The old cottage?

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Easylife
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On one of my new permissions, a stubble field, I found a particular area which contained quite a lot of pre-decimal coins, mainly pennies from Georgian onwards. When I mentioned this to the landowner he said that there used to be a row of about three cottages around there which he thinks were demolished in the 1960's. But I have quite a problem with that because there are no buildings shown on the Tithe map nor any OS map after for that location, normally even if a building doesn't have a roof it would still be shown in my experience.
Yet I do have a detailed early 17th century map which does in fact show a building which is stated in the additional notes to be a cottage sited just onto the meadow besides the pasture. It's quite funny in a way because only recently did I have access to those map notes and had previously mistaken it to be just a tree on the map, but is quite obvious now. Just 30m from this I found a 1604 James I penny, so that ties in very well and a bit further away a 1553 Mary groat which is possibly related also. My GPS tracking shows that I've only so far detected about up to or just past that point yet there were no particular noticeable bits of pottery or building on the field surface. So maybe it's actual location was a little beyond, but at least it warrants further focus now. I can only guess that what the landowner was referring to was perhaps on adjoining land? So I have some support for this solitary likely 16th century cottage in the middle of a modern day field but when the field is soon ploughed I think that it should become more clear eyes only of it's more precise location? Most sites of older buildings were subsequently built on over the years which makes this one all the more interesting being set in a quieter field. It's all good fun! :Party:
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Blackadder43
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I had something similar on a permission many years ago
There was evidence that a building was on the boundary of one of the fields, and the coins coming up and odd "household" bits indicated this
The farmer said it used to be a solitary building of sorts that someone lived in many years ago but was then knocked down
I dont think it was a house in the way we view a house to be, more like a stone structure that someone placed his hay bed in to sleep
But no maps showed this
I wonder if it was a building that shouldnt have been there for whatever tax dodging or planning reason
I found an excellent Mary groat there amongst many other finds :thumbsup:

Good luck on future trips there, sounds interesting and may possible have a bottle tip there too :thumbsup:
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Easylife
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Blackadder43 wrote: Sat Aug 15, 2020 1:25 am I wonder if it was a building that shouldn't have been there for whatever tax dodging or planning reason?
Quite possibly, I thought it maybe odd that it was in the hay meadow! :Thinking:
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Saffron
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Things change over the years.

I have just gained a very small (less than 3 acres) new permission on a hillside. Now it is mainly walnut trees (is there a term for this?). In my youth it was the larger part of a very overgrown old orchard (I used to shoot in it, fortunately I picked up the cartridges!!). I have lived in the village all my life, and like the very few older "genuine villagers" (just done a quick count and sadly now down to 3!!) if asked about it would say "Its was a very old orchard". But if you look at it, and the other part where due to lack of trees its more obvious, it clearly been terraced in the past - almost certainly medieval - and you would not do this for an orchard, so it used to be used for crops of one sort or another.

Yes you can look at maps, which from the Ordance Survey maps of the 1840s onwards are a very reliable source of information, and ask "old timers" but sometimes you just have to swing the detector, and use your eyes for surface finds, and see what turns up.

Evan
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DaveP
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I know of an arable field that used to have a building but not a trace of it now. Local story it was a place for sufferers of leprosy. (don't worry, you won't catch it and much worse things in your garden soil :) )
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I have become more liberal in my application of things on tithe maps. i know of several things which existed at the time of the 1830 map and yet were not mentioned....and also then appeared on the 1950 map.
Especially in country districts, and at a time when planning laws were lax to nonexistent, what got built was very much on a 'need to know' basis. Growing up in a hamlet I know of a local farmer putting an extension on an old farmhouse in quite a visible spot. Planning permission was never sought or given. It is still there. He achieved this by employing two neighbours to build it, my dad was the bricklayer/plasterer and Mr Alcock next door was the joiner. Coincidentally ;) , they were the only two people who would have had any grounds to complain. :lol:

Likewise farm buildings. My mother's family farmed in the peak district. When our son was a nipper we moved back to the village and mum would walk with us around the fields of the old homestead. She pointed out lots of places where farm barns had stood and which also house itinerant farmhands during the season. They were not on any map. Most cottages had no water, drainage, and obviously not electricity....so whether they housed animals, straw, or people, was a moot point. Even today, legal definition of 'habitable space' in rural France comes down to if it has a certain amount of windows and doors and other things like water and power. Lots of people are still living in places which, officially, are not 'habitable' and as such would not be marked on a map as a domicile.
A tithe map is down to the accuracy of the recorder at the time (and of course what people wanted him to record.) The map totally missed a barn and an extension on our main house which I am totally sure were there at the time because I have an old photograph showing them in situ.


