Newsletter No. 156: February, 1984
FIRST LINKS WITH AVIATION by BILL Firth
At the end of September 1983 the Borough Planning Department
produced its sixth topic study, as part of the preparation of a Borough Development Plan. This study was entitled Public Utilities and Protective Services, and a copy of it was sent to HADAS for comment (as had been done with several earlier topic studies).
After careful perusal it was evident that the only section requiring comment from us was that which concerned the Army and the RAF. this gave the news that the RAF is likely to move out of Hendon completely in 1987; and the Ministry of Defence is then expected to dispose of RAF Hendon with the exception of the RAF Museum and the married quarters.
We are pleased to report that, as a result of representations from HADAS, the Borough Planning Officer is applying for the listing of the office building and control tower built by Claude Grahame White in 1916. These are adjacent to the contemporary hangar which is already listed (see Newsletter 112, June 1880).
The offices are the main prestige building built during World War by Grahame White, and the control tower is believed to be the earliest example extant. In the offices, on the first floor, is the room used by Grahame White; the CGW monogram over the fireplace still remains. We hope that efforts to list this historic building are successful.
Following demand from another (and aviation-minded) society it is hoped to be able to arrange a further visit to RAF Hendon this summer. It would help the planning if any HADAS members who would like to come would let me know on 455 7164.
ASPECTS OF CONSERVATION
As this Newsletter goes to press, the Borough of Barnet is about to host a reception at the Town Hall for representatives of conservation groups in the Borough, to which HADAS has been invited.
The proceedings are to be enlivened by displays of the work of some of the groups, and HADAS was asked to plan a small display. Our panel will show photographs and drawings illustrating some of our activities, under four main headings – field-walking, surveying, digging and recording.
We thank the Council for its initiative, hope the party will go well and look forward to seeing a cross-section of conservation in Barnet.
FOLLOW-UP TO HADLEY
Some soil samples from the 1983 dig at Hadley Wood have been taken by Richard Hubbard for examination by his North-east London Polytechnic students.
If any HADAS members are interested in taking part in this exercise, Mr Hubbard would be happy to make arrangements for them to do so. Please give Brian Wrigley a ring on 959 5982 if you would like to help.
MORE ABOUT PEOPLE
First, a bulletin on our most notable invalid – DOROTHY NEWBURY. Dorothy became ill – as a report in the last Newsletter indicated – soon after she had organised our Christmas outing to Whitbreads. It turned out to be a severe attack of shingles always a most painful complaint and one which ‘hangs on’ wretchedly.
Dorothy has been out of circulation now for over a month, but she reports that she is at last able to get on with a little reading and other work (the main force of the attack was in her head and eyes) provided she doesn’t keep at it for too long. The HADAS January meeting sent her a special ‘get well soon’ wish, and we know that every Newsletter reader will want to join in that.
Now pleasant piece of news. PHILIP VENNING, a keen HADAS digger and researcher (you’ll recall he directed the dig behind the Old Bull in the spring of 1982) tells us that in early March he takes up the post of Secretary to the Society for the Protection of Ancient Buildings. Hopefully this may mean that we shall see more of him, too – because he will be centred in London again (he lives in Highgate and also has a cottage near Bath, which has been his Main home recently).
The SPAB, he says was founded by William Morris, who “was horrified by much of the restoration undertaken by the Victorians;” the Society is planning to extend its activities in the near future. We hope to hear more of that later from Phillip and meantime send him HADAS’s congratulations and best wishes for success in his new job.
JAN MARSH, author of the article which follows, on local links with the Pre-Raphaelites, is not a HADAS member but she is the daughter of one. Knowing how much research her mother, NELL PENNY, does for our Documentary Group, Jan was kind enough, when she came across these Hendon and Finchley references while researching her next book, to take note of them and to write this article for the Newsletter – which we much welcome and appreciate. (Her first book, incidentally, was published last year – Back to the Land, a study of ‘the pastoral impulse in Victorian England.’
PRE-RAPHAELITE PAINTING IN FINCHLEY AND HENDON
by JAN MARSH.
