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3 and 4 Strawberry Hill Cottages Knotting

3-4 Strawberry Hill Cottages April 2015
3-4 Strawberry Hill Cottages April 2015

3 and 4 Strawberry Hill Cottages was listed by English Heritage in August 1987 as Grade II, of special interest. The pair were built by Lord of the Manor the Duke of Bedford in 1868, the same year as Strawberry Hill Farm. The cottages have a very different design to most Bedford Estate cottages. The listing notes: “datestone 1868, but stylistically later appearance suggests turn-of-century modifications”.It is likely that they originally resembled 1 and 2 Strawberry Hill Cottages.

The ground floor is built in red brick, the first floor is rendered with planted timbers. The dwellings have old clay tile roofs and comprise one storey and attics. The cottages were in the same ownership as Strawberry Hill Farm until well into the 20th century.

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 the cottages, in 1927 [DV1/C1/19-20], found that they were owned by by farmer Edward Harry Horrell of Strawberry Hill Farm.

The northernmost cottage was in occupation of A Reeve whose rent was five shillings per week, which had been set in 1926. His accommodation comprised a parlour, kitchen and scullery, a downstairs bedroom and a larder; two bedrooms were upstairs. A barn and an earth closet stood outside. Water came from a tap twenty yards from the house and there was soft water in a well at the rear. “Slope in bedrooms but nice cottages” the valuer opined, a colleague noting “Very good”. Next door was A Sawford who worked on Strawberry Hill Farm. His accommodation was identical to his neighbour.