100 years ago today, during the afternoon of Tuesday 31st August 1920, an auction of Broadway land and property was held by E.G. Righton & Son in the Swan Hotel.
Lot 1 comprised a freehold stone cottage on the High Street along with a leasehold stone cottage, stabling, store rooms and walled garden, let to Miss Parker, Mrs Stanley and Mrs Diston at the rate of £19 per annum.
Lot 2 was Buckland Wood Farm with its stone house and various outbuilding comprising a slate roofed barn, 15.2 acres of pasture and a top field of 10 acres. The land was advertised as being “Capital Dairy Land” with good shooting. At the time it was let to Mr C.T. Scott, Master of Fox Hounds at the rate of £65 per annum.
Lot 3 comprised two fields of productive pasture (referenced as Nos 274 and 236 on the Ordnance Survey Map) known as Lower Battenhanger1 and Wheat Furlough totalling between 29 and 30 acres on the slope of the Cotswold hills above Broadway about half a mile from the centre of the village.
Lot 4 was advertised as a “Superior Pasture Field” of 22 acres called Battenhanger (ref. 275 on the OS Map and adjacent to Lot 3). The land had a water supply was leased to Mr Smith with a rent of £85 per annum.
Broadway History Society
1. Lower Battenhanger, Wheat Furlough and Battenhanger are fields south of the High Street and east of the Snowshill Road. The 1923 Ordnance Survey Map of the village does not have field 236 recorded but field 235, adjacent to Lower Battenhanger is noted as being Wheat Furlough.
Today, the Gordon Russell Design Museum, Russell Square, in Broadway, is reopening its doors after a period of closure. The Museum will only be open on Thursdays, Fridays and Saturdays from 11am-4pm. Visits must be pre-booked and tickets are available via the Museum’s website.
The Gordon Russell Museum tells the story of the Gordon Russell furniture company, which was based in Broadway for over 60 years, and explores the influence and legacy of Gordon Russell’s designs on a broad spectrum of 20th century design.
The Museum has implemented new safety procedures to ensure visits are as safe and straightforward as possible, and visitors who pre-book will have the whole museum to themselves during their booked time slot.
Broadway Fete and Sports Day Organised by the Broadway Branch of the Comrades of the Great War Association
On Monday 2nd August 1920, the Broadway Branch of the Comrades of the Great War1 held their annual Fete and Sports Day at Broad Close. A committee, chaired by Donald Russell (owner of the Lygon Arms) with sports secretaries, W. Benfield. A. Ingram and M. Bates, organised the afternoon’s activities. The sporting events included; flat and hurdle racing, pony racing, bowling for a pig (which was won by Mr Sandals of West End) and a greasy pole. There was also a costume parade – the prize for the best dressed was awarded to Charles Savage who dressed up as a female land worker.
A tent was erected at Broad Close and refreshments were supplied by Mrs Nicholls, Mrs Warren, Mrs Jacques, Mrs Austin Davies, Mrs H. Collins and Mrs C. Jordan and the Broadway Brass Band played during the afternoon. The prizes were awarded to the winning competitors by Antonio de Navarro of Court Farm.
The Evesham Standard & West Midland Observer reported the following results on 7th August:
100 yards handicap for boys under 14: 1 R. Burrows2, 2 G. Lloyd 3. F. Dyer
Ladies egg and spoon race: 1 Elsie Steward3, 2. N. Lloyd, 3. C. Savage
120 yards flat handicap: 1 Augustus Cotterell4, 2 P.G. Biles5, 3 A. Hardwick
220 years hurdle race: 1 Charles Steward 2 J. Harrison 3 J.C. Biggs
Half mile handicap: 1 J. Cotterell, 2 C. Barnett, 3 Charles Steward
One mile flat handicap: 1 J. Cotterell, 2 W. Hartwell 3 P.G. Biles
100 yards veteran race (over 50): 1 W. Gilder6, 2 Fred Hill, 3 W.H. Biles
300 yards flat handicap: 1 H. Sandals, 2 D. Holland, 3 J.C. Biggs
440 yards obstacle race: 1 J. Cotterell, 2 Charles Steward, 3 J.C. Biggs
One mile walking race: This proved very exciting with Robinson and Folkes making a dead heat for first place with Steward well up.
