Volume 4 : 1985 – 1989


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Newsletter 223: October, 1989 Editor: Brigid Grafton Green

What’s on for HADAS

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

An outing to Piddington is planned for 1990.

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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


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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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


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

Rosebank Cottage, The Ridgeway, Mill Hill

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

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

The Mitre, 58 High Street, Chipping Barnet

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

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

However, various floorboards had been lifted for rewiring purposes and

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

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

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

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

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

Church Farm School, Church Hill Road, East Barnet

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

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

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

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

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

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


Victorian and Edwardian Hampstead by Alastair Service Historical Publications £9.95

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

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

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

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

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


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

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

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

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

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

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

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

‘Hypothesis: a guess”


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

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

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

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

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


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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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


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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

GREETINGS TO NEW MEMBERS from our Membership Secretary


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

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

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

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


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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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


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

First, Victor’s note:

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

SHEILA WOODWARD reviews a daunting tome

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

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

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

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

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

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

From creditors when cruel grown,

From bailiffs and their crafty scent,

From dining often with the Duke,*

From paying homage to the pump,

From taking of the ten pound act,

From being overcome by drink,

From lodging near a boghouse stink,

From having stomachs and no chink,

From asking for food to be denied,

From being turned to the common side –

Libera nos Domine

From being sent to the Lion White,**

From mouldy scraps in basket laid,

From making pegs, that humble trade,

From wooden blocks to rest one’s head,

From all or any King’s Bench bed –

Libera nos Domine

“Duke Humphrey”= “dining on air”

**A lower depth


news from the North

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

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

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

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

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


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


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

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


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

(Details and application form enclosed.)

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

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

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

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

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

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

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



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

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

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

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


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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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


“Eyes Down” in N.W. 4 ……………

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

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

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


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

Update on the Rose Theatre from Young LAMAS

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

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

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

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

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

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

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


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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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


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

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

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

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

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

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


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NEWSLETTER 221 August 1989 Editor: Helen Gordon


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

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

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

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

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

SOME AUTUMN CLASSES in or near the Borough of Barnet

The Archaeology of Mexico and Central America

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

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

For information ring Mrs Michaelson 452 8850

Ancient Empires of South America

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

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

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

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

Roman Archaeology in Britain and Beyond

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

For information ring William Whitehead 0727 73309

Dark Ages: Anglo-Saxon England 400-1100

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

For information ring Joan Meaden 205 4260

Industrial Archaeology,/u>

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

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

For information ring David Clark 0707 55217

Digging up the Bible

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

Camden AEI, Maccabi Centre, 73 Compayne Gardens NW6

For information ring 388 7106/7

For summary of Diploma and Certificate courses see back page


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

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

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

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

Barnet’s Triangular Market-Place by Andrew Selkirk

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

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

HADAS Library By Brian Wrigley

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

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

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

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


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

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


reported by Ruth Wagland:

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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


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

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

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

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

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

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

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


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

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

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


Tylecote, R P A History of Metallurgy (1976)

The Prehistory of Metallurgy in the British Isles (1986)


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

Experience is not necessary, though experienced workers are particularly welcome


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

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

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

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


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

NEWSLETTER 220: July 1989 Editor: Anne Lawson


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

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

Saturday Sept 30 Highbury, Canonbury: Mary O’Connell

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



LECTURE July 11 by

Alexander Flinder

(Founder Chairman, Nautical Archaeology Society)

An Underwater Discovery and the Book of Jeremiah”

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

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


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

Letter printed in BARNET BOROUGH TIMES May 25th 1989

MITRE Stables should have been preserved

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

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

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

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

TO: The Controller of Development Services

London Borough of Barnet

Barnet House

1255 High Road

Whetstone, London N20

Dear Sir,


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

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

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

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

Yours faithfully,

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

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

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

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

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


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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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


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

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

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

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

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

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

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



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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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



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

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

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

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



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

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

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

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



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

Northern Area

60, Barnet Gate Lane, Arkley Two detached houses

Laurenny, Totteridge Common Development

The Warren, Totteridge Common The demolition of detached house

Land to the rear of 176-204,

High Street, Barnet Residential development

Western Area

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

Edgware Detached House

3, Francklyn Gardens, Edgware Extensions

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

of new

Rose Cottage, Brockley Hill,

Stanmore Detached house and garage

10, Cedars Close, Hendon NW4 Extensions

3, Tenterden Drive, Hendon, NW4 Extensions




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

The Site Watching lists which HADAS produces depend largely upon the

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


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

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


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

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

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

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

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

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

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

Chairman:Andrew Selkirk

Vice-Chairman: John Enderby

Hon Secretary: Brian Wrigley

Hon. Treasurer: Victor Jones


Christine Arnott

Deirdre Barrie

Jenny Cobban

Phyllis Fletcher

Alan Lawson

Margaret Maher

Dorothy Newbury

Peter Pickering

Ted Sammes

Jean Snelling

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

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

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

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

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

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

Fifty Years of Verulamium Museum

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

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


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Page 1


Tuesday,9 May ANNUAL GENERAL MEETING 8.00pm for 8.15pm at Hendon Library. Business meeting followed by Review of HADAS 1988¬89. Will include slides of, Brockley Hill Flints Collection & Barnet and Whetstone excavations. (Does any member have slides of last year’s outing to Flag Fen? If so, please ‘phone Dorothy Newbury: 203 0950 Screens showing samples of surface finds from Brockley Hill will be on display.

Saturday, 13 May STAMFORD, Lincs., AND BURGHLEY HOUSE. Details and booking form with this Newsletter.


Saturday,8 July BEDDINGHAM ROMAN VILLA EXCAVATION, Sussex AND MICKLEHAM PRIORY. Enquiries, advance booking and further details about all HADAS summer outings should be made to Dorothy Newbury

Saturday,3 June DISCOVERING BARNET’S TRIANGULAR MARKET. See back page for details.Re-discover a long hidden feature of our Borough’ Explore what remains of the ancient town of Chipping Barnet – before it disappears for ever! This outing is intended primarily for our younger members, but all are welcome. PROGRAMME Assemble at 10.15 -10.30am at Barnet Museum, Wood St. Morning: visit Tudor Hall, St. John the Baptist, site of Middle Row and Old Bull Arts Centre. Lunch about 12.15pm Afternoon: visit some of the buildings in the market triangle – The Mitre, The Dandy Lion, 52-62 High Street. Back to Barnet Museum to see photographic exhibition Chipping Barnet’s William Breughton, the landlord of The Red Lion. was postmaster from 1772-88, and the Red Lion. was used as a Post Office where letters were put on to the mall coaches. The buildings in the centre of the picture formed part of Middle Row, which divided the High Street. The Row was burnt down in 1889 and demol¬ished the next year, (Note the market hall.) The sign of a bunch of grapes (indicating a tavern selling wine) is displayed by The Mitre.

Market Triangle – Then and Now. SPECIAL COMPETITION organised jointly by Barnet Museum & HADAS. 1st prize: £10 2nd prize: £5 plus FREE subscription to CURRENT ARCHAEOLOGY for one year (worth £8) for each completed entry. More details on 3 June

PLEASE BRING WITH YOU • Packed lunch including a drink. • A clipboard, pen and pencil and sketchpad. • Some spending money in case you wish to buy anything from the Old Bull Arts Centre or Barnet Museum. If you wish to come or would like more details ring Jennie Cobban as soon as possible:

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Official Minutes are recorded in the Society’s Minute Book. To refresh members’ memories before they attend this year’s Sixty-nine members attended the 27th AGM on 10 May 1988 at Hendon Library. The meeting was chaired by Vice-President Edward Sammes. Following the Chairman’s welcome to members, apologies were received from Brian Jarman, John Enderby, Margaret Maher, Myfanwy Stewart & Sheila Woodward. The Minutes of the 1987 AGM were approved & signed. Andrew Selkirk, Chairman of HADAS, gave the Annual Report which was accepted by the meeting. The Accounts of the Society were then presented by Victor Jones, Hon. Treasurer and as they had not yet been audited, were accepted provisionally by the meeting, subject to later audit and presentation at a Special General Meeting of members. The Hon. Treasurer drew attention to increase in costs and pointed out that but for the Minimart, there would have been a deficit. He expressed gratitude for the sum raised by the Minimart but warned that subscriptions may have to be raised. Reports on Research and Group activities were made for Industrial Archaeology Group by Bill Firth; for Excavations Working Party by Brian Wrigley; for the Prehistoric Group by Brian Wrigley on behalf of Margaret Maher and for the Roman Group by Gillian Braithwaite (who used her report as the basis for an illustrated talk given after the formal meeting). Officers of the Society were declared elected as only one nomination had been received for each vacancy. They were:

Chairman: Andrew Selkirk

Vice-Chairman: John Enderby

Hon. Secretary: Brian Wrigley

Hon. Treasurer: Victor Jones

As thirteen nominations had been received for the thirteen vacancies on the Committee 1988-89, the following were declared elected:

Christine Arnott

Dorothy Newbury

Phyllis Fletcher

Peter Pickering Liz Holliday

June Porges

Brian McCarthy

Kim Russell

Margaret Maher

Ted Sammes

Robert Michel

Jean Snelling

Myfanwy Stewart

The meeting ended at 8.55pm.

Andrew Selkirk, Chairman of HADAS, introduced a proposal to amend the Constitution to provide that the President shall hold office for 5 years, instead of for life or until resignation, in the following terms, as set out in the Notice of Meeting: 1. That in Clause 6(a), at the end of the first sentance there be deleted the ‘s’ at the end of the word ‘Presidents’ and following that word there be added’ who shall be elected for five years and the Vice-Presidents 2. That in Clause 6(a), after the words ‘elected for life’ there be added, ‘or until resignation’. 3. That in Clause 6(b) there be deleted the words ‘shall retain office for life or until resignation and such Officers…’ Clause 6(a) and 6(b) will then read: 6(a) The Officers of the Society shall be a President a number of Vice-Presidents as the Society may from time to time in a General Meeting determine, a Chairman, a Vice-Chairman. an Honorary Secretary and an Honorary Treasurer, all of whom shall be elected annually at the Annual General Meeting of the Society, with the exception of the President who shall be elected for five years and the Vice-Presidents who shall be elected for life or until resignation. A retiring Officer shall be eligible for re-election. 6(b) The President and Vice-Presidents now holding office and those elected to these offices hereafter shalluotbe Officers of the Society within the meaning of Clause 5(b). The President and Vice-Presidents shall not be prevented however, from being elected to an active office or to membership of the Committee. In reply to questions, the Chairman confirmed that the proposed Rules did not provide any bar to re-election of the President, and there was no change proposed in the position of Vice-Presidents. The Resolution was passed unanimously

Prehistoric Society’s Spring Conference Report by Christine Arnott

WAR AND PREHISTORY During the weekend 31 March-2 April, the Prehistoric Society devoted their Spring Conference to the study of “War and Prehistory”. It is possible to approach this subject from several different aspects and the many speakers taking part discussed the reasons for aggression, the role played by ritual, and (a move towards placating some in the audience) the role played by women. It was amazing to hear how much can be demonstrated as a result of archaeologicsl evidence, although it was inevitable, perhaps, that we should learn more about the Iron Age and the Celts, because at that stage written evidence from Roman sources is available.Quoting from Roman historians, one speaker gave details of the fighting traditions of the Celts, including their practice of confronting the enemy naked. Slides showing scenes inscribed on Trajan’s column in Rome and other famous sculptures bore out their behaviour in battle. Dr.Mallory, from Ireland, gave a blood-curdling account of warfare in early Irish literature from the “Ulster Cycle”. Although as it is written evidence,& is not strictly within the classification of pre-history, he believed that these were actually rewording of an ancient oral tradition extolling the deeds of Iron Age warriors. The practice of taking heads as trophies of war was a dominent theme in these horrific stories. It was suggested that this practice might have arisen so that the eating of the brain could enhance a warrior’s vigour. A very interesting account of the ritual practices of primitive tribes in New Guinea was given. There is a controlled approach to war in their culture, and there are strictly laid down lines to follow in war prep- aration and execution. There was a fascinating contribution from a Russian scientist (at present working at Reading University) describing the effects of various foods on behaviour, (including the possible after effects of eating ‘brains’!). A lively discussion followed as diet is a popular matter of argument these days. After two full days of very concentrated work, both by the speakers and listeners, it was a refreshing break towards the end of the second day to watch our secretary, Brian Wrigley, demonstrating the elements of fencing technique. With the help of Andrew Lawson, he gave hints for parrying blows from your opponent. Brian finished with a hair-raising demonstration of ways to dispose of your enemy, depending on the type of sword that was used. Andrew helped again, showing how to use a shield to counter the deadly swipes and thrusts. After watching them carefully, I began to wonder if I had learnt enough to counter a mugger attempting to attack me!

