Vintage ~ Handmade ~ Homes ~ Gardens

Sunday, 7 April 2013

The 1517 house

When we were kids Sunday lunch was always followed by a compulsory walk. We'll go and see the 'big houses' my Mother would say like it was some sort of treat to see how the rich folk lived in the kind of houses you were never going to live in. Well something must have rubbed off because this afternoon I took a walk that took in some of the local 'big houses' of Bushey Heath.

There's a short cut from my house - a little bridle track that runs by the side of the fields called Whomsoever Lane. Isn't that a great name? Almost as good as another local road named Trotters Bottom :-)

At the end of this track it opens up into some of the most expensive real estate in the area. A big house here costs millions. This part of Bushey Heath fancies itself a bit. Every drive has a Range Rover and there is private security to protect residents from the hoi polloi - not unlike that other BH town (Beverley Hills).

But in the midst of all this nouveau riche is a little gem - what I call the 1517 house. It hidden by a large hedge but I took a few swift snaps today with my iPhone without alerting security just to show you.

I can't tell you much about the house other than it dates back to 1517. I love the cross in the wall don't you? For a number of years the front of the house was propped up but clearly someone was brave enough to take it on on preserve this 500 year old house for the future. 500 years ago the house would have been surrounded by woodland. I wondered who lived there then? The area was infamous for highway robbery and in the 1700s Dick Turpin was rumoured to have operated in the private security then! 

According to Grant Longman's Robberies on Bushey Heath, the road from Bushey Heath to Stanmore is said to be where the highwaymen lurked, ready to raid the dozen or so caravans that passed through Bushey Heath daily, carrying money from trade in London. Before venturing through the pass, parties of travellers and merchants would form at the Boot Inn Pub at Edgware and the Three Crowns Pub at Bushey Heath so they didn’t have to venture through the pass alone. Imagine venturing down Whosoever Lane in those days!

The sun finally shone today. A great day for seeing the big houses.


  1. oh I love going for walks and being nosy at houses. This reminds me of when we were little as a family we would go around show houses on estates and I would pretend it was my house and where everything would go...and we would go to big NT houses and grounds, I loved it and keep saying to hubs we should go and visit the local ones!

  2. Oooh yes we used to do the show homes too!


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