Three teams entered for the tug of war, the visitors’ team obtaining the verdict rather easily. In the pony racing:
Ponies 13 hands and up: 1 Mr F.C. Cotterell’s ‘Blue Bell’, 2 Mr A. Proctor’s ‘Jenny’
Ponies up to 13.2h: 1 ‘Lightning’ 2 ‘Jenny’
Ponies up to 14h: ‘Lightning’ won easily, 2 ‘Jenny’
Horses of any height: 1 Mr F.C. Cotterell’s ‘Never Mind’, 2 Mr J. Atkin’s ‘Paddy’
Following its success, the fete and sports day was repeated the following year at Broad Close. It was held on the August Bank Holiday 1921 but following the amalgamation of the Comrades Association to form The British Legion the event was not held again.
In 1935, the North Cotswold Athletic Association organised an afternoon of sports on Broad Close, part of the village’s celebrations of the Silver Jubilee of HM King George V.
Broadway History Society
1. The Comrades of the Great War was formed in 1917 as an association to represent the rights of ex-servicemen and women who had served or been discharged from service during the First World War. It was one of the original four ex-service associations that amalgamated on Sunday 15th May 1921 to form The British Legion.
2. Reginald Harry Burrows (1906-1957)
3. Elsie Horne Steward (1909-1999), daughter of Charles E. Steward.
4. Augustine Cotterell (1901-1965)
5. Percy George Biles (1898-1996)
6. William Gilder (1859-1930)
From the mid 1880s, the rural idyll of Broadway became a popular destination for visitors from across the world. The Broadway Colony of artists, composers and writers, some of whom made Broadway their home, attracted a number of their friends from Europe and America to the village. Local newspapers regularly published lists of people who visited and stayed in the area at the time. The Evesham Journal reported in October 1892 that the following visitors had been staying in Broadway that summer:
Argyle Parade: Miss Murray (from London), Miss Paton (Wales), Mr Clutterbuck (Merioneth)
Cowley House, hosted by Mrs Righton: Mr & Mrs J.T. Morris and family1 (Ballinaboy House, Ireland)
The Green, Mrs Stanley: Mrs Harris and Mr Edward Harris (Windsor)
Ivy House, Mrs Holcroft: Miss Macpherson (Lichfield), Miss Davis (Bilston), Mr & Mrs Norton (Edgbaston)
The Low Farm, Miss Tennant: Major Corbett (Worcester)
The Lygon Arms Hotel, Charles Drury: Mr C Dixon, Mr H.M. Dixon, Miss Dora Dixon (Edgbaston), Mr Fred G. Clarke (Eastbourne), Mr. G.H.M. Morley (Birmingham), Mr J.W. Lill, Mr A. Lill, Mr D. Lill (Solihull), Monsieur Louis Saurin (Rue des Roses, Paris), Mr W.J. Gale2 (Toronto, Canada), Mr James Bettner Ludlow3 (New York), Mr & Mrs James Smith (Moseley, Birmingham), Mr & Mrs Lewis (Gloucester), Mr Joel Wainwright4 (Finchwood, Marple, Derbyshire), Mr & Mrs Schiefflein (New York), Mr J.H. Payne (Birmingham).
The Lygon Cottage, Charles Drury: Mr & Mrs John Baker and family (Pershore)
North Place Mrs John White: Mr & Mrs J.H. Bacon (Highgate)
North Street, Mrs C. Bunn: Mr Dyer (Cambridge)
Russell House Cottage: The Misses Barnard5
The Knapp Farm, Mrs S. Savage: Mr Peach (Straford-upon-Avon), Captain Henry Allfrey6 (Stratford)
The Swan Hotel, Mr J. Brick: Miss Maun (Bridgnorth) and Mr A. Maun (Shrewsbury), Mr F.W. Land (Leamington), Mr H. Jenkins, Mr C. Daniel, Mr W. Perrot (Bordesley)
The Morris family were Irish landed gentry who had inherited part of the estate of the Frenchs of Errislannan and they had a house in Ballinaboy, Co. Galway.
J. W. Gale was a wholesale dealer in staple and fancy dry goods, woollens, tailors’ furnishings, and gents’ furnishings with premises at 24 and 26 Wellington Street West, Toronto, Ontario, Canada. Gale was the manufacturer of the celebrated “Gale Shirt Collars and Cuffs”.
James Bettner Ludlow (1859-1921). James Ludlow was an expert on real estate law. Most of his time was employed in the management of the estate owned by himself and his sister, Annie, which embraced most of the water front of South Yonkers in New York.
