Blidworth in old picture postcards

Blidworth in old picture postcards

:   W. Richards
:   Nottinghamshire
:   United Kingdom
:   978-90-288-3355-5
:   80
:   EUR 16.95 Incl BTW *

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Fragmenten uit het boek 'Blidworth in old picture postcards'

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39. In 1842 the hay loft and harness room in the Vicarage stables were beingused as schoolrooms. The Curate, Martin Roe, saw the need for a Church School and in 1846 a site was given and a school built. The 'big room' nearest the road was divided by a curtain so that two classes could be taught. At the back of the picture the Infants' Room can be seen. The Headmaster's house adjoined the Baby Room at the back. Before the Council School was built in 1927 children from the growing new colliery village had to be taught, so five teachers taught about 240 children. From the bel! in the tower a chain descended into the big room, and the bell summoned children to assemble. Beneath the flat roof on the left were two rooms with pegs on which coats were hung, and there was a waterbucket for washing hands. On the inside angle of the big room and the porch was the foundation stone inscribed: 'LA US DEO' meaning 'Praise God'.

40. In 1675 by Crown Warrant, Blidworth's inhabitants were permitted to dig clay to make 'thirty hundred thousand' bricks. Thomas Frost built the first house from bricks that had been kilned locally, and until about 1960 it stood a few yards further back from the road than the tailor's shop pictured elsewhere. On the house was a plate inscribed: 'TF 1676.' The field on the inside ofthe right-hand bend on the road to Rainworth was where clay was kilned into bricks to build old Blidworth. The clay was dug from three places: some from Clay Bank down Church Hili; some from the corner of the field on the outside ofthe bend going to Rainworth; and some on the left-hand side ofthe road just beyond where it forks towards Mansfield. Ponds formed in the large holes caused by extraction of the clay and the one in the picture was called Brick-kilns Pond. It was filled in about 1975 and the site is now a lawn in front of the old house.

41. For several years before and after 1920 the teacher of this Church School class, Miss Madge Millington, had to walk nearly three miles to get to the school from her home at Lurcher Farm between Blidworth and Famsfield. From the bottom of Dale Lane Miss Millington's way home was by way of the footpath which was part of the ancient trackway to Farusfield before the present road was made. Gypsies often camped on Dale Lane and their women would try to seil clothes-pegs, line-props and other articles fashioned by their men-folk. Sometimes one of the men would take a horse to the blacksrnith's to be shod, and the blacksmith was always reluctant to do the job for two reasons: firstly the hoof would be badly worn and difficult to fit a shoe on without driving a nail into the tender part of the foot; and secondly he knew that he would never receive any money. Scrap iron, pheasants or hares would be offered in payment.

42. This is what the Forest Stone looked like to Blidworth folk who walked to Mansfield along B1ack Scotch Lane about the year 1910. The inscription read: This stone from the ancient Market House of Mansfield was placed here in 1752 A.D. by Henrietta Cavendish Halles Harley, Countess of Oxford, Lady of the Manor, to mark the site of the great Forest Court and Swainmote. On this place the Justiee in Eyre met the Great Officers of the Forest every seven years for the administration ofits affairs, and here also the Verderers met the Swains or Freeholders in a Moot three times a year for the purpose of renting pasturage. The metal plate on which the inscription had been embossed was stolen by tinkers. The stone itself was onee the central pillar of the Market House in Mansfield. In recent years the stone has been mounted on a base and a new plaque fastened on it. It can be deduced frorn some letters carved in the stone that it has been re-erected upside-down to what it was formerly.

43. It seems that th ere was an inn on the site opposite the church for more than 700 years. At one time it was called the 'Blue Ball', then changed to 'The Crispin Arms'. Was this change because bowmen from BIidworth who fought with King Henry V were not sure how to pronounee Agincourt but knew that the battle was fought on St. Crispin's Day? After it was rebuilt about 250 years ago it was called 'The New Inn'. The top storey of this inn was used as a Club Room in which the members of the Sick Club met to pay their subscriptions. Sick Clubs such as this were the forerunners of the Friendly Societies. There were 26 'Rules to be observed by the Society held at the house of George Marlow at the sign of the New Inn, Blidworth, commenced January 3rd, 1767'. There were 70 members in 1788 who were oblîged to attend the meeting or forfeit two pence. Monthly subscriptions were ten pence and every member had to spend two pence, presumably on beer.

