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5 to 9 Dunstable Road Studham

5 to 9 Dunstable Road January 2010
5 to 9 Dunstable Road January 2010

The 19th century village of Studham was largely a cluster of surviving properties in Dunstable Road. The Rating and Valuation Act 1925 specified that every piece of land and building in the country was to be assessed to determine the rates to be paid on it. Studham was assessed at the end of 1926 and the valuer visiting 5 to 9 Dunstable Road discovered that they were then a paid of semi-detached houses [DV1/C21/60-61], owned by the Ashridge Estate, that is the Lords of the Manor, the Brownlow family.

The southernmost property was occupied by James Austin at a rent of £4/10/- per annum. Accommodation comprised a living room, scullery and pantry downstairs with two bedrooms above. A cellar stood beneath the property and an attic on the second floor. A weather-boarded and tiled barn and brick and corrugated iron earth closet stood outside.

Next door was occupied by William Bowley, who paid £3/6/10 per annum rent ("absurd" according to the valuer). His accommodation comprised a reception room, kitchen, two sculleries and two pantries, with two bedrooms above. He also had two attics on the second floor. It thus seems as if he occupied both today's Numbers 7 and 9. The valuer noted: "Was two Cottages, Doors through now". Outside were two weather-boarded and tiled barns and a brick and corrugated iron earth closet.