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Adelaide Cottage Studham

Adelaide Cottage December 2009
Adelaide Cottage December 2009

Adelaide Cottage stands on Common Road. It was listed by the former Department of Environment in September 1980 as Grade II, of special interest. It is an 18th century building, constructed of brick - red stetchers and vitrified headers. The house has two storeys and attics beneath an old clay tile roof.

The Rating and Valuation Act 1925 specified that every piece of land and building in the country was to be assessed to determine the rates to be paid on it. Studham was assessed at the end of 1926 and the valuer visiting Adelaide Cottage [DV1/C21/88] found that it was owned and occupied by D. Desborough who was a baker and confectioner ("Chiefly confectionary, very little bread"). Downstairs comprised two reception rooms, a kitchen and a bakehouse measuring 17 feet b y10 feet containing a two bushel oven measuring 2 feet by 4 feet. Four bedrooms, two of them small, lay upstairs. Two attics lay on the second floor.

Outside lay a brick, weather-boarded and tiled lean-to earth closet and a weather-boarded and tiled range comprising a store shed ("was smithy"), a stable for two horses and a trap shed with a loft over. The cottage stood in just under one and a half acres and the grounds included an orchard and a grass field. The valuer commented: "Lovely front" and "Could easily be let for £40-50 [per annum]".

Kelly's Directory for Bedfordshire for 1894 and 1898 note the Adelaide Coffee Tavern. These were an idea of the temperance movement designed to have all the social aspects of a public house without the alcohol. One of them remains in nearby Eaton Bray, having been refurbished by Eaton Bray Parish Council in the late 1990s. In 1894 the manager at Studham was Mrs. M. Jameson, manager and in 1898 William Barker. The tavern is not noted again and probably fought a brief losing battle against three well established licensed premises in such a small village. Kelly's Directory for 1940 lists Frederick Colmore Nodder, construction engineer at Adelaide Cottage.