ID ML2014_001_P47 / Ron Green

TitleWest Mersea's early developer
Abstract

In the early part of the last century Leonard Weaver planned a large developement for West Mersea which he named the Fairhaven Estate. It included a Temperance Hotel and a statue of Queen Victoria on the Victoria Esplanade. The developement was well under way when the first world war broke out and put a stop to it.

One building which was completed was Mrs Weaver's home of rest which later became known as the boarding house and stands to this day on the corner of Seaview Avenue and Osborne Road. Named Aldeborough House it is now a care home and the picture below shows it under construction.

The scaffolding being used would not satisfy todays health and safety standards, but when I started in the trade sixty seven years ago we used this type of scaffolding. We were building a bungalow not a house as in this case and we would not have had so far to fall.

The wooden poles were planted in the ground and the horizontal poles (Ledgers) were tied to the poles with tarred ropes dressed in Stockholm Tar - an aroma I always found quite pleasant. The square lashings used had to be tightened every so often during wet and dry periods. The square oak putlogs going into holes in the brickwork can also be seen. There are no handrails and only one toeboard - and no diagonal bracing.

We only used that scaffolding on the one bungalow in East Mersea. My firm Clifford White & Co and an other Mersea builder George Deeks together bought and lot of tubular steel scaffolding that had stood at Harwich during the war and had half each. I still have much of Clifford White's half - quite an antique now.

I don't recognize anyone on the scaffold but suspect the bearded gentleman in the black coat could be Mr Weaver and the lady sitting by the the brick heap would be Mrs Weaver. They also seem to have over ordered on the bricks, as the brickwork seems to be finished.

As a builder I find this picture very interesting.

Article by Ron Green for Mersea Life January 2014, page 47.

AuthorRon Green
PublishedJanuary 2014
SourceMersea Museum
IDML2014_001_P47
Related Images:
 Leonard Weaver's Fairhaven Nursing Home being built. Mr Weaver wearing a hard hat and Mr Gethen standing by the chimney.
It was also advertised as Mrs Weaver's Home of Rest. It is in Seaview Avenue on the corner of Osborne Road, built 1910 or a little earlier. It opened as a guest house and was known as Fairhaven House. By 2012 it had become Aldeburgh House.
 The Weavers described Mersea as The Rising Christian Temperance Resort. Beautiful sea and country, old fishing village. Boating, bathing & cycling.  MMC_P405_012
ImageID:   MMC_P405_012
Title: Leonard Weaver's Fairhaven Nursing Home being built. Mr Weaver wearing a hard hat and Mr Gethen standing by the chimney. It was also advertised as Mrs Weaver's Home of Rest. It is in Seaview Avenue on the corner of Osborne Road, built 1910 or a little earlier. It opened as a guest house and was known as Fairhaven House. By 2012 it had become Aldeburgh House.
The Weavers described Mersea as "The Rising Christian Temperance Resort. Beautiful sea and country, old fishing village. Boating, bathing & cycling."
Source:Mersea Museum / M.J. Gethen Collection