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Volume 4 : 1985 – 1989

Newsletter-215-February-1989

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Newsletter-215-February-1989

 

NEWSLETTER 215: February 1989                                                            Editor: Liz Sagues

HADAS DIARY

Tuesday, February 7                          ALEX WERNER on London’s Dockland – Its.

Archaeological Discoveries and Potential.

Alex Werner works for the Department of Working History and Museum in Docklands Project. He led us on an excellent day trip to Dock-lands in July last year. By popular request we asked him to come over to Hendon and tell us more. This is an opportunity for members who missed out on the trip to come to see slides and to hear Alex Werner talk on this huge area, so near yet so unknown to many of us. HADAS will have a permanent attachment to the Docklands Museum as it has taken the winding gear rescued from Barnet for inclusion in the display when the museum is finally set up.

NEWS  OF  MEMBERS.

Serious swordplay: HADAS secretary Brian Wrigley will be briskly rousing post-lunch slumberers at the second day of the Prehistoric Society Spring Conference (April 1 and 2) with a demonstration of the use of Bronze Age weapons – a rare skill he displayed to HADAS members briefly at last year’s AGM. An ex-fencer, he explains that ancient warfare was a logical combination of two interests. “No-one knew anything about the use of old weapons, so I started doing some­thing about it myself.” Using wooden models, he will demonstrate attack and defence techniques and will argue that without practical understanding of how weapons work, study of their development lacks a solid, factual background. Theme of the conference, at the Department of External Studies, Oxford University, is War and Prehistory.


On stony ground: Myfanwy Stewart will be the first speaker at the 26th Annual Conference of London Archaeologists, organised by LAMAS at the Museum of London on March 11. Her subject is to be Recent Surface Flint Collection from Brockley Hill and her talk will be complemented by a HADAS stand, as usual. Final details of lecturers and ticket applications will be published in the March Newsletter, but meanwhile Victor Jones (458 6180) will be glad of offers of help with the stand.

Much other news of members, sadly, is more depressing. Mrs Crossley, who we congratulated last autumn on reaching the age of 103, died after Christmas after a short spell in hospital. John Enderby went to the funeral.

Mrs Jacqueline Morgan, wife of Eric Morgan, has sadly died at the early age of 47 after several months in hospital. Both she and her husband often came on outings and Mr Morgan attended lectures.

Mrs Tallant, formerly a regular at lectures and on outings for many years, has been involved in a bad fire in her flat, suffering severe burns which have necessitated amputation of both legs above the knee. Although over 80, she was still very active and as recently as November had spent a holiday in Malta. She is progressing well in Mount Vernon Hospital, is very cheerful and is looking forward to being provided with a special chair.

‘PETER’ GRIMES: THE FIRST RESCUE ARCHAEOLOGIST

Professor W.F. “Peter” Grimes, HADAS President since 1965, died on Christmas Day, aged 83. HADAS sends deepest condolences to his widow – and recalls happy memories of April 1982, when he gave a presidential address on the occasion of the society’s 21st birthday. His subject was Prehistoric Burial Rites in Britain and, in the words of the Newsletter report, “he gave us an expert and exciting survey of pre­historic burials and the information they provide about the central role of death in the life and religion of the people”.

Seventeen months later, Professor Grimes led a HADAS group during two days of a long weekend in Wales – including a memorable climb in the Prescelly Hills in “stinging sleet” and “the full blast of a gale… it was the worst mountain weather ever remembered by the Professor himself”.

HADAS chairman Andrew Selkirk contributed an obituary of Professor Grimes to The Guardian, which is reproduced in part below:

W.F. “Peter” Grimes is best known as the uncoverer of one of the most spectacular Roman discoveries in London since the war, the temple of Mithras.

During the late war, he was seconded to the Ministry of Works and became the country’s first rescue archaeologist. Rushing round the country salvaging what archaeology he could from the construction of wartime aerodromes, his most notable discovery was the unique Celtic temple that be found under what is today the main runway of Heathrow Airport.

