture and we were left with many things to ponder on; so we shall look forward most keenly to our visit to the site next year, when we can inspect “in situ” all the evidence of occupation during the four hundred years that we heard about on this first Tuesday evening.


On Saturday, 30th September, we had the good fortune to be introduced to parts of Highbury and Canonbury by Mary O’Connell, who kindly guided us on a short tour of the area. We started at Highbury Fields, by the memorial to Islingtonians who fell in the Boer War. Around the Fields stand the architecturally stately houses of the early 19th century, more of which we found nearby in Compton Terrace. Here our goal was the Union Chapel, a most imposing structure built as the centrepiece of the Terrace, now truncated as the result of bomb damage in the last war when Highbury “Corner” was destroyed.

We were welcomed by a Chapel member who favoured us with a lengthy discourse on its history, which began in 1799 when a small group of Anglicans and Non-conform­ists began to worship in a disused chapel at 18 Highbury Grove. At this time the area was poor spiritually, but nevertheless the chapel prospered, a regular Min­ister was appointed in 1804, and a new building was raised in Compton Terrace in 1806, Steady growth continued, particularly with the ministry of Rev. Alton from 1852, and a new and larger building, the present Union Chapel, designed by James Cubitt was opened in 1877, seating 1,700 with a Sunday School Hall for 1,000 children. Cubitt’s inspiration was the church of Santa Fosca Torcelle near Venice. The tower was added in 1889. A special feature was the organ (designed by Henry Willis) which is still in working order. Some of the party ventured into the small chamber in the basement where the original pump required two persons to work it – doubtless they would have appreciated the quieter interludes in the services! The early congregations were encouraged in hymn singing with two practice sessions each week, and the musical tradition continues with concerts frequently held today.

The building was designed in the form of a Greek cross enclosing an octagon, with

a large balcony, several handsome stained glass windows, and much decorative tiling. There was an interesting ventilation system whereby vents could be opened in certain pillars to facilitate an updraught for regulating a fan in the roof; the vents can still be seen. Another noteworthy feature are the handsome wooden pews, originally available for purchase or rent; thus establishing a financial basis for the vigorous charitable work of the early members, whose “seating plan”can still be seen on a wall in a back room. By 1892 the congregation was declining ­the then Minister declared it was either migrating to Hampstead or to Heaven! This decline continued until the appointment of the present incumbent, Rev. Janet Wootton, a very special and purposeful person under whose guidance the attendance has steadily recovered.

Our friendly guide took us to a room at the rear where he dispensed coffee and we ate our packed lunches, and we then made our way towards Canonbury Tower, passing along Canonbury Terrace and Square, Alwyne Road and Villas, streets full of 19th century architectural interest, all part of the estates of the Marquess of Northampton. In Canonbury Square, the tragedian Samuel Phelps resided at No. 8 from 1844 -67, Evelyn Waugh at No. 17a in 1928, and George Orwell at No. 27b in 1945. Alwyne Villas has been the home of Dame Flora Robson and Beatrice Lehmann. Along Canonbury Road (at one time New North Road) the course of the New River, ornamental ponds were constructed and land­scaped in 1950; here we met the local duck population enjoying the remains of the 1613 New River developed by Sir Hugh Myddelton, goldsmith and M.P. whose man-made waterway brought water from Hertfordshire springs to alleviate the problems of London’s water supply.

From the ponds we approached Canonbury Tower/Place, from 1952 the home of the Tavistock Repertory Company, and known as the Tower Theatre. The tower itself is the most substant­ial part remaining of what used to be Canonbury House. The land now contained in the triangle formed by Upper Street, Essex Road and St. Paul’s Road, was a manor before the Norman Conquest, but in 1253 it was bequeathed to the Canons of St. Bartholomew’s in Smithfield, an Augustinian Order, when it became known as Canons’ Burgh or Canonbury. Little was done to it until William Bolton became Prior – 1509 to 1532. He was a great builder, Master of Works to Henry VIII and responsible for the Henry VII chapel in West­minster Abbey. He owned other properties in the area, on two of which, an octagonal garden house at 4 Alwyne Villas and an old monastic door inside 6 Canonbury Place, his mark, a bolt piercing a tun (barrel) can still be seen. The Canonbury Tower was certainly his work, although how much more is uncertain. The Canons did not enjoy their retreat for long since the Priory and lands were surrendered to the Crown in 1539 and the Manor was bestowed on Thomas Cromwell, Chief Minister for the Dissolution, who himself fell from grace soon after and was executed in 1540, the remains of his fortune being used to provide an annuity for Anne of Cleves.

A chequered history followed until the Manor passed to Sir John Spencer, a wealthy Suffolk cloth merchant who increased his fortune by overseas trading, money lending and property development, holding many important offices, including Lord Mayor of London in 1594. He took up residence in 1599 and from about this time certain events provide a great human interest with the romance of his heiress daughter Elizabeth and Lord Compton, later Earl of Northampton. Lord Compton had spent most of his considerable inheritance with attend­ance at Court and other expensive exercises, and had borrowed from Sir John, who did not share his daughter’s love for the spendthrift nobleman. Elizabeth was confined to the Tower, but eloped and married Compton in 1599. Sir John then disowned his daughter and it was not until her son was born in 1601 that reconciliation was effected with the ass­istance of Queen Elizabeth herself, who had appointed Compton Master of the Leash in 1596. A second son was born in Canonbury Tower and on Sir John’s death in 1610, the couple finally inherited the Spencer fortunes. At this time, a letter from Elizabeth Compton to her husband, read by Mary O’Connell as we sat in the first floor “Spencer Room”, sets out in detail the style in which she expected him to keep her, both at Canonbury Tower and at the Northampton ancestral home, Castle Ashby, Northants. Gambling, lavish entertaining and extensions to Castle Ashby were supported by Elizabeth’s legacy, and also a very lavish funeral for her father (buried in Great St Helen’s, Bishopsgate). That expense may have distressed Compton, as for a while he was quite demented and was kept bound. He recovered, however, and was later Lord President of the Council in 1617, and in 1618 was created Earl of Northampton. The second Earl was killed supporting the King’s cause in the Civil War, and for a time his son, the third Earl, lived in Canonbury House, having had to pay a fine of £40,000 to the Commonwealth. He was the last of the line to live there, although the property is still owned by the family.

In 1907, the (by then) Marquess of Northampton completely restored the building, preserving the original features where possible. King Edward’s Hall was then built, presently the Tower Theatre, and the present entrance leads into a low hall adjoining the Tower. On the ground floor is a room with the original brickwork exposed; on the first floor is the “Spencer Room”, completely panelled, with an elaborately ornamented chimney-piece featuring ‘dons’ heads, carved figures, Tudor roses and much strapwork, and twelve pilasters (probably Flemish) which run from floor to ceiling; on the second floor the “Compton Room” even more elaborate “panel within panel” walls and strapwork on the ten pilasters, and a chimney-piece decorated with figures of Faith and Hope and fruits and flowers. Elsewhere is a shell pattern interspaced with the arms of Spencer and semi-grotesque heads. Finally, on the flat roof of the tower there is a fine view, described by Charles Lamb in 1835 as of “villages and countryside”. The whole is served by a central staircase of short straight flights and quarter landings, the centre filled with timber and plaster forming a series of cupboards.

Various famous tenants of the Northamptons included Lord Chancellor Thomas Eggerton in 1605, and Sir Francis Bacon in 1616. Bacon is believed to have planted the red mulberry tree in the courtyard, and also to have had painted on the wall of the top room of the tower an inscription of the names of the sovereigns from Charles I. During the 18th century, the buildings were partly let in separate rooms – Oliver Goldsmith was there in 1762 and was visited by-Boswell. In 1770 an impoverished Earl of Northampton parted with a lease of the property to one John Dawes, who demolished the south side of the quadrangle of buildings and erected the houses in what is now Canonbury Place. He also added the bay windows to the Tower. Our visit to this fascinating building was completed by refreshments in a room beside the Tower, adding the final touch to this most enjoyable outing.


(Head of History at Queen Elizabeth Grammar School)

Interest in Archaeology is growing: the University of Sheffield “Archaeology in Educ­ation” Unit at the Department of Archaeology and Pre-history is most helpful and inform­ative, producing study packs, replicas and information; more sites, like Fishbourne Roman Palace, are offering workshops so that pupils may examine artefacts or experience a simulation of life in the period of study; media coverage of Archaeology is improving, for example the recent programmes about the Sutton Hoo excavations. Clearly, this is an encouraging sign for lovers of the subject.

For several years, Queen Elizabeth’s Girls’ School in Barnet has adopted a chronological, though skills-based approach to the study of History. While giving the girls a basic chronological framework, we hope to develop their skills of observation, questioning, discernment and deduction. This culminates in a site description of Roman Verulamium in the 4th and 5th years, when girls are taken to the excavations and, through observ­ations, are asked to deduce what Verulamium tells each individual about Roman Britain and the problems the site poses.

The enthusiasm of the girls for the subject is shown when, in our present 4th year, 110 out of 150 girls have chosen to take History at G.C.S.E. level. It was also demon­strated when in the summer term of the last academic year, an optional trip to Ports­mouth was organised for 2nd year pupils to supplement their studies. This involved examination of the Mary Rose, the Victory, the Warrior, and their artefacts, and an ass­ignment. The quality of the assignments was good and the number of girls who chose to take part was 130 out of 150 As a result of the success of the field visits, the History Department now aims to organise at least one excursion to an archaeological site for each year group.

This year we have embarked on an Archaeology course for G.C.S.E. in the 6th Form. It lasts for one year and we have 18 girls on the course from both scientific and arts backgrounds. There are two examinations and a piece of extended coursework which need to be completed, and as well as archaeological finds and sites, we look at the role of the archaeologist and archaeological technique. The girls are extremely enthusiastic to the extent that, at half-term, we are going to the Oxfordshire/Gloucestershire border to look at the Rollright stones, Belas Knap, Chipping Campden market square and, possibly Crickley Hill. We hope that the girls will also be able to have some experience of local digs.

Our school offers an ideal site to study standing buildings, with all the modifications and additions which have been made over the last 100 years (the school celebrated its centenary last year). The Tudor Hall (Barnet College) as well as other Barnet buildings provide us with an ideal area for observation. The enthusiasm seems contagious – the course has aroused the interest of both staff and pupils and there is every indication that we shall have another large class next year.

With the advent of National Curriculum (in which History is compulsory) and the result­ing attainment targets, we hope that our courses and visits will continue. Our aim is to show that Archaeology, far from being dull and boring, is exciting, interesting and satisfying, and that through observation and experimentation as well as reading books, we can learn about life in the past.

(The Queen Elizabeth girls will be visiting the Mitre site in Barnet very shortly and hope they may be able to do some work there. Ed.)

A SIGN OF THE “TIMES”? by Micky Cohen

Archaeology is an “in” topic of news – the “heavies” now give more space to it than ever before. They carry not just the hyped items like the row over the Rose Theatre site, but also reports on interesting sites all over the world, on the implications of finds for man’s development in pre-history, on the City’s many digs and so on.

Now the “Times” is publishing a series of beautifully illustrated colour supplements every Monday for seven weeks – the “Atlas of Ancient Civilisations”. So far the Near East, Egypt and Greece have appeared. Each issue has maps, charts and photographs, and provides a brief text reviewing the main aspects of the emergence of civilisation in the areas concerned. Illustrations have been drawn from the Times “Atlas of World History” and “Past Worlds”.

The brief text is enough to stimulate further reading but unfortunately there is no reading list or guidance. However, there is a traveller’s guide giving news of forth­coming tours to each of the areas covered and information about access to sites.

The “Times” is to be congratulated on this initiative – those who take an interest in any aspect of Archaeology will welcome the prominence this series will give to the subject for a wider audience. A set of video tapes on the same lines would have even greater impact – what about it Mr Murdoch ?


Barnet Council enhances the “Village Green” of Hendon

Readers will recall that, after a short but messy occupation by “Travellers” of the “Paddock” – once graphically described as Hendon’s “Village Green” – adjacent to the Middlesex Polytechnic, the London Borough of Barnet agreed to replace the dilapidated iron railings – long patched up with ugly wattle fencing.

HADAS was appalled at the design originally suggested in the planning application, and made strong representations. The Planning Department then solicited at least two further designs before it was felt that they had got it right for this environmentally sensitive site. Recently, slender black railings, with delightfully sculpted arrow­head tops, have been installed, effectively protecting the “Paddock” from further intrusion. The Society has, in consequence, congratulated the Planning Department on producing such an aesthetically pleasing design, which, it is felt, will enhance the outstanding character of this open space as a sylvan “lung” in an increasingly urban area. May we hope that one day it will become available for quiet recreational use by the people of Hendon. This, the writer knows, was the avowed wish of the previous owner, Miss Nellie Hinge, when urban pressures forced her to sell – first the herd of cattle that had grazed the pasture for generations, and finally – the land itself.


Short progress reports have been in Newsletters on several occasions during the six months since the start of the project, and it is now possible to give a fuller (but still not complete) description of the house, how and why we are interested in it, further news on the dig, and other investigations during the project.

The background to it is that early this year the architects to the owners asked if we would be interested to investigate the Grade II Listed house at No. 1264 High Road,

Whetstone, which was being considered for restoration. This would be part of the re­development of the site which includes a small 19th century building, a courtyard and ground at the back of both buildings. This had a special interest as the Society had undertaken a similar project in 1981 on the adjacent building at No. 1266 High Road. Mrs Mary Alloway, then one of our members, produced a report and some very fine drawings of that building which has been very well restored and is now the head office of the company that owns it. This 1981 project work may well have contributed not only to the records but also to the conservation of a little of Whetstone’s past history.

The committee approved the project as the building is thought to be even older than that at No. 1266. The aim of the investigation was to study and record the general construct­ion of the building and especially its timber-frame construction. This Tudor system of house building is based on the manufacture in the carpenter’s workshop of all the wood components of the house and to assemble them there into the complete skeleton house frame. The components were then marked to show how they fitted together, the structure was dismantled and transported to the building site, and it was re-erected, the walls infilled and the roof added.

The main frame of the Whetstone house is made of very large oak beams some twelve or more inches square, most of which are in remarkably sound condition although some of the smaller ones have deteriorated. Some original wattle and daub infill still exists in the upper floors and the loft. Only part of the building is Tudor and this is approx­imately 55 feet long and only 16 feet wide. This narrow side is the frontage onto the High Road. Built on to the front of this, a much wider, very shallow and very ugly Georgian frontage has been added, possibly in a mistaken attempt to make the building look more important. This is the three-storey building next to the Griffin pub near the crossroads in central Whetstone. At the back of the building is quite a large area of ground and on part of this is a small 19th century building now used as a photograph­ic studio. There is also a courtyard and garden area at the rear of this.

As readers of the earlier reports will recall, we made a prompt start on digging in early April, requiring a massive clearance of about 1 metre of accumulated scrap, spread a metre deep over the area of the dig. We have not yet found any material earlier than 17th century, and we were stopped just as we were starting to dig in the undisturbed area at the rear; recording and drawing has gone ahead but was also delayed. However, the visit of the timber building specialists gave the first clue that the building might be older than the accepted dating. The Dendrochronology (tree-ring) tests have not proved successful as the timber samples taken were not satisfactory.

