Barnard's Cottages, Peldon

BARNARD'S COTTAGES

The name 'Barnards Cottages' appears in the 1911 census for Peldon and in the 1939 register. It also appears regularly as the address of former villagers in the Parish burials register. It would seem there was a row comprising two pairs of semi-detached homes and a block of six cottages in a terrace all called Barnards Cottages, housing ten families overall. They extended eastwards from the bottom of St Ives Hill along the North side of Mersea Road, Peldon.

In the photograph below, taken outside the old village stores on Lower Road (now Moss Cottage), buildings can be seen on the horizon - they seem to be painted black and there appear to be two blocks of semi-detached cottages and a terrace of six. The picture has been dated to circa 1920. These are Barnards Cottages, most of which have been demolished and replaced by modern houses.

In the following picture taken from the garden of 3, Peldon Crescent, Mersea Road in the late 1950s, the two semi-detached blocks of the Barnard's Cottage buildings can be seen over the road in the background; a bungalow, Claydons, was subsequently built where the right hand building (nos 3 and 4) stands.

Within living memory, the building nearest the junction with St Ives Hill was occupied by Mrs Phyllis Evelyn Tuppenney and her adopted daughter, Jean Beryl Smythe who both moved to the village in 1966. Originally, this was two semis, No 1 and 2 Barnards Cottages. A neighbour recalls that the house used to flood, particularly in the winter, and Jean took to living in the conservatory. After Jean's death, the property, still bearing the name of Barnards Cottage, the last to do so, remained empty and by 2000 was derelict and the garden overgrown. Neighbour, Angela Buckley relates

After she died and the estate agent came round to value the house, he went to go up the stairs and the whole house shook, so he decided not to. Shame it had to be demolished because it was very picturesque, but obviously beyond hope of repair.

The house was subsequently demolished and Bluebell Cottage, an executive detached house, was built in its place.

Mrs Tuppenney's house on the left (numbers 1 and 2) with Claydons on the right

Bluebell Cottage replaced Mrs Tuppenney's house. Claydons is on the right

So who was Mr Barnard after whom these cottages were named? There is no trace of a family called Barnard living in the village in the censuses but early documentary evidence of a Jabez Barnard's involvement with the village comes in the vestry minutes in 1864. Together with another tenement owner, William Bloomfield, he appeals that the rates on his tenements in Peldon be reduced. It appears the Small Tenements Rating had not been adopted by the Parish and they decide to allow for convenience a reduction of one fourth. His name also appears in a Poll book of 1868 listed as a Peldon landowner eligible to vote, his address is given as Oxford Street, London.

Jabez Barnard was born in Great Burstead near Billericay in 1800 and baptized in the Meeting House there. His wife, Mary née Ellis, was from Colchester; they married in 1829 and their first son, Jabez, who died in childhood, was baptised at the Meeting House in the Dutch Quarter, Colchester, in 1831. In the baptismal register, the family's address is given as 321, Oxford Street, London.

Described in censuses as a 'Colourman', Jabez Barnard, (1800-94) advertised in 1842 that he had opened his Artists' Colour Warehouse in Oxford Street with

an entirely new and extensive Assortment of every requisite for Oil and Water-colour Painting; comprising Metallic and other Tubes for Oil Colours, and all the new Vehicles at present in use. The Art-Union January. 1842 p.18.

In business from at least 1837, Jabez went into partnership with his son William in 1860 when the business became known as J Barnard & Son. This partnership lasted until 1875, following which, his son continued trading in the Oxford Street premises and at their wholesale outlet in Berners Street, while Jabez continued trading at Winsley Street. William Barnard also traded independently in Edgware Road from 1859, advertising some of Barnard & Son's materials, but died at the age of 45 in 1876.

Jabez Barnard advertised in his trade catalogue of c.1860 a wide range of materials for oil and watercolour painting and also photographic watercolours. The business was advertised in 1870 as

Manufacturing Artists' Colourmen, Drawing Paper Stationers. Lead Pencil Makers. Publishers of Works of Art. Importers of every Article connected with the Fine Arts The Artists' Directory June 1870.

He gave his business addresses as 339 Oxford St, a manufacturing steam works at Stanhope St and a wholesale department at 19 Berners St.

In 1871 the business expanded into additional premises at 19, Berners Street, which appears to have housed the wholesale department. From around 1870 Barnard & Son produced chromolitho transfer slides (according to John Barnes they may have been the first company to produce such slides) following a patented process in which the slides were fired after application of the transfer picture, and became one of the leading suppliers of this type of slide. Their slides were sold as 'Patent Enamel Slides' with circular glass mounted in rectangular wooden frames sometimes marked 'B & S Patent'. They also later sold sheets of transfers and other components to allow home assembly of slides, and published slide readings and a number of technical manuals, such as Samuel Pike's Use of Chromo-Printed Pictures for the Magic Lantern and Perran Garnier's Manual of Painting on Glass for the Magic Lantern (both c 1873). The company was still trading in the 1900s. The Magic Lantern Encyclopaedia.

Ready prepared outlines on glass were sold to be painted at home along with sheets of transfers; these transfers which were printed in Germany could be bought at 5 shillings a sheet. Slide readings and manuals were published to accompany the slides.

