The WURA area and the land auction of 1862

Much of the land now occupied by Welcomes and Uploads Roads was part of the Wellcomes Farm and Garston Farm estate.

The very early ownership of Wellcomes Farm is documented as being with the Gresham family from 1545. Michael Thornton and his son John are listed as the owners from 1682 to 1718, followed by Thomas Clemonts and his son Thomas between 1718 and 1780. James Roberts was the owner from 1780 to 1792, during which time it was actually farmed by Capt Coombs.

The Bourne Society list the owners of Kenley Farm during this early period as Henry Polsted, from 1547, through Sir Francis Carew in 1553 and Joseph Hodgkins in 1750. Hodgkins was also the owner of Garston Hall at this point. The Bourne Society’s Kenley Village History book includes a plan of Kenley Farm from 1762 in their Village History book of Kenley.

In 1817 ownership of Wellcomes and Garston Farms passed to John Keen and subsequently to his son Thomas. It is during this time that the land begins to be divided. In 1841, 300 acres go to Gabriel Lovelock and in 1861 a further 300 acres go to John Sallows.

Click on the image above to see a larger, zoom-able version. Welcomes Road is labelled ‘New Road To Kenley and Welcomes’. This is the road built by both Thomas Keen and Mr Marson, his neighbour in Kenley House. It is believed that the new road was constructed because Kenley Lane was proving too steep for horses drawing carriages.

At the time of the documented auction of the property in 1862, the Wellcomes and Garston Farm land comprised over 318 acres, spread over two main areas. The first area is the land between Old Lodge Lane and Welcomes Road, extending into part of what is now Kenley Common. The second area was distinct, to the south and east of what was recognised as Kenley Common then, extending towards Whyteleafe.

The land was bordered to the south and west by land owned by Thomas Byron of Coulsdon Manor, with the southern-most border being with W Chrystal. To the east and north it was land owned by G H Drew. Interestingly, Kenley House is shown as such, rather than as Kenley Farm.

The auction of the land was held on Tuesday, 13th May 1862 on the death of the owner, Thomas Keen. The land was parcelled into a total of 27 lots, itemised in the auction brochure of the time, produced by Messrs Blake, the auctioneers. It’s interesting to note that the auction itself was held in a coffee house, at Cornhill in London (click on the image below to see a larger, zoom-able version).

Land at that time was measured in acres, roods and perches. One acre was originally the area which could be ploughed by a team of 8 oxen in 1 day, but then this needed to be more standardised and it came to be defined as 40 poles long (1 furlong – in other words 1 ‘farrow long’ – 600ft ) by 4 poles (66ft) wide. There were 4 roods in 1 acre, and 40 perches in a rood. A perch is the equivalent of 25.3 sq m. The grand total covers 318 acres, 2 roods and 14 perches.

no.description cultivationa    r    p
1Farm house, buildings, yards and garden 2    0    2
2Kitchen meadow Meadow6    0    29
3King’s Close, Barn Field, Great and Little Lieu, Slade Wood, The Slade and Heath Field Arable2    1    27
4Wyse Wood Wood2    1    27
5Kitchen Meadow Shaw  Wood 0    2    39
6Shaw and Pit  Wood 0    1    19
7Shaw in Heath Field  Wood 0    2    21
8 Two cottages and garden  0    1    5
9Garston Meadow (including Pond) and Garston and Slade Meadows Meadow & pasture14    2    3
10Two cottages and garden 0    1    26
11North Hide, Gill’s Croft (including Pond) and Sibretts Pasture28    1    31
12Shaw and Pit  Wood 0    3    38
13New Hill and part of Long Common Arable14    1    7
14Part of Lower Common Pasture1    0    38
15Friland’s and Border Arable11    2    17
16Friland’s Shaw  Wood 2    2    8
17King’s Field Shaw and Pit  Wood 0    2    36
18Harrow Garden Shaw  Wood 2    3    8
19King’s Field and Borders Arable15    1    26
20Mesne Field and Border Arable12    0    5
21Smith’s Field, including 2 cottages, buildings and yard, Great and Little Size Ties, Stamp Wood and borders Arable72    1    8
21aHog Trough Field, Upper and Lower Baydowns and Borders Arable26    1    4
22Stamp Wood Shaw, Pit and Kiln Wood0    2    37
23Addery Hill Arable23    2    27
24Baydown Shaw Wood2    3    16
25Upper Baydown (part of) Arable3    0    37
26Goss Field and Border Rough pasture6    3    30

The descriptions of the lots include terms no longer in common use. A shaw is a small wood or copse. The pits were quite likely for flint or chalk and the kiln would have been for limestone.

