Newsletter-300-March-1996

No: 300                                                                  March 1996                                    Edited by REVA BROWN

DIARY

Tuesday 12 March                 Lecture: The latest news from Boxgrove - Simon Parfitt.

You've visited the site, watched the TV programme - now hear the lecture!

Tuesday 9 April

Tuesday 14 May

Lecture: The Thames Archaeological Survey - Mike Webber An update on last summer's work on the Thames foreshore, undertaken mainly by volunteers and students.

-Annual General--Meeting, followed by the excavation team's summary of their year's work. Bill Bass will show slides of Martin Biddle's excavation at St Albans at which several of our member’s participated

 

IRELAND 5 days                                            We have contacted Trinity College, Dublin for accommodation and

archaeological contacts, but as yet, have received no reply. A phone call has brought forth charges, however, and possible available dates. Jackie Brookes has been investigating flights and times. Everything appears to be pretty expensive. The most advantageous dates and prices appear to be mid- to-late June. It is on this basis that we are pursuing the possibility of 5 days (4 nights), leaving early by coach on a Wednesday morning, flying from Stansted, and returning on a Sunday evening, thus giving us 5 full days for our itinerary. As a guideline, would any members who are interested, please let me know as soon as possible? Further details and cost will follow, if and when available.

Dorothy Newbury, 55 Sunningfields Road, Hendon, London NW4 4RA                    (0181) 203-0950

NEWS FROM OUR NEIGHBOURS

Saturday 9 March 11.00 - 4.00: North London History Fair, organised by Islington Archaeological and History Society at the Union Chapel, Highbury Corner, (HADAS visited the Union Chapel with Mary O'Connell in September 1989)

Saturday 23 March 11.00 - 5.00: 33rd LAMAS Conference on London Archaeologists. HADAS will have a display at the conference; please visit our stand - constructive comments welcomed. Morning session: recent work in the City and Southward, Thames Archaeological Survey, and the new Roman Gallery at the Museum of London.

Afternoon session: the 50th anniversary of the Roman and Medieval London Excavation Council, instituted by the late Professor Grimes.

Tickets are £3 (members) and £4 (non-members) and are available from Jon Cotton, Dept of Early London History and Collections, Museum of London, London Wall, London EC2Y 5HN.

Thursday 28 March 7.45 pm at Avenue House: The Finchley Society lecture on "Boswell's London" by Geoffrey Toms (formerly of the Museum of London). Many HADAS members will remember our first weekend away at Attingham Park Adult Education College, Shropshire in October 1974. Mr Toms, then warden at Attingham Park, hosted our group. He was secretary of the Shropshire Archaeological Society and excavated under Dr Graham Webster at Wroxeter.)


MEMBERS' NEWS

Mrs Banham, one of the founder members of HADAS (1961), writes to send her best wishes to all our sick members. She wishes she could still join us on outings, lectures and weekends away. She was a regular on all of these, but her spinal ailment has severely curtailed her activities. She is now in her 90th year, and says she is with us in spirit when she reads the reports in our newsletters. Several of us will remember her habit of sneaking a bottle of sherry in her luggage on our weekends, and gathering us in her room for a reviver after an exhausting day. In the early days of the society, the late Mr Banham dealt with the dispatch of our newsletter, addressing the envelopes by hand.

Percy Reboul, another long-standing member (1972), is reported in an extract from a Plastics Industry Journal. The Greater London Industrial Archaeological Society (GLIAS) heard an entertaining history of 'The Material with a Thousand Uses". The history of Bakelite was presented by Percy Reboul, who is chairman of the Plastics Historical Society. The golden age of bakelite radios and telephones has now passed, bringing the closure of the 26-acre Tyseley plant in Birmingham, operated by BXL for whom Percy worked. The thrust of the lecture, which stimulated considerable interest among the GLIAS members, was firmly in the past. Percy's gift for bringing this to life and his unfailing enthusiasm for the subject were clearly on display. (Percy gave the same lecture to the Finchley Society on 29 February.)

Marion Newbury, another early member (1972), has had a son on Monday, 12 February, a brother for Grace.

PLANNING APPLICATION                                                                                                 Tessa Smith

Planning application has been received for the Bury Farm area at Edgware to be developed as another golf course. As some members may recall, HADAS field-walked this in 1976 and found a scatter of Roman sherds, rims, handles and mortaria in fields abutting the M1. Later, we investigated the water pipeline and its associated spoilheaps, but finds were minimal, although the area is close to Brockley Hill where 14 Roman kilns have been excavated in the past. Bury Farm is encompassed by the A41, the Ml, the tunnel by the Scratchwood Service Area, and Clay Lane.

MOLAS                                                                                                                                      Tessa Smith

MOLAS is at the moment doing a desk-top survey gathering together historical documents and relevant data, part of which includes our evidence of field-walking finds. At a later stage, if planning goes ahead, the museum will be doing a field survey which will include field-walking, and in which HADAS will be welcome to participate. In view of this exciting possibility, we are making a list of interested member who would want to join in the field-walking - I imagine everybody would be enthusiastic and want to! Contact the committee! We will keep you posted of further developments.

HERTFORDSHIRE INNS AND PUBLIC HOUSES is a gazetteer of over 700 licensed houses open by 1900 and still serving today. HADAS member Graham Javes has contributed historical information on 31 houses in Chipping, East and New Barnets, Arkley, Hadley and Totteridge which fulfil these criteria. The book may be purchased from Hertfordshire County Record Office, or ordered from bookshops. ISBN 0-901354-79-1. Price £18.00

BARNET'S PUBS Richard Selby               £8 . 95                                                                         Reviewed by Bill Bass

This is a book that will be close to the heart of several HADAS members. It mentions all of the public houses, inns, taverns, hotels, brew- and ale-houses that have ever existed in Chipping

Barnet, Arkley, Hadley. East and New Barnet since the 14th century. together with their locations, dates and histories.