From 1945 to 1956, he was director of the London Museum, but his most important work was as the honorary director of the Roman and Medieval London Excavation Council, and from 1947 to 1972 he salvaged archaeology on the bomb sites of war scarred London. Though the Mithras temple was his most spectacular discovery, his more important work, to the archae­ologist, was the discovery of the Cripplegate fort, a fort attached to Roman city which remains unique in the Roman world outside Rome itself. 

In 1956 he was appointed director of and Professor of Archaeology at the Institute of Archaeology. The previous director, Gordon Childe, was a brilliant scholar but no administrator, and Grimes was chosen to rectify the situation.

Under him the institute entered its most successful phase, doubling the number of staff and tripling the number of students. The major change came in 1956 when it opened its doors to undergraduates, and during his long tenure it became a centre of archaeological technique and expertise. After his retirement in 1973 Grimes returned to his beloved Wales where he served with distinction as chairman of the Dyfed Archaeological Trust and continued teaching and his excavations at regular summer schools.

His administrative abilities saw to it that he served on the councils of, and indeed as chairman of, virtually all the major archaeological societies, and with his dapper charm and the frequent flower in his buttonhole he adorned every committee he sat on.

It would be too easy to describe Grimes as a talented administrator who had the good fortune to be in the right place at the right time, for in so many ways his career foreshadowed what has gone since. In his work during the war he became the first rescue archaeologist and his work in Roman London paved the way for today’s highly successful unit at the Museum of London. Above all, with that twinkle in his eye, he made archaeology a happier discipline.

A personal tribute comes from Anne, Julian and others who excavated with him:

Besides Peter Grimes’ many professional talents and achievements his personal qualities were equally outstanding. He was an excellent and polite communicator, and an amusing after-dinner conversationalist, but the depth of his character always showed itself in his skill at directing an archaeological excavation.

He had a natural leadership ability, disguised behind his relaxed and pleasant style, to elicit hard work, loyalty and much dedication from the many volunteer archaeologists he directed. His personality assisted them to forget the many discomforts of excavating and he gave them his full personal attention, making each individual feel an essential part of the dig. He had mastered inspired leadership without domination.

We shall miss him, because of his extreme kindness and his charming manners over the 12 years that we were at Dale in the summer time.

DEATH OF A SALESMAN                                                                   by Percy Reboul

My father died at the age of 78 just before Christmas. He was not a member of HADAS and the only reason I presume to write this obit is that HADAS was directly responsible for making him into a super­salesman and well known as an authority on the history of Whetstone.

It started a decade ago, when I recorded his memories of working as a milk delivery boy for the Al Dairy over 60 years ago. This appeared in the Newsletter, made the columns of the local rag and eventually went on to the ultimate accolade of being included in Brigid Grafton-Green’s Money, Milk & Milestones.

Flushed with success (and to my astonishment) upon retirement at 65 he began to lecture on the history of Whetstone to schools, WIs, old people’s clubs and the like. Many letters among his papers testify to his relaxed, warm and witty style. His philosophy, he told me, was simple: “As long as you give the audience the right dates,” he obser­ved, “they don’t doubt that you know everything else.” I haven’t yet made up my mind about this…!

 

At the same time, he released his wonderful collection of photographs of old Whetstone to the local newspapers which brought him letters and comments from all over the world.

Finally, he developed techniques for selling HADAS publications which are an object lesson for us all. I would describe them as classic tinged with eccentricity. It was not unknown, for example, for him to board a bus and follow the conductor down the gangways offering HADAS publications when tickets were being dispensed and money was to hand. How he would have loved the Barnet Press headline “Mr Whetstone dies”. I know I did.

STAIRWAYS TO THE STARS

Betty Jacobs reports on the January lecture

HADAS celebrated the New Year with a flourish and a full house, inviting George Hart, well known for his gallery talks and lectures at the British Museum, to describe the Pyramid Age in Ancient Egypt, spanning the first half of the third millennium BC – the first flowering of Egyptian civilisation.

Chronologically, this follows the unification of the two lands, the Delta and the Valley, around 3100BC under Narmer (Menes) King of the South. This highly-significant event is recorded on the Narmer Palette with its representations of Narmer as King of Upper and Lower Egypt and pictorial descriptions of his conquest.