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A selection of places to visit, things to see and lectures to attend,

along the Parkland Walk, Islington., 2pm-5pm. Once an old railway line, now a haven for Spring flowers and wildlife. Meet Highgate Underground Station (Shepherd’s Hill exit). Walk ends near Finsbury Park Station. Arranged by Herts & Middx Wildlife Trust

Newland Park, Gorelands Lane, Chalfont St. Giles, Bucks. Wednesdays,Sundays and Bank Holidays, 2pm-6pm Historic buildings from 16th-19th centuries in 45 acres of park and woodland. Home-made teas. Free parking. Admission: Adults £1.50, OAPs £1.00, Children £.00, Under 5s free.

Saturday,13 May and Sunday, 14 May

CHURCH FARM HOUSE MUSEUM Greyhound Hill, .Hendon.

A Stroll through the Andes 10 April – 28 May Photographs by Maz Iqbal Sunday,4 June

Visit to the Abbey Mills Pumping Station arranged by Lee Valley Park. Meet at Three Mills Sports Centre car park, Three Mills Lane, Bronley-by-Bow, at 2.15pm. Bus S2; Tube Bromley-by-Bow (District Line). No children under 8 or dogs. Book in advance Phone 0992 713838
LUNCHTIME LECTURES Wednesdays at 1.10 pm

3rd May The Management and Charting of London’s River Down the Ages, by Alex Werner

10 May The Medieval Port of London. by Gustav Milne

17 May The City Vaterfront in Later Centuries by David Dewing

24 May A Performance of Music- Theatre to commemorate 800th Anniversary of the Mayoralty Performed by students of the Guildhall School of Music and Drama

31 May Paintings of London’s River by David Cordingly
EXHIBITIONS Museum of London

The Story of Pewter 1200-1700: a Celebration of the Craft May for one year This exhibition sheds new light upon aspects of London’s role as a major centre for pewter production and explores its manufacture and use. Exhibits from important public and private collections as well as those of the Museum. Lord Mayors, The City and The River Due to open late May/ early June until December To celebrate 800 years of the City Mayoralty,

Friday, 19 May at 1.10pm Visit to a site under excavation in the City
UNEARTHING SOUTHWARK’S PAST Report of April’s lecture by Sheila Woodward

It takes more than a wet and windy evening to quench the enthusiasm of HADAS members. Over 80 of us attended the April meeting to hear Harvey Sheldon, always a popular speaker, talk about the recent archaeological excavations in Southwark. The City of London and Southwark, facing each other across the Thames, have always presented a contrast: the City sleek and prosperous on its higher ground, Southwark more down-at-heel and ramshackle on its marshy flats, its development piece-meal and the threat of flooding ever-present. Yet the sandy islands in the marsh attracted settlers from quite early in pre-history. Many artefacts (flint tools, potsherds etc.) bear witness to this but it is only recent carefully controlled excavations which have begun to fill in the details of the settlements, Bronze Age and Iron Age burials and traces of roundhouses have been recovered. Cow hoof-prints appear to show where Bronze Age cattle were led to the water and cultivation is indicated possible ard (scratch plough) marks dating from the late Neolithic or early Bronze Age. There is no evidence of urban or proto-urban settlement before the arrival of the Romans.Southwark proved useful to the Romans both for docks and for its communications potential. It was the first point up-river where bridging was possible, the river being narrow enough and the land-edges sufficiently firm. There is evidence of early Roman settlement (coinage suggests a supply base) and land reclamation, and two main roads were laid down 7-10 years after the conquest. The settlement expanded rapidly after 70AD. Much of the evidence for this is recent because the clay and timber buildings are tricky to excavate. Most are simple rectangular structures, running back from the roads. A few are more pretentious, for example a large courtyarded building on the town outskirts, possibly a mansio. Another 2nd century waterfront building, almost opposite the Governor’s Palace, has stone foundations, a hypocaust, mosaic flooring and very fine-quality painted wall- plaster. In the staking area were the remains of a stone inscription with the recurring word “cohort”. Epigraphists (displaying, Harvey commented, even greater imagination than archaeologists!) suggest that this may be a commemorative plaque indicating occupation by a guild of soldiers. Recent excavations at the Courage Brewery site have uncovered a large timber building, possibly a warehouse, of early 2nd century. Waterlogging has preserved its superb wooden floors and base walls and there are even some indications of roofing. The timbers are being lifted and removed for study as they should produce important evidence of wood-working techniques. Burials found on this site (i.e. within the Roman settlement) are difficult to date. They could indicate a later shrinkage in the size of the settlement area or may be Christian burials within a churchyard. Here, as elsewhere in London, dark earth deposits overlie Roman levels, obscuring stratigraphic changes and posing problems of interpretation. Medieval and later buildings abounded. Pre-development excavation has produced evidence of 9th century warehouses, incorporated in 15th and 16th century waterfronts; traces of old Southwark Bridge; two moated buildings and a fine collection of Tudor artefacts. To round off his most informative and entertaining lecture, Harvey showed us slides of the recent publicity campaign and its supporters following the discovery of the Rose Theatre site. The excavation there is in its very early stages; we look forward to hearing all about it in Harvey Sheldon’s next

Five miles east of Stevenage.Tel.043 885 668 Old-fashioned hilltop garden on the site of a Norman castle, with ruins and spectacular views. Home-made teas on Sundays Picnics welcome. Regret no dogs.


Page 4

HOLES TO KEEP AN EYE ON Sites to watch compiled by John Enderby

Members living In these areas are asked to keep an eye on these developments and report anything unusual to our Site Co-ordinator, John Enderby, on 203 2630

25-35 Bells Hill, Barnet Erection of four storey block of twelve flats. 58 High Street, Barnet Erection of three storey office block. 2 Moxon Street, Barnet Ground & first floor extensions. 120 High Street,Barnet Side extension. Hadley Lodge, Hadley Common, Barnet Demolition of existing house.

194-210 Station Road, Edgware Three storey office block at rear of premises. 3 Francklyn Gardens, Edgware Front, side and rear extensions, 67 Francklyn Gardens, Edgware Front, side and rear extensions. 18 Brockley Avenue, Edgware Front, side and rear extensions, Rose-bank Farm, The Ridgeway, Mill Hill, NW7 Extensive conversions.

Andrew Selkirk, our Chair-man, has recently received a letter from Graham Sutton, concerning the proposed Iver to Arkley Trunk Water Main to be laid by Lee Valley Water Company. (See Gillian Braithwaite report in Newsletter No.202 for January 1988), Final approval for the scheme has not yet been given by the Board, but it seems likely that the construction of the main will start in September 1989. There is a proposed alteration in the route. The new route will follow Wood Lane and then go diagonally across to take up the original route at the A41. Graham Sutton says he will try to keep HADAS informed of latest developments.

Page 5


Latest in the series published by Alan Godfrey covers The Ridgway area of Mill Hill from Nether Court to the Grammar School. Includes John Cooke’s 1792 map of the “Roads from London to Mill Bill & Barnet”, street directory of 1898 and notes on the map by Graham Roberts, Local History Librarian for Barnet Libraries. Price L1.20 from mill Hill Library, Hendon Library, Totteridge Library, Local History Library or by post (add 20p P&P) from Room 6, Ravensfield House, The Burroughs, NV4 4BE
THO. NICOLL OF BARNET A note from George Ingram

Members may be interested to know of the following extract from an old Essex newspaper, The Chelmsford Chronicle, dated 10 September 1779. “The following inscription is painred over the door of a cobler(sic) at Barnet, Herts. Tho. Nicoll, operat¬or in ordinary and extra-ordinary; translator of soles; uniter of the dis-united; restorer of union and harmony though of ever so wide or long separation. He gives his advice gratis even in the most desperate cases.” I wonder if this cobbler’s workshop or perhaps his abode, still still exists today? Could this Tho. Nicoll have been related to a churchwarden of the same name at Hendon St. Mary’s c.1565? There was another family of this name who lived at Hendon Place about 1711. Relations perhaps?

I hope members have enjoyed reading the Newsletter in this format. Those of you who are experts with a word processor will realize that I haven’t mastered all the keys yet – I’m still struggling through the instruction manual! Any comments (for or against) will be most welcome, although I shall be out of the country when you receive this issue!


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NEWSLETTER 217: April 1989 Editor: Isobel McPherson


Tuesday April 4th HARVEY SHELDON on Recent Archaeological investiga­tions in Southwark.

Harvey Sheldon has been known to most of our members for very many years. He gave us a lecture in 1971 on the Highgate Woods excava­tion which he led in the 60s, and another lecture in 1973 on the Archaeological Problems of Motorway Building. He is now Head of the Department of Greater London Archaeology attached to the Museum of London, a body which is responsible for giving professional assistance, if required, in Greater London, including our own area of Hendon and Barnet. Southwark is one of his favourite areas and this is sure to be an interesting lecture.

Saturday April 22nd Afternoon tour of Harrow School. Application form enclosed.

Tuesday May 9th Annual General Meeting

Saturday May 13th Outing to Stamford, Lincs. and Burghley House

Saturday June 3rd. Barnet Triangular Market day. See below

Saturday June 24th Outing to Great Bur stead and Maldon

OUTING INFORMATION for new members. An application form is enclosed with the Newsletter for the month in which the outing is arranged (un­less the outing is very early in a month when the form will go in the preceding month). Early application is recommended as we sometimes get overbooked. Anyone wishing to notify Dorothy Newbury of their advance requirements is free to do so as long as they as long as they confirm, with cheque, directly they receive the application form. We usually make an early start – 8 to 8.45 – with pick-up points at Finchley Central, the Quad­rant, Hendon, and the Refectory, Golders Green.

Punctuality is essential as we usually have a tight time schedule.


If this heading strikes you as odd (What on earth? …Where?) be ready to regret your ignorance. HADAS – and especially YOUNG HADAS, together with a visiting contingent from Young LAMAS, will be inaugurating our-drive for the re-discovery of this long hidden feature of our Borough.

This is the triangular space at the top of Barnet Hill, just south of the church where the market was first held and from which Chipping (=Market) Barnet takes its name. Over the centuries it has shrunk considerably, rebuilding has inched forward to the road, for centuries Middle Row occupied the centre ground, to give way at last to a confusion of turning traffic. Now developers have their pin-table eyes on some of the surrounding terraces and NOW is the time to explore what is left, before it- disappears forever.

On June 4th we shall examine the church – especially the north (oldest.) wall, currently being studied by HADAS member Robert Michel, the existing buildings, precious or possibly disposable and, best of all the exploratory trenches which should by then be open behind the existing shops. It is there we hope to find traces of the mediaeval town. Junior Members may compete for prizes (details later), older Members will be more than welcome. Watch for further details in the Newsletter or, if you can’t wait. contact Jennie Cobban, the co-ordinator, on 440 3254.


For us the great news is that our Hon. Treasurer, Victor Jones, has been elected to the Council of LAMAS. We congratulate him and welcome this new link with the County organization. He is especially interested in the Development Sub-Committee, which promises helpful co-ordination of information on speakers, research in progress and publications. At a July seminar on Local History Publishing the use of a word-processor in producing high-quality publications was demonstrated. Is this a new path for HADAS?


This is always an interesting event, even more so this year because Myfanwy Stewart of HADAS made the opening speech on the flint scatter found by her at Brockley Hill in 1987 (and again in 1989) in connection with the HADAS trial excavation there. A number of flints were found both Mesolithic and Neolithic and a Bronze Age arrowhead, all beautifully mounted by Victor Jones for the exhibition, and it became obvious that early man had camped here many times before Romans built their pottery kilns on the same site.