The documentary studies, with some very hard work and unexpected luck, have produced some striking results as John Heathfield’s report in the October Newsletter has shown.


By | Past Newsletters, Volume 4 : 1985 - 1989 | No Comments

Newsletter 223: October, 1989 Editor: Brigid Grafton Green

What’s on for HADAS

Opening lecture of the winter season, Excavations at Piddington Roman Villa by Roy Friendship-Taylor, who is Chairman of the Upper Nene Archaeological Society and has been digging at Piddington every weekend for ten years ­not to mention two weeks every summer. The site was orig­inally discovered by a local vicar with a metal detector, who dug holes as and where he listed. Fortunately a field worker recognised its potential and reported it to the local society before too much damage had been done.

An outing to Piddington is planned for 1990.

Sat Oct 21. Conservation Fair, organised by Herts & Middx Wildlife Trust at Church House, Wood Street, Barnet, 10am-3pm. HADAS is manning an information table at which we will publicise the work of the society and show our publica­tions. Volunteers to help with this would be much appreci­ated. If you could make some time that day – even an hour. or two – please ring Christine Arnott on 455 2751.

Tues Nov 7. Lecture on Prehistory in Greater London by Jon Cotton

Sun Nov 19. HADAS members are cordially invited by the Herts & Middx Wildlife Trust to join in a walk along the Mutton Brook, through Big Wood and part of the Garden Suburb and so onto the Hampstead Heath Extension. Meet at Henly’s Corner (opposite the Express Garage), NW11 at 10.30 am. The walk will be led by Michael Holton, whose interest in conserva­tion includes curiosity about the farthest extent of the ice advance in the last Ice Age – popularly considered by some to be “to the line of the North Circular Road” and by the lighter-hearted as “stopping at the lights at Henly’s Cornerl”

Tues Dec 5. Southwark Cathedral and Christmas Dinner at “The George.” (Application form enclosed).

Tues Jan 2. Presidential Address on “The Archaeology of Ritual and

Magic – a study of Survival and Re-interpretation” by our new President, Ralph Merrifield. The subject is one which Mr Merrifield has made particularly his own, having published a book on it in 1987 and lectured on it to LAMAS last Decem­ber. The few HADAS members who heard his LAMAS lecture were unanimous in hoping that he would choose the same subject for his Presidential address – so we can count ourselves lucky. We thought you might like advance notice of the event so that you can mark the date in your (new) diary. Come along and meet the President on this, his first visit.

Lectures are held at Central Library, The Burroughs, Hendon, NW4, 8 for 8.30 pm. We like to welcome our new members person­ally, so if you are new, please make yourself known to someone who is rushing round looking harassed – it’s bound to be a Committee members

For information on outings, lectures and walks, please ring the Programme Secretary, Dorothy Newbury, on 203 0950.


Someone famous probably said – or if he didn’t, he ought to have done – that one thing which differentiates man from the apes is the ability to laugh at himself. That’s why I suggest you might enjoy “Bluff Your Way in Archaeology” – a small-book, only 7 x 44 ins, unillustrated ­but the best £1.95worth I have spent for a long time. It is one of a series of Bluffer’s Guides (published by Ravette Books, 3 Glenside Estate, Star Road, Partridge Green, Horsham, West Sussex), which cover about 30 wildly diverse subjects, such as Amsterdam, Banking, High Society and Seduction. For keenest enjoyment you need to know a bit about the subject you choose from their highly individual list.

Starting from the premise that “anyone who takes up archaeology is, or has to become, a consummate bluffer,” the author, Paul Win (said to have “decided at an early age he wanted to be an archaeologist since it seemed to be better than working for a living”) leads you through 60 pages of the kind of bluff needed to deal with every archaeological situation. Here are a few of his gems:

“Never let the fact that nothing is really known about past events stand in your way: instead, use it to your advantage. Some eminent archaeologists have built their entire careers upon convincing bluff.”

“You should know that rather than being carefully planned from the start, most digs muddle along by trowel and error.”

“It is advisable … to get as much information as you can about what lies beneath the surface before you start digging. This helps to avoid the embarrassment of (a) finding you’re digging in the wrong place; (b) not finding anything; (c) finding far

more than you were prepared for ………………………….. Failure to check out a
site adequately led one British archaeologist … to dig his way down into the London Underground …”

“Computer printouts, maps and diagrams make your reports look terrifically impressive and professional and have the extra advantage that they usually deter readers from examining your evidence very closely.”

“Diggers need strong knees in order to cope with long hours working bent legged on planks or subsoils: being a Catholic. or Japanese is useful …”

“There are a few fundamental laws in archaeological excavation with which you should be familiar: (1) the most interesting

part of the site will be under your spoilheap (2) the most
important find will turn up on the last day or when you are pressed for time and funds .,.”

“It is advisable … even if you have a pronounced sense of the absurd, to appear to take the past very seriously. After all it’s the only one we’ve got.”

“One basic rule in archaeollgical publishing is … to fill your work with ‘maybe,’ ‘perhaps’ and ‘possibly.’ This enables you

to make an-orderly and dignified retreat …………………………………. Another way to
sidestep criticism is to make your prose so obscure and tortuous that nobody, including yourself, is quite sure … what you have been saying …”

“Ethnoarchaeology: one of the latest branches of the subject, this is an excellent means of getting an exotic adventure holiday in a remote location …”

“New Archaeology … Bluffers can take comfort from the fact that

the title itself is bluff. It is really Old Archaeology dressed up with jargon and presented with … pomposity.”

Finally, there is a delicious glossary. One or two items taken from it have been slipped in between the more serious items in the rest of this Newsletter – so if you find yourself chuckling at an irreverent quotation, assume it comes from “Bluff Your Way …”


In case anyone is thinking that members of the HADAS Committee sit around all day contemplating their navels, here is a brief update on what has been happening lately on several sites of interest in the Borough.

Rosebank Cottage, The Ridgeway, Mill Hill

A call from Philip Wilson of Barnet Planning Department last week informed us that a well had been discovered here during building work. Rosebank is a 17c timber-framed, listed building which carries a Blue Plaque. It was used as a Quaker Meeting House between 1678-1719.

Bearing this in mind, we thought that the well might also prove to be 17c., so John Enderby shot off post haste to examine it. He reports that the site was formerly used as a pig farm and suggests that the ‘well’ may be the repository for highly undesirable substances which come out of pigs. As the ‘well’ is not under any immediate threat, it was decided with unseemly haste to put it on the back boiler while more urgent rescue work was carried out at other sites.

The Mitre, 58 High Street, Chipping Barnet

Yes, we haven’t forgotten the Mitre – how could we? It has been haunting us like Banquo’s spectre for at least 18 months. Work began on the interior renovation of this listed building some weeks ago.

After numerous ‘phone calls to Benskins Brewery, Brian Wrigley, Jennie Cobban and John Heathfield finally managed to gain access to the premises to see what was going on, only to find that work had been suspended by Barnet Council as the brewery had not received listed building consent.

However, various floorboards had been lifted for rewiring purposes and

redecoration was taking place, so we decided to risk life and limb and take a look around. A workman accosted us. “Did you see the painting?” he enquired.

Twitching a little, we asked him to elaborate. He told us that an original upstairs wall had been stripped to the plaster, on which had been painted the design of a castle surrounded by small flowers and ‘vines,’ the whole being enclosed within a circle. The ‘painting’ was incomplete, as it disappeared behind walls added at a later date.

The room had just (literally within a few hours) been papered and repainted, so we were left wondering what we had, in fact, missed. A child’s scrawl with crayon of 20c date? A fragment of a 17c wall painting? We won’t find out the answer until the wall is stripped again – probably in about a hundred years’ time.

A shock awaited us on Sept 7. The company now developing the rear of the Mitre, Brinsden & Co, phoned to say that HADAS could begin to excavate wherever and whenever it wanted. Shock, horror – was it a trick? Apparent­ly not, and Victor Jones and Brian Wrigley marked out a trial trench on the site on Sept 13.

By the time you read this two brave, unfortunate souls will (hopefully) have broken up the surface with a form of pneumatic drill (thanks for that to Philip and Graham Willcocks, able-bodied sons of Doreen Willcocks of Barnet & District Local History Society) and we will take it from there. Watch this space for results of the investigation.

Church Farm School, Church Hill Road, East Barnet

Gillian Gear, a well-known East Barnet historian, drew our attention to this potentially important site after subsidence revealed what appeared to be a well.

The site lies very close (about 19m) south of St Mary’s Church, East Barnet, which is considered to date from approximately 1140. It is potentially important because East Barnet has been listed as a possible deserted medieval village, although opinions as to the exact location of the dray (and indeed its very existence) are conflicting. Rumours also abound of a medieval manor house and rectory lying ‘near to the church’. It was therefore decided to take the opportunity for archaeo­logical excavation, as the site seemed to have exciting possibilities. All very vague – but still possibilities.

The historians are now engaged in extensive research into the site, and excavations have been underway for three weeks. It’s an odd dig in many ways – William Griffiths of British Heritage (not to be confused with-English Heritage, a very different beast) keeps providing cups of tea, tidying up and generally looking after all the volunteers. This is very nice: Barnet Council’s Education Department has also given much encouragement, and we have the full approval and co-operation of the head teacher of the school, part of whose premises we are busily digging up.

It is a little early to report on discoveries at the site. Victor Jones, Brian Wrigley and a loyal band of navvies comprising members of HADAS„ Barnet & District LHS and the East Barnet Residents’ Association are at present examining the foundations of Victorian cottages which once stood on the site and which seem to have formed at one time part of the laundry of the Boys School. A William IV (1830-37) silver sixpence was discovered in the rubble of the cottages. It was amusing to see this find described as a 17c coin in a local press report. The dome of the well, which first drew attention to the site, has now been exposed and photographed.

As yet, we have found no evidence of medieval occupation of the site, and trenches are at present being extended northwards towards the church. Again, watch this space for news of further discoveries.

“Hypocaust: a floor under which hot air circulates and heats the room above. The meeting place of any symposium of archaeologists constitutes the perfect example.”


Victorian and Edwardian Hampstead by Alastair Service Historical Publications £9.95

This 88-page, beautifully illustrated book – written by someone who patently loves his subject and knows it like the palm of his hand – consists of two walks around Hampstead, in which every architectural beauty is relished and every quirk of the many famous architects concerned is lovingly detailed. Even though neither walk enters our Borough, the book is full of interest for anyone who knows the south of LBB, so many of the architects who did Hampstead proud towards the turn of the last century nipped across what was then the Hendon/Hampstead border to add their artistry to houses in Hendon’s (now Barnet’s) Hampstead Garden Suburb – Guy Dawber, Quennell, Ernest George, to mention a few.

Royalties from the book are to be divided between the Victorian Society (of which the author is a stalwart) and Burgh House, which has just celebrated its tenth birthday. That’s a local museum dear to many HADAS hearts for several reasons: we once had a notable Christmas party there; the museum staged the first exhibition on the West Heath dig; the Curator, Christopher Wade, is an old friend who has led us on Hamp­stead walks; and his daughter Joanna has been a faithful HADAS member since her schooldays.

There will be, by the way, a Tenth Birthday Show at Burgh House from Oct 7-Dec 17, which will look back on some of the 60 exhibitions held there in the last decade.

Historical Publications, should you want to order by post, are a local outfit – write to them at 54 Station Road, New Barnet, Herts.

“Culture: archaeological term for regional groups of similar artifacts, often equated with different peoples. Also that which grows on mugs and plates in the excavation hut.”


It’s always great to be able to start this part of the Newsletter with some heart-warming news. One of our nicest (and prettiest) members, MARION NEWBURY, got married last month, and all those who know the Newbury family – which means virtually everyone in HADAS – will want to wish her well. The wedding, on Sept 2, was at the church in Mill Hill at which a younger Marion had sung in the choir for five years – St Michael and All Angels. The bridegroom, appropriately, is a doctor whom she met when doing her physiotherapy training at Winchester, Simon Le Besque. Marion joined HADAS, along with DOROTHY and CHRISTOPHER, 17 years ago, and the first photo of her in the HADAS archives shows a perky youngster of about 12

busy pot-washing at the Burroughs Gardens dig. Since then she has taken part in many HADAS activities, including leading outings to the Mary Rose and Danebury. Think of her now in a different setting – nature trekking in Zanskar, in the Himalayas – because they left early on the morning after the wedding on a walking and plant-studying trip. Dorothy – who can always tell a good tall story – swears they practically took their bulging back­packs to the altar with them – an unusual accessory for a bride clothed in beautiful apricot silk!

Should you want to find a Teddy-bear’s picnic, no need if you are a HADAS member to go traipsing down to the woods. Just saunter round to JOHN ENDERBY’s house in Hendon, and you will find 30,000 Teddy-bears, each one brown, 2Oins tall and really cuddly. They form part of John’s sterling effort to raise money for the North London Hospice. The appeal has col­lected £2,000,000 (yes, all six noughts of it) but there is another one million still to go. The Teddy-bears are a step along the way. They are Gerber care-bears, than which there is nothing higher or more ritzy in the bear hierarchy. The Hospice Appeal is offering them at the bargain price of €12.50 – a pointer, perhaps, to HADAS Mums, Dads and Grandmas looking for Christmas presents.

John and his wife Barbara, by the way, have just gone off on a trip to Madeira: a holiday they badly needed, as both were involved in a car smash a few weeks ago in which, as John laconically puts it “Barbara’s car was a write-off and her husband very nearly was.” He suffered severe whiplash – “and I don’t recommend that to anyone.”

HELEN LAMPERT is one of our members of many talents. She always makes elegant cakes and delectable quince jelly for the Minimart – and now she tells us that Hendon Library is about to put on a 4-week exhibition of her paintings -you can see them from Oct 7-Nov 4. Congratulations – that’s a real honour.

We seize this chance to send best wishes from all their friends in the Society to two HADAS members who have had operations. ANN KAHN would have been editing this Newsletter had she not been hauled off to hospital; and Nell Penny, too, is just back from a week in the Royal Free. We wel­come them back from the wars – and wish them both a good recovery.

It was a great surprise – but a thoroughly pleasant one, too – to run into GILL BRAITHWAITE last week in London, NW1I, when she might have been expected to be adorning (and “adorning” is the mot juste, because she was looking smashing) the British Embassy in Moscow. It was only a flying Visit, she explained, to see her son just home from India. With a visit from Mrs Thatcher in the offing, the Moscow Embassy is going to be a hive of activity this autumn.

‘Hypothesis: a guess”


TED SAMMES – on the wing for Denmark even as he wrote to the News­letter – has sent us details of two publications about places which the society knows from outings.

First, the Painted House at Dover, which we have visited four times, the last time in 1987 Brian. Philp, the excavator, has now produced a monograph on the site, tracing eight main periods of occupation between 170-200 AD (an extraordinary compression of activity into 30 years to be able to disentangle 1800 years later). The painted plaster has been studied in detail and all in situ plaster is illustrated and discussed. The book also includes 36 reconstructed designs. Illustrations are mostly black and white but there are also 14 in colour. The book should add greatly to the understanding of this most complex site.