The kings of Dynasties I and II (of the Old Kingdom) were buried in mastabas, table-topped shafts lined with mud brick and roofed over with protective limestone. In Dynasty III King Dzozer and his architect Imhotep created the Step Pyramid at Saqqara by building, in limestone, a tiered series of six mastabas of diminishing area, symbolising a 60-metre-high stairway to the heavens, and surrounded by a vast wall enclosing many festival buildings and storehouses. This pyramid, the first known stone building, marked a dramatic change in the architecture of the world.

On a practical level, this achievement is awesome, but magic had its place too, for all but one of the entrances are dummies and the famous statue of Dzozer seated in his serdab has two holes at eye-level, to keep watch or to inhale incense.

Though Dzozer’s complex was never repeated, other pyramids followed. We saw evocative slides showing the development from the Step to the true pyramid. That at Maidum, which may have been started by Huni, last king of Dynasty III, and completed by Sneferu, his son, first king of Dynasty IV, demonstrates vividly this transition. Its outer casing slipped and much of the pyramid collapsed probably 1,000 years after its construction. The remaining upper tiers stand among the mass of fallen material, showing the inner steps which would have been faced with limestone to create a true pyramid.

Sneferu built at least three pyramids, one, the Bent Pyramid, so-called because of its changed angle of inclination. That change remains of mysterious origin did the king die unexpectedly, limiting the building time, or was the original angle too steep for stability or, most probably, does the double angle symbolise the duality of Ancient Egypt?

The first true pyramid surviving is the Northern pyramid at Dashur and from it we came to the Great Pyramids of Giza those of Khufu, Khafre and Menkaure, with smaller pyramids for their queens. The still-complete Great Pyramid of Khufu was built on a scale never equalled and exemplifies the power and determination of the king and also the consummate skill of its creators.

Its casing having been shed, the precise apposition of the 21/2 million limestone blocks is clearly visible. Unusually, the sepulchre is in the superstructure. The gallery has a graffito date which confirms its origin.

Beside this vast pyramid there were at least two boat-pits. The boat in one of them has been reassembled to occupy a specially built museum nearby. This beautiful boat, the oldest of its kind in the world, is wholly functional, for there is evidence that it had been used, perhaps to convey Khufu to his last resting place. The craftsmen who built it had only the simplest of tools – adzes, saws, stone pounders and blades of beaten copper, no bronze, no iron, no pulleys.

Nearby is the pyramid of Khafre (Chephren), whose splendid statue of diorite shows him protected by the wings of a hawk and seated on a throne with the entwined papyrus and lotus, heraldic plants of Upper and Lower Egypt. He is also the king of the famous Sphinx of Giza.

The third pyramid at Giza is that of Menkaure, with its base of granite slabs and the gashes made by treasure seekers. In fact, all the pyramids had been robbed by 2000E0.

Menkaure’s pyramid, being much smaller than the others at Giza, heralds the beginning of the demise of the Pyramid Age of the Old Kingdom. In Dynasties V and VI, pyramids became amorphous heaps but texts inscribed in them give us the world’s first literature, spells of the ritual of the royal cult. In association with the pyramid of Unas, the last king of Dynasty V, there is the evidence of the huge causeway of inscribed blocks linking the mortuary temple with the valley temple on the river, where the king’s embalming may have been performed, from which the funeral procession would leave and where building materials would have arrived by river.

The king, paramount in power, was surrounded by courtiers, who were rewarded by him with tombs and statues. They were buried in mastabas, often close to the king’s pyramid. Stelae give details of their names and titles and show family groups united for eternity, listing pictor­ially and numerically their requirements for the afterlife. They are represented in the prime of life, as they wished to be for ever.

So the preponderance of evidence from tombs speaks not of morbid associations, but rather of the Egyptians’ hope and expectation that life in the hereafter would continue to be enjoyed. Idealist repre­sentations are at times tempered with a touching reality, as in the stela of Seneb, keeper of Khufu’s wardrobe, who sits cross-legged, with his son and daughter occupying the space beneath him and disguising his dwarf stature, while his wife sits full-size alongside.