From this we went on to a Middle Iron Age site at- Uphall Camp near Ilford – a univallate fort with rampart and ditch – much denuded but producing some Bronze Age and Iron Age pottery in ditches and pits with much burnt qrain and the remains of several round houses, some ‘four-posters’ for storing grain and a possible rectangular structure.

Roman London then took up most of the remaining time except for an interesting account of excavations taking place at Merton Priory in Surrey. Four main London sites were discussed:-1) An early Roman timber building, probably a warehouse, on the Courage Brewery site where the wooden planks, joists and sidewall timbers were sufficiently well preserved to be lifted for preservation. 2) A collection of a Roman forger’s coin moulds from a ditch outside the City wall found together with a number of real silver dinarii. 3) In Upper Thames Street, a collection of 60 or more Roman millstones from Germany forming part of a substantial revetted Saxon flood embankment on the Thames. 4) Finds from Roman London’s eastern extra mural cemeteries including Mansell Street. Cremations and inhumations with coffins of lead, wood, and merely shrouds for the poor, with a collection of many burial goods, remains of flagons and dishes, the odd coin in the mouth to pay for crossing the Styx, gold earrings, silver bracelets, jet pendants, ivory figurines, even traces of hob-nailed boots.

Finally to round off the day, a provocative talk by Gustav Milne on public buildings in Londinium and their rise and fall according to the contemporary political state of affairs.

VIKING ART Muriel Large

The meeting on 7 March, which was attended by more than seventy members, as all our meetings since Christmas have been, was led invitingly through the delights of Viking art by Graham Campbell, well-remembered in HADAS for his previous lecture on the Anglo-Saxons.

The Vikings have always had a bad press as blood- thirsty pirates, ravaging the seacoasts of Northern Europe, but they were also settlers, farmers, merchants and craftsmen. Comparatively little of their art has come down to us, but it shows a restless quality and a love of surface adornment in keeping with their way of life, and it is all applied art. Textiles in particular have vanished almost without trace, and we are left with weapons, brooches and other metalwork, carved stones and the wood carving found in churches and ship burials. The ships themselves, however, are both functional and beautiful with clean, elegant lines and excellent carved ornamentation, mostly animal patterns.

Six styles have been identified, from Style III (ending about 850 AD) to the Urnes style of 1050 to 1170 AD. All influenced Saxon and Irish art and themselves developed when Christianity arrived, bringing a need for crucifixes and therefore human representations other than the previously depicted Valkyries with drinking horns.

Memorial stones – using naturally-shaped boulders – contain pictures of ships under sail with their warrior crews, as well as runes, Christian symbols and the stylised beasts characteristic of the Vikings. One favourite was the “gripping beast”, whose writhing bodies formed complex patterns while their legs gripped the edges of the design or other parts of the body. So complex are the patterns that it is sometimes difficult for the untutored eye to recognise the one or more animals depicted, e.g. a lion fighting a snake. Often the design consisted of a ribbon of uniform size, twisted round itself, with a “ladder pattern” central strip around which the head, feet and tails emerge. Colour, which to modern eyes could have appeared crude in its brilliance, was added to the stone.

The ninth-century Oseberg ship burial was rich in items, particularly elaborately worked stem and stern posts of interlaced animals with small heads and frond-like feet while the cart, sledges and bedposts found in the burial mound include human heads in full relief in the vivid ornamentation.

Golden pendants and brooches which have survived are rich with filigree and granulation, notably the drum-shaped brooch from Gottland, while elaborate brooches have been found in Russia, the Isle of Man, Orkney and Ireland . The Danish royal burial mound at Jelland (c.958) yielded a fine silver cup with interlaced animals. Some Carolingian influence has been noted, especially on the fittings of a scabbard from Sweden and a magnificently decorated iron battle axe which includes a man’s face with long moustaches and a spiral for beard.

Design was lightened and refined in the Ringesrike style at the turn of the millenium. The Kallunga vane, originally on a ship and then moved to a church, is still elaborate in design but shows an appreciation of plain background to set off the multiple tendrils of mane and tail and also uses a more naturalistic representation, described as the “great beast”. Jewellery also shows this trend while stonecarvings, and manuscripts produced in Winchester (influenced by the Danish King Knut) echo it. In St. Paul’s churchyard (now in the Museum of London) was found a carved and painted stone of this period. Interestingly, on a crucifix from Trondheim, the wrists were bound to the cross, not nailed, so that the hands could be shown in tendril form. A fluted silver bowl from Gotland was restrained and elegant.

The Great Beast soon became less leonine and more greyhound-like as it began to appear in Icelandic brooches, but after a final flowering in Ireland in the eleventh and twelfth centuries, the style lost vitality and was overtaken by the incoming Romanesque, The whole history of Viking art exemplified considerable technical skill, with self-assured and extrovert design.

Questions after the talk ranged from the absence of sea animals or fish in the designs, and the limited range of birds, to the geographical extent of Viking influence, from Kiev to Iceland, and to the use of such designs in Northern Europe as opposed to more classic ones in the South. A vote of thanks was proposed by Alan Lawson and well supported after such a feast of riches.


All those members who enjoyed our Christmas Party at- St George’s will be sad to know they have lost their grant as Susie Harding had feared. The Bar and Restaurant are closed, as are performances other than their workshops. Sponsorship is being actively sought. An item of good news is that the young actor Vincent Regan, who entertained us, has been accepted by the Royal Shakespeare Company at Stratford – straight into minor roles, not just spear carrying or understudying. We heartily congratulate him.


This scheduled monument is described by the Historic Buildings and Monuments Commission as “an irregular L-shaped moat associated with the site of a 13th century manor house”. Recently English Heritage permitted some tree planting there, “under archaeological supervision”, that being provided by the Department of Greater London Archaeology of the Museum of London with HADAS cooperating. Martin Brown and I, the operators, took the opportunity to study this rather unyielding site.

The present Manor House of 1723 is now occupied by the Sternberg Centre for Judaism and in all covers nearly 8 acres. The garden area behind the buildings is almost entirely scheduled, the only visible sign of the monument being the moat at the southern end. The southern half and eastern border of the garden are now woodland apart from two tennis courts, and are engulfed by sycamores, brambles, nettles, occasional mature trees and dumped builders’ rubble. In the midst the moat, dry and overgrown, remains a formidable structure.

This sad state is now partly alleviated by the British Trust for Conservation Volunteers, who on February 21-25 made five clearings in the woodland and recovered the paths. They were allowed to plant 120 saplings – up to 35cms deep, outside and roughly south of the moat, treating clearance roots chemically without grubbing up in this archaeologically sensitive area, helped by the workmanlike children of the Sternberg’s Akiva primary school the expert Volunteers planted oak, ash, hornbeam, field maple, hazel, hawthorne, wayfarers bush, dog rose and guelder rose. Martin Brown and I poked hopefully in nearly all those holes and found not one potsherd nor anything else medieval. Either this was the end of the site or any remains are buried more deeply.

The old manor keeps its secrets well. The following account of it owes much to the VCH. References are given at the end.

The Finchley lands belonged to the Bishop of London’s Fulham estates from time out of mind, declared one Bishop, bereft of documents, in 1294; this may imply a possible Saxon estate. It is first recorded as a manor in 1319. From 1244 the estate was leased to a series of prosperous London merchants, and with a few interruptions for courtiers, C18 squirearchy and schools, the series continued up to the Jones Bros and Gamages of yesterday. In 1918 the Society of Marie Auxiliatrice bought the present house and grounds for a convent school. They left in 1981 and the Sternberg Centre took over.

The site was typical of many medieval houses in Finchley; close to the edge of the boulder clay as the land falls away to gravel and a stream, here the Mutton Brook. In earlier years neither house nor moat got much mention. The house is quoted in 1335 in a St Paul’s MS. Bibbsworth, a leaseholder in 1420-1443, possibly extended it as subsequently it was called a ‘great place’. At that time the estate had 6 houses including the manor house, 7 torts, 200 acres of land (arable/fallow?), 30 acres of meadow, 200 acres of pasture, 120 acres of wood and 49 shillings of rent in Finchley and Hendon. The farm land was always let to local farmers and this continued until the farms were sold in C19 and C20. The manor house was therefore more a country house than a farm complex. The VCH suggests that it was rents that attracted medieval merchants plus the possibility of offering the property as security when raising business loans.

In 1502-4 a lease cites the manor house, an orchard and another building as being ‘within the ‘moat’ (the first mention of it) and a great barn and long stable as outside but adjoining the moat. In 1664 the Hearth Tax return gives 19 hearths for the house which is ‘standing within a moat’. The VCH has a reference to the long fishpond north of the site in 1692 and also to some ornamental gardens. (This fishpond is shown in old photographs and was erroneously called a moat; it was drained in this century and the houses of Manor View now occupy the position).

In 1723 the squire Thomas Allen built the present manor house a little to the north and cleared out the old house and adjacent buildings, leaving only the moat, it seems. He or his successors built or extended ornamental gardens over the site. In 1947 this garden had become ‘the convent woods’; later the northern half was cleared for a school playing field and then the tennis courts.

So we are left with questions. Where was the old house with its outhouses and orchard? When was the the moat built and what was its extent?

A manor plan of 1870 (ref FD) suggests that the moat, drawn there perhaps unduly curved, may have extended to the north-west, i.e. was three sided. The OS map of 18984-6 gives only the L-shaped moat. If the three sided plan was correct, the old house with any remaining orchard or other buildings would lie north of the moat under the tennis courts and a little further to west. If the moat was always L-shaped the space for structures was still to the north but somewhat smaller. Despite 19 hearths and any possible infilling with C17 brickwork, the old house must have been basically a timber-framed hall house, with timber-framed barn, stables and outhouses. These buildings often leave little trace. Whatever might have remained beneath Thomas Allen’s gardens and the convent woods and the tennis courts would normally be described as now safe and not at risk – except perhaps from sycamore roots. At least the old house is not beneath its successor of 1723, as some HADAS trenching in 1982 showed (HADAS Newsletter March 1982)

As for the moat…………… In general moats were built between 1150 and 1500,

the heyday for building being 1200 to 1325. They were common on the clay lands; 30 are listed for Middlesex, Essex once had 548. Of all sizes and shapes, they could be built for drainage, fishponds, protection from thieves, protection of gardens (Haringey park had the Bishop’s deer), control of domestic or farm stock, a water supply for fire fighting, and to signify social superiority.

The Finchley moat now measures 23 metres wide at the west end, 18m at the east end. The length from the midline ramp to the west end is 45m. The eastern ‘half’ was not available for measuring length, being choked with undergrowth; it appears possibly a little longer. The depth has been much reduced by soil-wash and vegetation; one still climbs down into the (western) moat but it is not possible to estimate depth of any use. Now dry, the moat in 1947 contained water, perhaps 8-10 feet deep in the eastern (deeper) end, and had occasional visiting ducks. (from personal communication)

Apart from rain water, sources are not clear. The site lies at just below 300ft above sea level. The OS map shows a tentative stream line coming off Finchley Common, at Browns’s wells, following Squire’s Lane to the fishpond, crossing the site uncertainly and leaving from the southeast boundary, heading for the Mutton Brook. This stream is not shown on OS maps of 1894-6 or later, nor on the Roque map of 1794. There are no surface signs of it now.

A near midline ramp crosses the moat, raising the possiblity of a former medieval bridge. Remnants of abutments if any might lie beneath the ramp to the south; this may be due to an old track – or to another cause.

The literature on moats shows that the discovery of their foundations and possible age, original construction and any subsequent reconstructions makes a demanding task for excavators. Digging the occasional trench offers little of value. The surrounding structures (banks, buildings past-and present.) require interpretation. It is also necessary to watch for remains of pre-existing farming including Saxon or earlier settlement. In common speech excavation of the Finchley moat is not on.

All in all, the old manor of Finchley may well continue to raise questions that it is not going to answer. But it is a fine place for speculation.


Council for British Archaeology. Research report no 17. Medieval Moated Sites.

