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Village Farm

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(click photo to enlarge)

The house known as 'Ashville' was occupied for many years as a farmhouse for 'Home Farm' otherwise 'Village Farm'. The buildings, as seen above, belong to the house and adjoin its boundary.  Until her death in 2010, Monica Addyman lived at Ashville.  In Book I ('Villagers’ Reminiscences') she describes how her husband’s father rented the farm from the Greenwood family and that her husband’s grandfather, Jimmy Addyman had also farmed land in Hampsthwaite (at Bridge End Farm). Ashville appears to have been occupied as the farmhouse for Village Farm at least from the time of Monica’s marriage in 1942 to Fred Addyman. However, it seems that the land of Village Farm had also formed part of Bridge End Farm for, in the surveyor’s notes about Village Farm made for the purpose of the Land Tax valuation of 1910, we read this description of the buildings seen in the photograph above . . .

“(Village Farm)  Buildings and land 27a 0r 34p
Gross value land £68 buildings £5
Rateable value land £64.12s.0d. buildings £3.15s.0d.
Occupier: James Addyman   yearly tenancy £72
Owner: Hannah Burton (freehold)

Range of stone & brick built & blue slated buildings in good repair comprising: Dutch Barn. Covered in cow yard. Large mistal & small barn.
Stone & blue slated range in good repair comprising loose box. 4 stall stable. (Meat?) house with boarded floor.
4 stables Remainder stone flagged floors
Pasture land in good heart & of fairly even contour. Slightly above level of main road. Portion fronting road advertises for building purpose PTO [sic]
Public footpath”

The James Addyman referred to in the notes seems to be the 'Jimmy' mentioned by Mrs Addyman.

The outbuildings included the four barns later converted to dwellings (see the articles about 'South Royd', 'Byre Cottage', 'Coppings' and 'Swallow Cottage').

Life at Ashville was described by Mrs Addyman in Book I where she also had this to say about life on the farm . . .

“Our labourers in the early forties included German, Polish and Italian prisoners of war. They were brought from a camp near Ripon and dropped off daily at the various farms – the answer to the man-power shortage, caused when all those sound of limb were called up for military service. It was really unbelievable the hours that they worked to keep a food supply going.

At meal-times I used a huge table, fully extended. There would be perhaps two German prisoners and all the Houseman family – including Bernard, who lived up at Brimham Rocks Farm - and Mrs Penrose, who eventually came to live in one of the cottages, later demolished, down by the church. I cooked for them and waited on them. When they were “doing the corn”, they worked from dawn to dusk. It was so dusty then – I took drinks down to the fields at night. They were hard times, but that was the accepted way of life then.

Fred employed several of the village boys and it used to be a real pantomime with them all. They were constantly falling out, but they 'fell in' again! They never did anything really bad, not like today. My husband used to smooth things over – he was a kind employer, who appreciated how hard they worked.

We kept cattle, sheep, pigs – the lot . . .”

Part of Village Farm’s land housed the Abattoir which was demolished when the St. Thomas a Becket Walk estate was built (see also the articles about 'Ashville', 'The Abattoir' and 'St. Thomas à Becket Walk')

Village Farm
(click photo to enlarge)
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