In the autumn of 1854 Dante Gabriel Rossetti began work on a new oil painting, entitled Found. It depicted a young countryman who, bringing a calf to market- in a cart, finds his former sweetheart on the city streets, now a fallen woman.
He had immense trouble with the picture, working at it on and off for many years and leaving it still unfinished at his death in 1882. The part of the story that took place in Finchley, however, came at the beginning. After he, had completed the brick wall against which the woman cowers, he sought out a suitable calf, turning for help to his friend and fellow painter, Ford Madox Brown.
Brown was then living in Church End, Finchley, at No 1 Grove Villas, on what is now Regents Park Road, between Gravel Hill and Hendon Lane. The building has gone but stood in a row of villas – Albion Villas, Grove Cottages, Grove Villas – similar to the present Nos 289 and 291, near the larger Grove Lodge. At the back was a yard and garden, and beyond that a field where Christs College was soon to be built.
The house had a parlour, a kitchen and two bedrooms and contained, at this date, Brown, his pregnant wife Emma and their 5-year-old daughter Catherine or Katty. They were extremely hard up and frequently in debt. Brown was painting a small oval view of The Brent at Hendon, with the figure of a woman reading on the far, tree-shaded bank. This was begun on Sept. 1, when Brown recorded in his Diary (with characteristic spelling):
“…… out by ¼ to 8 to examine the river Brent at Hendon, a
mere brooklet running in most dainty sinuosity under overshadowing oaks and all manner of leafgrass. Many beauties and hard to chuse amongst ..”
The following day he selected his spot and worked from 9.30 to 1.30, returning home for dinner. In the afternoon he worked at another local landscape, Carrying Corn, which was a harvest picture containing ‘corn shocks in long perspective, farm, hayricks and steeple seen between them.’ This picture, like The Brent at Hendon, is now in the Tate Gallery; it doesn’t have much topographical detail, but it may be possible to identify the weatherboarded farm, which must have been within a few minutes’ walk of Church End.
Apart from a brief brush with that summer’s cholera epidemic, which attacked the new servant girl, Brown worked hard at these two -paintings, generally visiting the Brent in the mornings and the cornfield in the afternoons. Typical entries in his Diary read as follows:
(11 September) “… to work at the Brent by 11 am. Emma and the child brought me my dinner there at 2 – in a little basket. Hot hashed mutton and potatoes in a basin, cold rice pudding & a little bottle of rum & water, beer being bad for cholera. Very delightful & very
great appetite. ‘Set to work again by ½ past 2 till ½ past 6.”
(12 September) “… to the Brent by ½ past ten worked till ¼ to
2. After dinner from 3 to 6 at the cornfield picture.”
In the evenings he worked at a third picture, a charcoal drawing of ‘Beauty before she became acquainted with the Beast,’ for which a kitten was required. ‘Emma & I went out after dark & stole one yesterday,’ Brown recorded, but a few days later he changed his mind: ‘Scraped out puss & put in one with a more satisfactory miaow.’
On September 26 he wrote in his Diary:
“To the Brent by 10 worked till 1 – finished the landscape part as much as I can do to it from nature – went to see the river as far as Decoy farm, found none of it so beautiful as I had painted - home to lunch after a splendid walk in a broiling sun. Afternoon to the cornfield – dinner at 6.”
He carried on working in the cornfield during October, painting in the background and foreground, and commenting:
“It would seem that very small trees in the distance are very difficult objects to paint or else I am not suited to this sort of work for I can make nothing of the small screen of trees though I have pottered over sufficient time to have painted a large landscape…”
On October 4 he began the field of root vegetables – sometimes called
turnips and sometimes swedes – in the foreground, the fine weather broke, and money troubles became pressing. Two days later he ‘wasted about an hour and a half under an umbrella at the swedes – rain drove me off …’ at home he prepared all his valuables, including six teaspoons, for a visit to the pawnbroker in town the following day, where he raised £11 and then called on Rossetti, who asked him to try to find a white calf and cart.
