In The Village

Main Road (Central)

Credit: Garry Allam, Bishop's Sutton Heritage; curated by Mark Allen

York Cottage on left (formerly the Fox Beer house ) and Parkers (nearest camera) 2014. Both formerly York Buildings

From at least 1871, Bishop's Sutton had three pubs - it might have been earlier. The Ship Inn was well established and as it always was 'a bit better' than the other two, being an Inn. the others were mere beer houses.

As to which of the other two came first it’s not entirely clear; the Plough at the other end of the village from the Ship, (by the Water Lane turning) or the one in between the two: The Fox, situated in York Buildings (now York Cottage and Parkers).

Originally a tenement building, York Cottages have fluctuated between two and six 6 cottages. It is believed the Fox (sometimes called the Fox Inn) was the current York Cottage. In 1832 it was a dwelling house and grocers and baker's shop, the property of Mr Hathaway, and was sold - the closest reference to a pub is in the seasoned beer casks and brewing vats that were sold with it, but often beer houses would be incorporated with other establishments.

In 1861 either the Plough or the Fox was called the Nags Head, but by 1871 we had the Ship, Fox and Plough. Up until 1869 Beer houses were very loosely regulated and a one-off 2 guinea licence would allow the licensee to sell only beer with little or no other regulations. The Fox closed between 1912 and 1919, and the Plough in 1997.

Bishop's Sutton, the Fox/York Cottage/Parkers

Schedule of Licensed premises 1909

Showing all three Bishop's Sutton pubs

Bishop's Sutton, 3 pubs, schedule of licensed premises

New House Farm, spring of 1959 (by kind permission of Judy Ratner)

The old A31 (now B3047, the Main Road) runs along the bottom of the photo. The buildings on the left are White Friars then the Ruins, Then Tavy and Yeomans Cottages, Then New house and its farm yard. Behind, the farm buildings are now dwellings (West Barn and Swallow Barn House).

After New House is the row of thatched cottages then called New House Cottages (now Grove Cottage), formerly three cottages and it looks like before 1870’s there were two more cottages which ran parallel to Water lane from where the Willow tree in Grove Cottage garden is across the entrance to grove cottage.

Far right, you can just see the corner of the old bungalow on Water lane. The Watercress beds behind were subsequently abandoned.

Bishop's Sutton, New House Farm 1959

New House Farmhouse 1948

Description from Historic England:

Newhouse Farmhouse 5.12.55 GV II Farmhouse. C17 and mid C18. Timberframe with mathematical tiles and brick gables, old plain tiled roof. 2 storey, 5 bay, and central front door of 8 panels top glazed with C20 timber. Regency style flat roofed porch. Either side 2 flush framed sashes altered C19. Above 5 flush framed 12-pane sashes and dentilled cornice. External brick stacks at either end

Bishop's Sutton, New House Farmhouse, 1948

Mathematical Tiles, New House east end

it is difficult to see the tiles because of the paint (inset: clearer example from Bramdean).

It is thought that the front of the building is hung with Mathematical Tiles rather than being brick. These tiles were laid with mortar rather than being hung.

During the 18th and 19th Centuries and mainly in the south of England, mathematical tiles tended to be laid on the outside of timber framed building as an alternative to bricks. They had several advantages over bricks as they cut the cost of the work as it didn’t require a professional builder to lay them. They were cheaper, more weather resistant and the weight added to the building was much less; but they still gave the same effect as bricks.

In 1987 it was reckoned on 37 examples remained in Hampshire and the Isle of Wight at least two in Alresford.

Bishop's Sutton,  New House -  mathematical tiles

The last remnant of the Turnpike through Bishops Sutton

The Milestone outside White Friars (The Ruins) Installed by at least 1766 when milestones became compulsory.
Prior to 1752 the main route from Southampton and Winchester to Farnham and then on to London mainly missed out Bishops Sutton and Ropley as the road took various other routes.

Before the formation of Alresford pond and the development of New Alresford around 1204, the chief route was through the Worthys, heading up the present B3047 up on to Itchen and Stoke down through Abbotstone to Old Alresford, Drayton, Bighton, then Medstead to Chawton Park Wood, coming out near Alton Leisure Centre.

