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27 and 29 High Street Silsoe

27 and 29 High Street March 2011
27 and 29 High Street March 2011

27 and 29 High Street form the northernmost cottages of a row extending from 15 High Street northwards. The row then turns the corner and becomes 1 and 3 Church Road.

27 and 29 High Street were listed by the former Department of Environment in January 1961 as Grade II, of special interest. The department dated them to the 18th century "possibly a reworking of an earlier structure" and 19th centuries. They are built of colour-washed rough-cast over a timber frame and have clay tiled roofs. The doorway to Number 29 is in the north gable end. A map drawn up for the 2nd Earl de Grey in 1856 [L33/12/13] shows that 27 High Street was in the occupation of William Pearce and 29 of Edward Emmerton.

27 and 29 High Street were part of the Wrest Park Estate sold by auction in 1919 [L23/1000/1]. 15, 17 and 21 to 29 High Street with 1- 11 Church Road formed Lot 7. 27 and 29 High Street were then numbered 46 and 45 The Village, respectively and are described as follows:

Thirteen Good Cottages & Gardens
Nos. 39 to 52 inclusive (except No. 50)

Having a total Area of about

1 acre, 2 roods, 22 poles

In the occupation of Tenants, at rents amounting to

Per £41 16s. 3d. Ann.

These Cottages which are situated in Silsoe, near the Church, are built partly of brick and partly of stud and plaster with tiled roofs, and contain


Nos. 39, 41, 47 and 49. Two Rooms down and Three up.
Nos. 40, 43, 44, 46 & 58. Two Rooms down and two up.
No. 41. Three Rooms Down and Four up.
Nos. 45 and 52. Three Rooms down and One up.
No. 51. Three Rooms down and One up.

Each cottage has a Barn and Earth Closet.

The water supply is from a Well with pump on this Lot, the joint use of which with the joint liability to repair, with the owner of Cottages Nos. 24, 25 and 50 is included with this Lot.

There is also a large soft Water Tank.

The Land Tax has been apportioned for the purposes of Sale at £2 6s. 6d.

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 27 and 29 High Street [DV1/C236/53-54] found that they were owned by John George Murray, owner of WrestPark. He had bought up much of the Wrest Park Estate in 1918 and 1919. He had bought all thirteen cottages in July 1919 for a combined sum of £585 to ensure they remained part of the estate.

Number 27 was tenanted by Daniel Harris who paid rent of £5/14/6 per annum, an increase from the pre-war rent of £4/10/-. His accommodation comprised a living room, a kitchen and three bedrooms ("two of these very small"). A brick and tiled barn and washhouse combined stood outside, together with an ash pit. Included in the rent was a nearby allotment of a tenth of an acre.

Number 29 was in the occupation of A. T. White whose rent was four shillings per week. He had a living room ("large") and kitchen with three bedrooms ("one large") above. His nearby piece of allotment land was 0.079 of an acre.

In 1934 John  George Murray tried, unsuccessfully, to sell the Wrest Park Estate. Numbers 21 to 29 High Street were described thus [AD1147/23].

Five brick, Stucco and Tiled Cottages
situate opposite the Church and being Nos. 21, 23, 25, 27 and 29, containing Two downstair Rooms with either Two or Three Bed Rooms, together with Gardens and Outoffices.

No. 27 is vacant, and the remainder are let to Messrs. C. Fry, J. Mann, W. Walker Junior and A. T. White on Monthly Tenancies at rentals amounting to £34 6s. 6d. per annum.