Brown knew the Finchley farmers and their work force. Carrying Corn was nearing completion, and on October 13 he wrote:
“to the field for the last time thank goodness. I am sick of it, I have now only to work at home at it to put it a little in harmony. A labourer came and looked and stuttering fearfully expressed admiration which ended in his supposing he could not beg half a pint of beer, one whom I used to look upon as a respectable man …”
Brown gave him twopence ‘and scorn;’ he felt close to beggary himself.
Within a few days he had arranged with Bruce Johnson of the Manor Farm in East End Road for the use of a calf and a cart. Rossetti came to stay at Grove Villas on October 31 and the first night kept his host up to 2 an talking about poetry. The next day they went to approve the calf and the following afternoon Rossetti started work. It was, he reported to a friend, ‘fine clear weather, though cold;’ He obliged to paint even when it rained, even though “the calf would be like a hearth-rug after half an hour,” because the farmer refused to accept payment for the use of his property, ‘as he insists on being goodnatured.’ As for the calf,
“he kicks and fights all the time he remains tied up, which is five or six hours daily, and the view of life induced at his early age by experience in art appears to be so melancholy that he punctually attempts suicide by hanging himself at 3½ daily pm. At these times I have to cut him down and then shake him up and lick him like blazes …”
Brown remarked that Gabriel was getting on very slowly, painting the calf ‘hair by hair.’ At the beginning of December he reported no perceptible progress and complained of the cost of accommodating his friend: ‘all the time he wearing my great coat which I want & a pair of my breeches, besides food & an unlimited supply of turpentine.’ By December 17 the strain had become acute, with Emma Brown eight and a half months pregnant and the arrival of Lucy, Brown’s elder daughter by his first marriage and her cousin Elizabeth for the winter holiday. Brown confessed his exasperation to his Diary:
“This morning, Gabriel not yet having done his cart & talking quite freely about several days yet, having been here since the first Novr, & not seeming to notice any hints, moreover the two children being here & one stupid girl insufficient for so much work Emma being within a week or two of her confinement & he having had his bed made on the floor in the parlour one week now & not getting up till eleven & moreover making himself infernally disagreeable moreover my finances being reduced to £2.12 which must last till January 20, I told him delicately he must go …”
One marvels at the forbearance implied in that ‘delicately’; Brown suggested Rossetti might travel out each day to the farm from his rooms near Blackfriars Bridge, but Rossetti rejected this as too expensive. Brown commented ‘He thinks nothing of putting us to trouble or expense so he is gone for the present.’ And Manor Farm’s calf and cart were as finished as they would ever be.
Brown’s own paintings were not sold until June 1855, when The Brent
at Hendon brought in £10 and Carrying Corn £12. The following month he
“although all around one is lovely how little of it will work up into a picture …. How despairing it is to view the loveliness of nature towards sunset & know the impossibility of imitating it, at least in a satisfactory manner as one could do would it only remain still long enough …What wonderful effects I have seen
On July 27 he and Emma went for an evening. walk and ‘saw in twilight what appeared a very lovely bit of scenery with the full moon behind it just risen, and this he determined to paint. It was on land belonging to Lord Tenterden of Hendon Place, and the finished painting, The hayfield, shows a field sloping away towards a line of trees marking a stream, with other meadows rising to the skyline, just below which is a white building that may be a gentleman’s residence. In the field hay- making is in progress, with a farm cart and smocked figures and an artist sitting with his paintbox, palette and sunshade observing the scene. Because it is a late summer evening with sunset and full moon, giving the scene a particular light, Brown referred to this painting as his ‘Moon Piece.’ It is also now in the Tate Gallery.
In August he had another annoying visit from Rossetti, this time in company with Lizzie Siddall, whom Rossetti later married and who was friendly with Emma. They came to stay for two days and on August 14 Brown went with them ‘in a phaeton to see Totteridge & with Rossetti’s assistance got through much money.’ The next day Emma and Lizzie went into town early, before Rossetti came in from the Queen’s Head, the inn just south of Grove Villas, where he was staying, Lizzie having one bedroom in the house and the four Browns the other. Rossetti was angry at their departure and Brown sent him off with the servant girl and baby Oliver to meet the women in town.