Ted unfortunately omits to tell us the book’s price and publisher, and as he has now (temporarily) fled the country, the Newsletter has not been able to check these matters with him. We suggest that any member who wants to know should ring Ted in October on 062 864807.

The second publication is The Book of Boxmoor, in which Ted himself has had a hand. It is a collection of contributions from a number of different writers and photographers. Ted’s offering is photographic and includes some pictures from the Edwardian period which he drew from a collection of 200 taken by his father. The book starts in prehistoric Boxmoor and comes through to today. Compilers are Roger and Joan Hands and Eve Davis, publisher is Barracuda Books, price £15.95 plus postage.

“Dating methods: courtship rituals adopted by archae­ologists who want to share digs”.


As the Newsletter goes to press, a new exhibition is opening at Church Farm House Museum, in Hendon. It is a very appropriate one in the year that sees the 150th anniversary of the first photograph. If you enjoy really stunning photographs, do go and see it – you will enjoy a feast. Don’t be put off by its slightly cumbersome title, “54 Years Time Exposure.”

The exhibition is the history of the John Maltby photographic firm which closed, after more than 50 years existence, on the last day of last August. For 43 years of that time the firm was based in Hendon, so naturally there are some fine local photos. There is, for instance, a real beauty of Vine Cottages, Nos 77-79 Cricklewood Lane, the last dame-school left in the Borough. The cottages were demolished over the Easter weekend of 1981. HADAS and other conservationists had tried all through the 1970s desperately and unsuccessfully to get them listed.

You might expect pictures of modern arterial roads to be deadly dull, but the Maltby -photographs of the Apex Corner roundabout and the view across the transecting roads at Hendon Central towards the cinema, with all the lights flashing in the dark, manage. to be very exciting.

Local work was only a tiny part of the Maltby range, which was enormous, mostly architectural and industrial. One section specialised in cinemas, Odeons in particular, and someone has described Maltby as an “Odeonographer,” recording “cinemas of every description: tiled, castellate stuccoed, got No as Renaissance palaces (Ealing), railway stations (Shoe­buryness), fortified cottages (Faversham), Wurlitzer organs (Chingford),

radio cabinets (Boston), mausoleums (Kenton)” (Ian Jeffrey, London Mag­azine, July 1980 p66).

Maltby’s archives contain 120,000 negatives. When this farewell exhibition was first mooted, 350 prints were selected as a “short list.” Now these have (with weeping and wailing for each one discarded) been scaled down to 130 prints – the largest number of photographs ever to be shown at one exhibition at Church Farm House. The plan has been to show at least two pictures for each year that John Maltby and his partner, George Tanner (who joined him in 195k) were working. Maltby died in 1980; Tanner retired this year.

Apart from the sheer range of pictures – from, for instance, a factory floor on which literally hundreds of tailoresses are working, each at her own machine, to a close-up of a precise table-setting on the Flying Scots­man, with 2 wine glasses, 2 spoons, knife, fork, plate, menu card and paper napkin – the thing which strikes one at once is the extraordinary geometric eye of the photographer, marvellously aware of the power of shape. He turns what may have been quite an ugly metal stairway in a Southwark school into an essay in beautiful shapes as he takes it from above, showing the struts, columns and connections by which the treads are carried down to the sunlit courtyard below.

Where you and I might see merely a wide scruffy lane between two high, horizontally-boarded fences, built with alternate boards and gaps, Maltby has photographed the length of the path with the sun flooding through from one side and throwing long corrugations of alternate blinding light and black shadow across the lane, to where the planking on the other side picks up the pattern – an extraordinarily dramatic effect. Equally dramatic is his treatment of coiled things: springs, coils of wire, piles of tyres. In one picture great wire coils, each probably weighing about half a ton, hang from huge iron hooks in a factory ceiling, and extend in serried lines from the foreground into infinity.

It is good to know that Maltby’s archive is not to be broken up, but will be held in its entirety by the National Buildings Register, where no doubt in years to come it will be of great interest to many students, including historians and archaeologists. The Odeon collection, in partic­ular, will surely be the definitive visual record to which researchers will turn for the half-century in which cinema was king, before the TV usurper took over.

“B.P: Nothing to do with petrol, simply an abbrevi­ation for ‘Before the Present.’ As archaeologists tend to live in the past, their ‘Present’ is actually 1950.”


From now until Dec 12 the Museum of London offers a chance to inspect its reserve collection of many thousands of objects not normally on show and recently re-housed in Finsbury. Each Tuesday, starting 2 pm, there will be a guided tour, price £2.50 including tea. Most of the material is from fairly recent times: the interior of an Edwardian chemist’s shop, for instance, or the borough of Haringey’s first-ever computer, vintage 1970; but there is some earlier material e.g. an ornate Roman coffin – a contrast in size with a Victorian Oxo tin. Numbers limited – tickets and further details from the Press and Public Relations Office at the Museum (01 600 3699).

Barnet Libraries are organising a series of free Wednesday evening lectures at different libraries each week, starting 8.15 pm. Titles that catch the eye include;

The Great Fire of London by Peter Street, Nov 1 Burnt Oak Library

Treasures of Britain (castles, cathedrals and country houses) by John Wittich, Nov 29 Mill Hill Library

The Globe Reborn (reconstruction of Globe Theatre on Bankside) by Patrick Spottiswoode, Jan 24 Hendon Library.

At Oxford there is an interesting event next month, Nov 10-12: a weekend conference on Palaeolithic Art at Rewley House, organised by the University External Studies Department and the Prehistoric Society, with a strong team of speakers (which includes, by the way, Dr Paul Bahn„ author of Bluffing Your Way in Archaeology, – see p2). The conference has been advertised for some months and residential places are all booked – but if you are hooked on the subject it might be worth ringing Rewley House in case any non-residential places are left (0865 270360).

At Cambridge the corresponding department – the Board of Extra-mural Studies – is organising a residential study weekend (Fri evening-Sun lunch­time) at Madingley Hall, Feb 16-18 1990, on a fascinating subject – Strike A Light: Fire in the service of Man. Lecturer Dr David Trump will be in­vestigating the proposition that “man began using fire 1,500,000 years ago and it has Played a major role in making him the social animal he is.” Weekend fee £65; further details from Madingley Hall, Madingley, Cambridge.

As mentioned in the June Newsletter, Verulamium Museum, built as a memorial to Sir Mortimer Wheeler’s first wife, Tessa, has been celebrating its golden jubilee this summer. Festivities come to an end next month with an anniversary conference on Sat/Sun Nov 17-19 on Roman Towns: the Wheeler Inheritance. When the Wheelers published Verulamium: a Belgic and two Roman Cities in 1936 the study of Romano-British towns was in its infancy; the conference intends to discuss how it has grown up since. Chairman will be Martin Biddle and the list of speakers is imposing: they are linked with almost every important Roman town in southern Britain. Conference fee £30 (which includes buffet dinner on Saturday evening). Details from Verulamium Museum, St Michaels, St Albans, Herts AL3 4SW.

University of London Extra-Mural Archaeological Society (inevitably known as ENAS) was founded only two years ago; it now reports that it “has the strongest growth-rate of any Extra-mural Society” and its programme is admirably practical. On Oct 5 Chris Taylor opens the winter season with an authoritative talk on Landscape Archaeology, in the Chancellor’s Hall, Senate House, London University; and on Nov 10 Jill Kerr talks about Why. Recording, Stained Glass from Excavations is Important at the Institute of Archaeology (both at 7 pm). Society membership is open to all students and past students of extra-mural classes who have attended courses lasting at least two years, subscription £7. Further details from Dave Beard, 44 Granville Park, SE13 7DX.

The LAMAS Local History Conference – always a lively occasion – will take place on Sat Nov 25, 11.30 am-6 pm, at the Museum of London. Theme this year – which sees the 800th anniversary of the London Mayoralty and the centenary of the founding of the LCC – will be “Governing London.”

GREETINGS TO NEW MEMBERS from our Membership Secretary


Here’s a warm welcome to those new members who havejoined since last April. We hope we shall be meeting them at the various activities of the coming winter, starting off with the first lecture of the season, on Oct 3, and the Minimart on Oct 7, when their help will be most welcome (details of both events on pl):

Miss Paula Allen, Dr Josephine Bruegel, Mr R and Mr D Borchardt Miss Jackie Brookes, Mr & Mrs C J Day, Mr & Mrs W N Froude, Richard Gibson, Mrs L and Miss A. Griffin, Graham Javes, Mrs N & Miss D McDonald, Miss P A MacGregor, Mr Nigel & Mrs Anne. McTeer, Ms Norma Moore, Miss D Nicholls, Mrs B A Perkins, Mrs Marjorie Scarfe, Ms Elizabeth Stanton.

We would like to extend a special welcome to our colleagues in the Wembley History Society. We have been sending them a complimentary copy of the Newsletter for some years, but now they have decided to become corporate members – it’s nice have you.

Finally – and perhaps I should call this my Good Shepherd role, since it welcomes back two of the HADAS flock who strayed away for a while – it is a pleasure to greet once more Mr G M Ferris, who was from 1977-79 a member with his late wife, Joan – in those days they were particularly interested in the history and archaeology of Finchley Manor House in East End Road; and, after an 11-year absence, John Heathfield who has already started doing valuable research for the Society, as shown in his report on a house in Whetstone in the July Newsletter and a further report in this issue.


WILLIAM MORRIS, long-time HADAS member (he joined very young, back in 1971) seeks information:

“I have been carrying out some research on the life of a Rhobert Morris (1769-1823) who lived at Abergele in Denbighshire (now Clwyd) in North Wales. Rhobert was a livestock dealer who on occasions would buy Anglesey cattle at Abergele market and send them together with local cattle in a herd with drovers down through the Midlands to Barnet for sale.

I am curious to know a little more about the market at Barnet where the cattle were sold, particularly in about the period 1800-1811. Are there any memb ers who can tell me how often Barnet market was held? Was it only an annual affair, and if so, at what time of the year was it? Was the date fixed? Presumably a fair in the town was held in association with the market, but where exactly were the livestock sold’

The Newsletter itself can provide William with a few tit-bits. If he keeps a file of our back issues, he will find the answers to some of his questions in No 153 (Nov 1983), where Jeremy Clynes published a note on The Drovers; and in No 158 (Apr 1984), where there is a long contribution on The Welsh Drovers and Barnet Fair by Tom Elias of the Snowdonia National Park Study Centre.

Originally both horses and cattle were sold at the fair and chaffering was transacted in the street: cattle bargaining went on “nearer into Barnett” than horse sales – maybe because the Welsh ponies were even wilder than the cattle and so were kept further out of town. Nowadays the occasion is a horse fair only.

The Hendon & Finchley Times has shown considerable interest in the history of the fair. In its issue of Sept 15 1988 it published the text of a charter of Elizabeth I of Feb 6 1588. This granted to Charles Butler, lord of the manor of Barnet, permission to hold “each and every week … a market on Monday” and also two 3-day fairs each year, one on the eve, day and morrow of St John Baptist (to whom the church of Chipping Barnet is dedicated), the other on the feast of St Luke the Evangelist. Although the first market had pre-dated this confirmation by centuries – King John granted the first market charter to the Abbot of St Albans in 1199 – the Elizabethan charter is the one which first sets up the two fairs. The dates for these were altered in the 18c by a later lord of the manor; and subsequently one fair faded away. Finally the horse fair settled down as a single annual event held every year on Sept 4, 5, 6.

In recent years there has been some controversy about where the fair should be held and whether it should take place at all. This year the 401st fair was held from Sept 4-6 at Green Gates Farm, Mays Lane – a farm belonging to the Borough of Barnet and leased to tenant farmer Keith Butterworth.

“Necropolis: an area of tombs; a kind of city set apart for the death, something like Cheltenham.”


VICTOR JONES and JOHN HEATHFIELD report on the latest events and discoveries at No 1264 High Road, Whetstone

First, Victor’s note:

Soon after the last report – see September Newsletter – we were asked to delay further work for a time, as our activities were causing problems to the photography business which operates in part of the premises.

Happily we have now been told we can resume, provided we avoid anything likely to disturb the photographic work – raising dust, causing vibration by moving heavy items or tramping heavily on the stairs or through the upstairs rooms of this rather fragile building.

Entering via the front door and movement through the corridors and the courtyard has also to be reduced, particularly during busy Saturday photographic sessions. We will, I am sure, all be glad to comply with these conditions in order to be able to continue with the project – and I hope therefore to give you further bulletins on the archaeological side.

Meantime, there is much to be told from the documentary aspect. JOHN HEATHF[ELD now continues this unfolding story, with what he calls A Brief Note on 1264 High Road, Whetstone

The dig at 1264 High Road, Whetstone is on part of a site of con­siderable interest and some antiquity.

Much of the building is unused at present. The room fronting the High Road on the north side is used by a photographer’s business, and the room on the south frontage, currently empty, was an employment agency. Between these rooms is a corridor leading to the rear. Excluding toilets and cupboards, there are four further rooms on the ground floor, five on the first floor and two on the second floor, all apparently unused.

For many years the building was the Whetstone Post Office, run by the Gilmour family. Robert Gilmour was born in 1818 in Perthshire. He was originally a draper by trade, who moved to London before 1850. The 1851 census shows him living at what is now 1270 High Road, where his sons carved their names. By 1861, Robert had purchased 1264, and became Toll Collector of the Whetstone Gate of the Whetstone and Highgate Turnpike Trust, as well as running his draper’s shop. Following the closure of the Turnpike, and removal of the gate, his second business was the Post Office. This was obviously profitable, as he bought property further along Whetstone High Road towards Finchley. His first wife, Jane, died in 1864, and his second wife, Emma, in 1894. Robert was succeeded by his daughters, who became partners in 1904 – Ellen and Ada, the latter running the drapery, on the left side as you entered the shop.

1264 – the former Post Office – could be described as one building sublet into parts. That pattern of several occupants has a long history. Before 1837 the house was connected with the Griffin Inn, which stands next door to the south. Because the Griffin was remodelled in 1929, there is no physical trace left of the inter-relationship, but it is there in the documentation.

The principal written sources are the Friern Barnet Court Rolls, available at the Guildhall Library, and in Banks’ transcriptions at the Greater London record Office. Other sources include surveys done in connection with John Bacon’s estate by W P Attfield in 1815, and by J Ellis in 1787. The photocopy of the Tithe Map of 1844 held by Barnet Local History Library appears to be a reduction of the original held at the Public Record Office.

In 1783 Samual Sandys sold the Griffin Inn and cottage adjoining in the occupation of Widow Hews, together with a close of land behind of 1 acre 3R 35P to William Nixon who, on his death, willed it to his daugh­ter Elizabeth Cole. It was she who sold the sites to Meux the brewers in 1837 for £1,050, and through them, the Post Office to Gilmour.

In 1744 No 1264 is described as a messuage with appurtenances and gardens, and a close of 2 acres, and belonging to Richard Brown, who on his death left it to his sister Elizabeth Sandys.

The complete list of owners, which I have made, is probably of interest only to lawyers. In 1739 the house is described as “three messuages now one,” and in 1700 as “three messuages formerly two.” The records are missing for the period round the Civil War.

