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9 to 12 South End Milton Bryan

9 to 12 South End about 1900
9 to 12 South End about 1900

9 to 12 South End were listed by the Ministry of Public Buildings and Works in January 1961 as Grade II, of special interest. The row of cottages dates to the 17th and 18th centuries, with 19th century alterations. They are timber-framed and mostly have colourwashed brick and plaster infill between the timbers. All have thatched roofs.

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 9 to 12 Church End [DV1/C261/49-51] found they were all owned by the Duke of Bedford’s London and Devon Estates Company.

Number 9 was occupied by Mrs. E. Turney who paid rent of a shilling a week for a living room, kitchen and three bedrooms above. A barn and an earth closet stood outside. The valuer commented: “Glorious roof room over archway”.

Number 10 was in the occupation of A. Nicholls who also paid a shilling a week for a living room, a kitchen and scullery and three bedrooms above. Again a barn and earth closet stood outside.

Numbers 11 and 12, numbered as 11 Milton Bryan, were in one occupation – Miss Elizabeth Abraham, who kept a shop and ran the post office. She paid rent of thirty shillings per quarter and her accommodation comprised a shop measuring 12 feet by 15 feet, a living room and a scullery with two bedrooms above. The ubiquitous barn and earth closet stood outside.

9 to 12 South End January 2008
9 to 12 South End January 2008

Directories for Bedfordshire were not published every year but every few years from the early to mid 19th century until 1940. A number of directories mention a postmistress or postmaster in Milton Bryan and these are given below. It should be noted that the post office was not necessary always in the same building but could move depending on who took the job on:

  • 1864 Mrs. Elizabeth Burrows (listed as a shopkeeper in 1854 and 1862);
  • 1869, 1877 Mrs. Jane Burrows;
  • 1885 Miss Emily Jane Burrows;
  • 1890 Miss Alice Mary Burrows (also a grocer and a draper);
  • 1894, 1898, 1903, 1906, 1910 and 1914 Miss Jane Fleckney;
  • 1920, 1924, 1928, 1931 and 1936 Miss Elizabeth Abrahams (from 1906 to 1914 she is listed as a shopkeeper);
  • 1940 Percy George Woodhead.

9 to 12 South End February 2012
9 to 12 South End February 2012