The Allerton History Society was first started in 2003 with the objective of raising funds to produce a book on the History of Allerton which was in the process of being written. This was successfully launched in November 2004 under the title "Allerton in the Twentieth Century - Cowsheds to Computers"and has sold over 300 copies.  This was re-printed in 2016 and is available from Johnny Torrens-Spence - Tel 710188 or email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

We try and organise 2 evening talks of a historical nature per year and one visit.

2015 saw the launch of a project to look at the development of the village and the history of its houses.  It is hoped that this will form the basis for another publication about the Allertons.

For further information please contact the Secretary Kate Durston - Tel 01934 712309
or email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

(Also see our About The Allertons page)

 

Next Meeting

The next meeting will be the AGM on 22ndJanuary 2019 
in the Old Schoolroom at 7.30pm

This will be followed by a talk from Johnny Torrens-Spence entitled 
St Congar - a Celtic monk in Anglo-Saxon Somerset"

Badgworth church is the only church in Somerset dedicated to St Congar and Johnny is asking why this is.  Johnny is an excellent speaker and his talk should be really interesting so do please join us.

There will also be an opportunity for people, after refreshments, to talk about the History of the Houses project and the plans to move forward with it.

Next meeting

A summer visit will be arranged and will be advertised here and in the Allerton News so keep an eye out for it

Previous meetings

The 2018 AGM was held on Wednesday 10th January and followed by an excellent talk from Hazel Hudson on Allerton Sinners through through the Centuries.  

2017 AGM and talk
Over twenty people turned out on a bitterly cold February evening for the Allerton History Society AGM and a talk by Dr Sue Shaw.  The Chair, Secretary and Treasurer of the History Society remained unchanged from last year, but Alan Williams has regretfully decided it is time to retire from the Committee.  Alan Williams will be greatly missed as he is almost the last remaining founder member of the History Society.  If anybody would like to replace him on the committee please contact Kate Durston on 712309.

The History Society is continuing to focus on old houses and the talk, “Every House tells a tale”, was designed to help with research into old houses.  As a landscape archaeologist, Sue was able to explain the importance of detailed observation of the exterior and interior of our homes.  She used slides to help us spot interesting features of old houses, and she suggested that we took photos of interesting features and details in our houses and put them in scrap books.  She also suggested we catalogue any items found in our gardens and in the backs of cupboards or under the floor boards. It is vitally important to note where things have been found. 

Read more: Allerton History Society

History of the Houses Project

Research into the history of the houses in the Allertons is on-going.  If anyone would like to get involved then please contact one of the committee who are always glad to help with the research. 
We will be running a series of articles on particular houses during 2017 and 2018 which will be published in the Allerton News.  If anyone would like a copy of any of them please contact Liz Friend - This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Articles:
Feb:  New Tyning, Stone Allerton (known previously as Rose Villa)
built around 1844 by Isaiah Hatch, a Master Carpenter
March:  Harewood House, Chapel Allerton
A modest Gentleman's residence completed in 1864
April:  Applebarn, Stone Allerton
Originally a barn belonging to Stone Allerton Farm and used as a cider house
May:  Sleepy Hollow, Stone Allerton
A house built in the 1700's and later used as two or three separate residences which included a forge
June:  Jessamine House, Chapel Allerton.
Built around 1700 and owned by the church
July:  The Olde Forge (now Harts)
Originally called The Smithy the Olde Forge is first noted on the Tithe Map in 1842 when apparently there were two cottages, a forge and an orchard which were all owned by Ann Ham.  Her son was the blacksmith.
August:  Manor Farm, Stone Allerton.
Built in the 18th century and gentrified in the 19th century - there is no Manor in Stone Allerton though!!
September:  Mendip Hill Farm, Stone Allerton
An account from Harry Field whose grandfather farmed there in the 1920's
October:  There was no article in October but a very interesting article about Joan Stevens  who lived at The Cottage SA
November:  Holly Tree Farm owned by Andrew and Jane Midgley.
December:   Fern Cottage.  A house possibly dating back to the end of the C17th and with deeds dating back to the late C18th - then owned by Matthew Tilley and then John Ham and subsequently by the Durling family.
Feb 2018:  Mill House part 1
March:  Mill House part 2
Mill House on the Top Road was originally the mill for Weare and later converted to a house by Eve Luttrell of Badgworth Court
April:  Osborne House part 1
May:  Osborne House part 2
Osborne House was built in the 1840's in a Georgian style.  Early records are missing but it was lived in by Elizabeth Tucker (nee Ham) the daughter of Peter Ham after her husband's death in 1887.  Her daughter Honoria continued to live there with her husband Walter Wiseman

 

 Carvings in Weare Parish Church

On June 1st 2016 several members of the Society met Margaret Jordan in Weare Church to learn about the Pinwill carvings.  

For those who don’t know, the Pinwill sisters are renowned for their carvings in churches throughout Devon and Cornwall.  The ones that decorate the choir stalls in Weare are the only example of their work in Somerset and they were commissioned by the Luttrell family of Badworth Court, as part of a restoration project in 1901.

The sisters were the daughters of the Rev. Edmund Pinwill who became the vicar of a rather rundown church in Ermington in Devon in 1880 and who hired woodcarvers to restore the woodwork there.  He and his wife encouraged the daughters to learn the craft of woodcarving and three of them, Violet, Mary and Esther carved the pulpit for the church.  They subsequently went into business in 1890 forming a company called Rashleigh Pinwill, which specialized in oak carvings based on natural forms.  Violet later ran the company on her own, under the name V. Pinwill Carvers.  She employed men but also did a lot of the carving herself.  It’s worth remembering that this was done at a time when few middle-class women worked or ran companies employing men and no woman had the vote!

Thanks to Fiona Torrens-Spence for arranging this visit.