We saw slides of scribes, all-important in Ancient Egypt, where every­thing was counted and recorded. Their part in the organisational management for the building of pyramids is obvious. For this was not a land of slaves. The annual inundation meant that the mainly agri­cultural population was unable to work on the land for four months each year. This labour was utilised annually for the building of pyramids during these months – the regular pyramid workforce of 4,000 swelled temporarily to 50,000. They were well treated, supplied with basic rations of bread, beer and onions, water supplies were protected and they were rewarded in kind.

Other slides showed feasting with dancing and music, hunting and domestic scenes with a love of flora and an unmistakable appreciation of their animals.

From this zenith of a civilisation lasting some 3,000 years, George Hart brought to us such a wealth of information and interest that we under­stood, as he said in his opening remark, why the Egyptian galleries, with the Elgin Marbles, are joint first destination for 99 per cent of the annual four million visitors to the British Museum.


INTO A LAND OF FANTASY

Peter Pickering explores Cappadocia and South-Eastern Turkey

Last autumn we spent a fortnight in Ankara, Cappadocia and South-Eastern Turkey, using public transport and hotels varying from international top-class to scruffy. Here are a few highlights.

The landscape of Cappadocia is truly fantastic, with the tufa produced by Mount Erciyes long ago now carved by water and wind into gorges, pinnacles and cones. Into these hundreds of churches were carved and decorated with frescoes during Byzantine times. Natural decay, vandalism and desecration have taken toll, but the Turkish authorities are making great efforts to protect and restore them: such are the benefits of tourism, though too large numbers of visitors are also a threat.

The frescoes are remarkably varied, in date, style and context, with several scenes inspired by apocryphal gospels. Oldest were some childish drawings of birds and monstrous insects in red, which one authority thinks were Byzantine military standards.

We also visited two whole cities dug underground, with passages on up to eight levels, as refuges from invaders during the troubled history of these parts.

Next, we visited the mountain sanctuary of Nemrut Dagi, built by the megalomaniac Antiochus I of Commagene (64-32BC). The minibus ride up the mountain from Malatya took six hours, including one minor and one major breakdown. We were thus almost late for the sunset on the western terrace, but in the morning – after a night in a simple hotel – saw the full glory of the sunrise from the eastern terrace.

The giant headless statues on the side of the central tumulus, and the fallen heads below, most with pointed hats and curly beards, are unforgettable, as are the faces of the majestic and inscrutable, but endearing, eagles.

The south-east was really too hot for us. But the massive walls of Diyarbakir, the Amida in which the historian Ammianus Marcellinus was besieged in 359 by the Persian king, were great compensation. And in Urfa we sat by pools full of carp sacred to Abraham, visiting the cave where, legend has it, he was born and the place where the wicked emperor Nemrut threw him into the fire.

We went through the northern part of the Fertile Crescent – the reality of tells coming home to us – to Harran, with its strange beehive houses and its ruins all around. How are the mighty cities fallen! Finally, Mardin, still off the tourist trail, but with fine buildings of the various Moslem dynasties who ruled there in medieval times. Nearby is a Syrian Jacobite monastery, very neat and tidy, unlike some of the churches in Diyarbakir which testify to eastern Christian communities whom time is passing by.

Central and South-Eastern Turkey are full of monuments. The museums are good. Prices are low. The people are friendly – trust the self-appointed guides (some do not even want a tip, or to sell you a carpet). Some women are emancipated enough not to wear head-scarves. The food is good though at the very end we had some which did not agree with us. Visit the area.

THE EMPEROR’S MONEY MARKET

Liz Sagues reports on a lecture given by Andrew Selkirk to the Society of Antiquaries (reprinted from the Ham & High)

Roman London was no ordinary provincial city of the empire, democrat­ically run. It was the emperor’s private property, a free zone where entreprenerus were at liberty to go about their money-making activities as they wished.

 

With that argument, Andrew Selkirk, editor of Current Archaeology, aimed to upset the archaeological establishment. He contended that archaeology had become “dull, boring and, worst of all, soggy”, too bureaucratically-oriented and increasingly out of touch with popular enthusiasm for the past.