The formation of the pond made a connection along the weir from (Old) Alresford to the new development of Nova Forum (the New Market aka New Alresford). Another benefit of the weir was to dry up the marsh land further downstream at Sewers Bridge where the railway bridge at Ladycroft is now; this made it easier to pass and so opened up the road over the hill from Morn Hill and into Alresford down Broad street to connect with the old London rd through Bighton. The old road took many routes up numerous branches to Alton and was badly maintained, with a particularly difficult section being through Drayton which was often flooded.

Bishop's Sutton,  the Turnpike milestone on the main road

In 1752 an Act of Parliament established the Winchester and Alton Lower district Turnpike Trust. This gave the private company the right to collect tolls along the length of the route and they had the responsibility to repair and upgrade the existing roads. the road was about 20 miles in length with four toll gates and bars. One of the gates being near St Swithun’s school another on the crossroad that crosses the present A31 Ovington /Gander down and the Round House in the Avenue at New Alresford. The position of the fourth is unclear.

The tolls for a typical turnpike of the time were:
Coach with 4 or more horses 1 shilling
Coach with 2 horses 6d
Carriage with 1 horse 3d
Wagon or cart, with 5 or more horses 1 shilling
Horse, laden or unladen, not drawing 1d
Cattle, per score 10d
Sheep, pigs, &c., per score 5d

In 1851 William Green who was living in Bishops Sutton was employed as a labourer on the Turnpike. Because of the cost of the tolls, many - especially locals and drovers - continued to use the old routes. The turnpike thrived until the coming of the railway in 1865 and then went into decline and was eventually taken over by the newly formed Highway Authority

Bishop's Sutton,  the Turnpike milestone on the main road

The Elms (Bishops Court) 1903 Taken from an auction catalogue

The Elms was in 1870 called Sutton Cottage. Shortly after it seems Charles Collis the owner changed the name to Elm lodge/The Elms at least by 1880. Charles was a well-known farmer in Sutton (Church Farm) and Colemore: a sheep dealer and corn merchant. Charles died in 1883. By 1909 it had become Bishop's Court.

Bishop's Sutton, the Elms 1903

Description of the Elms 1903 Auction Catalogue

Bishop's Sutton, The Elms auction catalogue, 1903

Description of the Elms 1903 Auction Catalogue

Bishop's Sutton, The Elms auction catalogue, 1903

The Cripples 1895 The Ruins (White Friars)

This was a purpose-built building over the stream at the bottom of what is now White Friars garden. It was used by the Racehorse owner Arthur Yates (Standing with hat) for the treatment of strains and lameness in his horses using hydrotherapy. The two horses are Ulysses and Esher.

Along the back behind the horses can just be seen a Wapiti and a Molucca deer with an impressive Emu in the foreground.

It is said that Mr Yates kept a veritable menagerie at his properties the Ruins and across the road at Lacklands with various deer and Zebras which roamed the grounds and exotic birds including Parrots.

Bishop's Sutton, The Cripples 1895

1897 Map showing position of the Cripples

Bishop's Sutton, The Cripples 1895

Lacklands (sometimes called Bishop's Sutton House) 1895

In the 1960's it was a Preparatory Catholic boarding school for boys. More recently, it was divided up into North, South, East and Hall Lodges and became private properties.

This View is looking at the East end of Mr Yates' House . The property to the right is across the road: the Ruins (today White Friars). At the time of the photo both properties were owned by the Racehorse trainer Arthur Yates.

Bishop's Sutton, Lacklands

Cobbs Farm Bishops Sutton aerial view 1947

There is mention of Cobbs Farm Bishops Sutton in 1318, however there could be a problem as there is also Cobbs Farm at Sutton Wood which is a 17th century building formerly in Bishops Sutton (although now in Bighton), so it is not clear as to which place the 1318 reference applies to. However the house in Bishops Sutton is of some age. In 1839 it was called Cobbs Homestead and up to the late 1930’s Cobbs Cottage or sometimes just as the Cottage or Sutton Cottage. from the 1940’s as Cobbs Farm.

Bishop's Sutton, Cobbs Farm Bishops Sutton aerial view 1947

Cobbs Cottage extracted from a picture of 1908 looking east from the Plough P.H.

Bishop's Sutton, Cobbs Cottage extracted from a picture of 1908 looking east from the Plough P.H.