Joel Wainwright was a naturalist, author of ‘Memories of Marple’ and one of the publishers of The Strines Journal.
Frederick Barnard’s daughters, Dorothy and Polly, served as the models for John Singer Sargent’s painting Carnation, Lily, Lily, Rose which was painted in Broadway in the mid 1880s.
Henry Allfrey was born on 9th September 1850. He was educated at Cheltenham College and entered the army in 1868, being gazetted Ensign on 19th May to the 2nd Battalion 60th Rifles. Promoted Lieutenant on 28th October 1871 and Captain on 29th September 1880. He saw service during the Zulu War. Captain Allfrey was the father of Lieutenant General Sir Charles Walter Allfrey, Commanding Officer of V Corps in North Africa and Italy 1942-44.
In August 1724, John Tawney, of Ampney Crucis, Gloucestershire, was executed in Over1 near Gloucester after being found guilty at the County Assizes of the charge of highway robbery on the London to Worcester coaching route above Broadway.
Born in Ampney Crucis to parents who were described as being “honest parents” who gave him “sufficient competency to begin the world with”, Tawney reportedly kept “wicked company”. Aged 30 at the time of his conviction, Tawney was married with four children.
At his trial in August 1724, Tawney admitted that he had in the previous two years been involved in several highway robberies including robbing 20 people going to Cirencester Fair. On the night he attacked the London Worcester Stage Coach, Tawney was accompanied by an accomplice called Stutley. Tawney admitted that they broke in to stables owned by Mr Lillington at Wotton-under-Edge to steal horses which they used to ride to the hill above Broadway where they attacked and robbed the occupants of the coach. Captain Bissel, who was on the coach, prevented Tawney and Stutley from making off with their bounty and they fled the scene.
Tawney was tracked down and was held at Gloucester Castle, which at the time served as the county gaol. Before Tawney was hanged at Over he was reported in the papers as “being very sullen”. Before going to the gallows, Tawney allowed a Minister to pray with him and he was pressed by the Minister to reveal the whereabouts of his accomplice Stutley and another man he had mentioned during his trial but he refused to reveal their whereabouts.
Broadway History Society
Prior to 1792, executions at Gloucester took place in the village of Over 2 miles from the city. The condemned were conveyed to the gallows in carts, sitting on their own coffins.
The next meeting and talk hosted by Broadway History Society will take place on Monday 16th March 2020. Starting at 7pm in the Lifford Memorial Hall, Councillor Elizabeth Eyre will be giving an illustrated talk entitled Broadway’s Schools.
Elizabeth’s talk will cover the day to day running of the schools in Broadway including Broadway National School from its opening to its relocation on Lime Tree Avenue. Although there have been private schools in the village, Broadway’s village school, at The Old Schools, was the main centre of education from the mid 19th century1 until it closed on 22nd December 1914 and then new Broadway Council School2 on Lime Tree Avenue was opened on 12th January 1915.
All welcome. Non-members £3 on the door. Refreshments will be served before the talk.
Broadway History Society
1. In 1855, when Sarah Ann Hedgecock was school mistress, there were 15 boy and 25 girl pupils enrolled at Broadway National School. From 1880, Horatio Kilwood was School Master with Miss Edith, Prince Mistress of the Infants and from 1883, William ‘Billy’ Timms who moved to Broadway Council School in 1915 with Miss Clements, Mistress of the Infants.
2. The building of the new Broadway Council School by Epsleys & Co, started on 16th March 1914. When the new school opened, on 12th January 1915, it could accommodate 170 pupils. The staff were: William Timms (Head), and teachers Miss Edith Timms, Miss Edith Neal and Miss Maud Colllins.
The next meeting and talk hosted by Broadway History Society will take place on Monday 17th February 2020. Starting at 7pm in the Lifford Memorial Hall, Committee Members Mary and Nigel Smith will be giving an illustrated talk entitled A Builder in Broadway, Charles Edmund Steward.
Charles Steward (1874-1954) was a Broadway Parish Councillor, Captain of Broadway Fire Brigade, and builder in the village and surrounding area between 1898 and 1954. Charles was instrumental in building many of the houses in Broadway we know today and Mary and Nigel’s talk will include some of the interesting building projects Charles and his firm, Steward & Co., worked on.
All welcome. Non-members £3 on the door. Refreshments will be served before the talk.