His controversial thesis on Roman London – the central “lollipop” of an example in a broader discussion of monetarism and archaeology – was one reaction to that. But it wasn’t a new theory, he pointed out. Tacitus had said London was not a colony, but full of traders, and the Greek geographer Ptolemy had called it a city of the Cantii, from Kent.

Most self-governing Roman towns, he explained, were ringed with villas, the homes of their town councillors. London had none. Its basilica, the largest Roman building north of the Alps, was far too big for a normal Roman town and its “parallels must be found in Rome itself”. “London clearly was not an ordinary Roman town. But what was it? The answer I believe is that London was the emperor’s private property, part of the imperial domain. Once this is accepted everything falls into place.” And it became, he added, “a free zone in which entre­preneurs could get on with making money without any interference from local authorities”.

Money, he said, was the key to the middle revolution of the three that were critical to understanding the past. Between the neolithic revolution and the industrial revolution came that of the Greeks and Romans – in which the Greeks provided the world’s first market economy and the Roman empire was the first victim of inflation. A satisfactory explanation of that and of the succeeding 2,000 years, plus a new “symbiotic relationship” between archaeology and the present age, was essential to bring back “some of the excitement and some of the con­troversy into archaeology”, he said.

But despite his description of his lecture as a Christmas cracker, the archaeological luminaries in the audience seemed reluctant to pull it. While Ralph Merrifield, doyen of London archaeologists, described Mr Selkirk’s theory as “very one-sided”, he admitted there was a “great problem” about the city’s status.

EXCAVATION IN 1989

Calling all diggers – young, old, experienced or novice

With the amount of development currently going on in the Borough of Barnet, we have to be prepared to get in quickly on redevelopment sites if valuable archaeology is not to be lost – readers will remember the heart-rending story of Chipping Barnet High Street told by Jennie

Cobban in Newsletter 213! We still have hopes of digging, this year, in Chipping Barnet and also at The Burroughs, Hendon; both are places which we think important for their good prospects of finding remains of medieval settlement.

We need to be ready to call up a team when the chance of digging occurs – so if you want to be in on this please write or telephone

Brian Wrigley                                                          or              Victor Jones

21 Woodcraft Avenue, NW7 2AH                                         78 Temple Fortune Lane,

(959 5982)                                                                                NW11 7TT        (458 6180)

Please don’t be reluctant because of lack of experience – it’s the very purpose of this society to enable complete novices to join in a useful dig to learn at the side of other diggers. We hope shortly to prepare a small leaflet of advice to new diggers.


METAL DETECTORS AND ARCHAEOLOGY

The committee recently had occasion to discuss this topic, and it was generally felt we should adopt a positive attitude. It was agreed that we should encourage the use of metal detectors under suitable archaeo­logical supervision in appropriate situations, and it would be sensible to initiate investigations ourselves making use of them. The sort of situations in mind were examining spoil heaps (archaeological or building ones) or plotting concentrations of metal on new sites.

As a start, it would be interesting to know how many members have a metal detector available. If you have, and would be interested in using it on HADAS sites, please let Brian Wrigley (address and phone number on previous page) know.

AN ORIGINAL QUESTION

Bill Firth (49 Woodstock Avenue, NW11 9RG, phone 455 7164) has a plea for help:

I have been asked about the derivation of the name Silk Stream and if it has any connections with the silk industry. My, admittedly scanty, records of Hendon do not tell me. Can anyone help, please?

ORDERS TO CHANGE

Membership secretary Phyllis Fletcher reminds all members that, from April 1, new subscription rates apply: £6 for members aged 18 to 60, £4 for members under 18 or over 60, £2 for dependent relatives residing with a member and £8 for corporate members.

All those members who pay by standing order should complete a new form – sent with this issue of the Newsletter – and send it on to their bank as soon as possible, certainly before April 1.

COURSE NOTES

Several series of courses of archaeological interest run at the City University, EC1, during the coming months. First to start (10 meetings weekly, Tuesdays 4pm to 6pm, from February 22) is Britain Before History, by Brian Oldham, on the archaeological evidence for the ritual, social and economic development of people in Britain.