Richard's exhaustive research has unearthed a wealth of facts, details and anecdotes. The earliest houses include the Swan on the Hoope, established in 1398, and the present Dandy Lion in Barnet High Street, which has been in existence for over 550 years, having been the Red Lion, the Cardinal's Hat and the Antelope, established before 1449. This once-extensive pub at one time stabled 100 horses, which explains the presence of most of these houses - The Great North Road.

Travellers have long found Barnet a convenient stopping-off place to and from London, culminating in the stage-coach era in the late 18th century. There are stories of the Red Lion in "commercial friction" with other houses competing for the early postal trade, with postboys brawling. "The Red Lion thought nothing of taking out the posthorses from any private carriage passing the house, and putting in a pair of their own, to do the next stage to St Albans. This, too. free of charge, in order to prevent the business going to their hated rival" - the Green Man.

There's a chapter called "So, What's a Pub?". Is it a tavern, inn, hotel, alehouse? Richard has sampled them all and explains, also Barnet's several breweries are recalled and described. Alas, in the 1920s, there was the "Barnet Comb-out", following the Balfour Act of 1904, and pressure from the temperance lobby, nine of the town's public houses did not have their licences renewed.

At the northern end of Barnet, there once flourished a community called Kick's End, an area now composed of Hadley Highstone, Wrotham Park and Kitt's End Road. Here, the old medieval route to St Albans and The Great North Road met. This disparate hamlet took advantage of the coach trade. Richard describes the village and its pubs, which were previously unkown to him (and myself). Eventually, the "New" St Albans Road was built (1826) bypassing this area, which then fell into obscurity, later to become part of the Wrotham Park Estate.

This is a fascinating book illustrated with maps, photos and prints. As well as the pubs' histories, it gives further insight into the townspeople, their trade, and the passing traveller down the centuries.

HADAS have so far dug at three of Barnet's pub sites: The Mitre, Red Lion and the Old Bull -only 197 to go!

AND A PINT FOR MUMMY

The "Daily Mail' reports (7 February): The beer the Egyptian pharaohs took to their tombs is being reincarnated - in Newcastle. With the help of Cambridge University scientists, brewers Scottish and Newcastle have recreated a 4,000-year-old recipe to produce 1.000 bottles of Tutankhamen's Ale.

 

THE MOUNT HOUSE, MONKEN HADLEY COMMON        Bill Bass

Further to HADAS' excavation of a mound base at the above site (Newsletter 292), further research has turned up an article in LAMAS Transactions (Vol. V, Part II, 1925) by Mr Fredk. L. Dove; a previous owner. Amongst other things, he removed a portion of earth from the north side of the mound and planted a cedar tree (which still exists) at ground level. This clears up a slight mystery as photographs have shown a tree on top of the mound: this one was replaced, as it was blown down. Mr Dove, like us, also dug a trench following the circumference of the mound, at 8 feet down - The trench was half on virgin gravel and half had been previously excavated. At 12 feet, he found the water table. Dove then excavated a shaft near to the centre of the mound, finding "two foot six inches of ordinary soil and six inches of a greyish white sand". He then found dirty gravel and loamy bright yellow virgin sand. He also mentions a previous owner who "drove a heading into the mound, but was not rewarded by making any discovery” Dove felt that his mound and others on the common were "soil excavated from the adjoining ponds". There is, however, evidence from this article and elsewhere that the mounds on Hadley Common may have contained rubble and 'brick bats', but from which period, it is not known. Also, it seems that the locals used to allude to the `hillocks' on the Common as "Soldiers' Graves". Dove's methods may not have been totally scientific, but with his evidence and that of HADAS, remains of any medieval or earlier occupation at The Mount House appear to be elusive.

ARCHAEOLOGICAL ILLUSTRATION

Madingley Hall, the residential course centre of the University of Cambridge Board of Continuing Education, is offering a course on Archaeological Illustration, tutored by Sandra Rowntree, on 11­13 October, 1996. The fee of £115 includes accommodation. Phone (01954) 210636 to book, or for the Courses Programme.

CLASSICAL SHIPS

The exhibition at Church Farmhouse Museum is open till 17 March. Modelled by George Fantides, there are Greek warships, Roman merchant ships, and Egyptian barges. This unique collection will be leaving the country this summer for permanent display abroad, so take this chance to see.

This, the 300th edition of the Newsletter, is accompanied by a copy of the very first Newsletter produced. Its editor is still a member, and for around 30 current HADAS members, who were members then, this will be the second time they receive Newsletter No. 1!  They are: Daisy Hill, Reva Brown, Christine Arnott, Mrs Banham, Mr & Mrs Bergman, Mr & Mrs Canter, Dr Cogman, Mrs Corlet, John Enderby, Mr Harvey, Enid Hill, Mr & Mrs Hurst, Bryan Jarman (our chairman for 20 years), Alec Jeakins, Chris Leverton, Dr Livingstone, Daphne Lorimer, William Morris, Dorothy Pavasar, Peter Pickering, Ted Sammes, Liz & Mr Sugues, Ann Saunders, Sally Shulman, Margaret Taylor, Ann Trewick, Freda Wilkinson, Helen Gordon, Celia Gould and Liz Holiday.

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