In 1873, the population of Worcestershire was 338,837 living in 69,988 houses across 242 parishes in the county. A census of landowners held that year records 5,796 people owning more than one acre of land, a total of 436,327 between them.
In Broadway the following landowners owning more than one acre of land, are recorded as:
Isaac Averill – 309 acres
Michael Bedford – 184 acres
Reverend Charles Smart Caffin – 33 acres
Robert Careless1 – 49 acres
Charles Drury – 42 acres
The Executors of W. Fisher – 32 acres
David Hawkes – 20 acres
Joseph W. Morris – 25 acres
Owen John Morris – 25 acres
Edward Phillipps – 42 acres
The Trustees of Broadway School – 76 acres
Edward Stanley – 43 acres
John Wilson Wilson – 550 acres
The above figures are taken from the Return of Owners of Land 1873.
In 1692, during the reign of William III, a Land Tax was introduced by Parliament. It was the first, and for a long time, the only form of direct taxation in Great Britain (it was eventually abolished in 1963). The tax was levied on land and property, including personal property and salaries from public offices, and was collected from individuals, including wealthy landowners, tradesman and shopkeepers. In the 1690s the tax raised around £2 million which equated to around 35% of the national revenue.
The 1798 Land Tax Register drawn up during lists owners of land and/or occupiers by parish and the amount of tax owed. Owners of land valued under 20s were exonerated from the tax so do not appear in the register. The tax was calculated on a quota allocated to each parish which varied across the country. Additionally, land of the same acreage was not necessarily valued and taxed at the same amount with more productive land often assessed for more tax. The tax was set at 4s in the pound and in 1798 became a perpetual charge which could be redeemed by the landowner by payment of a lump sum equalling 15 years of tax.
The 1798 Register is most useful for identifying landownership and the register for the parish of Broadway1 in Worcestershire included the following landowners and their tenants:
Richard Averill – land occupied by Mr Moseley
Reverend Mr Baker – land occupied by Mr Dobbins
Mr Bucknell – land occupied by Giles Stephens
Major Cotterill – land occupied by Mr Russell
Edward Cotterill – land occupied by Mr Lamley
Thomas Cotterill – land occupied by Richard Brown
The Right Hon. Earl of Coventry – land occupied by Mr Osborn
Mr Cowley – land occupied by Christopher Holmes
Reverend Mr Crawley – land occupied by Mr Holmes
Reverend Mr Davis
Mr Fisher – land occupied by Thomas Rastal
Mr Gould – land occupied by John Adkins
Mr J.H. Griffiths – land occupied by Isaac Averill
Mr Grove – land occupied by John Newman
Mr Perrin – land occupied by John Adkins
Mrs Perrin – Mr Brown
Thomas Phillipps3 – lands occupied by Thomas Smith, Robert Careless and John Grinnell
Executors of Thomas Smith – land occupied by Mr White
Mrs Stephens – land occupied by Mr Collett
Mrs Ward – land occupied by Richard Davis
Sir Edward Winnington4 – land occupied by Mr Brown
Reverend Mr Wyniatt5 – land occupied by Thomas Stowe
Broadway History Society
1. Source: The National Archives
2. Isaac Averill (1749-1826)
3. Sir Edward Winnington, 1st Baronet (1728-1791)
4. Thomas Phillipps, father of Sir Thomas Phillipps (1792-1872)
5. Reverend Reginald Wyniatt (d.1819)
The next meeting and talk hosted by Broadway History Society will take place on Monday 20th January 2020 in the Lifford Memorial Hall with an illustrated talk by Art Historian and former Director of the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston, Malcolm Rogers CBE, entitled Russell House, Broadway, its People and History. Malcolm’s talk will start at 7pm and refreshments will be served at the end of the meeting.
Russell House is a handsome Grade II listed Cotswold stone building on the green in Broadway with beautiful grounds. Built in 1791, the house has had a number of owners. One of whom was the American artist Frank Millet who moved with his family to Russell House in 1885. Millet, one of the Broadway Colony of Artists1, died in the sinking of the Titanic in 1912, and his wife, Lily Millet continued to live in Russell House until her death in 1932.
Broadway History Society
1. Broadway Arts Festival, held in the village biennially, celebrates Broadway’s artistic heritage of the world-famous colony of American artists, writers and musicians, who visited and worked in the village in the late 19th century.