44. Around the year 1930 there was a Mission Hall at Rainworth which, besides having a curate, was the Vicar of Blidworth's responsibility. When the Reverend John Lowndes was Vicar he formed a football club which played home matches on a ground at Rainworth and which he registered as Rainworth Church Football Club. Not all the players lived in Rainworth: the tall player next to the goalkeeper was Wilf Allen who Iived at the 'Fox and Hounds', and early on Saturday aftetnoons the Vicar's bull-nosed Morrris car would collect players from the villages and harniets and take them to the field of play. The Vicar of ten acted as linesman for his team as well as trainer and manager. He is pictured here behind the goalkeeper, and on wintry days he wore a flat cap as well as a worn rnacintosh. The trophy in the front is the Church Cup for which clubs in central Nottingharnshire having conneetion with a place of worship were allowed to challenge.

45. This shop and Post Office was between the 'Black Bull' and the 'White Lion'. The Post Office business was carried on in the room behind the posting-box. Eunice Clarke, who helped in the office and shop for many years and also delivered letters in the old village, has one foot on the pavemenl. Behind her is Grace Shopland who lived in one of the row of cottages behind this building. Holding the paper is Mrs. Harris, the postrnaster's wife. In front of her is Mabel Chandler who delivered letters in another part of the village. The building on the right was used as a garage for the motorcycle and sidecar used mostly by Mr. Harris to fetch newspapers from Rainworth station. Newspapers were sent by rail from Nottingham to Newark where theywere put on the Mansfield train which called at Rainworth at6pm.

46. Few tradesmen had a monopoly in the village, and about 1900 there were two blaeksmiths' shops within a stone's throw of eaeh other. The picture shows the inside of the shop whieh was onee behind the house on the bend opposite the ehapel. Most workmen wore collarless fJannel shirts, but however hot the work, William Bean Froggatt of Fishpool always kept his shirt buttoned up to the neck. B1acksmiths had an apprentice, usually called a striker beeause he often had to strike the hot iron with a large siedgehammer before it was finally fashioned by the blaeksmith's two-pound hammer, and the one pictured is Jack Lockington. As women traded gossip while drawing water from the wells the men heard news wh en visiting the tradesmen's shops. The country newspaper was the weekly 'Nottingham Journal' and was fivepenee a copy. Several families would subscribe to buy a copy whieh was passed around to be read aloud by the best scholar in the family.

47. Taken about 1880 this picture of the church and Church Farm shows what was probably the first threshing-engine to work in and around Blidworth. It betonged to Billy Bird. Steam powered the large flywheel and a belt operated the winnowers inside the thrashingdrum. Before this time sheaves of corn were threshed in threshing-barns by men using flails, and one such historie barn still stands among the farm buildings behind 'The Laureis'. Behind the church tower a massive ash tree grew. At a meeting of parishioners at Easter, 1892, this tree was senteneed to suffer death by a thousand cuts because it was feared that if it was blown down in a gale or felled from the bottom it might fall on the church or vicarage. The trunk was more than twelve feet round and the total height was seventy-five feet. After rernoving the topmost boughs and then the big branches the trunk was then felled into the vicarage garden. The trunk showed nearly 250 concentric rings, giving a good guide to the tree's age.

48. Below Holly Tree Cottage on the Main Street is the large house shown in the centre of the picture. For many years it was occupied by the Headmaster of the Wesleyan School and was known as School House although it was not Trust property. In 1903 it was resolved that the Headmaster's salary be increased by f5 per year to a maximum off6ü per year, out of which he had to pay rent. Also in 1903 the School Report says: Diptheria is in the School House, and do not wonder when sewage flows down the street and pig manure at the back door. It is likely that what the School Inspeetor saw was not foul sewage but used water from sinks running down the open drain, because in the privies were midden-pits. There may have been discoloured water, as some cottagers kept a pig and when the loeal pig-killer did his work on the backyard a lot of water was used.

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