He was peacefully working when the girl came back with a message to join the others at Blackfriars and then go on to the theatre. When Brown arrived they had already left and, finding that they had gone to Astleys, which was more of a circus than a theatre, Brown spent the evening in a coffee shop. At the end of the performance, however, they were nowhere to be seen and Brown returned to Blackfriars to find Lizzie in bed there, Gabriel sleeping elsewhere and Emma having gone to stay with her mother in St Pancras. In a poor temper, Brown found a cheap lodging for the night and rose at 7.30 next morning ‘not having closed my eyes.’ Such were the tribulations of Rossetti’s friendship.
The house at Grove Villas was proving too small to accommodate the growing Brown family and the servant required to help Emma with the housework and childcare, and at quarter day in September 1855 they left Finchley for No 13 (now 56) Fortess Terrace in Kentish Town, a good deal loss rural despite the dairy farm on Primrose Hill and Lord Mansfield’s estate at Kenwood. The Hayfield was not finished at the time of the move and in October Brown spent two days at the Queen’s Head in order to complete the background. On-December 1 he was at Cumberland Market near Euston, selecting a haycart and during the rest of the month he painted in the figures, the horses, the artist’s equipment, the moon and various other details. He then went ‘carefully over all the part I painted in at Hendon from nature,’ darkened the hayfield and finally completed it early in January. At the end of the month his dealer White rejected the picture: ‘he said the hay was pink’ and it was not until August that the painting bound a buyer.
This was the young William Morris, who was introduced by Rossetti and induced to pay £40 for the little hayfield. So Rossetti rep id some of his debt to the Browns.
The Diary of Ford Madox Brown, ed. Virginia Surtees, Yale University Press, London, 1981
Letters of Dante Gabriel Rossetti,.ed. 0 Doughty and J R Wahl, Oxford, 1965, vol 1
The three paintings by Ford Madox Brown (The Brent at Hendon, Carrying Corn-and The Hayfield.) are in the Tate Gallery, from whose Publications Dept. black and white photographs are available at £1.05 each. The Tate is holding a Pre-Raphaelite exhibition from March-May this year, and the three pictures will be on,show.
Rossetti’s unfinished picture Found is in the Delaware Art Museum, but an early version with only the wall, woman’s head and calf – which may well be the actual panel which was carried to the farmyard in East End Road – is in Carlisle Museum and Art Gallery.*
Two other interesting excerpts from Brown’s Diary:
l October 1854: “a long walk over the fields from ‘Five Bells’ by the Spaniards to Hampstead, bought flannel for babycloathes, paid bills, then to Hendon, where ditto …”
19 October 1855 (after meeting H C Shenton, engraver). “Find that he lives at Hendon & is great friends with the old rascally vicar there whom we nicknamed Judas from his iiniquitus looks and conduct especially towards cats** … walked home from Camden Station …”
*shortly before Christmas 1854 Rossetti wrote to Brown asking him to arrange for the carrier to collect his painting equipment – case, paintbox and easel – from Johnson’s farm and look after them until Rossetti was able to return to Finchley to finish painting the wheel of the cart and the pony’s legs and ears,’ which he estimated would take him a day. These items remain unpainted in the Carlisle panel and Rossetti never went back to Finchley to paint.
** this was the notorious, litigious and long-lived Rev. Theodore Williams.
AS OTHERS SEE US?
HADAS has been at the receiving end of several unexpected bouquets
recently, and we thought members might like to know about them. .
First, issue No 4 of the Newsletter of the British Association for Local History picked up the news of our successful October Minimart, offered its congratulations on the outcome and suggested this was an encouraging example for other BALH groups to follow.
