A very old cottage, 3 East Delph Whittlesey.

3 East Delph Whittlesey, East Delph Cottage

East Delph Cottage

Knowing of my interest in local history Mrs Bullen kindly lent me her book of the history of her home in Whittlesey, 3 East Delph, a seventeenth-century cottage.

Samantha Broughton’s book of the cottage’s history. The drawing on the cover is by Mrs P A Mager

The book was written by a former occupier, I assume. The cottage was owned by Stuart Broughton between 1992 and 1998. The author is Samantha Broughton, B.A.(Hons.), M.Ar.Admin, the book is dated, 1993.

Ms Broughton’s research is meticulous and detailed it must have taken a considerable amount of time to compile this incredibly interesting record.

The book is passed on with the cottage as it changes hands, a wonderful idea.

Until reading this I was unaware of Copyhold as a form of property ownership I was familiar with Freehold and Leasehold but this form of lease, from the lord of the manor, was new to me.

James Loomes bought the land from the Earl of Portland, Lord of the Manor in1655, thereafter paying an annual rent of 4 pence. The cottage was built soon after and remained in the hands of the Loomes family for close to another 90 years. After a succession of owners between 1744 and 1838. The cottage was purchased in 1838 by the Oldfield family and it remained in their hands until 1955, over 100 years.

A former occupier of the cottage.

Arnold Taylor bought the cottage in 1955, living there until 1988.

In 1989 and 1990 according to electoral records the house was occupied by Graham and Caroline Venters.

After remaining unoccupied the cottage was bought by Stuart Broughton in 1992 he remained there until 1998.

Between 1999 and 2003 the cottage was occupied by Gary and Lorna Simms.

The account ends at this date.

Over the years the cottage has been occupied by Wheelwrights, Thatchers,  Blacksmiths, farmers and agricultural labourers amongst others. It has no doubt seen births, deaths, happy times and sad. This account must have taken many hours of careful and painstaking research, there is included in the book are copies of manorial records, deeds, wills and maps.

This is an outstanding document to pass on with this cottage, genuinely a piece of living history.

On a separate note, the narrow street that runs past the front of the cottage is believed to be one of the town’s oldest roads as was known in the past as Town Lane. The road was probably connected to a causeway to Thorney used by monks travelling to and from Thorney Abbey.

The Cottage would have been on the very edge of the fens when it was built.

Town Lane is one of Whittlesey’s oldest streets. The oddly shaped house was built by a former owner of the cottage for a relative.

This is a fantastic written record and I am grateful to Mrs Bullen for allowing me to read through it.

10 responses to this post.

  1. Posted by Irene Henson on August 19, 2022 at 1:19 pm

    What a wonderful journal x

    Reply

  2. Posted by Rosemary Hobbs on August 19, 2022 at 6:58 pm

    Very interesting piece of history to know about

    Reply

  3. Posted by Jackie on August 19, 2022 at 8:32 pm

    Thank you Phil. I am pleased you enjoyed reading the book.

    Reply

  4. No ghosts then? I love a place with history.

    Reply

  5. It is wonderful that she took the time to record the history of that home. We don’t have any homes quite that old, though some come close in Colonial Williamsburg. There’s always something in history to research that others would enjoy reading. 🙂

    Reply

    • It was really kind of Jackie to allow me to read it.
      After posting a link to this article on the local Facebook page someone else who lived at the cottage has come forward with more information on restoration work they undertook.
      They are going to pass a copy to Jackie to keep with the original record.

      Reply

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