Often the slides had a light-green label reading

Patent Enamel Slides for the Magic Lantern
J Barnard and Son, Makers, London

followed by a description of the slide.

A J Barnard slide entitled Phenomena of Nature Sand Storm - from UKauctioneers.com

There were twenty sets in the first issue, religious subjects, fairy tales, topographical views, animals and 6 dissolving view sets.

A J Barnard slide showing Cinderella trying on the glass slipper.
From www.luikerwaal.com - a Dutch online Magic Lantern Museum

Jabez Barnard died in 1894. Described as a wholesale colourman in his will, probate on his considerable estate, worth £20,288, was granted to Joseph Thurgood, oil merchant, Jabez's son-in-law, and Thomas Claude Fairhead, artists' colourman, his grandson.

Jabez Barnard's cottages in Peldon then passed on to his family. The 1899 Peldon Parish Council Minutes record that a letter was received from the executors of J Barnard requesting the Parish Council erect a stile to the footpath leading through their property. A further letter was received in 1914 from Barnard's executors concerning the rates on the Cottages.

The only Barnards Cottages to still stand today are a pair of semi-detached houses now called Bramley Cottage (formerly Cruachan) and Marigold Cottage. The owners of Marigold Cottage tell me their house was previously two cottages, another door was clearly visible when they moved in. They remember when they moved in that there was a faint No.10 house number confirming theirs was the eastern-most cottage knocked through into No 9. It seems that Nos 5 - 10 were a small terrace and in the intervening years with the demolition of most of the cottages, Bramley and Marigold Cottages now stand alone as a pair of semis, comprising the site of No 7, No 8 (Bramley) and No 9 and 10 (Marigold).

How Barnard came to own property in Peldon we'll probably never know but from the deeds to Marigold Cottage we learn that the land on which the cottages stood was conveyed to Jabez in February 1850. The vendor was landowner John Ward and the banker, George Round, a third party, is listed, presumably financing the purchase. Were the ten cottages built shortly after and then rented out? They were definitely built by 1864 when Jabez applied for a rate reduction.

Following Jabez's death in 1894 the cottages were assessed to earn a rental income of £48 annually from yearly tenants.

The cottages remained in the possession of Jabez's family until 1935 when all ten were sold by his grandchildren to Percy Wilfred Beaumont for £650. Those tenants listed in 1935 were

D. Gladwell, E. Wyncoll, W. Goody, W. Goody, E.J. Harvey, Wm. Smith, H. Pook, G. Miller, G. Simpson Senr and G. Simpson

In the 1939 register, numbered although not named, the ten cottages clearly have many of the same tenants.

1. David Gladwell 2. Edward Wyncoll 3. Frederick Mycroft. 4. Ernest Goody 5. Henry Harvey 6. Eldred Ward 7. Harry Pooke 8. George Coates 9. Maurice Fletcher 10. Charles Simpson

Upon Percy Beaumont's divorce the houses were left in trust for his ex-wife, Florence Ethel Beaumont during her life-time. The cottages seem to have become known as Beaumont's Cottages for a while, several entries in the Peldon Burials Register list Beaumont's Cottages.

Percy married again in 1939 and died at his home in Clacton in 1948.

Possibly merely coincidence, in 1947, Percy's nephew, Albert Edward Beaumont, moved into Rose Cottage, just east of Barnards Cottages where he, his wife and daughter were to run Peldon Post Office from 1950.

The 1950s and 1960s are a time when the cottages seem to be subject to several changes of ownership in quick succession, some homes being demolished while some faced being knocked into larger houses. The ten Barnards Cottages were no longer owned by the same landowner with owner occupiers taking on the cottages instead of absentee landlords and tenants.

In 1951 Florence Beaumont sold Nos 5, 6, 7, 8, 9 and 10 Barnards Cottages to Elsa Phyllis Wheatman. No 8 was unoccupied but the other two were rented out to tenants called Bull (No. 9) and Thursby (No.10)

At this point, the address is given as Peldon Road, (now Mersea Road), Peldon. An official search in 1960 states

This road is commonly known as Mersea Road but has not been officially named. It is believed to have been formerly known as Peldon Road but there is no information as to when this name fell into disuse

A member of the Goody family, whose family moved from Barnards Cottages to the new council houses next door, remembers her neighbours being Mrs Pooke, Ted Wyncoll, Mrs Wopling and her son Dick, Mrs Bull and her son Ozzy, Ron and Blanche Thursby, and Mr and Mrs Coates. George H P Wheatman, a photographer, (in later years he ran Braiswick Photographic Company Ltd in Bradfield), and his son, Nigel, lived in the last house No 10. June's childhood memories will be of a period after Elsa Phyllis Wheatman bought the six cottages in 1951.

In 1957 Mrs Wheatman sold the freehold premises known as The Trio (Nos 8 -10) to Mrs Jane Louisa Hill.

In 1959 the two semi-detached cottages known as No 3 and 4 were replaced by a bungalow, Claydon, occupied by members of the Riddle family from new to the present day.