Shortly after Reverend Francis A. Morgan was appointed Vicar of St Michael’s in 1887 (see below) he arranged a supper for members of the church choir. The Church Choir Supper was then held annually whilst he was Vicar.
The 5th Choir Supper took place on Thursday 14th January 1892 in the National Schoolroom. The Evesham Journal reported:
“About 30 sat down to a bountiful spread, which was served in the infants’ room, the Vicar being in the chair. Amongst those present were Mrs and Miss Pauline Morgan, Alderman Averill, Messrs H.T. Morgan, A. Wylde-Brown, W. Timms, A.R, Williams, W. Gill, W.H. Biles, A. Roberts, J.J. Bollard, M. Biles, G. Riseley, F. Stokes, G. Hunt etc. After the repast the Vicar, in the course of a few remarks, suggested that they might give a little bonus to the boys who stayed in the choir after they had passed through the standards. They now had a very good choir. There were some members to whom he felt he could not do anything but express his warmest thanks for the way in which they backed him up and he mentioned especially Mr Williams and Mr Gill. He passed on to speak of the necessity of their attending practice and service regularly, and in conclusion said they could do no better than re-elect Mr Gill leader of the choir. Mr Gill having acknowledged his re-appointment, the Vicar thanked him for again taking office and for his services in the past. Having chosen Walter Benn and Richard Foss as the two boys to look after the choir books he proposed the health of the organist thanking him for his work in connection with the choir. Mr W. Timms replied, and submitted in eulogistic terms the health of the Vicar. The Vicar in reply spoke of the great interest which Mrs Morgan and himself always took in the choir. Mr A.R. Williams said a few words on the importance of attending practice and said they were glad to welcome the Vicar back amongst them in restored health. Alderman Averill thought the choir might have a little trip during the summer, say down to Worcester where they could go to the Cathedral and hear the singing there. Worcester was one of the most completely restored cathedrals in England and he never found one in which the services were better rendered. Mrs Morgan also addressed a few words to the company and then an adjournment was made to the adjoining large room and a musical programme was gone through. Amongst those present at the concert were Viscount Lifford, Miss Caffin, the Misses Hensley, Mrs and Miss Clare-Balle, Miss Bedford, Miss Williams, Miss Morgan (West End), Misses Brick, the Misses Fridlington, Mrs Timms. Messrs H. Averill, G.M. Cook, Stanley (Snowshill), T. Gillett etc.”
Accompanied by Miss Morgan on the violin and on the piano by Mr H.T. Morgan, the programme included:
Good King Wenceslas – The Choir
Hybrias the Cretan – Mr S. Fleming
The Manger Throne and Wot cher – Mr M. Biles
We’ll all go a Hunting Today – Mr G. Riseley
Riding on top of an Omnibus – Mr T. Gillett
Billy Stutters – Mr J.J. Bollard
A Piano Waltz – Miss Clare-Balle
My Mother – Mr W. Timms
The Toreador – Mr S Fleming
He ought to have a Muzzle on – Mr Gill
The concert ended with all singing God Save the Queen.
Rev. Francis Augustine Morgan (1838-1921)
Francis Morgan was the second son of Rev. Samuel Francis and Mary Juliana Morgan of All Saints Church, Birmingham. He was baptised on 23rd August 1838 at All Saints Church, Birmingham, Warwickshire. Francis was educated at Wadham College, Oxford, receiving his BA in 1860 and MA 1863. He married Annie Bridget Harriet Rowlinson in Chepstow in 1865.
Francis was the first Vicar and and builder of St Paul’s Church, Bath (1869-1885) and then Vicar of Chepstow before moving to Broadway in 1887 with his wife Annie and two daughters, Charlotte and Pauline). Rev. Morgan retired to Somerset in 1910 and died, aged 83, on 10th November 1921. He is buried in Locksbrook Cemetery. Lower Weston near Bath, with his wife (see photo) who died the following year, aged on 22nd December 1922.
Broadway History Society has been sent the following biography of Joseph Henry Yarnold (1860-1923) by Yocker Yarnold and Ken Edwards. Joseph served with the police force in Broadway in charge of the village’s police station from 1887 to 1894.
Joseph Henry Yarnold was born on the 20th December 1860, in Kingswinford, Staffordshire, the son of Eliza Yarnold. Joseph, known as Henry or Harry, was initially brought up by John and Eliza Bint at Market Street, Kingswinford. Sometime after 1871, Joseph moved to live with his Yarnold relatives1 at Menithwood, Pensax, Worcestershire, where he was brought up alongside his many cousins.