Inquiries to: Extra-Mural Studies, Centre for Continuing Education, City University, Northampton Square, EC1V OHB (253 4399, extensions 3268, 3252).

Down on the farm, at Butser Ancient Farm, the 1989 course programme ranges from General Experimental Archaeology to Pollens or Fire, Clay and Metal, the six-day courses running through from late March to late October. Fees, including full board, are normally £95. Details from: Dr P.J. Reynolds, Director, Butser Ancient Farm Project Trust, Nexus House, Gravel Hill, Horndean, Hants (0705 598838 – office).

Newsletter-212-November 1988

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Newsletter-212-November 1988

Newsletter 212: November, 1988             Editor: Brigid Grafton Green

RECORD BREAKING, HADAS STYLE

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.

 

HADAS DIARY

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.

OTHER DATES FOR YOUR DIARY

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.

 

THE ANNALS OF THE POOR: Part 1  by NELL PENNY

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.

 

ALL ABOUT PEOPLE

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,”

 

VISIT TO NORTHOLT AERODROME IN APRIL 1989

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.

 

MORE ABOUT ARCHAEOLOGY AND LANGUAGE

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.

 

SITE WATCHING

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

 

CRISIS COUNT-DOWN

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.

 

CELTIC COIN AT BROCKLEY HILL – UPDATE             Jennie Cobban

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.

 

HOW WELL DO YOU SLEEP?

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!

 

THE OCTOBER LECTURE

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.

 

PATTERNS FROM THE PAST

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

 

A Dawn’s Eye View of THE HADAS MINIMART 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

MEDIEVAL EDGWARE: THE HOSPITALLERS ESTATE OF EDGWARE BOYS

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.

 

ANOTHER TREASURE IN THE BOROUGH ARCHIVES

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.

 

DGLA CHANGES IN OUR AREA

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.

TED SAMMES

 

ROUND THE MULBERRY BUSH

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.

Newsletter-185-July-1986

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Newsletter-185-July-1986

Newsletter 185: July 1986
PROGRAMME
NEWS

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

 

AN APPEAL FROM  OUR MEMBERSHIP SECRETARY

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

BROCKLEY HILL POTTERY EVENING

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!

BRITISH SCHOOL OF ATHENS 1886-1986

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.    

                                                                                                            ALEC GOULDSMITH

MORE NEWS OF THE GRAHAME-WHITE HANGAR, HENDON AERODROME

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’S MILLENIUM

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.                                                             

                                                                                                                        MARY O’CONNELL

FAVERSHAM AND  ROCHESTER

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

SPRING MEETING OF LOCAL SOCIETIES AT THE MUSEUM OF LONDON

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

COMMITTEE CORNER

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.

COUNCIL OF BRITISH ARCHAEOLOGY POLL RESULT

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.

SITE WATCHING

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      

ANGLO-SAXON CEMETERIES: A REAPPRAISAL

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).

FOR YOUR BOOK LIST

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.

Newsletter-179-January-1986

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Newsletter-179-January-1986

Newsletter No. 179 January 1986

 

HADAS PROGRAMME

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.

Tuesday 4 Feb.,; 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.

 

PROPOSED WEEKEND STAYING IN EXETER UNIVERSITY

        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.

 

NEW MEMBERS

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).

 

SITES TO WATCH

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

           

LOCAL HISTORY AT LAMAS

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.

 

BOG BURIALS                    .

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

           

ENCORE FOR ONIONS

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.”


 

ABOUT HADAS PEOPLE

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.

 

SALUTE TO THE WELSH HARP

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 –

A SONG FOR. THE WELSH HARP,

(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.

HALLELUJAH

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-185-July-1986

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Newsletter 185: July 1986
PROGRAMME NEWS

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

 

AN APPEAL FROM OUR MEMBERSHIP SECRETARY

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

BROCKLEY HILL POTTERY EVENING

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!

BRITISH SCHOOL OF ATHENS 1886-1986

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.

ALEC GOULDSMITH

MORE NEWS OF THE GRAHAME-WHITE HANGAR, HENDON AERODROME

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’S MILLENIUM

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.

