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45 The Village Old Warden

45 High Street March 2008
45 The Village March 2008

Old Warden is something of a show village due to the preponderance of attractive cottages; some are tiled, some are thatched, but most are quaint looking and painted in the same livery of cream and white. Most are rendered and some have mock timber framing on the outside (sometimes concealing real timber framing beneath the render!). All look old but many are 19th century. They all belonged to the Shuttleworth Estate as it was known after Joseph Shuttleworth bought the estate in 1872. It had previously been the Ongley estate after Samuel Ongley bought it from Earl Bolingbroke, a member of the Saint John family of Bletsoe, in 1698.

45 High Street was listed by the former Department of Environment in 1970 as Grade II, of special interest. It is an Ongley Estate cottage from the early19th century "probably a reworking of an earlier building". Like most of the cottages in Old Warden it is built of colour-washed rough-cast render over a timber frame. It has a thatched roof. It is a single storey house with a four room plan and, unusually, no attics.

In 1927 the dwellings of Old Warden were valued under the Rating Valuation Act 1925; every piece of land and building in the country was assessed to determine the rates to be paid on it. The valuer visiting 45 The Village, as it was then known [DV1/C34/112] noted that it was owned by the Shuttleworth Estate and tenanted by F.G.Vintner. He described it, a little anachronistically, as a bungalow; it comprised a kitchen, two bedrooms and a living room with a barn and wash-house outside. Rent was £3/14/0 per annum. The valuer commented: "Wonderful wavy thatching. Pretty. Thatch v.g."