Posts Tagged ‘Drove Lane’

Drove Lane Cemetery

August 21, 2015

Family history researchers should not forget that there were several burial places in Market Lavington. Two, sadly, can no longer be visited. These were at the old Baptist chapel which is now a fish and chip shop and also at the old independent chapel which had previously been the Quaker meeting house. But as well as St Mary’s churchyard there is also the Drove Lane cemetery. This was once used by the Congregational Church but these days it is actually a cemetery for Easterton and the surrounding area.

Here we present information about one grave there.

James and Eliza Hobbs

image001 In loving memory of James Hobbs who died June 1st 1913 aged 53
Only a step removed. We soon again shall meet
Our own; our dearly loved around the saviour’s feet.
Also of Eliza his wife who died Dec 7th 1939 aged 74
At rest

James Hobbs was born in Easterton, a tithing of Market Lavington in Wiltshire, around 1859. Submitted IGI entries give a birth date of 21st May and a baptism on 26th June 1859. The parents given on these are William and Mary

In 1861 he was with his parents, William, an agricultural labourer and Mary. James, aged 1, was the youngest of the three children at home.

In 1871 the Hobbs family were in Easterton. William was a labourer. Children were Hannah (15), our James (11) and Emily (8).

In 1881 William and Mary, along with James, were still in Easterton, living on White Street. William was a market gardener.

Eliza Lane was born 20th April 1865 and baptised at Market Lavington on 4th June. Her parents were William and Ruth.

In 1871 the Lane family lived at Market Place, Market Lavington. William was an agricultural labourer. Five year old Eliza was the oldest of the three children at home.

In 1881 Eliza worked as a live-in servant for the Pomroy family on High Street, Market Lavington.

The marriage between James Hobbs and Eliza Lane took place in the July quarter of 1887

In 1891 James and wife Eliza lived on White Street, Easterton. James worked as a market gardener. Eliza, aged 25, had been born in Lavington. James’s widowed mother, Mary lived with them and also present was James’ brother in law, 16 year old Robert Lane from Lavington.

In 1901 James and Eliza were the only occupants of the White Street, Easterton house. James was now a dairy and agricultural farmer and listed as an employer.

In 1911 James and Eliza were still living on White Street in Easterton where James was a farmer.

James died in 1913. Eliza outlived him by 26 years.

This has been borrowed from the site at where information about other graves can be found.

Homestead Farm – pre-war style

July 30, 2015

The Homestead Farm of 1936 no longer exists. It was replaced a few years ago by a building more suited to 21st century living. The new building still carries the Homestead Farm name which we at the museum are delighted about.

Back in the late 1930s the old building was more a large detached cottage than a fully-fledged farmhouse. And here it is.

Homestead Farm in the late 1930s. Homestead Farm is on Drove Lane

Homestead Farm in the late 1930s. Homestead Farm is on Drove Lane

It looks homely enough and maybe the ivy covering helped to reduce the penetrating damp. From the fact that the building had a slate roof we imagine it was a Victorian building. Slates are not found in this area and probably were rarely used in Wiltshire, except by the very rich, until railways could transport them cheaply.

The family who lived at Homestead Farm in the late 1930s were a branch of the Gye family. Two of them can be seen in the photo.

The photo isn’t sharp enough to positively identify just who the man and small child are. Almost certainly, though it is James Gye who ran his market garden here and his daughter Elizabeth.


Drove Lane

June 2, 2015

Simple chance can cause quite big impacts and Drove Lane is what it is now in part due to chance. Its name has changed over the years. At one time it was ‘The Drove’. Then the cemetery was created and it became ‘Cemetery Lane’. Then, perhaps because people didn’t like their home address being associated with death, it became Drove Lane.

Drove Lane was never given a road surface throughout. That was the chance fact of it being quite near to and parallel with the Parsonage Lane route north out of the village. So Drove Lane became a quiet byway.

Well that was until 1971 when its position – handy for both Market Lavington and Easterton – made it the ideal site for the new St Barnabas School which replaced the Victorian village schools in both parishes.

Back then, in 1971 the road, and specially surfaced footpaths, became busy with mums walking their children to and from school. These days, that carriage of children is much more often by car as a parent then has to get to work straight after dropping off the kids.

A large electricity substation was also constructed alongside Drove Lane. I dare say the occupants at the cemetery, next door, didn’t complain about it! That substation shows on our pre-1971 photo.

Drove Lane in 1968. It shows the site of the proposed new School

Drove Lane in 1968. It shows the site of the proposed new School


The car in the photo was registered in 1966 but there is no school to be seen. The photo dates from 1968 and is actually captioned ‘site for new school’.

Apart from the absence of a school, we’ll note that Drove Lane had no pavements. They were added to make for safer access to the school. We are fascinated by the brick ‘gate post’.


Can anyone identify this brick post?

Does anyone know what that was for?

A second picture shows a similar view with the school nearing completion. It was taken in 1971.

St Barnabas School nears completion in 1971

St Barnabas School nears completion in 1971

At this time the road was improved and the pavements put in. The footpath from Oak Lane and beyond was given a tarmac surface as was the one from the top of Northbrook.

This school, of course, is still thriving with local youngsters who are often in local events.