1978 Davis, Fred. Finchley Manor: Influential Families. Barnet Libraries Local History Publication 1982

Victoria County History of Middlesex. vol. VI 1980


Cherry LavelI of the Council for British Archaeology, was quick to respond to John Venn’s request in the last issue. Here is her list of reviews of Colin Renfrew’s Archaeology and Language

Antiquity. 62, 1988, 563-95 (three papers) plus 607-9 (straight review)

American Anthropology 90(4), 1988, (pans the book on language grounds alone)

Current Anthropology 29, 1988, 437-68 (gives precis by Renfrew of his book plus critiques by 8 reviewers)

Nature 331, 28 Jan 1988, 311 (Richard Bradley’s review)

Times Lit. Supp. June 24-30 1988 (pan by Marija Gimbutas)

Cherry Lavell says these are all that she has noticed so far in the learned journals there have also been short reviews in Times, Guardian, Observer

American Anthropology and Current Anthropology can be

found in UCL Institute of Archaeology Library, and not, many other places I know of!


187 Marine Parade,

Hunter’s Quay,

Dunoon, Argyll, PA218HJ.


I do so enjoy the Newsletter. I met Daphne Lorimer at the AGM of the Council of Scottish Archaeology at the end of January and we had lunch together. It was good, to see her. Cowal Archaeology Society will be digging at the end of May for two weeks led by Betty Rennie. Should anyone (or two people) be “madly” keen to visit this part of Scotland and join us I could offer accomodation.

with best wishes,


Dorothy Thomas

PS. The Summer School might also be of interest SLUBTERRANEA BRITANNICA

Mrs Beaman, who gave us that illuminating talk on Ice Houses at our last.

AGM, has sent in details of the above Society, which is an organisation of about 120 members, with extensive active contacts with people and organisations in Sweden, Denmark, The Netherlands, Belgium, Germany and France. They are concerned with all aspects of research into man-made and man-used underground space. Meetings are held twice a year in Cambridge and/or London. There is an annual study weekend to enable members to visit a variety of underground sites, and they participate in International Conferences and visits abroad. There is a Newsletter several times a year and informal exchange visits and exhange of information is encouraged among members. Particular areas of interest include ice-houses, dene holes, canal, road and railway tunnels, miscellaneous minas, the several abandoned Channel tunnel works, underground stone quarries, rock cut cellars etc. Mrs Beaman also enclosed details of a day conference at the Royal School of Mines, Prince Consort Rd on Saturday 8th April. Lecture topics include The Channel Tunnel Grid, Underground Fortifications on Alderney and Stone Quarries at Caen. Lunch available. Further information from Malcolm Todd, Secretary, on 0737 823456 or from our present. Editor on 046 7720


A reminder that a subscription to the British Museum Society, which is open to anyone interested in supporting the Museum, brings not only the chance to attend evening lectures and private views, free entry to paying exhibitions such as the Shadow of the Guillotine: Britain, and the French Revolution, 10 per cent discount on all items at the BM shop and at exhibition sales points. and, three times a year, a beautifully produced magazine, which reports on the activities of the Society and the BM with authoritative illustrated articles, usually written by the curatorial staff, and notes on acquisitions and special exhibitions. The Society also

organises tours abroad and in the U.K forthcoming ones include Cappadocia; Egypt, Jordan and the Holy Land; Jordan and Sinai; Egypt in Europe (visits to Munich, Linz and Vienna) and 1812: Napoleon in, Europe. More information on the Society from June Forges, 346 5078.




This is the title of our new publication, virtually ready for printing and bound to be a success. The size – a pocketable “shire-size’ volume is settled, a few illustrations have yet to be selected and then we shall be set to introduce ourselves to an even wider audience than ever before. More news soon.

Archaeology workshop: Dig into Archaeology! Mike Hutchins, based at the Museum of London, will explain, in layman’s terms, what archaeology is about, its methods and results. Saturday April 29th, 2pm at St John’s Gate. The cost will be £3, including a sandwich lunch beforehand. Cheques to the Curator, Museum and Library, St John’s Gate, London EC1M 4DA before 20th April

Mutiny on the Bounty
An international exhibition to mark the bicentenary of the most famous mutiny in maritime history at National Maritime Museum Greenwich, April 28 to October 1 1969

Art in Flight An exhibition of paintings and drawings of aviation in World Wars 1 and 2. Church Farm House Museum, Greyhound Hill, NW4 March 18th to April 30th.Closed Tuesday afternoons, Sunday mornings, otherwise 10 to 1pm, 2 to 5.30pm.

London Area Pottery_Group. A study dav on current finds from London and the South East. Lecturers include Mark Redknap on Barking, Paul Blinkhorn on Ipswich and Dr Helena Hamerow on Mucking. Saturday May 6th at the Education Department, Museum of London 10am. Early booking advisable. £6.

Finchley Information Fair. An annual exhibition at which groups have an opportunity to show the community what they are doing and talk to possible new members. HADAS will be there with finds and photographs from our recent activities. Saturday May 20th 10am to 5pm. Methodist Church Hall, Ballards Lane, Finchley.


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NEWSLETTER 216: March 1989 Editor: Deirdre


Tuesday, March 7 DR. GRAHAM CAMPBELL on “The Vikings and Their Art” . Dr. Campbell is Reader in Medieval Archaeology at University College. He came to talk to us in 1987 on Late Celtic Art in Great Britain and Ireland. He gave us a fascinating lecture with excellent slides. We are sure that this too will be a most interesting evening and hope the audiences will be as good as they have been at our January and February lectures.

Tuesday, April 4 .HARVEY SHELDON on Recent Archaeological Investigation in Southwark.

Saturday, April 22
Afternoon Tour of Harrow School.

“CANARY WHARF IS FOR THE BIRDS” – Alec Jeakins reports on the February lecture

An artist’s impression of Canary Wharf was the final image of Alex Warner’s lecture on the London Dockland and its Archaeological Discoveries and Potential. Apart from showing the main 850-foot structure, in the background was the proposed road linking Canary Wharf to the start of the Highway at Ratcliffe Cross. The road will be built cut-and-cover, i.e. a deep trench that will be covered over. The route will cut through potentially important archaeological sites at Limehouse and Ratcliffe Cross (medieval docks and possibly Roman wharfs). These are areas that Mr Werner has identified in a series of research papers that he has written to alert his colleagues, the London Docklands Development Corporation and the planning departments in the London boroughs covering the Docklands. He also added a plea for £200,000 from the developers for archaeological work – from the £200 million budgeted to build the road!

That story encapsulates the archaeological problems of the Docklands – few planning restrictions, 50-60 planning applications per week, vast sites, some contaminated with hazardous wastes such as lead and transformer oil, totally inadequate resources which reduce the archaeologists to begging favours from JCB operators to cut them holes and trenches, and that’s assuming they can get on to the site in the first place.

Mr Werner was, in the opinion of some members, unduly protective towards one particu­lar major developer by not naming the company, a company which has consistently refused assistance of any kind to the archaeologists.

As an example of the practical consequences of this scale of activities, in Southwark 34 excavations were undertaken in 1988 (Harvey Sheldon will no doubt tell us about them in more detail in April). They included the Cherry Garden Wharf which produced Saxon and Roman remains; Platform Wharf where a moated site, possibly a palace belonging to Edward II has been partly excavated, though the central area has still to be worked on (which in the 17th C was used as a “Delft” pottery); a site of what may have been Falstaff’s House that produced a fine piece of waterlogged medieval carved wood; a fascinating slide of Neolithic plough-marks that had been found below a warehouse basement; and also from Southwark existence of a Bronze Age barrow and the famous wooden-floored Roman warehouse.

Not surprisingly, with this quantity of excavation on the South side of the Thames, virtually no excavations have taken place on the North bank. This will change as projects like Canary Wharf Road get under way. Already tantalising glimpses are coming to light of wattle-laid medieval pathways through the Isle of Dogs. Evidence of the scale of the embanking of the Isle of Dogs has been shown by the quantities of -Delft” kiln wasters, clay, and kiln furniture from the Southwark potteries that have been found so far.

We were left with the feeling that whatever historical information is recovered from the Docklands will only be a fraction of what could have been found, had the redevelopment taken place at a less frenzied pace. What we let slip through our fingers is not only our loss but lost forever.


Myfanwy Stewart will be speaking on Brockley Hill – Prehistoric Flintwork at the 26th Annual Conference of London Archaeologists, organised by LAMAS. (See February Newsletter). At 11.10 am, Myfanwy will be the first of a group of speakers on Recent Archaeological Research in London. The afternoon session consists of short lectures casting new light on aspects of Roman London.

The day of lectures will be held in the Museum of London Lecture Theatre, and tickets are obtainable from: LAMAS Archaeological Conference, c/o Museum of London, London Wall, London EC2Y 5HN at £2.50 (LAMAS members) and £3.50 (non-members of LAMAS).

Victor Jones and Brian Wrigley will talk on An Ice House in Hendon when they take part in a LAMAS “Members’ Miscellany” at the Lecture Theatre of the Museum of London at 6.30 pm on Wednesday 17th May. LAMAS says they “will be delighted to see any members of groups from affiliated societies who may be interested.”


Readers of December’s Newsletter may remember that, during the course of my “heart­rending” account of High Street, Barnet, I referred briefly to an object discovered boxed within the exposed timber framing of 52 High Street (Louis Shoe Shop).

The original function of this wrought-iron, roughly spoon-shaped tool, 18* inches long, remains a mystery. It was duly sent to the British Museum experts for dating and identification, but they could offer no clue as to either its date or function. Since the object’s return to Barnet Museum, where it now sits smugly on display, puzzling everybody, it has started a “guess-what-it-was-for” game. Suggestions have included a heating iron for mulling wine, a thatching tool, a ratting spoon and an ancient murder weapon!

Having for many years been immersed in the study of the history of witchcraft and magic, and given the fact that the object seemed to have been deliberately concealed within the timber framing, possibly for magical purposes, I sent a photograph and information concerning the object to Ralph Merrifield, author of “The Archaeology of Ritual and Magic”, requesting his opinion.

Mr Merrifield very kindly replied very promptly with the following comments:

“Thank you very much for you kind words about my book. I’m glad you enjoyed it and only hope that it has some effect on the attitude of archaeologists who, unlike you, are at present unconverted … I have heard of an ordinary 17th century table spoon being found enclosed in the door lintel of a house at Waltham Abbey;’ it is now in the Museum of London.

The curious object from Barnet is, of course, quite different, and if it was enclosed as a charm, the reason may have been that it was made of iron, which in any form was supposed to repel witches and fairies. I would be interested to know precisely how and where it was boxed in. Somewhere near the chimney piece on the first’ floor would be the most usual place. With regard to its original function, I don’t much favour either the ‘ratting’ spoon or the thatch­ing tool theory. The fact that it had a wooden handle, and was quite long suggests to me that it became very hot at the spatulate end when it was used.

I would therefore favour the heating iron theory. It could have been used in mulling wine or ale, or perhaps in some industrial process. It would even have been used for more general kitchen purposes as a stirrer – e.g. of the contents of a cauldron.

If it is a spoon, it must have been used for ‘supping with the devil’!”

The mind boggles. Bearing in mind the above comments, I contacted the builder who discovered the object, Mr. Bob Fairweather, who provided further information concerning the positioning of the object within the timber framing.

The object was first discovered within the first floor wall, placed carefully within a recess in the timber framing, and enclosed by the original plasterwork, which had not been disturbed. This indicates that the object was placed here at the time of construction, probably some time in the 17th C. (Many of the timbers used are apparently re-used 16th C ships’ timbers, according to Mr. Fairbrother.) Further, the object was indeed deposited very near to the chimney, as Mr. Merrifield predicted.

It would therefore seem reasonable to suppose that the implement was placed here deliberately as a charm to protect the building at the time of its construction. Placing it near to the chimney could protect the building against (a) the risk of fire and (b) against any malevolent entities entering the building by way of the chimney. The charm, if it is indeed such, may also have had a far more specific purpose, linked to its original function. If anybody out there in HADAS recognises its purpose, for goodness’ sake let me know at once and put me out of my misery.

My thanks are due to Ralph Merrifield for his speedy and informative response to my plea for assistance, and to Mr. Graham Javes of Barnet Museum for the photograph. Many thanks also to Bob Fairbrother, the building contractor in charge of work at 52 High Street, who has kept HADAS informed of progress and discoveries at the site throughout. What a pleasant and refreshing change!


