2 to 6 Mill Road Stanbridge
2 to 6 Mill Road December 2008
2 to 6 Mill Road are quite unprepossessing but they are reasonably old, having been built in the 1880s. In 1883 Potash Farm and other properties of the late Thomas Twidell was put up for sale by auction, amongst the various lots. Lot 5 was Mill Hill Field, 3 acres 3 roods 25 perches of grass. Three years later the same properties were again put up for sale on the death of the buyer, Eliza Buckmaster [BML10/67/15]. Lot 5 had been developed as it was now described as: "Two nearly new and substantially-built brick and slated freehold cottages, each having two Rooms below and Two over, occupied by William Goodman and Joseph Blake, at an annual rental of £5 respectively. Adjoining is a substantially brick-built and slated freehold house, containing Two Rooms and Cellar below, and Three Rooms over, occupied, with Lot 6 [nearly three acres of grassland], by John Blake, at an annual rental of £14. There are Small Gardens in front, enclosed by a neat Iron Pallisade, on dwarf wall, and Well of Water. In the rear is a Timber-built and Slated Stable; there is also a Yard, Garden and small paddock of grass; the whole containing about 1 rood 34 perches. This Lot has an extensive frontage of about 300 feet to the roads leading to Tilsworth and Eggington, suitable for the erection of other houses".
The Rating and Valuation Act 1925 ordered every piece of land and building in the country to be assessed to determine the rates to be paid on it. Stanbridge was assessed in 1927 and the valuer visiting 2 to 6 Mill Lane [DV1/C97/101-1-3]. Noted that the terrace was owned by W.Olney. Number 2 was occupied by J.Blake [perhaps still the John Blake of 1886] at an annual rent of £15 per annum including the adjoining meadow, as in 1886. Number 4 was occupied by W.Mead at an annual rent of £7/10/- per annum and Number 6 by E.Orchard at a rent of 3/6 per week.
The valuer does not mention a cellar or three bedrooms in Number 2 as had been the case in 1886; each of the cottages was described as having a living room and kitchen downstairs with two bedrooms above. It seems as if the valuer looked at Number 6, the first house in the row which he visited as it is the one with the earliest reference in the book, and simply assumed they were all the same inside. He did not external differences - Number 6 had a brick and slate barn outside and Number 2 a weather-boarded and corrugated iron shed.