In 1603 William Sanny sold “the messuage in which he lives and another cottage in the occupation of Thomas Atkins” to Nicholas Kempe of the Inner Temple. The Sanny family were numerous and widespread, and owned a good deal of property in Finchley and Whetstone.

In 1549 John Sanny transferred “a cottage called Bakehouse, a cottage and garden which he has lately built, and a cottage and barn” to Robert Sanny, and in 1504 John Sanny inherited from Thomas Sanny “a cottage and garden.”

This seems to suggest that 1264 High Road contains parts of a building which was certainly there in 1549 and may have existed in 1504.

“Posthole – any hole too small to be a storage pit” “Storage pit – any hole too big to be a posthole”

SHEILA WOODWARD reviews a daunting tome

Excavations in Southwark (1973-76) and Lambeth (1973-79)

The latest LAMAS & SAS Joint Publication (No. 3) thudded through my letter-box some 3 weeks ago. It is a formidable tome covering excava­tions at 16 sites and a period of seven years, and is crammed with technical detail. Such detail is the inevitable result of improved excavation and processing techniques. Should it be included in the printed report or consigned to microfiche or computer print-out? Hitherto T have been anti-microfiche; this report has converted me. Although Peter Hinton’s introduction gives good reasons for the choice of format, the result is most cumbersome and the clutter of information is daunting.

The sites covered range from full-scale excavation to trial-trenching and site-watching during development. All have added something to the jigsaw picture of Southwark’s development since prehistoric times. New evidence on changes in sea and river levels clarifies the early topography which affected the Roman settlement pattern and road alignments. Environ­mental evidence, which is copious, supplies information on climatic conditions land-use, purposes of animal-rearing and methods of butchering. And how interesting to note that Mrs Beeton can come to the aid of archaeological interpretation (see p.435/6)1

Amongst the Roman finds, one of the most attractive is the bone ‘portrait pin”, possibly worn as a charm or a memorial. More important is a fragment of glass, blown and cameo-carved with vine-leaves and grapes, the first such find from Roman Britain. It provides new evidence for the production, dispersion and decoration of cameo glass vessels.

There is an interesting discussion on the development of tin-glazed ware which is technically inferior to lead-glazed earthenware but looks more decorative. This 17c willingness to “pay for appearances” is seen as a trend towards the modern consumer society! Another section of the report dealing with leather records the changes in shoe-making techniques and styles in the medieval and post-medieval periods – a fascinating study. There is even a suggestion for anyone looking for a research project: the use of Romano-British domestic pottery, especially its use for cooking.

The Borough High Street site was once occupied by the Kings Bench Prison. It was “prison industry” finds which provoked the inclusion in the report of this sad little Kings Bench Litany:

From creditors when cruel grown,

From bailiffs and their crafty scent,

From dining often with the Duke,*

From paying homage to the pump,

From taking of the ten pound act,

From being overcome by drink,

From lodging near a boghouse stink,

From having stomachs and no chink,

From asking for food to be denied,

From being turned to the common side –

Libera nos Domine

From being sent to the Lion White,**

From mouldy scraps in basket laid,

From making pegs, that humble trade,

From wooden blocks to rest one’s head,

From all or any King’s Bench bed –

Libera nos Domine

“Duke Humphrey”= “dining on air”

**A lower depth


news from the North

In the August Newsletter there was a news flash from Daphne Lorimer about the discovery of a rock-cut burial chamber in Orkney – possibly the first in a new class of ancient monument – and a promise of “more news next month.” However, we shall have to be patient a bit longer, because there is an embargo on information about the discovery until laboratory tests on the cremations and inhumations it contained have been completed. Daphne holds a watching brief for the Newsletter and will keep us informed.

Meantime, she has information about another site in which HADAS has been interested since our Orkney holiday in 1978 – the underground passage near the Round Church and Earl’s Bu in Orphir. We carried a report on that about a year ago (see November 1988 Newsletter); now here is another.

Last year the excavation of the mysterious passage at the Bu Farm revealed a large chamber thought to be of prehistoric origin. This year Dr Colleen Batey and her team dug up the floor of the chamber and discovered that beneath it was a sealed Viking deposit. Not only that: the continua­tion of the excavation beyond the chamber began to give an entirely different picture. They now think it represents the lade of a horizontal water mill, similar to the clickmill at Dounby. This will be the first Viking mill found in Britain. A clickmill is really a mechanised quern, in which the mechanism is propelled by a controlled rush of water of moderate force which can be derived from quite small streams.

The stream is dammed at a convenient place some distance from the mill to form a reservoir. The water is controlled by a simple sluice and is diverted along a mill lade to the mill house, where it is directed down a trough onto the fins of a horizontal mill wheel. The fins are set obliquely so as to revolve a vertical spindle which passes upwards through the lower millstone to be fixed to the upper, which then rotates and grinds the grain between the two. Wedges are used to regulate the pressure and allow flour of different degrees of fineness to be milled.

Stones with central holes to take a spindle were also found on the last day of the dig; and next year’s discoveries are eagerly awaited. Geophysical surveys were done on the fields all-round the site and revealed the large industrial complex which once surrounded the Viking Earl’s palace: all this, from a hole that HADAS discovered!


Hendon has one strange – and ghoulish – claim to fame, recalled by last month’s commemoration of the 50th declaration of WWII on Sept 3 1939. Heading Street – now swept away under the Church End development – was the scene of the death on active service of the first member of the British WWII armed forces He was 28-year-old John Noel Isaac, on an exercise out of RAF Northolt that Sunday morning – training for a war in which he would have no part. He became the first casualty – to be followed by so many millions – when his plane crashed as he tried a single-engine approach to Hendon. The plane, a Blenheim bomber, stalled. Three houses in Heading Street were burnt out, but no civilian was killed or hurt. Pilot Officer Isaac died instantly. There is a memorial plaque to him in Golders Green Crematorium. On Sept 3 1589 someone remembered – and put flowers on it.


By | Past Newsletters, Volume 4 : 1985 - 1989 | No Comments

NEWSLETTER 222: September 1989 Editors: Christine Arnott, Dawn Orr

After the lovely summer we have enjoyed, it is difficult to realise that Autumn is upon us – but, as you will see below, the academic season invites your attention.


Saturday September 30th Walk in Highbury and Canonbury with Mary O’Connell

(Details and application form enclosed.)

Tuesday October 3rd Lecture on Excavation at Piddington Roman Villa by Roy Friendship – Taylor.

Saturday October 7th Minimart at St Mary’s Church Hall, Greyhound Hill, Hendon. N.W. 4.

Ring 203-0950. if you have saleable items available now. We do not like goods brought in on the day, as everything is sorted and priced beforehand. Also old helpers and new volunteers please ring in if you are available on that date. (See separate leaflet for details and Sales and Wants List of larger items.)

Tuesday November 7th Lecture on Pre-history in Greater London by Jon Cotton.

Tuesday December 5th Southwark Cathedral and Christmas -Dinner at “The George

Lectures are held at the Central Library, The Burroughs, Hendon. N. W.4. for 8.30 p.m. Last year, the doors were found to be closed on several occasions. If this occurs, please bang and ring until the porter hears you

For information on outings, lectures and walks, please ring 203 – 0950 and ask the programme Secretary.



On Saturday 30th September and Sunday 1st October, the archaeological excavations at the moated manor site at Scadbury will be open to the public. Members of the Orpington & District Archaeological Society (ODAS) will give guided tours showing the work that is currently being done on the site, as well as the foundations of the drawbridge by the side of the moat. The moated area contains the foundations of the buildings associated with the Walsingham family that stood on the site in Elizabethan times.

Guided tours will start at 2.00 p.m. each day from the circular footpath at the point where it now goes pact the moated site. Follow the signs to the site from the Nature Centre in Grovelands Road, St Paul’s Cray. The walk from the Nature Centre takes about 15 minutes.

For elderly or disabled people, car parking is available close to the site, by free ticket only, for which application should be made (enclosing s.a.e. and stating for which day required) to Meekums, 27 Eynsford Close, Petts Wood. KENT. BR5 1DP

A warm welcome is extended to any HADAS member who would like to visit on ether of the above dates.


A new version of a “bread and butter” letter, from Cherry Lavell.. Having had the bare-faced cheek to beg a “returned” coach ticket (and not even being a card-carrying HADAS member, though an avid reader of your invaluable Newsletter) I should not have been surprised to find myself ‘volunteered’ into writing this report on the very delightful August trip.

After a slightly shaky start, the journey to Gloucestershire went well, including a coffee stop at The Windmill near Burford and the Cotswolds looked their loveliest in the bright sun with passing clouds. Arriving at Crickley Hill Country Park at about 11.45 a.m. and needing to find the dig director, Dr Philip Dixon, I was despatched as the (ex-native) runner to find him Normally he is the first person I see whenever I visit Crickley, however this time it took two whole circuits of the hill (leaving messages all round) to run him to ground. The by-then somewhat restive party was rallied, and rewarded by a thoroughly fascinating tour.

We saw first the Dark Age (post-Roman, sub-Roman, what-have-you) area close under the ramparts, where the old Iron Age quarry scoops had been recycled as sunken-featured buildings with stone footings and turf walls. This gave us an immediate taste of the difficulties of the natural rock on this site: it is a fissured and fractured oolitic limestone which takes some practice to deal with. Nearby were big 4-post structures (presumed granaries) cut into the rock. There was also an Iron Age hearth in this area, originating in the Earliest Iron Age (conservatively, about 700 B.C.) and re-made in the Second Iron Age phase, about 500 B.C. (The main part of the EIA settlement was dug years ago and is rather inaccurately marked out by the Country Park authorities in set-flush concrete posts – blue for the early, long house phase, and yellow for the later 500-ish B.C. phase with its round houses.)

We then followed Phil through a gate which was also a time-gap of about 2,000 years, for it led us into the Neolithic causewayed enclosure which takes up the furthest promontory of the hill. Here there had been numerous phases of build­ing and rebuilding, including more than one attack and burning, with 480 arrow­heads clustered round a burnt entrance. (This, if I remember rightly, was the first site at which the myth of the peace-loving Neolithic people was first seriously dented.) Here too is the Long Mound, with its circular business end or ‘ritual’ terminal, which is only slowly giving up its secrets.

Beyond this area we found prehistoric crafts being demonstrated, this being the annual Open Weekend. Dr Ros Cleal was firing pots made of the local clay-in an open bonfire, and other pots she had made were on show. A flint-knapper in an Asterix T-shirt was doing fine pressure-flaking with an antler baton, and a trio of weavers were doing battle with a ware-weighted loom in the strong Severn Vale breezes. From here there were glorious views of the Vale, right up towards Evesham, with the Malvern Hills of Worcestershire and the Black Mountains of Wales beyond to the west. Past lunchtime now, so a hurried return to the coach for a quick munch before leaving for Painswick village.

Here we emptied rapidly out of the coach on a double yellow line – Painswick suffers the twentieth century as best it can. Through the churchyard, with its 99 yew trees (the 100th allegedly will never grow) and a splendid collect­ion of table tombs, we were met by Mr Roy Truman, who acted as our guide to the 14th century church – much Victorian restoration reasonably well done. On dis­play was a very large collection of kneelers made by needlewomen (and men) of the parish, beautifully crafted though variable in quality of design. We were then free to wander round the village, using the excellent guide map produced by the Painswick Women’s Institute – whoever said all they do is make jam? Many of us visited the exhibition of the Guild of Gloucestershire Craftsmen, and were duly staggered at the prices asked, even granting the superb quality of the bookbinding, woodcarving, screenprinting and everything else on show.

Then off to tea up the road in the hall of Christchurch – a splendid spread provided by Mrs Truman and her helpers. The homeward coach ride was enlivened by the customary raffle with several lucky winners and a handy sum made for HADAS funds.

Has this report suitably repaid your kind hospitality? I certainly had a lovely day, and happily echoed the warm vote of thanks which Alan Hill made to Dorothy Newbury for all her hard work in planning such a successful trip.


“Eyes Down” in N.W. 4 ……………

Walking along Brampton Grove recently, I inspected a pile of bricks from a house about four doors away from Brampton Court, opposite No. 63. My eyes soon espied some red facing bricks. It took some while to find a complete one with the maker’s name in the frog of the brick which was readable. It read : E. SMITH & CO. COALVILLE.

Coalville is in the Charnwood Forest area of Leicestershire, six miles south­east of Ashby de in Zouche. This area was developed by George Stevenson, who in 130 was living at Alton Grange at Ashby. In the area there was plenty of good clay for brickmaking, which needed no additions. Also in the area were coal-bearing seams, in which he had an interest. The addition of railway connections made transport possible for both products. Prior to “Beeching” Coalville was on the old L.M.S. Railway, so transport to a station near to Hendon would not have been difficult.

I suspect that these bricks which found their way to Brampton Grove were probably not made until after the turn of the century.


Andrew Selkirk has received a recent copy of the “Young LAMAS Newsletter” and sends us the following. extracts, in which some of the youngsters describe their visit to Chipping Barnet on Saturday, :rd June , 1989. We reproduce in toto some illustrations which we think our readers will find amusing as well as informative. The Young Lamas visitors began their “Local Studies Days” at Barnet Museum where they were met by Jennie Cobban, and first of all we visited the Tudor Hall, which used to be part of Barnet’s Grammar School. In the centre of the Hall was the whipping-post. The older boys during Tudor times were expected to speak in Latin all the time – if they lapsed into English they got a dose of the whipping post. A number of us
were relieved that whipping posts are not important parts of schools today The gentleman showing us the Hall remembered it being used when he was at the school ! We also saw where the dormitories used to be – boys used. to sleep five to a bed.In the afternoon we were taken on a walking tour of Barnet – seeing how some people (see HADAS July Newsletter to find out who ‘some people’ are – had pulled down important Tudor stables, before the archaeologists could excavate them.””Perhaps the most interesting thing out of all the trip was why Chipping Barnet was called Chipping Barnet,we were soon to find out, for ‘Chipping means ‘market’ and ‘Barnett’ is thought to mean ‘a place cleared by burning’ . Chipping Barnet was a market in the place cleared by burning.”

Update on the Rose Theatre from Young LAMAS

Excavations by archaeologists from the Museum of London at the site of the Rose Theatre have now finished. You will be pleased to know that everyone agrees that the site should be kept and that eventually it should be on dis­play to the public. There are, however, different opinions as to how this would best be done.

The theatre itself was small, the stage area perhaps being no more than 13 metres. The archaeologists found a lot of organise (animal or plant matter) debris on the floor; this could be the remains of a roof hatch.

All the information is important in helping archaeologists and historians to understand how early playwrights, such as Shakespeare, staged their plays. If you want any more information, telephone or write to me: Elizabeth Hess, Young LAMAS, Museum of London, London Wall, EC 2. Telephone: 600 – 3699. (HADAS younger readers please note.)

” Update on the Huggin Hill ‘Roman Baths’ from Young LAMAS

We were very lucky to see this site when we did. Although the developers did agree not to destroy it completely, it is not going to be open to the public, as it will be at the bottom of their new building. To help protect the site for future archaeologists, the site was covered by a layer of sand.

The interesting finds have been on display in the front hall of the Museum of London.

