28 Church Street Clifton
28 Church Street August 2009
28 Church Street is a striking farmhouse. Bedfordshire and Luton Archives and Records Service has a conveyance of the property, then called Whiston Farm, in 1857 [X892/4/1]. In 1851 the farm belonged to Edmund Fearnley Whittingstall and he mortgaged it to three men. In his will of 1855 he appointed one of the mortgagees, as well as two other men, as executors and trustees with instructions that they should sell all his real estate after his death. He died the following year and in 1857 Whiston Farm was sold at auction to Richard Palmer and Henry Young of Essex Street, Strand [Middlesex] for £760.
The Rating and Valuation Act 1925 specified [Section 19 (1)] that every piece of land and property in the country be valued to determine the rateable value. Clifton, like most of Bedfordshire, was assessed in 1927 and the valuer visiting 28 Church Street, Whiston Farm [DV1/C186/51] noted that it was then owned and occupied by Mrs. Wilson and stood in 1.151 acres.
The valuer noted that the brick and slate farmhouse was built in 1857 (presumably by the new owners after sale) and commented: "Nice House. Yew Tree round door. Good Fir Trees". Accommodation comprised two parlours, a living room, kitchen, larder and coal house downstairs with five bedrooms above. The valuer especially noted: "No Bath". The house had two cellars and a small bedroom in the loft, the whole of which measured 23 feet by 19 feet.
An unheated glasshouse stood outside along with a brick and tile barn attached to the house. A brick, wood and corrugated iron barn stood "up the yard" as did a garage.