With this Newsletter I am enclosing a reminder that subscriptions have been increased and are due for renewal as from 1 April 1989. As mentioned in the February Newsletter, members who pay by standing order should complete a new form and send this to your bank – if you have already done this, please ignore this reminder.

Thanks also for the subscriptions I have already received. I await hearing from you all, and thank you for your assistance.

After much delay, I have finally read Colin Renfrew’s book, “Archaeology and Language”, and hope it is not too late to add some comments, particularly as I believe Brian Wrigley’s remarks in last August’s Newsletter were unduly critical.

The views on the location of the Indo-European “homeland” and the date of dispersal from it which Professor Renfrew discusses in his early chapters are very speculative. They are based only on the common “core” vocabulary of the Indo-European languages and on vague estimates of the rates at which languages change. Attempts to match up the supposed migrations with the archaeological evidence (Beakers, Corded Ware, etc.) are not convincing. For many years the opinion of most linguists has been that the matter would be eventually settled by archaeological research, and that seems to be what is happening now, though in a rather surprising way.

What Professor Renfrew has done is to cut the Gordian knot by taking firmly the view that there were no Beaker or Corded Ware migrations, and backdating the Indo-European dispersal, therefore, to the last period in which there probably were migrations, namely the period in which agriculture spread. To me this seems a brilliantly simple idea, and much that was previously puzzling now falls into place. The longer time-scale and the slower rate of migration leave more time for the observed differences between the main language branches to have developed. And if the dispersal was from the south, it is easier to see why, before the Roman Empire, there was a fairly distinct north-south frontier between the Celtic and Germanic branches, which has always seemed difficult to account for if dispersal was from the east.

As Brian Wrigley says, Professor Renfrew’s model relies completely on the supposition that domesticated plant and animal species spread across Europe from a Near Eastern homeland. I am not too sure how well accepted this idea is in archaeological circles (or indeed the view that there were no Beaker or Corded Ware migrations) – maybe HADAS members can advise me on this point. it does not seem to me, however, that the model is totally dependent on the “wave of advance” theory of Cavalli-Sforza and Ammerman. Professor Renfrew only invokes it to account for his own objection that a non-hierarchic society, such as the late Neolithic, would not have had sufficient organisational ability to mount a planned migration. It does not, however, seem all that improbable that a planned migration should take place in this era. Somehow or other, these early farmers crossed the sea at several points, which seems to demand a degree of planning which exceeds the simple “wave of advance” model. This is not to argue that “wave of advance” is in itself suspect. It is really a statement of statistical fact rather than an archaeological theory, showing the demographic consequences of the fiftyfold increase in population which a change to a farming economy would make possible. As far as it goes, its main points can be verified in five minutes with a pocket calculator. It undoubtedly operates if the conditions are right – the only doubt in any particular case must be whether the conditions are right and whether other factors are operating as well.

As far as dispersal of the Indo-European languages in Asia is concerned, the situation is not quite the same as in Europe, because the existing theories (though over-romanticised) are more satisfactory. The languages of the Indo-Iranian group are more closely related to each other than are the languages of Europe, suggesting a later dispersal. Though there is no proof that the Indus Valley civilisation was overthrown by intruders, it did come to a sudden end. And although the Indus Valley script has not been interpreted, the balance of opinion seems to be that its language is Dravidian. Professor Renfrew’s case for linking the coming of Indo-European languages with the spread of agriculture is not made so convincingly as in the case of Europe, and it still seems distinctly possible that they arrived from the north-west in the second millenium BC. Hopefully the Indus script will be deciphered one day and throw some more light on the matter. If the language is Indo-Iranian, Professor Renfrew will almost certainly have been proved right.

It is now some time since Professor Renfrew’s book appeared, and presumably responses to it will have appeared in specialist journals. Do any HADAS members have knowledge of these?


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

Northern Area

315 Wellhouse Lane, Chipping Barnet 48-bed Geriatric Unit with parking spaces

63/65 Wood Street, Chipping Barnet 2 storey offive building

Edgware Farm, Edgwarebury Lane Rear Extension

48 Brockley Avenue, Stanmore Front and rear extension.

Rosebank Farm, The Ridgeway, NW7 Extensive conversions to farm buildings

68, Francklyn Gardens, Edgware Extensions


Any archaeological excavation, whether amateur or professional, depends for its success on the humble digger. For those who have not yet given a hand at any of the past HADAS projects, these few words have been put together to given them some idea of what is required in practical terms, and to emphasise that we need not only the horny-handed, gimlet-eyed “old stager”, but the absolute beginners who are willing to give us a little of their time so that in the coming season we shall see many new faces among the volunteers.

First and foremost, the only real requirement is enthusiasm, although of course any experience is very useful, even working in your garden or allotment will mean you will have some familiarity with the use of the spade and trowel.

In essence, there are two types of dig. Usually the site is opened up by removing the more recent layers, which are often very disturbed. The depth of this varies enormously, from a few inches at rural sites to several feet in cities. This accumulation is not without its value, but the dictates of time mean that a certain amount of ruthlessness must be adopted, and in the case of professionally-directed digs, this whole layer is removed by a JCB machine. For amateur groups, however, picks and shovels and wheelbarrows are the only practical answer, used on carefully chosen and limited areas.

When the less disturbed and potentially more informative layers are reached, more finesse is required. Small areas are marked off, each digger being allocated a section, and she/he uses a trowel gently to remove the soil to a depth determined by the site director, carefully recording the three-dimensional position of each artefact found. The find may then be placed in a tray, or for more important pieces, in a plastic bag, together with its record card. A small shovel is then used to put the spoil into a bucket, which when full is transferred to the spoil-heap. Ideally, each load should be carefully sieved before disposal, but for several reasons this may have to be omitted, and therefore will be at the discretion of the director.

In both cases, common sense is an important factor. When using the pick and shovel, a sharp eye should be kept for interesting finds, (a bag of Victorian guineas, for example!) or the modern unrecorded water-pipe or cable. When trowelling, observation must be even more acute. A change in soil texture or colour might indicate the edge of a pit or feature which will need different recovery techniques.

In case of any doubt, the attention of the director or a more experienced digger should be brought to the anomaly.

Although “trenching” has been superseded by the investigation of sites layer by layer by professional archaeologists, trial trenching is an important tool for small groups with limited time and effort at their disposal. The siting of these trial trenches is obviously critical since, if you are unlucky, they could miss every feature, and therefore is the cause of many headaches to the director, but if chosen well, can give an insight into the potential of the excavation very quickly.

It may be that you are concerned with the equipment for your debut. If we start with the clothing, washable jeans are the best choice for everyone. On top, several layers are preferable (shovelling is hot work, trowelling isn’t), and are easily adapted. In changeable weather, a waterproof jacket and overtrousers are essential, and so are a good pair of wellingtons or boots. In dry weather trainers can be worn when trowelling.

Note-taking equipment is useful, as you will need to record the finds on the cards supplied. A notebook of your own will enable you to keep a history of your own contribution to the dig.

We now come to the trowel, the symbol of all archaeologists, and the tool all beginners should possess.

It should have a blade 3″-4″ in length and be in one piece (forged) or welded. Rivetted trowels are not recommended as they become loose, but for reasons of economy beginners might feel that as they are much cheaper, they may do as well to start with. “Texas” DIY shops supply quite acceptable varieties. Your own kneeling-pad might also be convenient (your spare woolly in a large plastic bag will often serve). All other equipment, shovels (small and large), buckets etc, are supplied by HADAS.

Every help will be given to new diggers on site, and at the end of the day, you will find that it has not been hard graft but a most enjoyable social occasion.

For anyone who would like to go deeper into the theories and practice of excavation, a number of books are available. One of which can be recommended is Graham Webster’s “Practical Archaeology”.

THE DERIVATION OF SILK STREAM (See p.8 of February Newsletter)

Bill Firth says “Only one member, Jean Snelling, came up with a full answer to the derivation of the name ‘Silk Stream’.

‘The Concise Oxford Dictionary of English Place Names’ (4th ed. 1960, Eilert Ekwall) refers to the Old English sulh meaning a plough, but also in the sense of ‘furrow’ or ‘gully’ – a narrow valley. Ekwall gives references to Silk Stream as sulh, sulc in 957 AD and sulh in 972 in the ‘Cartalarium Saxiconum’.”


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

Newsletter 214 January 1989 Editor June Porges



Tuesday 3rd January
George Hart Egypt in the Pyramid Era

Tuesday 7th February Alex Werner London’s dockland, its archaeological discoveries and potential.

Tuesday 7 March DR GRAHAM CAMPBELL. Subject : The Vikings

All lectures are held at Hendon Library, The Burroughs, NW4. This is quite near to the junction with Hendon Way (buses 113), not too far from Hendon Underground Station and the 143 bus passes the door.

Coffee is available from 8pm and the lecture begins at 8.30. If you are a new member do make yourself known to someone.


On 6 December some sixty members enjoyed an evening of food and entertainment at St George’s Theatre in Tufnell Park. Mary O’Connell came up with the idea for such an original venue. This was no surprise to members who know just how extensive her knowledge of London is from her Charterhouse and Clerkenwell tours.

Before supper Susie Hardie, the theatre’s administrator, invited us into the theatre to tell us something about St George’s. The church was built in 1867 to accomodate the growing population of the newly- built Tufnell Park Estate. The Estate’s Surveyor, George Truefitt, was appointed architect with the task of designing a church within a triangular site. He decided on a structure with a circular interior resembling a mosque, a style of architecture favoured by the crusaders for eastern churches.

George Murcell, the theatre’s founder and artistic director, a classical actor himself, was looking for somewhere to establish a Shakespearean theatre. He stumbled across St George’s, which had become redundant, and coincidentally it conformed without any drastic alterations being necessary to what we believe a Shakespearean theatre in the round was like. After many setbacks he managed to get a preservation order on the building with the help of John Betjeman and the Victorian Society and to raise the necessary funds to buy it.

The repertoire is at the moment entirely Shakespearean and geared towards young people and the current school syllabus. Nevertheless those of us who have seen performances there will vouch for the high quality and professionalism of the productions. After Susie Hardie had answered all our questions we eagerly returned to what was modestly described as our supper. This turned out to be an excellent and generous repast served on festively decorated tables.

The theatre prides itself on being one of the few places where young actors can get a proper classical training. After the main course we were entertained by two of their talented young actors who treated us to a varied programme from Shakespeare’s works finishing on a happy note with “0 Mistress Mine” from “Twelfth Night”. We were deeply impressed by the commitment and enthusiasm of those involved with St George’s even to the extent of Susie Hardie lending a hand with the catering and serving our coffee. The evening ended with the raffle and John Enderby proposing a vote of thanks from all members to Dorothy Newbury for her superb masterminding of the event so soon after organising the record-breaking Minimart. It must be a difficult task to find something equally original for next Christmas.


A tree was planted in memory of Paddy Musgrove in the grounds of Avenue House, East End Road, N3 on November 26th. The tree, a rare Hungarian Oak, was given by the London Borough of Barnet and the planting was led by Paddy’s daughter, Mrs Leone Berry and his enthusiastic grandson Rhys, aged four, supported by the Mayor of Barnet and the Finchley Society.

The sapling oak, staked and fenced, can be found on a grassy bank close by tree no 22 (recently dead) following the plan in the booklet The Trees of Avenue House, Finchley. (50p at Church End Library, Hendon Lane, N3 Tel: 346 5711). There is already one splendid and mature specimen of this Quercus Frainetto in Avenue House grounds, no 52. Paddy would have approved the timely provision of a young successor, and its association with his services to Avenue House and to the Borough generally would surely have given him great pleasure.

The first week of the New Year is the time for the newspapers and television to publicise holiday ideas, so to keep In fashion HADAS Newsletter brings news of two recent holidays.

A PACKAGE TO SICILY by Rose and Alf Mendel

We had booked a Taormina holiday attracted by the climate (75 degrees late September/early October) and by the wealth of ancient sites.