Let us know if there is any interesting or important local history or arch­aeological work going on near to where you live. ”


The Whetstone project has been like Topsy; although starting small, it has grown of its own volition until it now it has become the major HADAS project of the summer, with sections working in local history, a regular drawing and photography group as well as its loyal band of diggers.

As some members will know, central Whetstone has several listed houses. These are where Totteridge Lane and the Great North Road meet opposite the Griffin pub. There used to be a set of toll gates here, and it was a convenient place for refreshment of man and horse.

In 1981 the Society investigated one of these houses, and we produced a splendid set of drawing of 1260 High Rd Whetstone. This building has since been very beautifully restored by the present owners, a local building company who now use it as their offices. The society’s 1981 work may have contributed to this happy outcome.

The present project is at No.1264, and between them the three buildings form as remarkable a group as any in the Borough. From our present investigations they appear they have been in continuous use for the last 450 or 500 years. They are not mansions or palaces or churches but ordinary houses. No 1264, the subject of our present project, could perhaps be described as a minor Tudor hall.

From the street the site presents a somewhat undistinguished Georgian Frontage. The interest lies to the rear, where there is a Large timber framed hall, lying at right angles to the frontage. Currently it is divided into four rooms on each of its two floors and a large loft above. Originally it appears to have been a single large structure with a hearth at either end. At the back there is a paved area with an outhouse, and behind that a large garden. We have been excavating in this garden, while within the house we have been recording the archaeological aspects in the unoccupied part. From the first inspection of the house it had seemed it could be rather unusual and possibly early type of construction.

We started the digging programme with a ‘quite heroic effort and soon cleared about 1 meter of assorted rubbish from the dig area. This was achieved by a few of the “regulars” and some great work by a number of our new members. The details of the subsequent dig have been reported in previous Newsletters. We have recently started on a new set of trenches further away from the house to search for rubbish pits.

We had earlier decided to seek specialist advice on the house construction and consulted Phillip Venning a long standing member and veteran of the West Heath and many other HADAS project who is now Secretary of The Society for the Protection of Ancient Buildings. He asked two of his members to advise us and they expressed the view that the building was probably older than the listed date of the 16th century.

At the same time members have been researching the records and have found traced continuous occupation of the site right back to the 15th century, with the names and trades of many of the occupants. Meanwhile the Museum of London experts have taken samples of the timbers for tree-ring dating. Let us hope that they will provide the final clues to the dating of this major survival from Whetstone’s past.


Micky Cohen We are pleased to learn that Miss Cohen has passed her second year Diploma Course in Archaeology – with merit. (We would like to hear about any other members who have passed their course examinations this year. Ed.)

Aubrey and Valerie Hodes We are sorry to learn that the Hodes have moved away to Morecambe – for peace and quiet to get on with their writing, we understand. We shall miss their cheerful participation on outings and their Minimart help.

Mr Levison was a non-participating member, but he enjoyed our Newsletters and was always interested in our activities. He died recently. He had earlier given a generous donation to the Society.

Mrs Holliday we are very sad to hear that Liz Holliday’s mother died suddenly in hospital on Thursday, 10th August. Mrs Holliday was a member with Liz for several years and came on outings with her. She suffered some ill health latterly, but they had a happy holiday in Venice earlier this year. We send Liz our sincere sympathy.

Mr. and Mrs Ivor Leverton The Levertons have advised change of address to:

26 Heath Road, Little Heath, Potters Bar, HERTS.


By | Past Newsletters, Volume 4 : 1985 - 1989 | No Comments

NEWSLETTER 221 August 1989 Editor: Helen Gordon


Saturday August 12th
Outing to Crickley Hill Excavation and Painswick, Gloucestershire (Details and application form enclosed)

Saturday September 30th Walk in Highbury and Canonbury with Mary O’Connell

Tuesday October 3rd Lecture on Excavation at Piddington by Roy Friendship-Taylor
Saturday October 7th MINIMART St Mary’s Church House

Tuesday November 7th Lecture on Prehistory in Greater London by Jon Cotton Tuesday December 5th Southwark Cathedral and Christmas Dinner at “The George”

Lectures are held at the Central Library, The Burroughs, Hendon 8.0 for 8.30 pm Coffee is available. For information about outings and walks telephone Dorothy Newbury on 203 0950

SOME AUTUMN CLASSES in or near the Borough of Barnet

The Archaeology of Mexico and Central America

Tutor Ursula Jones, 10 meetings from Thurs Sept 28th, 8.00pm

WEA Golders Green, Golders Green Library, Golders Green Rd, NW1I

For information ring Mrs Michaelson 452 8850

Ancient Empires of South America

Tutor Nicholas James, 20 meetings from Mon Sept 25th, 8,00pm

WEA Mill Hill & Edgware St Martins School, Goodwyn Av. Mill Hill NW?

Tutor Tony Rook, 22 meetings from Wed Sept 27th, 7.30pm

WEA Mill Hill & Edgware The Scout Hall, Edgware For information ring Peggy Davies 959 3505

Roman Archaeology in Britain and Beyond

Tutor B D Adams, 20 meetings from Tues Sept 26th, 7.30pm WEA Elstree & Borehamwood The Community Centre, Allum Lane, Elstree.

For information ring William Whitehead 0727 73309

Dark Ages: Anglo-Saxon England 400-1100

Tutor Brian. Adams, 20 meetings from Mon Sept 25th, 8,00pm WEA Stanmore & Kenton, Stanmore Library, 8 Stanmore Hill

For information ring Joan Meaden 205 4260

Industrial Archaeology,/u>

Tutor Denis Smith, 20 meetings from Mon Sept 25th, 7.30pm

WEA Potters Bar, De Havilland College, The Walk, Potters Bar

For information ring David Clark 0707 55217

Digging up the Bible

Tutor Lorna Oakes, 24 meetings from Mon Sept 18th, 2.00pm

Camden AEI, Maccabi Centre, 73 Compayne Gardens NW6

For information ring 388 7106/7

For summary of Diploma and Certificate courses see back page


Church Farm House Museum A Cabinet of Curiosities – the work of a small museum June 17th– September 17th demonstrating how our small museum, typical of many, has evolved from the old antiquarians’ collections of curiosities, and exploring ways for future development. Documentary material and rarely seen objects are on display and also The Changing Face of London – Photographs by Harold Rose July 8th – September 10th showing the dramatic changes which have occurred in the architecture of London: Open: 10 am – 1 pm, 2 pm – 5.30 pm. Tues.10am – 1pm and Sun. 2pm – 5.30pm

King’s Library, Great Russell St, WC1 Particular Places until September 3rd

This exhibition celebrates the 200th volume of the Victoria County History and focuses on places whose history is currently being researched. Open: Mon-Sat 10 am – 5 pm, Sun 2.30 pm – 6 pm

The Clink 1 Clink St, SE1. This is a permanent exhibition on the site of the original Clink prison; it is now a museum. Its history probably goes back to 816AD when the Bishop of Winchester’s “Colledg of Preestes” must have had a cell for erring monks to comply with the Synod’s edict of that date. Certainly by 1127 AD when Henry I created the estate as “The Liberty of the See of Winchester in the Clink in the Borough of Southwark” the Bishop had power of justice and imprisonment. Part of a buttress of the Bishop’s palace has been identified in the wall of the museum. The museum traces the history of the treatment of prisoners; it is no accident that the Clink was situated in an area devoted to entertainment of all kinds (including the Rose Theatre) and was also near a religious institution. It has a touch of the red light district, and is worth a visit. Open: 10 am – 4 pm Monday to Wednesday, 10 am to 10 pm Thursday to Sunday

Barnet’s Triangular Market-Place by Andrew Selkirk

More than a dozen young archaeologists assembled at Barnet’s triangular Market Place on Saturday 3rd of June to see what survived of Barnet’s history, and to debate what could be done to enhance that history. Most of the young archaeologists were from Lamas, the London and Middlesex Archaeological Society, though a few were from HADAS; we need more younger members! There were a number of not-so-young archaeologists, including two visitors from California,

We began in Barnet Museum where Jennie Cobban, who organised the whole event, distributed a six page information pack about Chipping Barnet’s Triangular Market Place. First point of call was Tudor Hall, the original building of The Queen Elizabeth Grammar School, now marooned in the glass and metal archicture of the Barnet College of Further Education, Dennis Marshall, who taught history at the College showed us around and described the history of the school, originally founded in 1573. It was fascinating to compare this with the rather better known school at Harrow which we had visited a month previously. Both schools were Elizabethan foundations and had similar histories down to the 19th Centurya when Harrow under a succession of outstanding headmasters became pre-eminent, But Barnet Grammar School continued to flourish down to the 1930s when the Ravenscroft foundation who were the Governors decided it was no longer viable as a school and turned it into their headquarters, After the war it was converted into a College of Further Education, and most of the old buildings were pulled down and the assembly hail. Sad that so little a sense of history survives there.We then went across the road to the parish church where Bill Guider showed us around and distinguished between the original Medieval church and the Butterworth expansion of 1875. We also looked at the fine alabaster tomb of John Ravenscroft in the corner and followed the history of the other members of the family whose charity has played such a major role in Barnet’s history.We then adjourned for lunch, the adults to the Mitre and children to the Old Bull Art Centre where we visited the theatre that has been ingeniously installed at the rear of the old inn. After lunch we viewed the position of Middle Row, the old market hall that stood in the centre of the triangular market place until it was burnt down in 1889 – providentially in a way, for it removed an impossible traffic hazard. We then visited the backlands behind the fine frontages on the east side of Barnet High Street It is here that development is taking place and we viewed the destruction of the past year, the site of the old granary behind 62 High Street destroyed last November and then the site of the stables behind the Mitre, the last surviving stables of the old coaching inns of Barnet but destroyed last December.We then returned to the Museum where Graham Javes of the Barnet Local History Society had prepared an excellent questionnaire which we all snapped up and went around the Museum answering the questions and learning the history of Barnet. There was also a splendid special exhibition on the market place, laid on by Doreen Willcocks. This terminated the official proceedings but afterwards most of us repaired to the cafe on the site of the Red Lyon in the High Street and had cheesecake and coffee – just as Samuel Pepys did in 1667, when he went to the Red Lyon “and ate some of the best cheese cake that ever I ate in my life”.The big surprise for those of us who stayed until the end was the splendid Barnet Information pack that Jennie Cobban had prepared to enable the young archaeologists to enter the competition. Indeed they were so popular that the adults snapped them up too. When I produced my copy at the recent Committee Meeting there was such general admiration that I found at the end of the Meeting that it had mysteriously disappeared! Any young member of HADAS who was not able to come to the meeting should certainly write to Jennie Gobban at 42 Tudor Road, New Barnet EN5 3NP and see if there are any sets left. I was left with the increased conviction that Barnet’s Triangular Market place is perhaps the outstanding historical centre in the borough. But action is needed if we are to preserve anything in the face of new development. The forthcoming excavations on the site of the old stables will help to draw attention to it, but we must do more. We must make friends with the Old Bull Art Centre and bring together the literary and historic side of Barnet. This was the place where Samuel Pepys came to eat cheesecake and the last stopping place of Oliver Twist when he ran away from the orphanage to come to London. Could we not put plaques up on some of the historic buildings to remind everyone that Barnet does have a history? A martyr’s memorial to William Hale, who was burned at the stake in the market place in 1555? And what about the Horse Fair which still takes place every September? Many regard it as a nuisance but it is the direct descendent of the market which was granted a charter by King John in 1199. If only we can produce some ideas and initiatives, we can make Barnet into the finest historic town between London and St Albans!

HADAS Library By Brian Wrigley

It was on a Friday, 2nd June that the Hon. Secretary received the call from Barnet Council Administrator, John Rheam ………………….. the scaffolding at Avenue House had been put up to hold up the floor of our fire-damaged room – and how soon could we come and get our books to a place of safety – like Monday afternoon?

Well of course we were as anxious as anyone to get our hands once more on our collection and see what sort of state it is in. But the first problem was – where should we take them to? We have no other HADAS home to accomodate this number of books, reeking of smoke and soot! Well, as soon as he was approached by phone, the White Knight, David Ruddom, the Borough Librarian came galloping to the rescue with an offer of temporary space at the Borough Library bookstore in Friern Barnet. And after a flurry of telephone calls and appeals over the weekend to try to raise a workforce for Monday—in-the-end it was your-Chairman- (with his van for which the Society must be thankful!), the Treasurer and the Secretary who turned out in their working gear on the Monday, and then again on Tuesday, to load up the books and transport them. John Rheam donned his overalls and buckled to with us.

We had to tread warily on a new board placed over the blackened, lath-thin planks of the library floor (with daylight showing through in places). We concentrated on getting the books packed into cardboard boxes as quickly as possible for transport, to keep our activity on the precarious floor as short as possible; with no electric light and only a small window, we soon found ourselves working against time and fading daylight, with no time to have any detailed inspection of the books; however, we were at least able to see there was actual charring to only a few of the volumes, but the page edges of virtually every single book were blackened with smoke and soot. In moving them we noticed that the covers of most had stuck to their neighbour’s (smoke tar or heat?) but all seemed to separate easily. We didn’t want to stop to open many of them to see inside, but the few we looked at seemed legible still. Some paper-back periodicals have probably lost some numbers beyond recall.So, a great deal of work is needed to make our books readable without getting black all over. (We can now claim to have a unique collection of filthy books!).

This is a job that will have to be done, we think, in stages, by taking a batch at a time from their resting place in Friern Barnet, inspecting them and cleaning them up, June Porges, our Librarian, is prepared to start organising this as soon as possible, and we hope we may soon find somewhere to keep the refurbished volumes safe and accessible. We were, before the fire, discussing with the Borough the possibility of having another, slightly larger room at Avenue House (one which is in fact undamaged) and we are still in negotiation for this.However, we have to recognise that the fire damage has put a lot of pressure on the remaining accomodation at Avenue House, and we may have some delay. Meanwhile, our good news is that the site records and finds, and some other archives which were stored in another room at Avenue House, are unharmed.


Mary O’Connell,our member who takes us on City walks has hit the headlines! I hope readers saw her picture and write-up in the Sunday Times supplement on July 15th. She now tutors the course in Guiding at City University .This is the Clerkenwell/Islington Guide-course of 20 sessions, mostly or. Wednesday evenings, but including some other times according to opening hours of places visited, and also four Saturdays each term. The class visits many interesting places and Mary assures us that it is not essential to take the exam. For details, ring her at 205 1501, or write to her at 2 Highfort Court, Buck Lane NW9 OQG.

