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Bedford Estates Cottages in Timber Lane

17 and 18 Timber Lane March 2012
17 and 18 Timber Lane March 2012

The Dukes of Bedford built numerous estate cottages in the various parishes in which they owned land from the mid 19th century into the 20th century. There were a number of different types but all are instantly recognisable as Bedford Estates properties. Fittingly the highest number was built in Woburn.

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. Woburn, like much of the county was valued in 1927 and the valuer visiting Timber Lane found the following groups of cottages [DV1/C126/114-115 and DV1/C108-109] and described their occupation and accommodation as set out below.

  • 17 Timber Lane: in the occupation of Ernest William Peacock whose rent was 2/6 per week for a living room, a kitchen and a parlour with three bedrooms above and a coal barn and W. C. outside. The house was lit by oil lamps and had mains water laid on.
  • 18 Timber Lane: occupied by Herbert Ball whose rent was £1/12/6 per annum for identical accommodation to Number 17.
  • 23 Timber Lane: in the occupation of Mary Judge whose rent was £1/14/8 per quarter for three living rooms, a kitchen and four bedrooms with two coal barns and two W. Cs outside “was two cottages”;
  • 24 Timber Lane: occupied by William Haddon whose rent was £1/0/7 per quarter or a living room, a kitchen and three bedrooms with a coal barn and W. C. outside.

It is very fitting that all the new houses built in Timber Lane around the turn of the millennium still carry the Bedford Estates crest and date in the same way as their 19th and early 20th cebtury forebears.

23 and 24 Timber Lane March 2012
23 and 24 Timber Lane March 2012