Tag Archives: buxted

Festival of Postcards: Spotted Deer at Buxted Park, Sussex

18 Oct

The theme for the latest Festival of Postcards is Quadrupeds, I searched my postcards for animals, and to be honest most of my postcards are of rural nature, so there was no shortage of four-legged animals to choose from.

In the end I settled on these fine looking animals from Buxted Park in Buxted, East Sussex.

Spotted Deer close-up

I have not really been able to find out much about these deer beyond what was written on the back of the card. It looks like these may well be chital deer, but I am no expert on deer.

In case you can’t make out the handwriting the message reads:

My dear Arthur I thought you would like this card for your book there are no other in England like them they are never hunted I was quite close to them the other day as I often take a walk in the park They belong to Lord Portman and there are about four hundred they are very pretty hope you are quite well from your Aunt Lucy

The card must have been sent in an envelope or delivered by hand, so there is no postmark to help with dating it, and no clues as to who the publisher was either, but I would think it probably dates from the 1920s.

I was walking over at Buxted a couple of months ago, and I didn’t see any deer (only sheep). My great-grandmother Minnie HEMSLEY is said to have worked at Buxted Park, in the house which is now a very nice looking hotel.

In case you are wondering what they look like out in the open here is another postcard of the deer out in the park.

Spotted Deer, Buxted Park

Proving to myself it is worth getting organised

26 Aug

As if to prove my point from yesterday that organising my files is going to make my research more efficient, I discovered something last night that had me throwing up my hands in frustration.

I was reviewing a report of my 3x great grandparents Ambrose VINALL and Sarah FRENCH. I had some census images that I had printed, but I hadn’t got digital copies, so I saved them to my hard drive. Looking closer at the images and the report I realised that the addresses were in Buxted.

Less than a week ago I had been wandering around Buxted, looking for my DRIVER and HEMSLEY ancestors, and I could have added another five or six addresses to my hit list. At least a couple of these addresses were places I remember walking past (Stonehouse and Maypole Farm), I could have quite easily got a photo or two whilst I was there.

In 1841 Sarah FRENCH was living with her parents Joseph and Hannah FRENCH in Buxted, Sussex. The specific address was Five Ash Down, I say specific, but there were several households at the same address, so probably better described as a community rather than an address. Anyway, when I got off the bus last week at Five Ash Down (opposite the Pig and Butcher pub) I would have sworn that I had never heard of the place before. Yet several months ago I had located three ancestors living there, but they had been forgotten in the intervening months. There was not a lot to see in Five Ash Down but I would have taken a couple of photos looking up and down the street if I had known.

Now I have two more things to do, go back to Buxted and get some photos, and set up a list (or a custom report in Family Historian) that will list all the places in an area that I am visiting, so I don’t get caught out again.

Wandering around Buxted

19 Aug

From High Hurstwood I made my way to the village of Buxted. I was hoping I might find a few ancestral gravestones here, but my hopes weren’t very high as I have no evidence that any of my ancestors were buried at Buxted, but merely lived in the parish for a while.

To be honest I was a little disappointed with the church of St Mary the Virgin at Buxted. I am not sure why, it looks quite nice, but I just didn’t warm to it. There was a small graveyard behind the church, which was being kept trimmed by sheep (at least I think those shaggy things that moved to the next field when they saw me coming were sheep).

St Mary the Virgin, Buxted

St Mary the Virgin, Buxted

A short walk down the road from the church is Buxted railway station. At one stage I had planned to catch the train back to Uckfield, but by this time I had decided I would walk back to the bus route and take the bus home. I couldn’t resist taking a photo of the station because it looked quite charming.

Buxted railway station

Buxted railway station

Next stop was the church of St Margaret the Queen, Buxted, set in the grounds of Buxted Park. This was much more to my liking, lovely and cool inside and well presented outside. There was lots going on here, a stone mason at work in the churchyard, and a gang of men on the roof replacing the shingles on the spire.

St Margaret the Queen, Buxted

St Margaret the Queen, Buxted

I was surprised by the number of people that visited the church whilst I was poking around amongst the gravestones. There are some very old gravestones here with some wonderful carvings, but sadly none that I could identify from any of my ancestral lines.

I resisted the temptation to visit Buxted Park Hotel. I don’t think they would have been amused at a hot and sweaty genealogist turning up in their lovely expensive hotel asking if they had any record of his great grandmother having worked there nearly 100 years ago. Perhaps one day when I am feeling very rich!

Blogging to you live from High Hurstwood, Sussex (well nearly)

19 Aug

This is the first time my new netbook has been out in the field with me, and although it is extra weight to carry, this is only a gentle walk today so it is not too bad.

I have made my way to Holy Trinity Church, High Hurstwood, Sussex first by bus (or rather buses) and then about an hours walk. I am sitting on a bench in the churchyard and this is the wonderful view I can see.

View from a bench at High Hurstwood, Sussex

View from a bench at High Hurstwood, Sussex

Holy Trinity is to my mind quite an unusual church because of it’s shape, all sorts of odd bits are sticking out here and there. I think quirky would be a good word to describe it. The photo from the front (below) will show you what I mean.

Holy Trinity Church, High Hurstwood, Sussex

Holy Trinity Church, High Hurstwood, Sussex

My route here took me past Stone House Cottage, just outside High Hurstwood itself, where my grandmother Annie HEMSLEY was born and where her father Henry Herbert HEMSLEY died. It is his gravestone that I am hoping to find here at Holy Trinity Church, although I have no idea whether he was buried or cremated here or not.

The other reason for visiting Holy Trinity is because my widowed great grandmother Minnie DRIVER (HEMSLEY as she was then) married Moses FARLOW here in February 1925.

From here I will head back along the Vanguard Way to Buxted and visit the church there and then probably along to Buxted Park and visit the church there, before making my way back to Uckfield to catch a bus back to Brighton and home.

[Just as I tried to send this post I discovered I had no mobile broadband signal, so it had to wait until I was back in Uckfield on the bus to send it]

Is there a doctor in the house, or perhaps a vet?

8 Jul

The death certificate for my great grandfather Henry Herbert HEMSLEY arrived in the post today, and it has left me more than a little confused.

He died on the 1st July 1921 at Stone House Cottages, Buxted aged 38 years. The informant was Charles William HEMSLEY his brother from Brighton.

Now I always been told that he had died from sunstroke or heatstroke, but the cause of death recorded on the certificate appears to be Septic Pleuro-Pneumonia (9 days). The certificate also records that there was no post mortem and the death was certified by E. H. Sweet MRCS.

Naturally I wanted to find out what septic pleuro-pneumonia was? What were the symptoms? How did it develop? Where did it come from? Is it something else I can add to my list of potential illness I might have inherited?

However nearly all the references I can find to the condition on Google relate to animals and mainly horses. Henry was a farm labourer, but I am sure that is just a coincidence.

What I really need to find is a doctor who is on call to answer genealogical queries about medical issues in plain English, rather than have me fumbling around in a specialised field which I don’t have the first idea about.

Does anyone know of such as doctor? And make it quick please, because I can feel a genealogy induced headache coming on!

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