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Milford Cottage Thurleigh

Milford Cottage stands a good way up Cross End Lane, a no-through road. It was listed by English Heritage in August 1983 as Grade II, of special interest. The cottage dates from the 17th century and is timber-framed with colour washed plaster rendering. The cottage had a two room plan to which a 20th century cross-wing has been added to the north. The structure comprises two storeys beneath a 20th century tiled roof. The central chimney has a back-to-back hearth on the ground floor which provided heating for both the original rooms.

Before the property was sold in 1979 owner Eric Wildman brought the deeds in to Bedfordshire and Luton Archive and Record Service for a catalogue to be made. The deeds were then passed to the new owners, the archive service retaining the catalogue [CRT130Thurleigh9].

In 1720 Thomas Morris of Pavenham, mason and William Harrison of Pavenham, stone cutter and Elizabeth, his wife, conveyed a cottage formely occupied by Widow Tirkington or Turkington (who is shown as occupier in the Hearth Tax of 1671), then of William King to Henry Empson of Thurleigh, yeoman for £48.

Five years later the cottage, now in the occupation of George Harris, was conveyed by Empson's sister, Katherine Partridge of Clifton Reynes [Buckinghamshire], widow to the wonderfully named Silence Izard of Thurleigh, widow for £35, Henry Empson having died. By 1731 Silence had married John Smith of Wellingborough [Northamptonshire], grocer and they sold the cottage to William Bushby of Thurleigh, carpenter for £35/10/-. The cottage was now occupied by Francis Coley, labourer. Bushby was still owner in 1744 when he mortgaged the cottage, now occupied by John Smith, for £50.

Bushby later sold the cottage to Ravensden carpenter Edward Wildman and in 1786 he sold it to John Austin of Thurleigh, yeoman, for 15 guineas. The property had been divided into two and was now occupied by Joseph Hill and William Tinsley. Given the 17th century date for this cottage it seems likely that this is M

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/C73/83] found that it was owned and occupied by E. J. Fuller and that it stood in 0.374 of an acre. It comprised a parlour, a living room, four bedrooms and a washhouse. The valuer noted that it was originally two cottages. A barn stood in the garden. The valuer commented: "Situation bad".