After leaving school Joseph first found employment at the local Hollins Colliery2, however, having received a good education, aged 19, he joined the police service as a Special Constable. By 1883 Joseph was serving as a full time officer and within a few weeks had been promoted to Constable at Evesham.
In March 1887 Joseph transferred to take charge of Broadway Police Station. During his time at Broadway Joseph met and married Eliza Jane Baskett, daughter of George Baskett the Sexton of the parish of Salford Priors, and they married at Salford Priors on the 20th February 1887. In January 1894 Joseph was promoted to the rank of Sergeant and after serving in Broadway for 7 years moved back to Evesham to the new Police Station in the town. Upon his promotion the village held a dinner in Joseph’s honour. The Evesham Standard on Saturday 20th January 1894 reported:
At the Lygon Arms, on Wednesday, a public dinner was given to present a testimonial to PC Yarnold, on the occasion of his departure to Evesham and his promotion to be Sergeant. Ald. Averill presided, and there were also present – Messrs A Drury, G M Cook, K Averill, A Williams, T Bayliss, R Johnston, J Brick, J W Wilson, B Burrows, H Preston, Haines &c. The Chairman read letters from the Vicar and Mr Pemberton, who expressed regret at being unable to attend. He said they had met to make Sergeant Yarnold a presentation, as a small recognition of his services in Broadway for the last seven years. They were all aware that the life of a police officer was by no means an easy one, and PC Yarnold came to Broadway in troublous times3, just after an election, but his conduct throughout was most satisfactory. All classes of people respected him, and would be sorry to lose him. The Chairman asked Sergeant Yarnold to accept the present, which was a beautiful marble clock, as a mark of appreciation from the Broadway people. Ald. Averill then proposed the health of Mr and Mrs Yarnold, which was cordially drunk. Sergt. Yarnold returned thanks for the way the toast had been received, and for the handsome present made to him. He was sure in after life he should never forget their kindness, and he hoped at the end of the next seven years to have proved himself as satisfactory in his new office. Other toasts were drunk, including the health of Mr Johnston, who had promoted the testimonial. Mr Johnston said he was sure he had never collected money with more pleasure. Sergeant Yarnold had been a splendid officer, and all had responded most generously to his appeal. Mr Averill proposed the health of Mr and Mrs Drury, which was very heartily drunk. Songs were given during the evening by Mr S Jarret, Ald. Averill, Messrs Smith, A Hunt, and others, and the proceedings concluded with the toast of “The Chairman”, which was heartily responded to.
Eight years later Joseph was again promoted to the rank of Inspector a position he held until his retirement in 1909. Joseph was held in high esteem by his colleagues, magistrates and solicitors and on his retirement he was presented with a gold watch by the magistrates at Evesham County Sessions. The watch bore the inscription: Presented to Inspector J H Yarnold on his leaving the Worcestershire Police Force by the Magistrates of the Petty Sessional Division and Borough of Eversham and their Clerk, in recognition of long and faithful service, June 1909.
During his police service Joseph received a merit badge for saving the life of a man who had been pulled out of the Avon river and presumed drowned. Joseph performed respiration on the man and he survived. Upon retirement, Joseph and Eliza went to live at Salford Priors. Following a short illness in May 1923 Joseph was admitted to Clent Nursing Home where he died, aged 63, on 23rd May 1923. His funeral took place at Salford Priors Church the following Thursday. Joseph’s wife Eliza outlived him by 24 years dying at Bream in Gloucestershire on the 21st December 1947, aged 83.
Broadway History Society
1. The large Yarnold or Yarnall family had lived in the villages of Menithwood, Lindridge and Pensax for many generations, the men employed as agricultural labourers or coal miners.
2. Hollins Colliery was on the site of a farm of the same name, situated between Pensaz and Clows Top. Samson Yarnold (1860-1937), one of Joseph’s uncles, followed in his father’s footsteps, working at several of the small local Pensax pits. Samson became the owner of the Hollins coalmine in the 1890s and retired from coal mining, aged 70 in 1930.
3. In the late 1880s the country was in deep recession and unemployment and poverty, particularly in Broadway and the surrounding area, was high. However, an article aimed at attracting visitors to Broadway published in the local newspapers in August 1887, painted the village as a rural idyll.
