Monday, 6 February 2017

M25 Merstham centre



Post to the east Merstham Station
Post to the west Gatton Bottom


Church Path
Footpath leading from Quality Street to St.Katherine’s Church. This path, which was once a main road, once crossed the mill pond via a foot bridge and now crosses the motorway, also by a bridge. It also crosses Church Meadows.
Church Meadows. The M25 now runs across this area.

Gatton Bottom
This road follows a dry valley from Reigate Hill and is an access road to Junction 8. It is on the border between the steep rise of the North Downs and the rise and then fall of Gatton Park to the south. Wellingtonia were planted here in the 19th,
Gatton Mine.  It is said that a brick-lined passage leads to a large chamber with a series of short, blocked passages. This was thought to have been worked by a steam crane in 1819 and was still open about a century.
Merstham House This was the home of the Joliffe family until 1899. William Joliffe had married the coal owning Hylton’s heiress – his son was later to be Lord Hylton. He built here in 1790 Mersham House, which was demolished in 1834. He also enlarged The Cottage which later too was called Merstham House. The family eventually moved to Somerset in the 1930s. The house was  was then let until the Second World War, when it was occupied by the Canadian forces. It was pulled down in the 1950s and the M25 was built through the grounds in the late 1970s. A stone wall, some of which remains, was built to contain a flat lawn in the garden of the house.
Great House. This was opposite to Mersham House but demolished in 1830 for structural reasons.
Wellhead Farm. This includes Wellhead which is a  house built in the late 17th with a timber frame. There is also a barn in Estate Yard which was built of Merstham stone in the 19th
Dovecote. This 14th structure stood originally on the land now used by Merstham Station. When the railway was built it was removed here onto a 19th brick foundation. Inside are stone shelves with nesting holes on each shelf.
Wellhead Wood
Old Church House. This was originally St. Katherine's Rectory. This is a 16th timber framed house with its hearth at the back. A brick house has been added at the front

Grange Court.
This is on the site of Merstham Grange
Merstham Grange. This was demolished in the 1970s or possibly earlier. It was a ‘prep’ school but the headmistress in the 1950s was a Miss Hummel closely involved in local drama and music events. Replaced with housing.

High Street
The short stretch of the High Street is the remains of the original through road. Before the construction of the turnpike in 1807 it would have connected to the south to School Hill and to the north to Quality Street and the current footpath to Marling Glen
Feathers Pub. The present building was built for the brewers in 1911 and on the building are signs for ‘N&C’ the Nalder & Collyer's Brewery Co Ltd of Croydon.Basically an 18th building was given an arts and crafts frontage and inside are art nouveau features – particularly fireplaces have been added. It was previously Ye Olde Feathers Hotel and was a coach stop for the Brighton coach, The building has retained some 18th structure to the back and there are 17th outbuildings.
Small garden with a display of rails and sleepers from the Godstone quarries – similar to those which would have been on the Croydon, Merstham and Godstone Railway. There is also a seat, recently repaired by a local councillor himself.
A tollgate for the 1804 turnpike road was just south of The Feathers.
Horse Trough. Erected 1888 for the Metropolitan Drinking Fountain & Cattle Trough Association
Thatched Barn. This stood here as a local landmark but was burnt down in 1969.
Village Pound. A walled enclosure.
7 Old Smithy. This is marked as ‘smithy’ on old maps and a building at the back show as ‘abattoir’
House, next to the old pub, was the innkeeper’s house. It later became a shop.
Cottage of Content Pub. This closed in the 1960s. They sold Pagden's ale which came from the Hope Brewery in Church Street, Epsom. It is now a private house
Townsend’s Meads, this is the name shown on 19th maps for the meadow land to the west of the High Street. It was also called Towney Mead and was the common land for the town’s men.

Home Farm Place
Housing on the site of  Home Farm. The 1769s barn has been converted to housing and other buildings incorporated.

London Road South
This is on the line of the 1804 turnpike road. Both London Roads north and south were created by the turnpike and thus changed the layout of the town with a new through road.
Merstham Primary School. A school is shown on this site since the 1890s. It would seem reasonable to suppose that this is the school built in 1898 as a replacement for the National School in Quality Street.
Old Saddlery. This sold saddles and stirrups and was restored by Paxton Watson in 1931. It is now private housing.

M25

Quality Street
This would have been the main road north out of the village before the construction of the turnpike road in the early 19th
Quality Street took its name from James Barrie's comedy. Ellaline Terris and Seymour Hicks were in the play and when they lived here the street was named after the play..
Gateposts at the end of the road here the entrance to the estate of Merstham House. The M25 motorway now goes through the estate where the house stood.
Copse next to Priory Mead, This copse was the site of an archaeological dig before the construction of the M25 Motorway in 1972. Two long banks were identified which where thought to be part of the landscaping for Merstham House.
Priory Mead. This is a 17th house which was the lodge to Merstham House.
The Glade House. This was built in the same style as Merstham House in its grounds by architect Gordon Jeeves,.  The ornamental mound from Merstham House is in the grounds.
Manor House. This was the manor house of Chilberton Manor . It has the date of 1598 on it and is a timber framed building fronted in red brick. It was restored by Paxton Watson in 1905 who also added Court Cottage alongside
National School. Set up in 1847 and was moved to London Road South in 1898, It is a half-H-shaped building with a timber frame but which has been rebuilt inside..
Almshouses and poorhouse. These are behind the school and are now three houses, A tablet on them records that "This Poorhouse was rebuilt and the land given by Hylton Joliffe Esq. 1816".
Merstham Cricket Club. Founded in 1864 and played at the Quality Street ground from 1890 thanks to Lord Hylton who also provided a pavilion nd a chain for protecting the pitch from cattle, Apart from breaks for the two world wars they have played here ever since.
Old Forge. This is the remains of a late mediaeval house which was, timber framed with brick infill. It was previously called 'Cromwell House', but was renamed by the Hicks family of actors. It was restored by Paxton Watson.
The Barn House. Built in 1902 by Paxton Watson for himself. Rough cast with plaster reliefs. It replaced the old wheelwrights shop.
Meadowside. Home of Paxton Watson’s sister
The Refreshment Rooms and White Elephant Coffee Tavern. This was in the cottages, dated 1897 which are now partly taken up by the garage in London Road.

Reigate Hill Golf Course
The Golf Course was designed by the David Williams as an 18 hole, par 72 course layout in 1995. The course appears to take up much of what was the grounds of Mersham House plus some common land

Rocky Lane
The lane was originally built as an entrance drive to the Gatton Estate
Middle Lodge. Single story house.

Sources
Archaeology database. Web site
Bourne Society. Web site
British Listed Buildings. Web site
Feathers. Web site
Geocaching. Web site
Historic England. Web site
London Transport. Country Walks
Pastscape. Web site
Penguin. Surrey
Pevsner. Surrey
Reigate and Banstead Council. Web site
Sowan. Firestone and hearthstone mines in the Upper Greensand of East Surrey 
Surrey County Council. Web site
Wikipedia, as appropriate. Web site

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