Then in November’ there was a letter in The Times from the editor of Current Archaeology, Andrew Selkirk (who also-happens to be a member of HADAS) arising out of the plan to abolish the GLC. He didn’t mention our Society by name, but he did refer in course of his letter to the fact that ‘in Tory-controlled Barnet … there is an exceptionally strong and active archaeological society, which carries out all the necessary rescue archaeology at no expense to the ratepayers. Indeed, they recently even carried out a major excavation on Hampstead Heath …’
Finally, in the January issue of the Camden History Society newsletter, Cherry Lavell (who is on the staff of the Council for British Archaeology, although on this occasion she was not writing as such) had this to say: ‘Barnet is indeed very lucky in having one of the best archaeological societies in the whole country – HADAS, the Hendon & District Archaeological Society. They do indeed carry out excavations and other work to professional standards, and put on better exhibitions than many professionals manage.’
It’s bad form, we know, to blow one’s own trumpet – but isn’t it lovely when. someone else, blows it for you?
HOUSING ANGLO-SAXON STYLE JEAN SNELLING reports on
the HADAS January lecture
‘Richard Darrah, warden of the site of West Stow, in West Suffolk, recognised that HADAS plans its third visit to his Anglo-Saxon village this summer. His lecture therefore concentrated on experience in reconstruction and on building methods of the mid-Saxon period.
The settlement flourished from about 400-650 AD, being dated by its Lackford and Ipswich pottery. Beginning small, it grew to three or four homesteads for extended families and their farm stock; then it shrank and was abandoned. The cemetery contains about 100 inhabitants in total. Excavations from 1965-73 revealed traces of about 80 buildings over 5 acres, and since then the reconstruction of several specimen buildings by original methods has been in progress.
Two types of structure are found: sunken-floored buildings (SFBs) in the majority, and ‘halls’ (up to six). The halls were grouped with 5 or 6 SFBs each, to make the farmsteads of the site’s heyday.
West Stow has yielded many potsherds, loomweights, animal bones and small metal objects; but its building remains consist only of the stains of postholes in the sandy soil, the floorpits, clay hearths and charcoal and daub from SFBs which burnt down. Analysis of charcoal has shown residues of split oak planks (floorboards and wall cladding), ash poles and hazel rods (rafters and roofing support for thatch). The stains give the size and depth of postholes. These meagre signs are the basis for reconstruction.
One SFB reconstruction shows the older Sutton Courtney “wigwam” model, with low eaves and floor limited to the sunken area. But experiment at West Stow indicates that occupied floor-pits, unlined, would have eroded, while the originals did not erode; it is therefore believed that floors were boarded over and that buildings were often larger than their sunken area. Some deeper pits were wood lined; the unlined shallow pits probably kept floorboards and wall planks drier than solid earth would do, and received mud, dust and small objects falling between the floorboards. The frame of the SFB rested on end-posts, and simple wall plates and probably floor plates are assumed. Pegged rafters would stretch from ridge pole to wall plates. Simple lap and tenon joints were known. Wall plank cladding may have had tongue and groove fitting or daub sealing. A clay hearth could overlap the solid ground inside the building, alongside the pit. With much variety of shape and function, the SFBs could have made very serviceable houses, workshops, stores and stocksheds.
The halls were modest, not above 30ft long with 6-in square posts. One now reconstructed has 40 posts at 2ft intervals, sunk 1-2ft deep. Medieval ploughing removed all floors and surface debris, so the (level)
flooring is unknown (wood, sand, clay?), but burnt central areas suggest hearths. In reconstruction, it is assumed that tie beams must have supported roofs to prevent walls from spreading. Now the tie beams and wall plates are first fitted together on the ground, almost as high medieval timber framing would have been. Wall cladding and roofing present the same questions as with SFBs, and there is no telling if halls were gabled or hipped. Nor is there any indication of how the families used the halls, or what kind of gatherings or activities took place there.
Mr Darrah referred throughout to Saxon tools and to the wood supply. Reconstruction indicates that the axe, spoon-drill and wedge would mainly
be used. The efficient Saxon axe of 3-4 lbs was iron-bladed and steel‑
This fascinating lecture stood well on its own, and also made the prospect of a visit to West Stow next summer irresistible.