The following article about Broadway was published in the Gloucestershire Echo on 24th August 1887 and the Cheltenham Chronicle on 27th August 1887:
Broadway is geographically in Gloucestershire but topographically is a peninsula of Worcestershire which juts out into the neighbouring shire. Broadway is about five and a half miles from anywhere, and just six miles from everywhere. Two hundred years ago, or even so far back as Shakespeare’s days, Broadway may have been a place of note. Now it is a place of no account, except as one of the quietest, sweetest, most peaceful, and most pastoral “out of the world’ villages in all England. It consists of one wide, straggling street, of quaint old stone-built houses with gables and dormers, Tudor chimneys, casements with leaded panes of old glass, mullions, carved doorways, finials and high-pitched roofs. There is an amazing hotel, the Lygon Arms, which would have driven Dickens wild with delight, and in another ancient hostelry, now turned into a private residence, are the old oak beams and floors, old windows and wide chimney-nooks which were there when Charles I slept – or more probably only laid down his uneasy head – after a disastrous battle. On the walls of these fine houses apricots and vines grow freely, and their fruits ripen.
There is a village green, the chosen club of all the village dogs, who romp and race there from morning till night. The well-planned kennels of the North Cotswold Hounds are in the village, and when they are seen coming down the wide street the way in which the other dogs “get up and slide” is most diverting.
At the extreme end of Broadway in an old house, with an old garden, shut in by a high old wall, an American colony of artists1 have established themselves, painting and drawing all day long with intervals of lawn-tennis for exercise; and there, the world forgetting, but not by the world forgot, they lead an ideal life of work and art and simple healthful occupation. They have their models male and female, after their kind in an adjacent cottage; and they have fitted up a great old barn as a studio, from which are sent out many notable pictures.
The country round about Broadway is a mixture of flat cornlands and rolling hills, profusely timbered with splendid elms, ash-trees, and oaks, and the district is literally studded with old abbey barns, old manor houses, and old churches, in most quaint and picturesque styles of architecture. Beautiful walks through pastures and coppices, over hills, superabound in every direction. People in search of quietness, fresh air, and something rather out of the common-place in rural life might do worse than find their way to Broadway. To get there is not just as easy as to get to Charing Cross, but it can be done by taking the train to Evesham, or utilising a smart four-horse coach2 that leaves the Plough at Cheltenham for Broadway every Saturday afternoon at five o’clock, for a delightfully picturesque drive of sixteen miles to Broadway. The very difficulty of getting to Broadway enhances its charm of isolation. If it were nearer a railway-station it would be more noisy and less nice.
Broadway History Society
1. The Broadway Colony of artists included; the American artist Francis Davis Millet (1848-1912) who lived at Farnham House and Russell House and also rented Abbot’s Grange on the village green, and John Singer Sargent (1856-1925) who painted Carnation, Lily, Lily, Rose in the gardens of Farnham House and Russell House during the summers of 1885 and 1886 whilst staying with the Millet family. Millet’s most famous painting Between Two Fires was painted at Abbot’s Grange. Frederick Barnard, an illustrator of Charles Dickens’ novels and the portraitist Paul César Helleu were also visitors to Broadway at the time. The Artist Colony Room at Broadway Museum and Art Gallery provides an insight into their art and their lives.
2. The Four-Horse Coach started running between Broadway and Cheltenham in August 1887. The coach ran every Saturday at 9am from the Lygon Arms Hotel, Broadway, calling at the White Hart Hotel, Winchcombe, to The Plough Hotel, Cheltenham, returning at 5pm the same day.
Broadway History Society’s next meeting and talk will take place on Monday 9th December 2019, with a talk by David Haldred on Hailes Abbey and the Mystery of the Holy Blood.
Located between Toddington and Winchcombe, Hailes Abbey was founded in 1246 by the Earl of Cornwall, the second son of King John, and was once the centre of monastic life. In 1270 the Abbey received a holy relic believed to be a portion of the blood shed by Christ on the Cross. The Holy Blood of Christ transformed the monastery into one of the most important pilgrimage sites in medieval England but the relic was destroyed and the Abbey left in ruins when the Abbey was dissolved by Henry VIII in 1539. David’s talk will explore how the rise and fall of the Abbey was inextricably linked to its prized relic.
Non-members are welcome, £3 on the door. Refreshments will be served during the interval.