I would imagine the reality of your cottage is somewhere in between the two scenarios. An earlier building which was pressed into use housing poor folk and farm workers in time of need.
I often detect such places and find the reality of the finds clarifies the situation on the map. unfortunately poor cottages obviously provide few finds of substance in value alone, though they are fascinating in terms of re-establishing a fragment of lost local history.
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Easylife
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I popped out for a couple of hours this evening to have a swing about the area where the cottage is shown on the old map and also to see if I could spot any evidence to support it. There was no sign at all of it there but expect it was somewhere else on this field, time will tell. :thumbsup:
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Easylife wrote: Sat Aug 15, 2020 12:36 am On one of my new permissions, a stubble field, I found a particular area which contained quite a lot of pre-decimal coins, mainly pennies from Georgian onwards. When I mentioned this to the landowner he said that there used to be a row of about three cottages around there which he thinks were demolished in the 1960's. But I have quite a problem with that because there are no buildings shown on the Tithe map nor any OS map after for that location, normally even if a building doesn't have a roof it would still be shown in my experience.
Yet I do have a detailed early 17th century map which does in fact show a building which is stated in the additional notes to be a cottage sited just onto the meadow besides the pasture. It's quite funny in a way because only recently did I have access to those map notes and had previously mistaken it to be just a tree on the map, but is quite obvious now. Just 30m from this I found a 1604 James I penny, so that ties in very well and a bit further away a 1553 Mary groat which is possibly related also. My GPS tracking shows that I've only so far detected about up to or just past that point yet there were no particular noticeable bits of pottery or building on the field surface. So maybe it's actual location was a little beyond, but at least it warrants further focus now. I can only guess that what the landowner was referring to was perhaps on adjoining land? So I have some support for this solitary likely 16th century cottage in the middle of a modern day field but when the field is soon ploughed I think that it should become more clear eyes only of it's more precise location? Most sites of older buildings were subsequently built on over the years which makes this one all the more interesting being set in a quieter field. It's all good fun! :Party:
I wonder if such buildings could be farm workers dwellings, possibly only used seasonally as required?

I used to know of one such building that probably started life as s small stone out building, possibly for use by shepherds, and it had been adapted/adopted for use by the gamekeepers on the Estate when they were working on the moor...There was no running water or electric, and no paved road to it, but it had been inhabited on and off for years...
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Easylife
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I'm assuming that as it was recorded as a cottage that it would have at least had a tiled roof and a stone fireplace of which there should be some debris?
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TheFenTiger
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The landowner on my new permission swears there was a windmill and dwellings in a field but they are not marked on any map I can find and there is not much in the way of finds that would relate to them.
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I have loads of sites where there’s not a sign on any map of buildings but they did exist because the tiles, stone debris and finds.

Exciting news on the building. Looking forward to the update :thumbsup:
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Easylife wrote: Mon Aug 24, 2020 9:38 pm I'm assuming that as it was recorded as a cottage that it would have at least had a tiled roof and a stone fireplace of which there should be some debris?
Could the original roof have been thatch? As for stone debris, if the location is not remote, I would imagine some could have been taken and reused else where?
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Just thinking on now, just up the road from one of my permissions is an old grass civil aerodrome which was operational from 1931 to 1939, built by the Hunter family who had a house near by, but there is no reference to it on maps of the time period or later.

The site is fairly well known locally by the older generation and is listed with the Airfields of Britain Conservation Trust so there is no disputing it's existence and it was apparently a fairly busy place in its day..
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Easylife
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The field is being ploughed and harrowed next month so should be easier to spot any building materials and pottery. :thumbsup:
But hope they don't use one of these! :shock:
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Saffron
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It could also be worth checking Google Earth "historical view", for my area there is coverage for 1945 (although a quick check shows this is not the case for all the country).

As others have said when demolished the stone would have been reused. I know of 3 stone buildings, all with stone roofs, one of which was a very substantial building although the other 2 were smaller, that have been demolished in my time. You would now be VERY hard pressed to find any indication of these.

A building with a thatch roof would leave even less evidence.

Evan
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