A three hour flight from Gatwick took us to Catania, birthplace of

Vincenzo Bellini. It took another one and a half hours to get to our hotel, driving along a ring road from where we saw patches of black lava from Mt Aetna’s big eruption in 1928. We drove through the suburb of Giardine Naxos where the first Greek settlers from the island of Naxos had landed in 735BC and where we later visited the Museo Archaeologico, set in an orchard. A section of Greek walls and furnaces can be seen here, while excellent exhibits and wall charts in the nearby museum give an outline of local history.

The earliest inhabitants were the Sicani and the Siculi, after whom the island was named. They had been trading for centuries

with the Aegeo-Mycenians and Phoenicians, but by the 6th century BC there was the beginning of a stampede by the many city states of Greece to occupy a section of the Island of Sicily. After cutting down their own forests to build ships for trade and war resulting soil erosion had reduced the area available for agriculture, and the wheat fields of Sicily answered their need.

The Greek settlers, besides tending their newly acquired fields, had to fight many battles against the native Inhabitants, as well as against each other and the Cartagenians, until the tyrant Gelon united all of Sicily. After his victory over the Cartagenians In 480BC he became the most powerful figure In the Greek world.

Our hotel was only fifteen minutes’ walk from the Greek amphitheatre, where shortly after our arrival, on a moonlit night, we sat listening to a concert of Bellini’s work performed by the Catanian Philharmonic Orchestra. This theatre, seating twelve thousand people, was built in the Hellenistic period, was greatly altered by the Romans, but retained its wonderful acoustics. The “cavea” (the part where the seats are) was excavated into the hillside, and a “naumachia” (a flooded area where mock naval battles could be staged) was added. Goethe described the view from the top of the Cavea, writing that “never did any audience in any theatre have before it such a spectacle”

Of the many tours available we took three. All of them have to traverse great distances, and often more time is spent on the coach than on visiting sites. A five hour coach trip took us to Agrigento where we visited the Vale of Temples, once the Inspiration of British and German “grand tourists” who used to admire the symmetry of architecture and landscape. Now the vale is disturbed by a network of busy roads, high-rise buildings and factory chimneys belching acid fumes which cause deterioration, and one is no longer allowed to walk through the temples. All this has happened against the protests of archaeologists, but they were helpless when opposed by the Mafia who control practically the whole of the local building industry. Our next tour, to Piazza Amerina, was a wonderful experience. A knowledgeable guide took us to the “Villa Imperials” home of a wealthy landowner around AD300. Enough is left of the walls, which had been buried by a landslide, to get an impression of the vastness of the house. One enters through a triumphal arch with two fountains on each side, leading to thirty-seven rooms containing bathing pools, a frigidarium, tapidarlum, caldaria etc. What makes this “stately home” unique are its well preserved mosaic floors, the work of craftsmen Imported from Africa. The site was first discovered around 1820, but excavations over an area of some 3,500 square metres were only completed in the 1950s. Today the whole Is protected by transparent plastic roofing,and footbridges have been erected above all the floors covered by mosaics, so one can stand and look down on the beautiful scenes depicted – girls in “bikinis” performing gymnastics, hunting expeditions, cupids busy fishing, various mythological scenes, a young girl taking off her clothes assisted by two servants – all of it reflecting the lives and beliefs of people living In the later years of the Roman Empire. We felt sad leaving all this splendour, to travel back via Enna, hillside centre of the island, and visit the Castello di Lombardia, built by the Swabian emperors who took over from theNormans in 1194. Our third trip took us to the Aeolian Islands, named after the Greek god of the winds, Aeolus, who was said to keep the winds imprisoned in his cave. One and a half hours after leaving Sicily our ferry reached Llperi, the biggest of the Islands, where we ambled through the busy fishing harbour and followed narrow streets leading up to the Castello built by the Spaniards in the 16th century. On the summit of the same hillside, extensive excavations have revealed uninterrupted occupation since the Neolithic age, and we found the various levels well marked. Still on the summit we came to the baroque cathedral built in the 18th century on the site where the Norman church had stood since 1084, erected by the Norman Count Roger de Hautville who had captured Sicily with a handful of knights in the second half of the 11th century. Norman knights were then the dominant power in Europe, also setting up kingdoms In England, Greece and the Holy Land. The adjoining 17th century Episcopal Palace is now part of an extensive archaeological museum, where we admired the collection of vases from the 5th to 3rd centuries BC, and an outstanding series of terracotta figures and theatrical masks whose facial expressions of greed, fury, madness or mirth are much the same as we see in our theatres today.

We had to rush past excellent reconstructions of ancient burial sites to catch the one o’clock inter-island boat that took us past strange basalt stacks, and a seventy metres high obelisk of rocks rising out of the sea, to the small island of Vulcan. Here we found a rugged volcanic landscape. We made for the nearest beach, which was lined by rocks, and we found hot sulphur springs bubbling in the sea close to the shore. After a swim in the warm sea and some lunch we felt sufficiently refreshed to set off along a steep, stony path leading up to the crater whose rim you see steaming with sulphur vapours from down below. It is possible to scramble right up to the cone of the crater, but we didn’t make it. However, we were feeling at peace with ourselves and the world.As we were winding our way back downhill, through groves of citrus trees, prickly pears and old gnarled olive trees. Civilization was still a healthy distance away.

Two days later on our flight home we pondered over Sicily’s harsh

history of conquest, by Greeks, Carthagenians, Romans who cruelly repressed two slave uprising, Vandals, Ostrogoths, Byzantines, Saracens, Normans, Swablans, French, Spaniards, as well as the British In the early 19th century, and the Germans and Americans during the second world war. Arriving in grey Gatwick and becoming part of its mass of tourists milling around is always a shock, and yet we felt quite pleased to return to our everyday lives and home on an Island which in its recent history has suffered no foreign Invasions.


Strangely enough our journey to Ireland commenced at a farm near Milton Keynes at 6.55am on a dampish morning in June. There we, Isobel McPherson, Hans and I, boarded a coach which commenced to tour the area, picking up small groups at Bletchley, Great Missenden, Beaconsfield and other foreign parts west of Barnet including Taplow, where to our astonishment the familiar figure of Ted Sammes loped aboard. We found several other old friends among the party including David Ridd who helped arrange the memorable HADAS outing to Porton Down. We sped along the M4 and A40 to Pembroke Docks to Join our ferry, but found no boat, sailing delayed for six hours. Time passed quite quickly, however, as we explored the ghost land of the Naval Dockyard which is in the process of being demolished, and the town, where Ted’s observant camera photographed unusual artefacts in the streets and on the houses. So our eagerly anticipated drive from Rosslare to Cork took place in the dark and we arrived at our destination, St Dominic’s Retreat and Conference Centre, to a warm welcome and hot soup (with lovely home made bread) at.4.30am. We were assured that breakfast would be available all morning, so we were able to catch up on some sleep and after we had eaten found St Dominic’s to be a lovely old mansion set in gardens full of unusual exotic plants and more usual ones which because of the climate grow to be several times the specimens found in our gardens. Here we benefited for the first time from the expertise of our natural history expert, Bob Millard, who throughout the trip provided us with beautifully prepared sheets of information for the different habitats we visited, and who was always available to answer our questions.

After lunch (if you want to eat well go to a Dominican retreat) we met a well known local resident Tom O’Byrne, who after working in the East and Australia for many years has returned to Ireland and acquired his own valley, which he has turned into a nature reserve. He led us beside the stream whose banks are edged with an abundance of plants and trees, told us of the animals to be seen there and showed us the ruins of a spade and shovel factory which stood there using the water from the stream – a bit of token archaeology for those of us who were not really natural

historians. Tom gave us a fascinating account of the local natural

history, even Illustrating a talk he gave us after supper by rushing from the room and with a spectacular rugger tackle saving a pygmy shrew from under the paw of the astonished house cat.

Our first real archaeology was a visit to Ballytcatteen Ring Fort, a fine circular settlement site of three acres surrounded by three great ditches, a lovely peaceful place where we were joined by the owner of the farm who told us how her father had enjoyed working with the archaeologists excavating In the 1940s, and how it is now impossible to keep it cleared of brambles and undergrowth with the shortage and cost of farm labour. On to Dromberg stone circle which can be lined up with winter solstice. Nearby there are two hut circles and a fulacht fiadh, a cooking place consisting of a pool of water into which hot stones were dropped to cook the food. Later we met someone who had experienced meat cooked in that way as a bit of experimental archaeology and who said it wasn’t very good – why eat boiled deer when it would be so much nicer roasted. Could the pool have been used for ritual cooking, or perhaps as a sauna? The day finished at Knockdrum, a fine cashel (stone fort) with ten foot thick dry stone wails.

The next day we travelled to Limerick by way of the Dingle Peninsula, with marvellous cliff and sea landscapes, interesting flora and visits to Aghados Cathedral, a ruined church with celtic crosses, the promontory fort of Dunbeg and Reasc. This is a well-displayed excavated early Christian site. It is one of fifty or more small monasteries on the Peninsula, all enclosed by a monastic wall, round or oval, and some retaining their curious beehive huts (clochans). Reasc has the remains of a small oratory and one of the finest cross-inscribed pillar-slabs in Ireland. Last we visited the astonishing corbel-built structure of Gallorus Oratory, still in good order after over 1000 years.

From Limerick we visited Craggaunowen where an attempt is being made to recreate aspects of Ireland’s past with the restoration and reconstruction of earlier forms of dwelling houses and farmsteads. It included a restored castle, filled with furniture and domestic artefacts of varying ages and provenances, a wood-track excavated in 1975 at Corlea Bog, Co Longford and moved to its present site; reconstructions of a fuiacht fiadh, a
crannog (lake-dwelling) and a ring fort. For those of us who had experienced the great excitement of Tim Severins’s book there to be seen – leather patches and all – was the leather-hulled boat “Brendan” in which he crossed the Atlantic to recreate the voyage of St. Brendan the Navigator In the 9th century.

Off we rushed again to enjoy one of the highlights of the visit, the extraordinary landscape of the High Burren where the ice Age has left a large area of bare limestone blocks which bear a mixture of Arctic and Alpine plants.

Limerick was rather disappointing at first sight (a scaffolded hotel, some rooms having scaffolding actually coming in through the windows didn’t help), but we enjoyed a walk round the English town, the Castle standing at the confluence of the Shannon and the Abbey rivers. Then on to Dublin from where we visited some of the greats of Irish archaeology. The Hill of Tara, the immense hill thought to have been the ancient seat and assembly place of the High Kings of Ireland, and to the Bend of the Boyne where we went into the great passage grave of Newgrange, gaping at the corbelled roof, the immense decorated slabs of rock which form the sides of the passages and the richness of the geometric decorations. The enormous burial mound covers about an acre and a half, it has a maximum diameter of between seventy-nine and eighty-five metres and is eleven to thirteen metres high, and there is a kerb stone which is probably the most magnificently decorated stone of any passage grave in Europe. There are some small satellite tombs of a similar structure, some of which may have been there before the great mound. Unfortunately when we reached Knowth we found it swathed in black plastic awaiting the arrival, said to be the next day, of the team of archaeologists who are excavating it, so we could only stand on a viewing platform in driving rain while Mike Farley, our archaeological leader, vividly described what was hidden from us. On the way back to Dublin we called at Monasterboice, the site of the monastery founded In the 6th century, with three wonderful stone crosses, and also managed to fit in a quick run up the hill to St Patrick’s Rock, Cashel, which is a fortress complex started in the 4th century AD which Includes Cormac’s Chapel, the earliest Romanesque church in Ireland; a cathedral; a castle and a round tower, all perched high above the green and misty plain.

Our last day was spent in Dublin itself, St Patrick’s Cathedral, the archaeological museum, a typical Irish pub for lunch, a hunt for a cashpoint which would take one of our cards, and best of all for me the Trinity College Library, looking just as a library should. Unfortunately we did not have time for the three hours it took to queue for the Viking exhibition.

A pretty good trip on the whole, spoilt in places by careless organisation and weak leadership, though the two experts who accompanied us were excellent. The Boyne and Dublin provided the only really bad weather, having been warned before booking that Ireland can be wetter than Wales we were quite pleasantly surprised. The landscape was green and lovely, there was always something to be seen as we drove around – although nobody believed me when I reported seeing a donkey with a pipe-smoking dog on its back, it really was true.

