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Plumtree Cottage - 34 and 36 Apsley Bury Road Shillington

34 and 36 Apsley End Road April 2015
34 and 36 Apsley End Road  April 2015

Plumtree Cottage was listed by the former Department of Environment in July 1975 as Grade II, of special interest. It dates from the 18th century and is of timber-framed structure with colourwashed plaster infill and a thatched roof. It comprises one storey and attics.

The cottage formed part of the combined Manors of Shillington alias Aspley Bury and Aspley alias Aspley Bury which were put up for sale by auction in November 1898 [BS782]. Plumtree Cottage was then described as two cottages in the separate occupations of William Ingram and Alfred Ingram.

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 cottage [DV1/C62-84-85] found it still divided into two – owned by Sir James Hills. The southern half was occupied by W Hilliard at a rent of £3/10 per annum and compriseda living room, a kitchen and two bedrooms, with a wood and tiled barn outside. The other property was occupied by Mrs E Ingram who paid the same rent for the same accommodation.

The valuer opined that the building was a "wretched hole!" No commented: "no drains". A later hand added a reception room and kitchen and WC downstairs, with three bedrooms and a bathroom upstairs and wood and tiled garage outside with a brick floor as both properties were combined into one.

A sale catalogue from the late 1940s or early 1950s [Z35/46] describes the cottage as follows: "possessing the characteristic features of the period with a large amount of exposed oak timbering both inside and on the outer elevations, two inglenook fireplaces and it has been completely modernised throughout, which included re-thatching only a few years ago. The accommodation comprises: - reception hall, off which is cloakroom having glazed handbasin with hot and cold supplies over and pedestal WC, spacious lounge about 14 feet 6 inches by 13 feet 6 inches with inglenook fireplace, dining room about 14 feet 6 inches by 9 feet, breakfast room about 14 feet by 11 feet, well equipped modern domestic offices with hot water supply by a Rayburn cookanheat stove".

"On the first floor are two excellent large double bedrooms and a good sized single bedroom. Bathroom with glazed bath and handbasin, both with hot and cold supplies over and WC. Main services of electricity and water. Modern drainage. Outside garage for two cars. Delightful Old Word garden carefully disposed and maintained, being well stocked, laid out with lawn, fruit trees, soft fruits, flower beds and herbaceous borders, together with a productive kitchen plot, in all about ¾ acre". The price was £3,800.