EARLY METALURGY CAMILLA RAAB has kindly abstracted the following from World Archaeology, 15.(2), October 1983, pp, 211-17:
Craddock, P T, Curjar, L K and Hegde, K T M, Zinc Production in Medieval
India. Zinc was made and used at a much earlier date in the East than in Europe. A preliminary survey has been made of the extensive remains of the ancient zinc mines and smelting remains at Zawar, Rajasthan. From the survey and the preliminary investigation some attempt is made to reconstruct the original process.
Zawar is one of the sites mentioned last April in Paul Craddock’s lecture to the Society on early metallurgy,
TRIPE – A LA HADAS by Brigid Grafton Green
Some unexpected questions occasionally land on my desk. A surprising one a few weeks ago came from a local historian in Bolton, Lancashire. She wanted to know if I could offer any help on the history of tripe. Anyone who asks that sort of question of such an inveterate newspaper reader as myself might expect a fairly ripe answer – but luckily my correspondent went on to explain that it was the tripe-trade she was interested in; and particularly why ‘the buying and selling of tripe was such a part of the Northern way of life.’
I couldn’t help much about Northern tripe unfortunately – but these facts about tripe in general did turn up.
In the Vision of Piers Plowman (William Langland, mid-14th c) the ‘doctour’ is said to have eaten tripe, which he called ‘wombe-cloutes:’
‘He eet many sondry metes,
Mortrews and puddynges, (‘mortrews’ = soups)
And eggs, y-fryed with grece.’
in 1662, on October 24, Samuel Pepys recorded that he ‘dined upon a most excellent dish of tripes of my own directing, covered with mustard, as I have heretofore seen them done at.my Lord Crewe’s, of which I made a great meal. Two years later, on April 9, 1664, Pepys again mentions ‘at noon home to dinner of tripes.’
Hannah Glasse, in her Art of Cookery made Plain and Easy (first published 1747), has rocipes for fried tripe, tripe a la Kilkenny (which is tripe and onions: described as ‘a favourite Irish dish’) and a receipt for -preserving tripe to go to the East Indies. This last is done in a pickle of spring water, fine clear salt (‘common salt will spoil it’), white wine vinegar, rosemary and allspice. The tripe and the pickle are put into a 4-gallon cask, which should be fastened down by a cooper and not opened in the Indies until you are ready to dress it.
Dorothy Hartley (whose book Food in England, published 1954, is a most glorious rag-bag, into which it’s impossible to put a thumb without pulling ‘out a plum) says ‘Tripe Normandy seems to have come over with the Conqueror; usually medievally made in autumn, we now make it when we can obtain the necessary ham trimmings:’
Those snippets suggest that, in addition to having a long history, in earlier times tripe was eaten as much in the south – not to mention Ireland – as the north. Pepys, after all, was a Londoner and Hannah Glasse, although her family came from Hexham, was London-born and married a London lawyer.
SITES F0R WATCHING
Applications for planning permission are being considered by the Borough of Barnet for the following sites which,- if the applications are approved, may be of some archaeological interest:
Land rear of Campbell Croft, Edgware detached house
Glebe Court, Parson St, NW4 detached bungalow
15 Elm Gardens, N2 2 semi-detached houses
“Ridge Cottage, Arkley Drive, Barnet Rd detached bungalow
land adj. Arkley House, Barnet Road 5 detached houscs
Should you notice possible building activity on any of those sites, please let Elizabeth Sanderson know on 950 3106.
Tues Feb 7. Church End Hendon Excavations, 1973-k.
We are pretty sure this is an evening no one will want to miss and
that most of you will have already red-lettered it in your diaries – because it will be one of’ our own Vice-Presidents, TED SAMMES talking about one of our own digs, which he directed, just south of Hendon parish Church. It’s the dig which finally proved, beyond all doubt, that Hendon was, and is, a Saxon foundation.
This lecture will be the first of the occasional Constantinides Memorial lectures in honour of our founder, Themistocles Constantinides. It was suggested at the 1983 AGM that such an event should be initiated, and we reported in last July’s Newsletter that the Committee had decided to ro ahead with the idea. It is highly appropriate that Ted – one of our founder members, who knew ‘Mr Constans,’ should be the first Constantinides lecturer, and that the first subject should be the one dearest to ‘Mr. Constans’ heart, which prompted him to found an archaeological society for what he hoped for most of all was to prove that Tendon was Saxon.