MARY O’CONNELL

FAVERSHAM AND ROCHESTER

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

SPRING MEETING OF LOCAL SOCIETIES AT THE MUSEUM OF LONDON

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

COMMITTEE CORNEER

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.

COUNCIL OF BRITISH ARCHAEOLOGY POLL RESULT

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.

SITE WATCHING

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

ANGLO-SAXON CEMETERIES: A REAPPRAISAL

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).

FOR YOUR BOOK LIST

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.

Newsletter-179-January-1986

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Newsletter No. 179 January 1986

HADAS PROGRAMME

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.


PROPOSED WEEKEND STAYING IN EXETER UNIVERSITY

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.

NEW MEMBERS

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).


SITES TO WATCH

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

LOCAL HISTORY AT LAMAS

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.

BOG BURIALS .

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

ENCORE FOR ONIONS

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.”


ABOUT HADAS PEOPLE

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.

SALUTE TO THE WELSH HARP

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 –

A SONG FOR. THE WELSH HARP,

(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.

HALLELUJAH

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

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Newsletter 212: November, 1988 Editor: Brigid Grafton Green

RECORD BREAKING, HADAS STYLE

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.


HADAS DIARY

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.

OTHER DATES FOR YOUR DIARY

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.

THE ANNALS OF THE POOR: Part 1 by NELL PENNY

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.

ALL ABOUT PEOPLE

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,”


VISIT TO NORTHOLT AERODROME IN APRIL 1989

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.

MORE ABOUT ARCHAEOLOGY AND LANGUAGE

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.


SITE WATCHING

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

CRISIS COUNT-DOWN

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.

CELTIC COIN AT BROCKLEY HILL – UPDATE Jennie Cobban

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.

HOW WELL DO YOU SLEEP?

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!

THE OCTOBER LECTURE

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.


PATTERNS FROM THE PAST

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


A Dawn’s Eye View of THE HADAS MINIMART
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

MEDIEVAL EDGWARE: THE HOSPITALLERS ESTATE OF EDGWARE BOYS

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.

ANOTHER TREASURE IN THE BOROUGH ARCHIVES

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.

DGLA CHANGES IN OUR AREA

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.

TED SAMMES


ROUND THE MULBERRY BUSH

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.

Newsletter-225-December-1989

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

ISSUE No 225 Edited by Liz Holliday DECEMBER 1989

HADAS DIARY

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

Tuesday, 6 March CONSTANTINIDES MEMORIAL LECTURE

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,

BOOK LAUNCH AT HENDON TOWN HALL

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!

HONOUR FOR OUR PRESIDENT

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?

NEWS FROM EXCAVATIONS By Brian Wrigley

WHETSTONE

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.

LAND BEHIND ‘THE MITRE’, HIGH STREET, CHIPPING BARNET

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).

COUNCIL FOR INDEPENDENT ARCHAEOLOGY

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)

Newsletter-224-November-1989

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NEWSLETTER 224:


November 1989 EDITOR:
Micky Cohen

HADAS DIARY

TUESDAY NOVEMBER 7th Lecture on PREHISTORY IN GREATER LONDON. Our lecturer
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.)

MEMBERS’ NEWS

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.

REQUIESCAT IN PACE FRIEND

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.

VISIT TO HIGHBURY AND CANONBURY by M.E. JOHNS

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.

ARCHAEOLOGYAT A BARNET SCHOOL by Alison Stratton

(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 ?

ENVIRONMENT FRIENDLY RAILINGS by John Enderby

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.

MORE ABOUT THE WHETSTONE TUDOR HOUSE by Victor Jones

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.

Newsletter-223-October-1989

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.

CALLING OUR BLUFF

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 …”

ACTION FRONT

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.”

LOOKING SOUTHWARDS

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.”

ALL ABOUT MEMBERS

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”

OUT OF THE BOOK

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”.

PRECISION THROUGH A LENS

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.”

WHAT’S ON OUTSIDE HADAS

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

PHYLLIS FLETCHER

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.

IN SEARCH OF BARNET FAIR

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.”

THE WHETSTONE PROJECT

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

FROM OUR ORKNEY CORRESPONDENT DAPHNE LORIMER sends more

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!

GRIM CLAIM TO FAME

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.