“AH YES, I REMEMBER IT WELL” by Robert Michel

Maurice Chevalier In his charmingly Gallic way, couldn’t quite get it right. Luckily for the historian Hermione Gingold was on hand to correct him. A delightful song from a classic film – but it does highlight a basic problem confronting budding oral historians.

In the summer of 1963 The Beatles pop group were on the threshold of stardom. They had already had two chart topping hits and in August “She Loves You” – arguably their best known song – was to become their third. However before “She Loves You” and the ensuing so-called Beatiemania the Group continued to play small town one-night stands around the country. In Great Yarmouth, Norfolk, they still remember the night The Beatles came to town. Or do they?

HADAS member Paula Allen and I interviewed the recently retired photographer Kenneth Mansell, who in the 1960s was the regular photographer at Yarmouth’s ABC theatre. His portfolio is a Who’s Who of British comic and musical talent of the last generation. I bought two photographs of The Beatles at the ABC and asked him about the night they were taken. Although recalling that it was a summer Sunday night the precise year and, naturally, the date escaped him. He seemed quite clear that they appeared only once, which was also the recollection of Joe Dade, a part-time museum curator in Norwich (1). In an attempt to fix the date Mr Mansell remembered slipping out of the theatre during The Beatles’ act for a quick drink with Arthur Haynes, the well-known entertainer, who was appearing on the same bill.

Sadly for the oral historian Mr Mansell falls into the Maurice Chevallier category of witness. The Beatles did appear at the ABC on a summer Sunday night, on 30 June 1963 in fact (2). Obviously it would be unreasonable to expect Mr Mansell to remember the precise date 25 years after the event, but both he and Mr Dade forgot something far more fundamental – The Beatles played the ABC twice that summer (3). The second visit was on Sunday 28 July and was clearly a success as teenagers were reported to have been “hammering on the stage door” after the show (4).

In addition Mr Mansell could not have enjoyed a drink with Arthur Haynes while The Beatles delighted the teenagers. You see Arthur Haynes appeared at the ABC the week before on the 21 July (5). The proximity of dates seems to suggest that it was the July performance that Mr Mansell photographed while, curiously, Mr Dade (by reference to the month and the presenter, Ted Rogers) clearly recalls the first appearance.

“Living memories” are undoubtedly a useful tool in helping to recreate the past and these notes are not intended to blunt its edge. It goes without saying that personal recollections should be corroborated whenever possible. Failing that the cultivation of an ability to differentiate between a Maurice Chevalier and a Hermione Gingold will greatly enhance the accuracy and thus the usefulness of the oral historian’s work.


(1) Mr Dade contributed to a newspaper article on The Beatles’ Yarmouth connection: Eastern Evening News (EEN) 23 March 1988 (2) Yarmouth Mercury (YM) 31 May 1963 and onwards (advert)

(3) YM 21 June 1963 and onwards (advert)

(4) EEN 29 July 1963

(5) YM 12 July 1963 (advert) Acknowledgements

Thanks to Paula Allen for her secretarial help and patience, and to Messrs Mansell and Dade for their time and inspiration. Thanks also to the staff at the Eastern Counties Newspapers’ offices and Yarmouth Library.


Those of us who have been missing Edgar and Lily Lewy at lectures and outings recently will be sorry to hear that Edgar has been in hospital for some time, undergoing several operations. At last Lily feels he has turned the corner and she is hoping that he will be home for Christmas. We all send our best wishes to him for a speedy recovery.Nell Penny has also been in hospital, but is home again and recovering well. Happy New Year, Nell.


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, our Site Coordinator, on 203 2630

Northern area

Land adjacent to the Territorial Army Centre, St Albans Rd, Barnet 6 detached houses

Oak Hill College, Chase Side, Southgate, N14 3 x storey block 12 flats

77/79 Brookhill Rd, East Barnet 2 storey office building

37/41St Albans Rd, Barnet Block of 7 flats

Land at rear Two Brewers P H, Hadley Highstone 5 houses

1, Mill Corner, Hadley Highstone garage and swimming pool

Land to the west of Sainsbury’s car park, Lancaster Rd, East Barnet enlargement of car park and industrial units

39 Union St, Chipping Barnet rear extension

11 Mays Lane, Barnet Central area 3 storey block

10 Grass Park, Finchley N3 Western area extension at rear

Land adjacent to 16, Hartland side extension

Lane, Edgware The Edgwarebury Hotel, Edgwarebury Drive, Edgware rebuild and extensions.


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

Newsletter 213: December 1988 Editor: Liz Holliday



Tuesday 6 December
CHRISTMAS SUPPER AT ST. GEORGES THEATRE All places are now booked and there is a waiting list – but ring Dorothy Newbury (203 0950) if you would like to go, in case there are last minute cancellations.

Tuesday 3 January GEORGE HART, staff lecturer in the British Museum’s Egyptian Collection, will give an illustrated talk on EGYPT IN THE PYRAMID ERA.

Tuesday 7 February ALEX WERNER (by popular request of members who attended the Docklands outing) who works for the Department of Working History and Museum in the Docklands Project, will give his talk entitled LONDON’S DOCKLAND – ITS ARCHAEOLOGICAL DISCOVERIES AND POTENTIAL.

Tuesday 7 March
DR. GRAHAM CAMPBELL will speak on a Viking subject

BRIAN MCCARTHY reports on the November lecture

Peter Mills packed a great deal of information, views and humour into a potted, illustrated history of the Royal Mint site, which is just to the east of the Tower of London.

The original site was a marshy, useless piece of ground outside the City walls that was pressed into service as a Black Death cemetery in 1349. The area became the home of the St. Mary Graces Cistercian Abbey, founded by Edward -111 in 1350, as the result of an undertaking given 20 years earlier, when he had been in danger of drowning. His reluctance to make good his promise and his failure to finance it properly, produced a structure on poor ground that needed constant repair and buttressing, despite the use of expensive materials and magnificent drainage work carried out by the monks. After the Abbey was dissolved in 1538, it passed first to an entrepreneur named d’Arcy, who plundered the building for all he could, and then about 1560, the site became the first Naval Victualing Yard, which it remained until the 18th century.

The slides of the excavation showed with startling clarity the regular lines of individual Black Death graves, interspersed with long pits crammed higgledy-piggledy, which were needed when the death-rate rose to its height. The pictures also gave us a glimpse of the skill of the excavators who meticulously exposed some 800 skeletons, all of which will provide a unique medical record of a cross-section of the population of 14th Century London. It was interesting to learn that these bones will all eventually find a new resting place in the East London Cemetery.

As the monastery had been underfunded by the Crown, it seems that the monks went to the City for their finance and as a result, the populace was encouraged to use the Abbey church for worship and the cemetery for their dead. This is a possible explanation for the surprising mixture of all ages and sexes in the graves.

Very little was found of the Abbey itself because of quarrying and stone robbing. After d’Arcy’s exploits what remained of the church was almost all built over by the Mint in the 18th Century. Most of the Abbey buildings could be identified but little was left of any of the walls, except for the Infirmary. Here, the walls remained up to six feet high in places and had presumably been used as part of the victualing yard. In the warming house, the only room in the Abbey where heat was allowed, most of the medieval brick floor survived. A store room, which later became a latrine, provided a quantity of 16th and 17th century pots – both complete and incomplete. The “great drain” probably continued in use until the 19th century, but very little of the naval yard could be found.

Peter Mills’ lecture was packed full of information and was followed by a very lively question time – enjoyed by all.

WEST HEATH, HAMPSTEAD – A Neolithic Postscript ?

We have been fortunate enough to receive Radiocarbon dates from samples from five small fires at the Mesolithic site. The dates from Oxford University’s Accelerator Unit are as follows:-

OxA -1431 WH 1460± 70

OxA -1432 WH 4830± 90

OxA -1433 WH 4710± 90

OxA -1434 WH 4810± 90

OxA -1435 WH 4770± 100

All are uncalibrated dates Before Present.

Archaeological features dated from single samples are always liable to contamination and this is especially so at sites such as West Heath where all the deposits are in very shallow podsol. Whilst contamination might easily explain the first date – a Saxon one of c.600 AD – the remaining dates are all Neolithic and all lie close together within a 120 year span. This is at variance with the archaeological evidence – a Mesolithic site with over 100,000 flint artefacts, none of which seem to be Neolithic. No pottery, no polished stone tools and no domestic or funerary structures have been found.

Other dating evidence also conflicts – the TL dates for the site give an average of 9625±900 BP which is c.7500±900 be, which accords well with the majority of the flint industry, which is of early Mesolithic type.

So the identity of the firelighters remains a puzzle. The best candidate at present is a transhumant, teetotal Neolithic cattle herder who stopped at the site once every twenty years and who stayed just long enough to warm his hands at the fire.


On Wednesday 8th February next year, Myrtle Ellis will be speaking at Mill Hill Library. Her subject ranges from the simple family homes of early settlers to the extraordinary Gothic halls built by 19th Century industrial tycoons. Illustrated with slides, the lecture starts at 8.15pm.


Surviving Hendon settlement records total 775 examinations between 1727 and 1834. These were not spread evenly over the period; there were gaps of five years and single years when the parish officers seem to have decided that there were too many strangers in the village. In 1763, 40 persons were examined, in 1785 55 people and in 1804, one of the years of steeply rising food prices and poverty, a record figure of 82. Finchley records are more intermittent than those of Hendon. There were 430 examinations between 1744 and I836, two thirds of them in the period before the Act of 1795 which restricted examinations to those persons applying for help. There were 27 “foreigners” questioned in 1756 and 34 in 1793. Very few examination records survive for Edgware parish – they only cover the period 1822 to 1833 when 41 persons were questioned. And Friern Barnet records are nearly as meagre: they cover 1785 to 1836 and total less than 70 examinations.

Whether the number of examinations was large or small, all four parishes show the same classes of people who walked seeking work. The largest group were the farm servants, who more often than not had gained settlements in parishes by working there for a whole year for their keep and wages varying between £2.10s.(£2.50p) and £8. The monotonous repetition of “being then a simple man” proves that the farmer ratepayer did not like the risk of contracting with a married man with a young family who might become parish burdens. Unless such a man had very valuable skills his marriage was likely to reduce him to the status of a day labourer. And some farmers broke contracts if they felt they had made bad bargains with poor workers. In 1763 William Dawson was 17 years old. When he was 13 years he had been hired by a farmer in Totteridge for £2.10s. (£2.50p) a year and his keep, but the farmer had “turned him away with 49/- (£2.45p) ten days short of the year because of a dispute about a sheep’s broken leg. Poor William had not gained a settlement in Totteridge. On the other hand, fear of losing a Hendon settlement did not deter Mary Glenister from leaving her employment with Mrs. Gurney at Coventry Farm in Mill Hill, before her contracted year was finished. Mary told Friern Barnet magistrates that she was 22 years old; in 1817 she went to work for Mrs. Gurney at £2.10s. (£2.50p) a year. When she “wanted 3 days” the farmer’s wife offered to renew the contract. Mary refused the job even at £3 a year. So Mrs. Gurney sent the ungrateful girl back to Harrow, where she had been born “before the full year”.

The examinations of women – about a quarter of the total – is one more proof of their inferior status in the eighteenth and early nineteenth century. Whether they were elderly widows or young women, widowed or deserted, with a string of young children, they were expected to know where and how their husbands had established settlements. In 1744 Sarah Darben faced Hendon magistrates. They thought that they had established that her husband had been born in Staines, Middlesex, so they signed a removal order there for Sarah, daughters Diana (8 years) and Mary (6 years) and Darben’s posthumous son (“5 weeks old not yet baptized”). In 1828, 64 year old Mary Worrell told Edgware magistrates she was destitute. She had been married at Tring in 1793 to the man who in 1828 was at “Portsmouth awaiting transportation”. Mary hoped that her husband’s settlement in Edgware as a contracted farm worker would entitle her to parish relief there.