Ted, in fact, went one better – he took the Church End site, on the corner of Greyhound Hill and Church End, where the Meritage Old
People’s Club now stands, back to a Roman presence by unearthing a small cache of Roman pottery; and we haven’t told you the half of it – there was fine medieval and Tudor material and a gorgeous 18th c rubbish pit which was-George Ingram’s pride and joy…. You’d better come along and hear all about it: it’s too good a story to miss.
The remainder of the winter programme is:
Tues. March 6 25 Years Excavation in Wiltshire John Musty
Tues. April 3, Underwater Archaeology in the Holy Land Alexander Flinder
Meetings are at Hendon Library, The Burroughs, NW4, coffee 8 pm, lecture starts 8.30.
CORRECTION TO THE HADAS PROGRAMME CARD. We regret that an extra ‘2′ has crept into one of the dates in the Programme Card which accompanied your January,Newsletter. The first lecture of next winter should be:
Tuesday, October 2nd – Orkney – Isbister
“The Tomb’ of the Eagles” John Hedges
Would members please alter October 22 to October 2.
DO YOU ENJOY THE NEWSLETTER? IF SO, PLEASE HELP!
One of HADAS’s largest financial headaches is the Newsletter. Not the editorial side, of course, that’s done for love; but the nuts-and bolts bit – the reproduction (text and illustrations) and the distribution.
Paper costs keep rising, and postage is unbelievable today when you look back to what it was even a few years ago. Our faithful duplicator, so lovingly tended by Rene Frauchiger, is getting long in the tooth and needs periodic (sometimes expensive) maintenance: and we know it can’t last forever.
That’s why we reported, in the December Newsletter, the Committee’s decision to set up a small working party to consider, so far as the Newsletter is concerned, ways and means.
Now we would like to call on any help that members can offer. We know many of you have experience in the Communications field -whether it be in schools, advertising, newspapers, publishing or whatever. If you have any ideas for ways we could improve and/or cheapen the production/distribution side of the Newsletter, be they old or new, experimental or well-tried, please get onto me on 346-5078 and tell me. I’ll be delighted to hear from you. JUNE PORGES
The Museum of London has its usual full programme of lectures, films, displays and workshops between now and Easter. Three archaeological lectures in February are;
Feb 3 Recent excavations in Southwark: Calvert’s Buildings
David Beard & George Dennis
Feb 10 Recent excavations in Southwark: Winchester Palace
Derek Seeley & Brian Yule
Feb 17 Recent excavations in West London Jon Cotton
Three talks under the general heading ‘London’s Burning,’ on great
fires which have devastated the City, also sound interesting:
Wed Feb 22 Boudicca’s Revolt Hugh Chapman
Thur Feb 23 The ‘London Blitz Geoff Toms
Fri Feb 24 The fire of London 1666 Rosemary Weinstein
Another-event at the Museum will be the annual LAMAS Archaeological Conference on Sat. March 17. As yet we have no further details about times, speakers, etc, but you may like to note the date in your diary.
Tony Rook, who spoke to HADAS last November about prehistory and Roman Hertfordshire, sends these details of two linked Greek study tours which he is organising from Apr 10-23 next. The full fortnight (both
tours) costs £560, plus £10.50 insurance; or you can take the Cretan tour only (Apr, 10-17) for £378; or the Peloponnese tour only (Apr-for 16-23) (both plus insurance).’ Further details and itineraries from Tony Rook, 23 Mill Lane, Welwyn, Herts AL6 9EU.
The Jorvik Viking Centre at York opens on April 14 next. It has called ‘the most exciting tourism project ever seen in Britain’ and also ‘a permanent cultural asset to the region and the world.’
It ‘will be in two parts. Below ground the 9th. c Viking town, with streets, workshops and houses, has been reconstructed on the Coppergate site on which it was dug in the 1970s. There will also be ‘the whole sequence of archaeological discovery and interpretation as it was on the
site during excavation.’ At ground level, in the artefacts hall, will
HADAS members who were on our York weekend in 1976, when we had a private view of the Coppergate dig, will find the new museum particularly interesting. It will be open, year round seven days a week, from 9 am-7 between April and the end of October; and 9 am – 5.30 the rest of the year.
