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Wood End Farm Kempston Rural

Wood End Farm March 2012
Wood End Farm March 2012

Wood End Farmhouse was listed by English Heritage in August 1987 as Grade II, of special interest. The farmhouse dates from the late 17th or early 18th century with a rear wing, built at right-angles to the main property, which is later. The house is timber-framed with colourwashed roughcast render and comprises a single storey and attics beneath an old clay tiled roof. The later rear wing is taller than the main building. The porch is 20th century.

In 1874 the farm belonged to William Pritzler Newland of Kempston House, a brewer. He mortgaged it to Charles William Powell in that year for £13,700 [Z442/28]. At that date the farm comprised 157 acres, 3 roods. Newland made his will in 1898, leaving all his real estate to trustees for sale, and died in 1900 [Z442/28]. The mortgage was redeemed in 1900. A new mortgage was taken out in 1901 with Frederick Archdale of Southampton [Hampshire] and was repaid in 1904, after Archdale’s death [Z442/28], a new one being taken out with other mortgagees. This was partially repaid in 1923 and wholly paid off in 1929.

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 Wood End Farm [DV1/H1/14] found that it was still owned by William Pritzler Newland’s widow, who lived at Kempston House and occupied by James Frossell whose rent, set on 1st March 1923, was £250 per annum. The farm comprised about 160 acres and had one tied cottage. The valuer commented: “Quite good land. The House is very poor and the buildings are far too large. Water from pump and a good supply. On High Road”. Another hand has concurred: “Buildings too large”.

The farmhouse comprised a living room, a reception room, a kitchen, scullery and pantry with four bedrooms above. An earth closet and a coal house both stood outside. The valuer commented: “Water from pump very good well”.

The farm buildings comprised the following:

  • South Block: a brick and tiled six bay open hovel.
  • South-East Block: a large brick, wood and tiled mixing barn.
  • North Block: a brick and tiled loose box and three cow lodges each for six beasts.
  • East Block: a wood and tiled barn and chaff house; a wood and corrugated iron two bay open hovel and a wood and tiled calf place.
  • Rickyard: a wood and tiled poultry house; a two bay open hovel and an implement shed.
  • 2nd Yard North Block: a wood and tiled seven bay open cart hovel.
  • 2nd Yard East Block: a wood and tiled five bay open hovel and a pig place with a corn loft over.
  • 2nd Yard South Block: three wood and tiled pigsties and a large barn.
  • 2nd Yard South-East Block: a brick and tiled stable for eight; a hay place and a harness room.
  • 2nd Rickyard: wood and tiled five bay and four bay open hovels.

The Kempston House Estate, including the farm, was put up for sale by auction following the death of the owner. The sale particulars [AD1147/10] describe Wood End Farm as follows:

Wood End Farm and Green End Farm, Kempston
Area of 156 acres, 3 roods, 31 poles
(more or less), in accordance with the Schedule printed below
The Farm is let to Mr. James Frossell, at a
Rental of £265 per annum on a yearly tenancy.
Which is built of Brick, Stud and Tile, contains on THE GROUND FLOOR: 3 Rooms, Scullery, Pantry and Dairy. UPSTAIRS are 4 Bedrooms.

Arranged round 2 good enclosed Yards comprise

IN THE FIRST YARD a Timber and Tiled 6-Bay Open Cow Shed, a Barn built of Brick, Timber and Tile. A Brick and Tiled Range of Cow House and 2 Open Sheds.

IN THE SECOND YARD is a large Timber and Tiled Barn, a Timber and Tiled Open Shed, a Timber and Tiled 5-bay Cow Shed and a Range of Pigstyes with a Loft over, a Brick and Tiled Range of Buildings with Stabling for 7 Horses and a Chaff-house.

ADJOINING THE SECOND YARD is a 7-Bay Open Shed built of Brick, Timber and Tile, and detached near the Homestead is a Timber and Tiled 4-Bay Open Shed and a Sheep Hovel.

There are THREE WOKMEN’S COTTAGES two of which are situated approximately in the centre of the Farm. These two Cottages are built of Brick and Thatch, one of them containing a Living Room, Scullery and 3 Bedrooms, and the other a Living Room and 2 Bedrooms and have hitherto been occupied in connection with Kempston House.

The third Cottage is situated near the Farm Homestead and is built of Brick and Tile and contains 2 Rooms downstairs and 3 upstairs; it is let to Mr. H. Burraway. The farm underwent improvements in the early 1960s [RDBP6/62/51].