Single women fared no better than their married sisters. With rare exceptions they had gained settlements, when they had them, by domestic service. Old Mary Parish surely deserved better than she got in 1761 when she was examined. She said she was eighty years old: had worked for Mr. Francis Newmans in Kingsbury between 1727 and 1747. On his death his son had continued Mary’s employment in Hendon at £5.15s.Op (£5.75) a year. “But now she is old and unable to work and in want of relief”. The parish officers were ruthless in their examinations of pregnant spinsters. They felt it essential to establish the paternity of the children in order to pin a bastardy order on a man to get some money for the child’s maintenance. In 1750 Elizabeth Kirby had a baby at her father’s house in Hendon, “which is liable to be Chargeable to the Parish”. John Jordan, who was a fellow servant with Elizabeth at Mr. Hoyle’s in “Idlestree”, had “several times carnal knowledge of her body and no other had”. If the father could not be found Hendon officers were hopeful that they could prove Elizabeth’s settlement in Totteridge where she had been employed by Allen Parsons at £2.10s (£2.50) a year. In 1786 Mary James, 26 years old, was about to have a baby in Finchley. She said the father was William Jones, a watch maker in the Strand. “He has since gone back to Birmingham to a master silversmith” to whom he had been apprenticed.

The relatively small number of settlement claims based on apprenticeship may prove that men who had ‘served their time’ as tailors, wheelers, cordwainers or blacksmiths would be less likely to be unemployed than labourers were. Most men who had been apprenticed signed their examinations: this indicates their social status superior to that of farm servants, who generally ‘made their marks’. In 1752 Thomas Lodge, a blacksmith, was examined in Hendon as a foreigner although he appeared to be prospering. Born in Edmonton, he had served his apprenticeship with Mr. Harley of the same parish. In 1746 he rented a house and blacksmith’s shop in Hendon at £7 a year; four years later he also rented a field at £3 a year. Joshua Tyler was “a Barber and Perry wig maker” examined in Finchley in 1748. He began apprenticeship in St. Bartholomew the Great parish in 1728. He had served 31/2 years there when he was “turned over” to another master in Southwark where he completed his indentures. If Joshua asked for relief would he be removed to Smithfield or Southwark? Some apprentices did not complete their indentures and could not claim settlements. If a master died or was made bankrupt the apprenticeship would be cancelled. In 1793 James Dearmen told Finchley vestry that he had been apprenticed to a carpenter in St. Albans. After four years his master “failed”. The indentures were transferred to a carpenter in South Mimms who promised to pay the first master 4/- (20p) a year. He only paid for one year so the apprenticeship lapsed. One of the rare examples of a girl apprenticeship did not get very far. In 1737 Mary Winterbury had only served 13 months with Francis Tanblay of Finchley, a gold and silver button maker when “he left about a month ago”. “Last Thursday” Mrs.Tanblay also disappeared but Mary “has not heard a word”.

It was not always the master who failed to honour the indentures. In 1786 52 year old James Warren, married with three young children, told Finchley magistrates that when he was he was apprenticed by the parish of Dursley in Gloucestershire to a farmer in Horsley in the same county. After three months he had run away. Once he had been sent back to Dursley from Thame in Oxfordshire. William Harris was also examined in 1786. He also had been born in Gloucestershire. When he was 14 he had been apprenticed by his father to a butcher in Sudbury in the same county. He endured “ill-treatment” for three years before he ran away and went home.

There are some surviving certificates or copies of certificates. These were ‘passports’ issued to workers whom parishes judged unlikely to ‘fall on the rates’. The issuing parish promised to pay if the person named on the certificate asked for relief in another parish. In I727 Hendon Vestry clerk made a list of 40 certificates held “in the cupboard”; 4 were from other parishes in the modern borough of Barnet, 10 from the area north of the Thames covered by the old G.L.C., 24 from the northern Home Counties and only 2 from further afield. Between 1727 and 1785 only 14 other certificates were recorded. Perhaps the most interesting was one given by the parish of Llanvylling in Montgomeryshire to John Wynne. It described him as a “yeoman” and asked “Poole in the same county and all other parishes in Great Britain to admit him, his wife and six children”. Finchley, Edgware and Friern Barnet have very few references to certificates. In 1793 23 year old Robert Ellis was examined in Finchley. He believed that his father, who died in Hatfield in 1780, had a certificate from Friern Barnet. Soon after the father’s death four young children had been removed from Hatfield to Friern Barnet. In 1808 Ann Banks was 16 years old and pregnant when she was examined in Friern Barnet. She had lived all her young life there. When she was 12 she had gone to live with her brother-in-law at the King’s Head in Whetstone for “bed, board and cloaths”. She thought her mother and father were “Certificate People” from Edmonton.

It is not possible to use the settlement cases to prove how mobile working folk were before the advent of the train and car. Some work has been done which disproves the belief that rural families continued to be born, to live and to die in their villages for hundreds of years. Many names disappeared from a locality in less than a hundred years, either by natural wastage or migration, as they do in the more mobile twentieth century. At a very rough guess, between 5% and 10% of those living in the parishes which constitute the Borough of Barnet had not been born there or done their first regular job there.

Because the labouring poor walked if they moved it is possible to detect a significant proportion of “foreigners” moving into Edgware and Hendon along Watling Street and what is now the A41 and into Friern Barnet and Finchley along the Great North Road. In Hendon 22.5% of the “examinees” came from other parishes in the Borough of Barnet; 22.5% from parishes in the former G.L.C. area, though few seem to have ventured across the Thames bridges; 37.5% from parishes within a 50 mile radius, mainly from the northern Home Counties – Hertfordshire, Buckinghamshire and Bedfordshire – and 17.5% from further afield. Finchley statistics show a similar pattern though more of the Home Counties travellers came from Bedfordshire than from Buckinghamshire. The figures from Edgware and Friern Barnet are too small to show any significant patterns.

THE BARNET COURT BOOK – an additional note From the Borough Archives & Local Studies Department

In the Newsletter issue 208 (July 1988) there is a brief description of some of the evidence for Chipping Barnet to be found in the Barnet Court Book, British Library Additional MS 40167, and members may like to know that the microfilm of the book has now arrived at the Archives and Local Studies Department.

One item which was not mentioned in July may be of interest to members examining St. John’s, Chipping Barnet. In 1353 the inhabitants of Chipping Barnet made formal agreement with the abbot of St. Alban’s concerning the continuation of an annual payment of 12d rent, due from land which had been used to enlarge the St. John’s cemetery. The exact date of the enlargement is not given, but presumably it was recent. The court book, as Miss Levett showed in Studies in Manorial History, records the devastating impact on Barnet of the Black Death in 1348-9.

Bound into the front of the book, and included on the microfilm, is an unexpected bonus: a map of the Barnet Common area between Wood Street and Mays Lane. It is undated but apparently in a 17th-century hand, and since it marks the Physic Well cannot be earlier than 1652. It also marks the road widths and ponds of the surrounding roads, but gives little description of houses. It would be interesting to establish more exactly when and why it was made.


Over the past eight months or so, John Enderby and I have concerned ourselves with the redevelopment of the land to the rear of 60/62 High Street, Chipping Barnet. As the neighbouring premises of 52 High Street (Louis Shoe Repairs) and 58 High Street (The Mitre Inn) have recently been drawn to my attention as further scenes of imminent development, it would seem timely to inform HADAS members of our activities regarding the above sites.

Before reporting on each site separately, it should be noted that all are thought originally to have formed part of the Mitre ‘complex’, first mentioned in 1636. This complex, according to Barnet Museum archives, once occupied practically the whole block from and including 64 High Street southward to and including 48 High Street. We know that the Mitre Inn complex evolved from three messuages or inns, called The Man, The Rose and The Crowns, but at what period in Barnet’s history these inns began their lives is unknown.

62 High Street

There have been two aspects to our activities on this site, the first being the recording and preservation of the 19th century granary machinery and the second being protracted negotiations for excavations on this sensitive site. It is adjacent to 64 High Street where, in 1934, was discovered the remains of a medieval house, well and a complete 14th/15th century pot. It was hoped that we may gain some evidence of Barnet’s earliest occupation, the site being situated so near the church and medieval market place.

John Enderby has reported fully on his work in preserving the granary winding gear, which was eventually a successful operation, though not without its attendant difficulties due to lack of co-operation on the developer’s part in keeping John in the dark on the demolition schedule.

Negotiations to excavate the site have so far, after seven months, proved a total waste of time and effort, again due to lack of co-operation and communication between the developer, Council and ourselves.

To cut a very long story short, a written request made in May by John Enderby for permission to carry out a resistivity survey prior to excavation from July 30 – August 1, 1988 was completely ignored. Repeated requests by letter and ‘phone in August for a machine trench to be excavated for us (a suggestion originally made by the developer) were finally agreed verbally … Machine trenches were indeed excavated by the developer’s subcontractor (the Council) but in fact we were not informed by either the developer or the Council when these works were proceeding. The situation was only discovered on a routine visit to check on the site in October, when I found excavations actually in progress.

The stratification of the site is now so massively disturbed by sewage and drainage works that the developer’s latest suggestion that the Council might excavate a trench for us (a suggestion greeted with blank surprise and eventual refusal by the Council!) seemed in any case likely to prove of little value to us, and under the circumstances there seems little point in pursuing the matter any further.

52 High Street (Louis Shoe Repairs)

Louis Shoe Repairs is housed in a listed building, and it was discovered (again, purely by chance) that extension works at the rear of the premises were in the process of exposing timber-framed walling. Fortuitously, the builder concerned has proved most co-operative and informative, being an expert and specialist in the alteration and restoration of historic buildings. He considers the timber framing to date from the mid-fifteenth or possibly early sixteenth century, and has taken a full photographic record of his work, which will be made freely available to HADAS and Barnet Museum.

Items of historical interest which have been unearthed in the course of alterations are a near-perfect clay pipe decorated with a double clown figure and a perfect little stoneware inkpot. A few days ago, a strange heavy iron implement, about 18″ long was discovered boxed within the first storey of the timber framing – possibly an iron used for heating drinks.

All three items have been donated to Barnet Museum and are at present being identified and dated by the British Museum. It is hoped to mount an exhibition on the Mitre site comprising photographs and finds from all the properties mentioned in this report. We are, however, being somewhat hampered by the lack of response from Benskins Brewery, Watford, which according to information received, holds what appears to be important documentary evidence on the history of the Mitre Inn complex. A letter written on 20th October 1988, requesting access to these documents has, to date, remained unacknowledged.

58 High Street (The Mitre Inn)

The rear of this site is the subject of a current planning application by PRC Partnership, a company which appears to have links with the developer of 60/62 High Street. A request has been made to the Council to include archaeological conditions in the planning terms, but as these conditions seem not to be legally binding and depend largely upon the goodwill of the developer concerned, I anticipate that little will be achieved here.

The stables at the rear of The Mitre (a listed building) have already been demolished under dubious circumstances. The Council were unable to inform me by whom the building had been demolished and doubt exists as to whether or not an application for the demolition of what forms part of a listed building had ever, in fact, been received, let alone granted. The period of the demolished building is uncertain, and Barnet Museum would appear to have no photographic record of it.

Most of the information concerning the properties in this report has come to light purely by chance during routine visits to check on 62 High Street.

My personal opinion is that LBB ought to inform at least one of the Barnet heritage groups when work is to proceed on listed buildings and in archaeologically and historically sensitive areas, rather than expect HADAS to learn of them from planning applications, by which time it is often too late to take effective action.

Redevelopment in Chipping Barnet itself is so intense that keeping abreast of all developments in sensitive areas is becoming increasingly onerous, bearing in mind the protracted negotiations necessary merely to obtain access to each and every one of these sites.

However, research and enquiries concerning the premises which once comprised the Mitre complex are proceeding, and any further discoveries and developments will be reported in future HADAS newsletters.


The Salisbury Hotel was demolished some months ago, and the developers concerned have been approached for permission to site watch when excavation works proceed.

The first evidence of an inn on this site is in the Manor Rolls of 1557, when the Tabor and Pipe was transferred to Margaret Taylor on the death of her husband, Roger. It is, of course, possible that evidence of earlier occupation may come to light during building excavations.

A timely history of the site of The Salisbury Hotel forms this year’s Bulletin No.26 from Barnet Local History Society and is available from Barnet Museum, Wood Street, price 25P.

We still urgently need typists (or people who can type) and who are prepared to help out from time-to-time. Please phone Liz Holliday (204 4616)