Magnolia Cottage - 1 Days Lane Biddenham
Magnolia Cottage - 1 Days Lane April 2012
The Bedfordshire Historic Environment Record [HER] contains information on the county’s historic buildings and landscapes and summaries of each entry can now be found online as part of the Heritage Gateway website. The records gives two separate entries for the property – HER 10,142 and HER 9159. Entry 10,142 seems the better match as a description of the property and is the one quoted here.
The HER states that the house has 17th century origins and is constructed of colourwashed plaster over a timber frame, partly infilled with brick. The house comprises one storey with attics and has modern rear extensions.
Today all one cottage, it was once two cottages, numbered 1 and 3 Days Lane, the building being divided left and right as seen from the road. This is still noticeable in the different coloured thatch in the photograph above.
The Rating and Valuation Act 1925 specified that every building and piece of land in the country was to be assessed to determine its rateable value. The valuer visiting the cottage found both dwellings owned by the Wingfiels family, Lord of the Manor of Biddenham.
Number 1 [DV1/C277/149] was occupied by L. Herbert who had paid rent of £3/18/- per half year from 1913. It comprised a living room, kitchen and pantry (“small”), with one bedroom in the attics and a barn, W. C., and wood and tiled bicycle shed outside. The valuer opined: “very poor” and noted: “water from pump in lane”. Another hand has written: “Very poor place, very bad up”.
Number 3 [DV1/C277/150] was in the occupation of W. G. Mason at a rent of 24/- per annum from 1902. It comprised a living room and kitchen downstairs, with one bedroom in the attics. Outside stood a barn and an earth closet. The valuer’s comments exactly mirrored those for Number 1.