Christine Arnott is making a slow-but-sure recovery from her fall which resulted in broken and sprained ankles, but she is not yet out of plaster and is still virtually chair-bound. However her physical incapacity in no way prevents mental activity, and at present she is infuriated at the BBC2’s misrepresentation of Stonehenge as a Druid’s Temple, In their programme ‘Country File’ from Pebble’ Mill, while discussing circles appearing in cornfields in Wessex, it was stated that Stonehenge was built 2,000 years ago by the ancient Britons as a Druid Temple. She thinks that such a disgraceful inaccuracy on a serious programme can only provide fuel for the annual midsummer confrontation at Stonehenge. She is boiling with frustration that she cannot organise a strong letter of protest from someone with the necessary authority, while she herself is physically deprived of access to the source material on which to base an informed protest. She hopes that an appeal to the Newsletter will not fall on deaf ears.


reported by Ruth Wagland:

A perfect morning, a smooth pick-up and then Dorothy’s opening remarks. ‘This is a picture of the Vicar of Great Burstead, he is a very difficult man so you can avoid him’. She went on to catalogue the lack of co-operation and information received from some of the institutions in Maldon, the partial closure of the M25, the new driver who was not sure of the way and the Greek cafe owner who didn’t understand about scones. Members of HADAS know that this is only a ploy and we set off confident that an enjoyable day was to come.

The first stop at Great Burstead coincided with the setting up of the village fete, tea, coffee and cake was provided in the tent and many members seemed content to sit outside all day. But we assembled in the church to be addressed by the warden, who pointed out the 14th century wall paintings uncovered in January 1989. There are three separate friezes, one shows St Michael weighing a soul with the Virgin interceding. Another series show the story of St Catharine, also depicted is doubting Thomas and Jesus. The church has registers showing the marriage of Christopher Martin, governor of the Mayflower. An earlier one recalls, through his widow, a martyr during the reign of Queen Mary.

We were then taken to the site of the new Maldon Southern Relief Road where at least two Roman cremations have been found, leading to some further investigation. It is thought that the site was a large agricultural area, probably owned by one family who divided the land with enclosure ditches for various members. Samian and grey ware has been found, also what are thought to be tanning pits, lined with clay and covered with gravel. There is also evidence suggesting a late Iron Age round house. Then on to the pleasant town of Maldon established as a Saxon burh (fort in 916, situated on the River Blackwater, where we had lunch.

A walk along the river brought us in sight of the causeway where the battle of Maldon was fought in 991 between the Vikings and the Saxons led by Brithnoth. There seems to be much dispute over exactly where and when this battle took place,

The evidence is based on an Anglo-Saxon poem, the beginning, and end of which are lost, The town plans a millenium celebration in 1991 with the erection of a statue to Brithnoth and much else.

Next, to All Saints church which has a unique 13th century triangular tower supporting an hexagonal shingled spire. There is a window presented by the citizens of Maldon, Massachusetts in 1928, to the memory of Lawrence Washington, the great-great grandfather of George who was buried somewhere in the churchyard in 1652.

As there were several places to visit we split into four groups. The Friary Walled Garden is only one-fifth of an acre, probably cultivated by a monastic community before the Reformation. The local Horticultural Society is restoring it to the Georgian design suggested by the path layout and box hedges surrounding small beds. There is much to do and they need volunteers!

The highlight of the visit was the Moot Hall, built in the 15th century for the D’Arcy family and bought for £55 in 1576 from Alderman Thomas Eve. The ground floor was used as a Jail; there is a door leading to the prison exercise yard. It was also a police station from 1863. From the ground floor the newel staircase winds to the roof. It comprises original Medieval bricks, has a built-in handrail and dates from the 1400’s. The first floor contains a Magistrate’s Court used possibly from 1576 until 1950. It is now an example of what would be called a ‘Dickensian Court House’. The second floor is the former Council Chamber, used as such from 1576 until 1974. It is now panelled in Regency pine.

We were shown round by a local councillor who was very informative, finally taking us up the newel staircase to the roof to see a panoramic view of the town and give us his theory concerning the Battle of Maldon. We then proceeded down the High Street to have tea and currant buns at the Mill House cafe,The Journey come was swift and despite Dorothy’s initial gloom another successful HADAS outing ended well.

Peter Pickering sends a footnote: Those who attempted to decipher the wall painting of “The Living and the Dead” in Great Burstead church may be interested in the following extract from History and Imagery in British Churches by M.O.Anderson. I regret that the book throws no light on the King of Cyprus.

“Another reminder of immortality once seen in many churches is that of The Three Living and the Three Dead. Some thirty examples have been identified and recorded in British churches but of these only about a dozen can be recognised, The fable may have had an eastern origin but the medieval artists knew it chiefly througn French 13th century poem by Baudoin de Conde which describes the meeting of three gay young courtiers with three Deaths. The animated cadavers remind them that even as they now are so shall all courtiers be. The first youth flees, the second hails the Deaths as sent from God, and the third discants upon the horrors of decay. Some of the remaining wall-paintings also differentiate the reaction of the Living. In the little chapel of Widford, near Burford (Oxon), the youth is intent upon his hunting and does not see the Dead, the middle-aged man tries to draw his attention to them and the old man shields his eyes from the horrible sight. At Charlwood (Surrey) the Kings were shown on horseback, a feature commoner in France than England. A pictorial tradition, independent of literary authority, associated the meeting of the Living and the Dead with a hunting scene, although neither this fact, nor the royal status accorded to the Living, are mentioned in the poems. A forest setting is suggested, if only by one tree, and the only King who survives at Paston (Norfolk) has two small huntsmen in attendance. At Peakirk (Northants) the horror of the vision is enhanced by a background covered with flies, beetles and other insects that feed upon corruption. Other examples can be seen at Tarrant Crawford (Dorset) and Hurstbourne Tarrant (Hants).

“The painting of the Three Living and the Three Dead at Raunds (Northants) is on the same wall as that of the Deadly Sins, and we can thus imagine the sequence of admonitions which these paintings were meant to express, At the west end of the wall, above the nave arcade, the little group of sins in the dragons’ mouths portray acts whose extreme familiarity inclines men to condone them, yet, as the eye travels down those branching dragons’ bodies into the giant form of Pride, and through her limbs to their true place of origin, in Hell, these petty vices are seen in the awful perspective of eternity. A few paces eastwards and our glance falls upon the second allegory, seizing first upon the rabbit and the hunting dogs, still clearly visible, and then discovering upon the darkened plaster above them, first the Kings, in their careless enjoyment of the chase, and lastly their horrible vision of the Deaths, unheralded and inescapable! The figure of St Christopher, also painted on this wall, offers a limited protection against unshriven death, but even his legendary power extends only to the day in which we have gazed upon his image, and only the vanished Rood, which has left a pale scar above the chancel arch, brought to medieval parishioners a hope of escaping from the terrors of damnation.”


On Saturday 8th July we made our way down to the south coast, and after a coffee stop at The Bolney Stage and picking up our guide for the day Elizabeth Sanderson, we headed on to our first destination, Beddingham. Here, while half of the group were shown around the excavations at Beddingham Roman Villa by the Director, David Rudling, the remainder had time to browse around St Andrew’s Church.

The excavations have shown a winged corridor villa with a 3rd century AD bathroom addition. The site was discovered as crop-marks in July 1986 by aerial photography during work on a nearby late Saxon site. After preliminary fieldwalking and a soil resistivity survey the site is now half exposed, but there is a farm enclosure on site and probably more Roman buildings two fields away still to be dug. Dating by coins and pottery finds confirm a similar date range of 1st to late 3rd century AD. The villa was defined by the stone walls of the bottom foundations and we could see a small suite of baths at the North end and a central living room with furnace feature. Finds of slag possibly indicate that at some stage one of the other living rooms was used as a forging furnace. As well as being shown the site and some of the finds we were shown a 3-D contour map of the walls made by computer from the geophysical survey.

St Andrew’s Church was originally Norman but has been altered and rebuilt over the years. Of noticeable mention was the 13th century wall painting of mother and child on the East arch. I am assured that there were fourteen sheep grazing in the churchyard, but after some discussion we were still split as to whether a mound was a possible barrow!

Our next stop was the County town of Lewes where we only had time for a brief glimpse at its historic past. The high street of Georgian shops and houses leads to the castle, its early 12th century keep on a high mound protected by a massive 14th century barbican. Next to the castle is the Museum of Sussex Archaeology housed in the 16th century Barbican House, and in town there is Anne of Cleves House now a folk museum. I would thoroughly recommend a day trip to Lewes to explore the town fully.

Our last visit was to Michelham Priory, an Augustinian Priory founded in 1229, and encompassed by a large 14th century moat. A gate-house was built in the 1300s and the property was adapted as a Tudor farmhouse in the late 16th century. The house contains a collection of period furniture, tapestries, Sussex ironwork. ancient stained .glass, musical instruments and a doll’s house. The moat encloses beautiful lawns and gardens including a physic garden where the plants are laid out according to their healing properties in the grounds we also saw a forge, wheelwright’s shop and ropemaking museum; and there is a working watermill which grinds flour for sale.Many thanks must go to Elizabeth Sanderson who organised it.

THE NOTTINGHAM AREA (R.A.I. 1989) Report by Ted Sammes

The region centred on Nottingham was the venue for the 135th Summer Meeting of the Royal Archaeological Institute. During the week some 600 miles was covered by each. The places visited varied from Saxon churches to Papplewick pumping station, a fine piece of the history of Nottingham’s water supply and built by James Watt & Co. in 1884. For me the highlights were the smaller churches at Breedon on the hill (Saxon) and Melbourne (Romanesque). We visited Laxton famous for its open fields systems. One evening there was a talk and quiz on Tree-ring dating. Members will remember visiting Repton Church; its excavations which ran for 15 years have now been back-filled and look as if they had never been excavated.The last place visited was Southwell minster, a highly impressive church with two distinct phases, Norman about 1180 and Early English 1234 onwards, and with a chapter house built in 1295. Much of the stone cornicing in the latter was extremely fine. Next year the Summer Meeting will be based on Exeter. Membership is open to all interested parties on the recommmendation of a member. HADAS has several members.


Since the last Newsletter, our enthusiastic diggers have been able to continue as before at weekends and a few mid-week days. As more features appear, we have expanded, so our opened area now spreads over 5 metres x 4. We have just had to move the spoil-heap once again! The base below the brick, a Tudor feature. Peter Huggins of the Vernacular Architecture Group, has visited the site and confirms this as similar to known features of Tudor buildings in the Waltham Abbey area, He considers (as indeed. several have wondered) that features in the standing building suggest it originally extended into the area now being dug, and these footings may belong to the missing end. It is not possible at present to check accurately on alignment, as the footings of the standing building are of course buried out of sight.

The ‘well’ turned out not to be a well. We shovelled down about 5 feet to empty it, to find a solid brick bottom keyed under the vertical side wall, and rendered all over. Peter Huggins suggested it might be a tank to collect rainwater, to provide soft water for washing, and there might have been a copper for laundering in a corner of the footings which appears to have been separated off by a single course of bricks.

A feature which has not been mentioned before is an area of burnt material, about 2 square metres, within the area enclosed by the footings. Under this scatter we found 3 small areas of concentration of burning, with slag, reddened clay, hammer scale and iron residues; one area (aka Feature 19A), about half a metre across, particularly looks as though it could be the lower remains of a small furnace dug into the surrounding clay. John Roche of the Department of Greater London Archaeology has visited to look at this and considers it indicates small-scale iron-working of some sort, quite possibly contemporary with, or even a little earlier than, the Tudor footings. The stratigraphy is difficult to interpret, but we still have some more to uncover which may help us to establish a relative chronology between these various features. Meanwhile, primed by reference to the books of Prof Tylecote, we are all on the look-out for a tuyere!


Tylecote, R P A History of Metallurgy (1976)

The Prehistory of Metallurgy in the British Isles (1986)


Volunteers are needed for washing pottery. This can be done at home.

Experience is not necessary, though experienced workers are particularly welcome


Extra-Mural Studies in association with The Ecology and Conservation Studies

The Structure and Evolution of the British Flora Tutor: Dr Martin ingrouille on a Friday evenings

29 Sept — 17 Nov from 6.30 – 8.30 pm at 26 Russell Sq WC1

During part of the Ice Age the British Isles was a desert, Our entire flora is an immigrant one. Where did it come from? A different topic will be covered each evening 1 The background (soils & climate) 2 Before the Ice Age 3 Glacials Interglacials 4 The colonisation of Britain 5 The Wildwood 6 Wetlands & Heaths 7 Wetlands and Heaths 8 New species & varieties.


By | Past Newsletters, Volume 4 : 1985 - 1989 | No Comments

NEWSLETTER 220: July 1989 Editor: Anne Lawson


Saturday July 8 Beddington Roman Villa Excavation, Sussex and Mickleham Priory ­Elizabeth Sanderson. There are places still available for this outing – please contact Dorothy Newbury 203 0950.

Saturday August 12 Crickley Hill Excavation, Glos. and Painswick.

Saturday Sept 30 Highbury, Canonbury: Mary O’Connell

Saturday 7 October MINIMART St Mary’s Church House. A “sales and wants” slip is is enclosed with this Newsletter as several larger items are becoming available.



LECTURE July 11 by

Alexander Flinder

(Founder Chairman, Nautical Archaeology Society)

An Underwater Discovery and the Book of Jeremiah”

at the New Synagogue Hall, 33 Abbey Road, London NW8
on Tuesday 11th July 1989 at 8.30 pm. Refreshments.

All enquiries to the Secretary, Anglo-Israeli Archaeological Society, 3 St. Johns Wood Road, London NW8 8RB (Tel. 01-286 1176)


Do we have any member who knows anything about mechanical earth moving? We have been offered financial help for our forthcoming excavations at High Street Barnet, and we want to hire a JCS to remove the extensive overburden on the site. Unfortunately no-one on the Committee knows how to set about this. Is there anyone out there among our members who has any experience of this? Even better, is there anyone who can drive and operate one of these beasties? If so, please ring 435 7517 or Brian Wrigley on 959 5982.

Letter printed in BARNET BOROUGH TIMES May 25th 1989

MITRE Stables should have been preserved

Regarding your article “Flattened stable fuels attack by Conservationists” (May 11, 1989), I was most surprised to learn that planning permission to demolish the Mitre Inn stables would have been granted “even if proper procedures had been observed.”

How very odd. In my innocence I have always thought that buildings were listed because they were important to a town’s history, and to protect them from this sort of calculated destruction.

The Mitre Inn and its detached stables formed the last surviving group of buildings representing Chipping Barnet’s role as an important coaching stop in the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries, and as such should have been preserved as a unit.

If Barnet Council is so sure that planning consent would have been granted to demolish an integral part of this listed building in a conservation area, I am forced to ask the question: Why bother having listed buildings in Chipping Barnet at all (or in the rest of the borough for that matter) if planning permission to demolish them seems so readily available? Jennie Cobban, Tudor Road, New Barnet.

TO: The Controller of Development Services

London Borough of Barnet

Barnet House

1255 High Road

Whetstone, London N20

Dear Sir,


Thank you for your long-awaited letter of 3 May, which we note does not answer the question put in our letter of 22 April, why we could not be told immediately if the explanation of the demoli­tion was so simple and innocent.

I have to say that it now appears my information about the particular site appearing in the weekly lists was incorrect. Now that you have given us the dates of the relevant lists, we have been able to confirm that we did receive them and this site was referred to these particular lists apparently did not get to our Member most concerned, who was on the lookout for applications relating to this site, and we have to accept this as due to some communica­tion failure within our Society.

