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10 and 12 Thorncote Road Northill

10 and 12 Thorncote Road March 2010
10 and 12 Thorncote Road March 2010

10 and 12 Thorncote Road were listed by the former Department of Environment in March 1985 as Grade II, of special interest. The department dated the pair of cottages to about 1800. They have a timber framed construction with colour washed roughcast render to the exterior and a clay tiled gambrel roof over one storey and attics, with a single-storey outhouse block to both gable ends. In recent years the properties on Thorncote Road have all been renumbered. 10 and 12 Thorncote Road were formerly Numbered 31 and 33.

In 1910 a thorough rating valuation was carried out across England as part of David Lloyd-George’s pioneering 1909 budget. The survey was so thorough it was known colloquially as the Domesday Survey. The results show that all the older buildings in Northill were owned by John Edmund Audley Harvey, who, though he lived in London, was Lord of the Manor of Northill as well as Lord of the Manor of Ickwell and owner of Ickwell Bury. These older buildings may have been built by a former Lord of the Manor or bought by the Manor at a later stage – detailed research of the Harvey [HY] archive would be needed to try to establish this in each case, unless the current owners still have the deeds to the properties concerned and so can research the history for themselves.

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. Northill was assessed in 1927 and the valuer visiting the properties [DV1/C42/89-90] found them owned by Cyril Course, who lived in Number 12 himself. He or a predecessor had evidently bought them from the Harveys though whether by public auction or private treaty is not known. His accommodation comprised a living room, kitchen, scullery and washhouse with two bedrooms above. The valuer considered the property “fair”, commenting “low in front better at back”. A coal house, hen house, pig sty and earth closet stood outside. The garden extended across the other side of the road as well as being adjacent to the house. Water came from an outside tap.

Number 12 was occupied by Sarah Jane Course who had paid rent of £6 per annum since 1913. Her accommodation comprised a living room, kitchen and scullery with two bedrooms above. An earth closet, coal house and barn stood outside and water came from an outside tap. She only had a small garden.