MARY ALLAWAY reports on her research into
CHURCH FARM, EAST BARNET
Looking around the trim Council buildings at Church Farm today it is difficult to imagine that somewhere a farmyard once existed here.
In 1817 a house and barn are shown on this site, owned by John Bacon, who may well have lived elsewhere as he owned many parcels of land including a sizeable farm in East Barnet.*
By 1841 Church Farm was owned by Sir Simon Houghton-Clarke and was occupied by Joshua and Martha East, both aged 25 with 3 Small children and 4 servants. By this time farm buildings had been built on three sides of a yard south of the barn and the farm house appears to have been enlarged or re-built (see maps at end of this Newsletter).
In 1859 ‘a committee of gentlemen bought 48 acres of the estate (of the former Church Hill House) and converted it into a farm for the training of destitute boy.’** A Crimean War veteran, Lt Col W J Gillum, was the first Superintendant. He built a house on adjoining land, Trevor Park, for his own occupation.
The Boys Home Farm continued from 1860-1938, when the buildings were taken over by East Barnet Council and the Home moved to another county, taking with it its records which regrettably have not been traced. The Council ran a primary school in part of the premises.
On two sides of a forecourt stands a neo-Georgian building of 1926 with a clock-tower at the angle. It has a fine panelled assembly hall, rooms like large classrooms and concrete stairways. The east wing once adjoined, at an oblique angle, the old farmhouse which had undergone two further extensions by 1898,, It was destroyed by fire in.1938, some of the slate floor being visible until recently.
‘On the opposite side of the courtyard is a range of buildings identified, from an old drawing reproduced in the Barnet Press, as the Playroom (1881). This was originally a separate barnlike building connected at a later date by a gabled extension to the schoolhouse of 1868, which way damaged by fire (but later repaired) soon after the burning of the farmhouse wing. Each building probably reflects a rise in the numbers at the farm. Certainly in 1868 the adjacent Parish church of St Mary the Virgin had a south aisle added, equal in width to the nave, to accommodate the boys; and the chancel was extended.
The Schoolroom (not to be confused with the Schoolhouse), with its bell tower, was built in 1876 on the site of an earlier farm building. A grim reminder of the ’39 war is the heavy double entrance doors, forming an air-lock for gas decontamination for the ARP who occupied the building at that time.
To the NW is another asphalt court in front of the Water Tower, built just before the turn of the century. Beside it is the entrance to the pool which lies behind. The ground floor and wings of the Water Tower contained workshops for the Boys Farm Home, and in war time the Fire Service hung their hoses on the first floor and slid through a hatchway to the ground. It is said that water was pumped from a well under the tower to the tank on top. Another possible well is the place marked ‘W’ on the 1870 map.
Between the Water Tower and Schoolroom stand two buildings, the larger said to have been the milking shed and the smaller (next to the Schoolroom) the bottling plant. To the north of this forecourt is a curious building, now converted into two houses, which was an isolation hospital. The attic is still continuous across both houses.
We discovered photographs in Barnet Museum which really gave a
picture of the farmyard, haybarn, pigsties, cowsheds and stables – as
Another picture in the Barnet Press shows a field with cows and horses grazing where the 1926 building-now stands. The site of the farmyard now lies partly under Burlington Rise and partly under the rear yard – now a patchwork of set-ts gravel, strips of concrete and weeds. The field from which the farmyard photos were taken is now completely built over, although most of the south field where cows and horses grazed still remains..
The history of Church Farm is being researched by Gillian Gear of Barnet Museum and we look forward to a future publication.
*Can this John Bacon be a connection of the John Bacon who leased the ancient manor house and the remains of the friary of Friern Barnet from
St Pauls from the 1780s to his death in 1816? His son was John (William)
**Victoria County History. (See HADAS Newsletter 34, Dec 1973)