However, this is not the real point, even had we been put on notice by the weekly lists, we should still have had to inspect the application plan, and the site, in order to observe that the site of the proposed office building overlapped the site of the stables, making it impossible to erect the new building without the destruction of the old stables (diagram enclosed).This fact is now plain on the plan with the LBC application NO2946D, and surely to notice this should have been the job of the Planning Department when Application NO29468 was first made? Was it noticed and ignored? Or merely not noticed, in spite of the fact that the application related to a Conservation Area and the site of a listed building?

We await your comments, which we trust will not be too long delayed.

Yours faithfully,

Just before the chill set in on Anglo-Soviet relations, a marvellous long letter arrived from Jill Braithwaite, skating lightly over the obvious strains of her life, especially during April (four hundred com­panies represented at the British Trade Fair, various political

visitors and Prince Edward with the National Youth Theatre). She has lost a good deal of weight, which is not surprising, but her letter fizzes with enthusiasm and she says “This is the most marvellous time to be in Russia.” They must be dashed by the present turn of events and even more overburdened than they were by shortage of staff, but we must hope that this down-turn is a very brief one.

The greater part of her letter tells of a welcome, six-day break, spent near the Estonian border. “I never could have imagined we could have spent such a totally relaxed, normal, pottering-about holiday in the Soviet Union.” They drove, by themselves, through fertile but almost completely deserted country, “looking at lovely, unspoilt villages with picturesque, well-maintained churches, at ruined fortresses … and one of the few working Orthodox monasteries of Russia, Pechory, which has never closed or ever, it would seem, been destroyed and is now in a wonderful state of preservation.” They went to the Easter midnight service in Pskov and next day had tea with the young Archimandrite, who had previously served for seven years in Jerusalem.

The remaining days were spent at the estate where Pushkin was exiled and wrote “Eugene Onegin”. Pushkin’s Ethiopian great-grandfather, given as a slave to Peter the Great by the Turkish Ambassador, rose to be a famous general and governor of what is now Tallin. His estate, burnt down during the Civil War, has been carefully rebuilt and is now a kind of Pushkin Museum, rather on the Williamsberg principle” set in glorious surroundings – but here, again, Jill returns with sorrow to the theme of the deserted countryside, the “green, grassy, empty fields … left to old people who don’t mind, or can’t afford to escape from” the total lack of civilised amenities. How young people can be persuaded to return and put this fertile territory into full production is the major problem in Russia today.

It seems a shame to reduce this wonderful,buoyant letter to a few short paragraphs but perhaps this summary will give an idea of its flavour and will cheer Jill’s HADAS friends, who wish her well in her demanding role.


Our small band of enthusiastic diggers have continued their good work, with an average attendance of 6 or so at weekends and 2 and 4 on the occasional weekdays.

A new entrance to the site has been arranged at the back of the house. This is through the fence at the back of the garden and so avoiding dis­turbing the occupants of the shops. This is approached through a conveniently placed public car park in the first turning past the traffic lights at Totteridge Lane and Whetstone Northern Line Station is only about 100 yds. away. We would welcome further help from anyone particu­larly interested in timber buildings, and to help in measurement and drawing.

Excavation work has progressed well. The remaining brickwork we reported finding last month, formed two of the walls of the extension to the timber building and has now been fully exposed. The drainage system has also been fully recorded and is now removed. Some new features are exposed inside the walls but are not understood. Finds suitable for dating continue to be sparse, probably because the site has been very dis­turbed, most recently by the construction of modern paths and drains and

previously 19th C drainage system we had uncovered, and perhaps by the construction of the extension to the house.

A new development has been the finding of a 5 ft diameter well just outside the rear wall of the extension building. The top course of the brickwork we have exposed is in good condition and we hope to excavate this in the hope of the usual treasure, or at least of finding dateable material if it is not too deep. Most of the finds at present have been very small pottery fragments, many of the standard Victorian types with a few pipe stems, a Victorian farthing (1/4d) and a few buttons. These are being cleaned and labelled for examination and dating.

Documentary investigations have continued. John Heathfield has traced the occupancy of the house back to about 1830, records seem to cease then. Pam Taylor has undertaken a review of some documents which John had previously found and has written a report which gives a framework within which we can understand the development of Whetstone.

The Museum of London Department of Wood Technology has just advised us that they are ready to take samples from the house timbers to see if they can be used to date these by the new dendrochronology process.

There is still a lot of work to be undertaken on the project and either Brian Wrigley or Victor Jones will be glad to hear of people, particularly for processing the finds and drawing and measuring the timber construction.


This land was held in 1336 by the Knights of St John of Jerusalem, who were Lords of the Manor. At that time, all land transactions were recor­ded at the Manorial Court.

In 1540, the manor passed to the Crown, and in 1544 to the Dean and Chapter of St Paul’s Cathedral. The Chapter sold the land just before 1780, and the Lordship of the Manor passed to the Ecclesiastical Commis­sioners. Many of the records of early land transactions appear to have been lost.

Early records of Rate Payers or Hearth Tax Payers are just lists of names usually without mention of a location.

In 1832, the shop appears to have been owned by John Fletcher, a draper.

It was certainly a drapers in 1839, when the owner was Robert Parker. He was still there in 1841.

By 1851, Robert Gilmour was owner/occupier. He was born in Perthshire in 1815. He was a toll collector at the Whetstone Toll Gate, and when the Toll Gate closed, part of his shop was used as a Post Office. The family business, run by his daughters, closed in May 1939.

The building is clearly shown on a map of about 1780. There are references to buildings nearby going back to the fifteenth century.



The documentary background is by no means as complete as we could wish. We know that the manor of Friern Barnet was given to the Hospitallers (the Order of St John of Jerusalem in England) in c. 1199, with whom it remained until the Dissolution of the Monasteries in 1535 when it was transferred to the Dean and Chapter of St Paul’s Cathedral. It was a small manor, and never ranked among the major estates of either its great overlords.

The one respect in which it was unusually important was that it lay along the route of the medieval Great North Road. This road was developed at some point in the late 11th or early 12th century (Chipping Barnet, which was founded on it, was granted a weekly market in 1199 but is not mentioned in Domesday Book in 1086). The original route came up through Muswell Hill, Colney Hatch Lane and Friern Barnet Lane, but this stretch was replaced in the 13th century by a better route up Highgate Hill and the eastern side of Finchley. The old and new routes therefore net at what is now Whetstone, where there were also important road junctions with Totteridge Lane and Oakleigh Road. Totteridge Lane is certainly a very early route, dating at least from the Anglo-Saxon period. Oakleigh Road was in existence at least by 1499 and very probably considerably earlier.

The original parish church of Friern Barnet is St James’, on Friern Barnet Lane. The church was built in the late 12th century, when Friern Barnet Lane was still on the Great North Road. Since churches were normally built to serve settlements, it must be assumed that the church marks- the original settlement site. The settlement almost certainly moved up to the new road junction after the new route and junction were created, but we have no documentary proof and therefore do not know when exactly this occurred. The first documentary reference to “Whetstone” occurs in a Finchley court roll of 1398 where it is called “le Weston”, probably meaning the western part of Friern.

As you probably know, the boundary between Friern and Finchley runs just east of the Great North Road. The whole of the western side, as well as a small part of the eastern, therefore lies within Finchley. Unfortu­nately, though, the Finchley manorial records cannot tell us much about the development of Whetstone since they do not distinguish between the different parts of the manor. The whole manor was both larger and more populous than Friern, and it included other settlements on or near the Great North Road.

The manorial records for Friern are very sparse. In the Hospitallers’ Cartulary in the British Library the pages for Friern have been headed but were never filled in. At the Dissolution when the Hospitallers’ estates were broken up, any documents which covered the whole group, par­ticularly the financial records, since they could not be distributed along with the estates, were probably mostly destroyed. The Dean and Chapter of St Paul’s did however inherit a few of the Friern manor-court rolls, which are preserved with their own. Until recently these were all at St Paul’s but they have now been transferred to the Guildhall Library. No parish or relevant national tax records have so far been found earlier than the 17th century, although the search continues.

The earliest court roll in the group dates from 1486, and there are at least some rolls for each of the following decades. There are therefore enough from which to draw at least some conclusions concerning Whetstone in the 15th and 16th centuries, and mine are as follows:

1. The population of the whole manor was and remained small during the 15th and 16th centuries. It was never a town like Chipping Barnet.

2. Whetstone was clearly the most important settlement within the manor.

3. Whetstone by 1487 was serving the needs of the Great North Road. The court rolls report infractions of the assizes of bread and ale. These assizes were originally supposed to prevent the general production of bread and ale for sale, but in fact they were constantly broken and the penalties were simply treated as a licence payment. The rolls do not record which part of the manor the individuals came from, but it is obvious that most if not all operated in Whetstone. In 1487 there were four female retailers of ale in the manor, and in 1494 six. In 1495 and 1496 there was one male brewer, and five female keepers of alehouses. In 1521 four male alehouse keepers were selling their ale at overhigh prices. In 1544 two men were brewing ale and two others retailing and breaking the assize with their measures.

Straight forwardly in 1559 two men and one woman kept alehouses and this time the rolll records’ that they paid their fine for licence to sell victuals. A baker was also fined in 1522 and 1544. Although alewives operated in ordinary villages, I am sure that this was a concentration along the Great North Road, and the fact that men became 90 involved is probably also significant.

There is thus general supporting evidence from the documents that Whetstone existed front at least the 14th century, and that it developed a rather different economy from an ordinary rural village. The documents provide terribly little detail, however, on both the precise chronology and the exact nature of the settlement. To find a surviving building which might be able to throw more light is therefore very exciting. T understand that the building may also be of wider interest, but in the purely local context it gives us a much needed chance to understand more properly the most basic factor in the history of Whetstone.



Irene Frauchiger has been a HADAS member for many years. Before she moved from Edgware to Radlett she gave very valuable service duplicating and ”stuffing” the Newsletter. The article about women’s work in the mid-nineteenth century, in the last Newsletter, reminded Irene of her mother’s experiences as a domestic servant in Mill Hill at the time of the 1914-18 War.

Miriam Carter was a country girl from Chiltern Green near Luton. Her first job was with the Frazer family at Hendon Park, a mansion which used to be in Highwood Hill near Nan Clark’ Lane. The homesick fourteen

year old had to carry the household washing to convent in Lawrence
Street every week and carry it back, freshly laundered. All the servants had to walk together to St Paul’s Church to attend Sunday service.

Promoted to parlour maid, Miriam’s wages were £10 a year “all found”. Then she moved to Highwood House where her older sister worked and conditions were “better”.



HADAS manned a stall at the Methodist Church Hall in Ballaxds Lane on this occasion, which turned out successfully, reflecting great credit on the planners. More than fifty organisations took part and the visitors must have been impressed at the wealth of caring, informative, educational, cultural or recreational facilities which Finchley can offer.

In spite of the crush, we were well pleased with our day’s work, selling a few books, running out of membership forms – some of which we hope will be returned. Best of all, we talked ourselves hoarse to a constant stream of interested people, some of them well informed about archaeology.

It was a glorious day, so the Toddler Group Mums who ran the excellent buffet set out tables and chairs in Ballards Lane and there, in our time off, we got to know other volunteer workers and watched Finchley residents, attracted by this Continental scene, venture inside for food and information.

We must express our gratitude to the organisers for this opportunity to show what we have to offer, especially to Pichard Tayler of Finchley Library who invited us to take part – and of course to the HADAS helpers; to Victor Jones and Brian Wrigley for eye-catching displays, and to Hans and June Forges, Jean Snelling, Robert Michel and Paula Allen for porter­age and “standing watch”. We enjoyed. ourselves, and were very pleased to be singled out for mention in the press.



The following sites, the subject of recent Planning Applications, could be archaeologically “sensitive”. Members living in the vicinity are asked to keep an eye on them and report anything of possible interest to the Site Co-ordinator, John Enderby, on 203 2630.

Northern Area

60, Barnet Gate Lane, Arkley Two detached houses

Laurenny, Totteridge Common Development

The Warren, Totteridge Common The demolition of detached house

Land to the rear of 176-204,

High Street, Barnet Residential development

Western Area

38, Hartland Drive, Edgware Extensions
Fiesta Cottage, Edgwarebury Lane,

Edgware Detached House

3, Francklyn Gardens, Edgware Extensions

Hyver Hall, Barnet Gate, Arkley Demolition of old Barn and erection

of new

Rose Cottage, Brockley Hill,

Stanmore Detached house and garage

10, Cedars Close, Hendon NW4 Extensions

3, Tenterden Drive, Hendon, NW4 Extensions




We hear from the Lea Valley Water Company that the pipeline is due to go through in September, but that its position has been changed to higher up the hill, where it will follow the line of Mill Lane. This takes it into a far more sensitive area and is likely to cut through the area of the Roman kilns. The Chairman has written to express HADAS’ concern.

The Site Watching lists which HADAS produces depend largely upon the

weekly Planning Applications lists which LBB prepares for each of its Planning Divisions. HADAS has been receiving these at no charge for some years. Recently LBB imposed an annual charge of £50 per division, making the charge to HADAS of £150 per year. As a result of the Chairman’s appeal against the fee, the charge has now been waived.


Mrs Tallant
. Mrs Banham writes to tell us that Mrs Tallant after her serious injuries in her house fire, has moved to Camberley to be near her nephew. If any old aquaintances wish to write to her, her address is Camberley Beaumont, 19-21 Heatherley Road, Camberley, Surrey.

Mrs. Banham misses the HADAS outings and lectures very much. Her spine has deteriorated further, and two more vertebrae have been crushed. But as always Mrs Banham brushes off her pain with a joke, by writing, “I am much shorter now, I shall soon be ‘The Hunchback of Notre Dame'” All HADAS members send her their good wishes. Dot Whitcombe and Miss Sheldon, two more active members of long standing are leaving the area, and we shall miss them at lectures and outings and their help at the Minimart.


By | Past Newsletters, Volume 4 : 1985 - 1989 | No Comments


Page 1


Saturday June 3 Remember! Barnet’s Triangular Market – see May Newsletter. Less youthful or vigorous members are welcome to join the party for the exploation of the Tudor Hall at Barnet College, Wood Street at 11.0, followed by a selective look at St John’s Church.

Saturday June 24 Outing to Great Burstead and Malden – Details and booking form with this Newsletter.

Saturday July 8 Beddingham Roman Villa Excavation, Sussex and Mickleham Priory. Elizabeth Sanderson form enclosed.

Saturday August 12 Crickley Hill Excavation, Glos. and Painswick.

