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SNIPETTS

*Many tracks converged at the top of Rosemary Hill in Blackheath. The parish boundary of Shalford once extended to the top of the hill. The parish boundary of St. Martha’s also meets the boundary of Wonersh there. For those reasons it was conjectured to be a meeting place or moot of the Blackheath hundred in medieval times. It was known as ‘roast meat’ hill, perhaps preserving a folk memory of feasting when the Hundred Court met. There used to be a cross cut in the ground to show the junction of the parish boundaries. (Surrey History Archives)

 

 

*Behind Mitchell Cottages there was a well worn ‘beer path’ leading across the heath to the Forest King ale house (now Heath House on the cricket pitch).

 

 

*The Memorial Cross in memoriam to the men from Blackheath who died in the First World War was erected in 1919 at a cost of £150. It is placed on the site of WW1 searchlight.

 

 

*Edward Mitchell was a builder from Shalford operating between 1848 and 1860. Thus, the name of Mitchell Cottages.

 

 

*There wasn't a ‘poor house’ in Blackheath, and until 1842 the nearest was situated near the millpond in Bramley. If Blackheathens needed to rely on the help of the ‘poor house’ or ‘workhouse’ they would have travelled to either Cranleigh Common or the Hambledon workhouse.

 

*The Manor of East Bramley of which Blackheath was part of, was valued at £4,910 in 1908. The sporting rights were estimated at £5.00. Peat and sand sales £5.00

 

 

*1829 - Lord Grantley wished to pull down some unofficial cottages on the common as being ‘inhabited by a nest of poachers and thieves. The cottage of one John Herington is cited, built 18 years previously (1811) by his father with stolen fir poles. He had received a punishment of transportation.

 

 

*The end of production of paper making at the Chilworth papermill came in 1870. The only piece of machinery to survive was an iron-drying cylinder. 5 feet wide and 3 feet in diameter this was part of the papermaking machine. The machine was dragged up to Blackheath cricket pitch after the closure and adapted and used as a heavy roller for the pitch. It now sits on the edge of the boundary and has kept many children over the generations occupied as a climbing frame.

 

 

 

*1839  - A lease for 50 years by the lord of the Manor was granted to Nimrod Mitchell (carpenter) from Shalford. Described as a parcel of land (1 ½ acre) lately enclosed out of the waste of the manor of East Bramley called “Blackheath’ with a messuage (dwelling place) built on it'. It was at that time occupied by Richard Billingshurst and Mr Jolly. The premises were leased at a rent of 20s pa and subject to a heriot (death tax) of 2s 6d and relief of 2s 6d each time the lease was sold.

 

 

* Approx 1895. Blackheath was en fete on Saturday when Mrs Roberts Austen invited all the inhabitants of the heath to accept her and her husband’s hospitality. Beautiful weather prevailing, the grounds were well peopled, over 300 accepting the kind invitation. At half past five a sumptuous ‘high tea’ was provided, after which various games and races for men, women and children were indulged in. A ‘lucky tub’ provided great attraction. The Wonersh Drum and Fife band played some lively selections during teatime and a good many of the young people afterwards indulged in a little ‘light fantastic’ with great zest. A hearty vote of thanks to Mrs Roberts Austen was proposed by Councillor Hayward, and Professor Roberts Austen returned thanks on behalf of his wife, and said they were always pleased to do anything for the enjoyment of the people of the heath. Approx 1895

 

 

* The Jubilee Sign - A competition was held to design a village sign to commemorate the Queen’s Silver Jubilee in 1977. Billie Hockley’s design won her first place. Her design included a well, pine trees, the church and a deer. The designs were displayed in the village hall and residents voted for their favorite choice.The sign was erected on the corner of the crossroads by Rosemary Hill

 

 

*The area known as 'Head’s Hill' in Blackheath is not named after Bill Head who cut the grass verges.

We believe it to be names after the family (who were most likely related) who lived over near Candleford on a small farm. They provided milk for the village and would carry it in buckets dangling from a ‘yoke’.

The family member would walk up the hill to the village, coming from the valley down to the right of the gallops. On reaching the top of the incline they would sit and rest a while on the same spot each day. Thus the name….

 

 

*In January 2013 an exciting new advertising campaign was shot amongst the pine trees of the heath.  The luxury fashion house Mulberry chose the backdrop of the heath for their shoot by fashion photographer Tim Walker. The model, Lindsey Wilson ran through the trees surrounded by hairy monsters and carrying luxury Mulberry bags.

*1878-Walter Townsend requested to purchase a piece of Blackheath for gardening allotments. It was noted that since the court had last received an application from Blackheath no less than 10 cottages had been built and commenced on the heath, and there was talk of even more being built.

*During the First World War an early picture of St.Martin's church was hidden away in a church vestry near Versailles, Paris.  It was  amongst the possessions of Malcolm Fox and his wife Connie. Connie was a niece of Lady Roberts-Austen of Blackheath and fled from Paris on a collier ship to South Wales  just before the arrival of the Germans. The picture of the church with no trees in sight but a lot of surrounding heather was a favourite of her aunts, and was similar to one hanging in the vestry in Blackheath for many years. Connie and her sisters were apparently the child models for the church murals, in particular the painting over the altar 'Christ blessing the children'. Lady Roberts-Austen had the picture hanging at one  time nearer favourite chair. The picture was finally collected from Paris after the war byDouglas Fox her nephew.

*In January 1912 a license to drive a motor car was issued to Blackheath resident William George Humphries of Blatchfeld, Blackheath. William was the chauffeur to the Miss Drew's and lived in their stable block next to the main house. The car he drove for them was a Landaulette and had the registration of P9284.

*In December 1976, Diana Boyd-Gibbins living at Candleford on Blackheath, applied for a licence to keep dangerous wild animals. She wanted the licence for her two Panthea Leo lions (African lions), one male and one female.  She was asked what type of food was to be supplied for them, 100lbs of beef or horse flesh, 8 chickens and 8 rabbits per week she replied. She also informed them she had an insurance policy to cover liability for any damage caused by the lions with a policy costing £100. She was duly granted the licence by Waverley District Council.

*24th November 1895, a large fire broke out at the Unwin's Country Printing Works in Chilworth situated next to the gunpowder works. Many Blackheath men worked there but luckily the company agreed to pay two weeks wages. No-one was hurt, but many manuscripts about to be printed were destroyed. 

 

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