The sequence below shows each of the parcels of land from the schedule – the map has been re-oriented to show north at the top, the direction more familiar with users of online maps.

The next post will show how this land fits in to the current landscape.

The WURA website is indebted to local history expert John Carr for making his map and auction schedule available.

Roadworks update – work completed

Allfreys began work on schedule on Tuesday 24th and progressed well, with the road re-opened for Saturday.

They have found two old cast iron pipes near the surface which are broken, so although their purpose is unclear these could be the source of the unexplained water.

There is no evidence of a spring but the general pressure from ground water has tended to force water to the surface through fault lines in the road surface. These will be sealed in by the contractors.

Road closure – 24th to 28th September, inclusive

Carriageway reconstruction is to take place between the Tuesday 24th and Saturday 28th of September 2019 between the speed ramp opposite 134 Welcomes Road and lamp post 24 on the verge on the first bend near 157 Welcomes Road. We hope that the road will be open again by the Saturday but please do not rely on it as it can not be guaranteed.

The contractor, J C Allfreys Co.Ltd., may need to carry out deep excavations to divert the flow of water from an underground spring which is causing subsidence to the road surface  possibly resulting in the complete closure of this stretch of road.  

The contractor will try to keep disruption to the minimum endeavouring if possible to allow the residents living directly opposite the works access to their property. 

Through traffic MUST  be prepared to use alternative routes to avoid this section of the road.

Please forewarn any visitors or deliveries that you are expecting between those dates.  The  contractor’s plant may be parked in Uplands Road near the Welcomes Road junction overnight.

We will issue further bulletins as the work progresses and will be writing to the residents directly affected about parking arrangements.

Kenley Community Plan update – Event 4

The Kenley Community Plan team presented an update session at the Kenley Memorial Hall on September 11th followed by another at the Old Lodge Lane Baptist Church on the 12th.

The main part of the presentation consisted of a set of boards showing a summary of their findings during the consultation throughout the Spring and Summer. This comprised an analysis of the answers to questions such as ‘what do you like about living in Kenley?’ and ‘how could Kenley be improved?’. Key areas of interest were identified, as follows:

  • youth and community
  • transport and streetscape
  • greening and local green space
  • health, sport and wellbeing
  • community safety and waste services
  • jobs and training

The issues and areas of improvement for each are presented in the full slide pack, which can be viewed here (11MB PDF file).

These key areas have been used to identify potential projects for further investment. The data collated by the Community Plan consultation will be used to support applications for funds from the Mayor of London’s Good Growth Fund. Such applications will be in a pool from councils all across London, so they are by no means a definite, but Croydon are hopeful that the involvement of the local community during the consultation period will put those applications in a good position. Potential projects identified so far are:

  • community accessible transport
  • improving green links
  • improvements for the Kenley Memorial Hall
  • initiatives for the Godstone Road shopping parade
  • improvements for the public space in front of the Godstone Road shopping parade
  • expansion of activities at the Old Lodge Lane Baptist Church
  • improvements for the public space at the Old Lodge Lane shopping parade
  • restructuring to give access to the New Valley Primary School playing fields outside of school hours

Each of these can be viewed in more detail in the GGF slide pack, viewable here (15Mb PDF file).

The team will be completing a final detailed analysis of all the feedback to be included in the draft Kenley Community Plan.  This draft will be published for public comment later in October and a final Plan will be published in early 2020.  The Kenley Community Plan page on Croydon Council’s website will be updated regularly so you can keep in touch with progress.

You still have the opportunity to get back to the team by contacting them on their email address to provide feedback on areas which have not been considered or even if you spot factual errors on the current material.