Saturday Sept O Highbury, Canonbury; O’connell.
Annual General Meeting May 9 by Dorothy Newbury

A goodly number – about 50 – attended the AGM and we were delighted to see Daphne Lorimer in the Chair. As is the custom with HADAS the business was rushed through in record time and we went quickly into the reports and slides of the year’s activities.
The President of HADAS

The distinguished archaeologist Ralph Merrifield was elected by the AGM as our President for the next five years. He describes himself as a “museum archaeologist” and has indeed worked as such at Brighton Museum, the old Guildhall Museum and the Museum of London where he became deputy director. His writings and books on the archaeology of Roman London have not only recorded discoveries but also have pointed the direction for new archaeological developments in London. A new book The Archaeology of Ritual and Magic presents the results of interest and experience over many years; a possible application in Barnet has led us to recent contact with him. We learn from him that he was born in Temple Fortune and spent his first two years there; we look forward to welcoming him and showing him a little more of our Borough.
Officers of the Society 1989-90

Chairman:Andrew Selkirk

Vice-Chairman: John Enderby

Hon Secretary: Brian Wrigley

Hon. Treasurer: Victor Jones


Christine Arnott

Deirdre Barrie

Jenny Cobban

Phyllis Fletcher

Alan Lawson

Margaret Maher

Dorothy Newbury

Peter Pickering

Ted Sammes

Jean Snelling

Myfanwy Stewart
Page 2


As a fairly new member of HADAS and an ‘archaeological novice’ I enjoyed an extremely interesting and educational day when our full coach set off for Stamford, Lincolnshire, on May 13th. Shortly after coffee at the Archer Inn,Tempsford, we arrived in Stamford; the town sign invited us to linger a while amid its ancient charms and that is exactly what we did. It is a stone town with fine Elizabethan and Georgian houses and medieval churches. Stamford was mentioned in Doomsday Book and became a conservation area in 1967. In C18 it was an important coaching stop on the Great North Road. Only three arches survive from the C15 castle. We arrived in St George’s Square and divided into two groups, one being greeted by Dr Till who lives in the oldest house in the Square, the other being led round Stamford’s most interesting streets by Mrs Joan Kudlinski. The two groups later swapped over. Dr Till invited us inside his splendid house. The building was completed in 1674 and has four floors; although it has undergone changes by previous occupants it remains a fine example of a C17 town house and has also a beautiful flowering walled garden. Dr Till has lived in the house for 50 years. On our guided tour we visited Browne’s Hospital. Now a museum it was originally an almshouse for 10 poor men and 2 women, built in 1475 by a wool merchant William Browne. The visitor sees examples of residents’ issued clothing and belongings. We had time to explore independently the churches, squares, Brewery Museum and the green meadows lying beside the river Welland that runs through the town. Burghley House, one mile southeast of Stamford, is set in beautiful grounds landscaped by Capability Brown. The house was constructed is three stages during 1555-1587 and was the home of William Cecil, first Lord Burghley and Treasurer to Queen Elizabeth 1. It is a magnificent stately home, open to the public; Cecil’s descendants still live there. The tour covered 18 state rooms, beginning through the servants’ entrance and kitchen, which shows 260 copper utensils and a collection of turtle skulls with turtle shaped tureen.The Burghley collection has 900 pictures, many on display. Several rooms have walls and ceilings completely covered in frescoes; these provoked mixed reactions from HADAS members. I found them rather intimidating but fascinating all the same. As explained by the guide, the frescoes really come to life with their brilliant 3D effect when viewed by candlelight. As well as paintings walls were also hung with tapestries. Perhaps the most magnificent is the ‘Heaven Room’, containing a wonderful fresco by Antonio Verrio, claimed to be his ‘greatest masterpiece’; containing also a large collection of Chinese snuff boxes, the earliest from 1646. Burghley has accommodated many famous guests including Elizabeth 1 and Queen Victoria and Prince Albert. Beautiful furniture and ornamits have been collected from travels around the world. After a cream tea in the orangery we had a little time to walk in the grounds and view the palatial exterior of the house. On a sunny calm evening this was definitely a sight to behold. Our thanks to all our Guides and to Mary O’Connell and Dorothy Newbury for their marvellous organisation.

This is a timber framed building, listed as mid c16th, with a yard or garden. The building is still partly occupied and is awaiting redevelopment. The architect to the developers is Mr Lavrant of F C Frizell Partners; he drew HADAS’ attention to the site. HADAS agreed to undertake an excavation in the grounds and is interested in archaeological aspects of the building. Brian Wrigley, Percy Reboul and Victor Jones were involved in the discussions. The following progress report is based on Victor Jones’ report to the architect. The outside work commenced on March 29 & 29. This required heavy clearance work with up to 1 metre of dumped building rubble and soil to be moved from most of the working areas. This task and an examination of the house occupied the first week. Up to ten members, male and female, young and old participated at times in this very heavy work. In the second week two trenches were dug, the first (1) near the back of the house and parallel with the concrete path round the house. The second (2) was approximately half way towards the rear fence at the back of the grounds. In trench (1) as soon as digging commenced fragments of china and clay pipes began to be found. After approximately 20 cms of soil was removed a 25 cm square brick pillar appeared in one corner of the trench. About 3 cm below this a soft and even white layer appeared, about 2cm thick and 1.5M by 1M. This small area may be all that remains of a floor. A section of what appeared to be a land drainage pipe system was revealed. When explored this was found to join three further pipes at the end of the trench. Below this clay appeared. This was tested at 0.4M by sampling rod and appeared to be even clay. Trench (2) was dug by another group and apart from a very few pottery and clay pipe fragments and some broken brick and tile it produced very little material of interest. The top was a mix of black soil and some gravel with brick and tile fragments and was about 0.4M deep. The next layer was an uneven soil and gravel mix and a similar depth. The lowest level we dug was a very coarse gravel and the 20cm sampled was free of artefacts. The trenches involved smaller groups working at different times both during the week and at weekends, probably 10-12 members, until the end of April. On May 2 we began a new trench (3) parallel to trench (1) and 2M further from the building. This was to find if the brickwork extended in this direction. It in fact joined a further buried wall section running parallel with the rear wall of the building for the distance dug to date. During the course of these excavations a number of items possibly useful for dating have been collected for later analysis. A military map dated 1780 has been found in the Borough records which shows a building extending from the rear of the present timber structure to approximately the extent of the buried wall base dug. The building has interesting features. It was noted that the finishing of the original timbers and the type of jointing is of an unusual kind. We approached a longstanding member Philip Yenning, Secretary of the Society for the Protection of Ancient Buildings, who introduced two knowledgeable colleagues. Their opinion was that the type of joints and other aspects of the construction suggested a rather earlier dating for the building. The Museum of London was asked if it would be possible to date the larger timbers and a dendrochronologist is investigating the possibility. The building appears to have had two separate open hearths, one at each end, and it is considered that there may have been central living acommodation. Reference has been found of taxation of a twin-hearth house in c.17. Our member John Heathfield has already undertaken investigation in the Guildhall Library of documents of the Society of St John dated to c.15. These relate to the general area and give some indication of settlement at that time. Our member Dr Pamela Taylor, Archivist of the Local History Library of the Borough of Barnet,has agreed to investigate the Guildhall Library papers in greater detail. Further work is proceeding and it appears there is an interesting prospect for the summer.

Page 3


I have been looking at the census returns for 1851 for the parish of Hendon, and from them trying to discover what work was open to women nearly a century and a half ago. In 95% of the households a man’s name came first as ‘head’ of the family; occasionally a widow was the head and even more rarely an unmarried woman. Over half the women achieved no other status than that of ‘wife’ – and still did in 1981! This ignored a woman’s unpaid work as housekeeper, cook, nurse, washerwoman and general dog’s body for her family. The women who did paid jobs were generally the wives, widows or daughters of poorly paid labourers in agriculture or general labouring. The women earned money as washerwomen, laundresses, charwomen or general servants. I am guessing that the washerwomen did the ‘rough work’ while the laundresses were prepared to starch and iron. But there is nothing which indicates whether the washing was brought home or whether it was done at the employer’s home. Rarely was a woman employed in a trade or a craft. Two widows in Mill Hill kept grocer’s shops; another was a baker with her son helping her. A widow in Church Lane (Road) was a “dealer in sweetmeats” and another in Brent Street was a linen draper. The wife of a tailor in Mill Hill was a stay maker; another wife in Ashley Lane made straw bonnets. Two wives in Brent Street were lace makers. A dozen women in the parish were dressmakers; their husbands or fathers rated higher than labourers. A handful of women were nurses – one of them defined her job more exactly as monthly nurse meaning that she worked in homes with a new baby. Two widows were publicans; one kept the White Swan in Golders Green and the other the Crown Inn in Cricklewood. This lady housedtwo grown sons (an artist and a solicitor’s clerk), an unmarried daughter,two maids, a waiter, a pot-boy and three lodgers. The only professional women were the school mistresses; though the label did not guarantee a well educated woman in the middle of the nineteenth century. There were two in Mill Hill and one lived in Child’s Hill Lane (Cricklewood Lane). I am grateful to Brigid Grafton Green for pointing out that Vine Cottage in Cricklewood Lane (demolished in 1981 despite the efforts of HADAS to have it “listed”) housed a Dame School in 1861. MissWardley, reminiscing in HADAS Newsletter in March 1979, said her mother attended that school. The two daughters of a retired solicitor living in Church Lane (Road) were daily governesses. There were three very moderately sized girls’ boarding schools in the parish – two of them in the “Burrows”. Jane Geeves, a spinster aged 38, had thirteen pupils. She employed two housemaids and a governess. At Burrows House another spinster educated twelve girls with the assistance of her widowed mother, two housemaids and a cook. In Mill Hill another woman kept a boarding school; she employed a female clerk, two housemaids, a gardener, a laundry maid and a nurse to care for twelve girls. In 1851 Hendon was still half rural and there were more than a dozen farms in the parish. But no women worked on the land; no farmer’s wife had any employment. Surely the wife and two servants at Church Farm (now the Borough Museum) helped in the fields at hay and corn harvests. Because women’s work on the land was likely to be casual – weeding, stone picking, turning the hay – it escaped census description. Domestic service provided jobs for far more women than any other type of work. It ranged from a charwoman or washerwoman to a lady’s maid “living in” with half a dozen other servants.The world of “Upstairs, Downstairs” is printed on our popular imagination by television series and visits to stately homes. In the twentieth century domestic service ceased to be an attractive job, but in 1851 country girls thought themselves lucky and comparatively well paid at “the big house”. Wages ranged from £5 to £12 a year and keep was worth about £12 a year. A cook was likely to be a few years older than the housemaids who in their turn were older than the thirteen year old kitchen maids or under nurses. Lady Raffles, the widow of the founder of Singapore, lived at High Wood House, Mill Hill with her son “a clergyman without benefice” and his family. She employed a retired nurse of 77 years, a nurse, an undernurse, a lady’s maid, a cook and two housemaids, plus a butler and a footman. All these servants were unmarried. Her coachmen had a separate household, either over the stables or in a cottage near Highwood House. Nearby was Highwood Ash, the home of the Reverend Bartholomew Nicholls and his family. He was the incumbent of St Paul’s Church. His large family of ten children, of school age or in the nursery, was cared for by a nurse, an under nurse, a superannuated nurse, a housemaid, a cook and a kitchen maid. Mr John Barnes, “retired from the East India Service”, lived in Milespit Hill. He employed a housekeeper, two housemaids,a cook and four living in menservants- coachman, groom, footman and gardener. Even an “army captain on half pay” could afford a cook and two housemaids. In the south part of the parish there were similar large house¬holds. The owner or tenant of Hendon Hall was not in residence; their gardener and his family were caretaking. Amelia Casey a 33 year old housemaid was looking after Hendon Place and had the dairy maid and under gardener for company. At the Vicarage the notorious Reverend Theodore Williams had only a housemaid and a cook to serve himself, his wife, four unmarried daughters and two sons. A general warehouseman in Downage Wood House employed a governess, a housemaid, a cook, a nurse and an under nurse and a groom. A young widow in Brent Street being “a woman of property” could afford two nursemaids, a housemaid, a cook and a laundry maid. The “upholsterer and house decorator to Her Majesty” (Victoria) lived in Golders Green served by five servants – a nurse, a cook, two housemaids and a footman.

Page 4


The 1989 season of outings started on April 22 with a well patronised event attracting about 64 people. We had two guides, Mrs Jean Leaf and Mr Jim Golland. I opted for the lady, who guided us firmly and with descriptions full of details. There was a monastic school in Harrow in pre-Reformation days which was closed at the Reformation. In 1572 a local landowner John Lyon obtained a charter from Elizabeth 1st to found a Free Grammar School. This he saw as a school for local children, all outside the parish being “foreigners”. Building began in CI7. From such beginnings has the present Harrow School arisen. We began in the School Yard which has a view to the south of racquets, squash and fives courts. Immediately below us was a small green known as the Milling Ground where once boys used to fight without interruption from the masters. We looked at the exterior of the old school, refaced and extended in 1820. The Old Speech Room was converted in 1976 into a museum and art gallery for the School’s collections; our attention was drawn especially to the silver arrows, prizes for prowessat archery. The Fourth Form Room is the highlight of the visit; it has probably changed little since the days of James 1st. The wooden walls are carved with the names of students during the period 1660 to mid C19. The room is no longer used as a form-room. One of our party was asked to sit in the position of Master and very impressive it all looked! The pupils sat on long benches without backs for 10 hours a day, 6 days a week. Only Latin and Greek were taught. In the new semicircular Speech Room we found in progress a rehearsal of a Shakespeare play. We inspected the Old Harrovian Room containing chairs carved with names of distinguished past pupils. We admired the Alex Fich Memorial Room with panelling of about 1580, removed from Brook House, Hackney. We sat in the chapel, built in 1855. No one could mistake this for anything but Ornate Victorian. Possibly the right religious centre then but today with Anglican,Catholic, Jewish, Moslem, Hindu and other religious persuasions not quite appropriate. Finally we retired for tea to the Churchill Dining Hall erected in 1977; from the terrace there was a fine view over Wembley towards London. It is worth noting in this year which celebrates 150 years of photography that Fox Talbot and Cecil Beaton were Old Boys of the School.
FIRE at Avenue House

Most members will have heard the sad news of Avenue House, Finchley, where the east wing was destroyed by fire on May 14-15. The Stephen’s Laboratory reconstructed by Paddy Musgrove before his death last year is quite lost. At the time of going to press we await discovering soon how much our library and some records may have suffered from fire or water. Forensic investigation and and the state of the building have delayed entry. Along with other local groups including the Finchley Society, we hope to learn in time whether we can hope for future hospitality in Avenue House. To those who do not know it, we say that the lovely little park is not harmed and we urge you to get to know it. STOP PRESS -Brian Wrigley reports, no safe access yet but a brief glimpse suggests damage to books.

Bill Bailey, who appears on the HADAS list as S F Bailey, has written a book, named above, based on the Crew Lists held by the National Maritime Museum. There is an 18 page introduction and then brief particulars of 681 men who signed on for service on the Cutty Sark from 1870 to 1895. Publishers are The Cutty Sark Society, 2 Greenwich Church Street, London SE10 9EQ: price £5.
Page 5

Fifty Years of Verulamium Museum

This well known museum opened its doors to the public on May 18 1939. It was designed also to be a memorial to Tessa Wheeler. In June there will be a memorial lecture given by Professor Barrie Cunliffe at the Maltings Art Centre, St Albans. Tickets £1.50. Since the museum opened nearly four million visitors have marvelled at the mosaics, pottery and jewellery. There is a full season of events. Details from Verulamium Museum. Send SAE.
Memorial to Professor Warmington

The Mill Hill Historical Society has recently unveiled a display panel in Scratch Wood to Professor Warmington. Besides being a classicist he was deeply interested in bird life, some examples of which are depicted on the panel. It is surely unusual for a man to be commemorated for his hobby rather than his professional career.