In 1960 a demolition order was made to demolish No 8 occupied by Mrs E Thursby, the cottage being deemed

unfit for human habitation and ... not capable of being made fit at reasonable cost

The Summary of Disrepair and Sanitary Defects for No 8 makes depressing reading and gives an outline of the accommodation, being living room, scullery, front bedroom and landing bedroom with a lean-to at the rear common to No 7 and 8. The house is leaking water through the roof and round the chimney, gutters are rusted, floor boards are badly rotted and plaster is wet. It is described as

extremely damp throughout from rising and penetrating dampness. Roof leaking The mains water supply is to a tap in the yard at the rear ... There is no proper drainage ... The sanitary convenience is a bucket lavatory in a timber structure...

there is no sink.

However it would seem that No 8 was not demolished.

The plan above accompanies the conveyance of No. 8 in 1961

No pictures of the original row of cottages exist as far as we know apart from in the background to the 1920s picture of the motor bikers above.

The north side of Mersea Road has slowly been 'infilled' over the decades; the six council houses of the 1950s, Claydons from 1959, the semis, Goldings and Southview built in 1969, and the twenty-first century executive houses, Swallow Cottage and Salcott Ray, in the gardens of the former Post Office, Rose Cottage. The council houses were so well spaced out that Ty Coch and Kingfisher Cottage have been built in between.

Did Jabez Barnard build the cottages as an investment and did his Colchester-born wife, Mary Ellis, have connections with the village? Being a Quaker, was this a philanthropic venture on his part? We will probably never know.

No doubt, unwittingly, some of Barnard and Son slides were among those shown to villagers in Peldon's schoolroom throughout the Magic Lantern's heyday. For over a 75 year period there are references to Magic Lantern Shows in Peldon for entertainment, religious instruction and education.

Elaine Barker
Peldon History Project

Sources:
Hermann Hecht DECALCOMANIA some preliminary investigations into the history of transfer slides.
(from New Magic Lantern Journal).
Encyclopaedia of the Magic Lantern
A History of Pre cinema Vol 1 and 2 Stephen Herbert
Evening Entertainments for the Magic Lantern

Thanks
Marianne Smith for photographs
Rene and Alan Marriott from the Magic Lantern Society
The owners of Goldings and Marigold and Bramley Cottages for the loan of their house deeds

APPENDIX 1 Detailed outline of changes of ownership from 1961 to the present day

The plan above accompanies the conveyance of No. 8 in 1961, between Mrs E P Kersey (formerly Wheatman) and Miss Dorothy Webster. * It shows the site of the ten cottages to the left of the Council houses. No. 1 and 2 are a pair of semis. On the plot where Nos. 3 and 4 had stood Mr Riddle's bungalow has already been built and Nos. 5 - 8 are numbered. Nos 9 and 10 are not numbered on the plan but are indicated as belonging to Mr Hill. No. 8 is highlighted in yellow.

* There is an anomaly here because there is an earlier conveyance between Mrs Wheatman and Mrs Hill for 8, 9 and 10.

In 1961 No 5 and 6 were demolished and Nos 7 and 8 were both bought by Miss D Webster.

In 1962 No 7 was knocked into No 8 to become one house; the whole site including land previously occupied by No 5 and 6 became known as Cruachan, (the house that still stands on part of the plot subsequently named Bramley Cottage.)

In 1964 Mrs Hill sold Nos 9 and 10 to Brian Frederick Hubert Spurling from East Mersea for £3,750; by now the cottage being sold is known as Marigold Cottage and is also referred to as No 10. Mrs Hill's address is given as Treetops, Church Road, Peldon. The conveyance informs us

said premises formerly comprised two cottages known as No 9 and No 10, Peldon Road,

Presumably, therefore, these two had been knocked into one between 1957 and 1964, possibly at the same time as Nos. 7 and 8 which were also sold to Mr Spurling in 1964.

In 1968 Mr Spurling sold Marigold Cottage to the Hendys of Pete Tye Farm for £4,000 who in turn sold to the current owners. A clause in all the early twentieth century conveyances gives the rights to the occupants of No 5, 6, 7 and 8 to draw water from the water pipe crossing Marigold Cottage's land at the rear, providing they pay two thirds of the cost of maintenance.

In 1968, the site of Nos 5 and 6, known as Plot 1 on the deeds, was bought by Maurice Victor Johnson a builder from Rowhedge who built the two semis, Goldings and Southview. He also bought Nos 7 and 8 which he then sold to Margaret Florence Sweeting.

In 1969, Alan and Julia Ladbrooke were the first owners of Goldings, giving it the name it still carries. The next owners were Brian and June Brown and they sold to the current owners in 1998.

In 1985 Nos 7 and 8 were sold by Margaret Sweeting to Kathleen Lane who sold in 1987 to the current owners of what is known as Bramley Cottage.

Read More:
Magic Lantern Shows in Peldon
Former residents of Barnard's Cottages:
Peldon People - Golden and Charlie Simpson
Peldon People - The Miller Family
Frank Walter Harvey - killed in WW1

Author: Elaine Barker
2 March 2020
ID: PH01_BND
Source: Mersea Museum