General Category => Shoreham Discussion => Topic started by: Nelson on July 14, 2017, 06:37:36 pm

Title: Preservation or Vandalism?
Post by: Nelson on July 14, 2017, 06:37:36 pm
Shoreham’s flint walls are older than we think. Many of those lining our ancient streets have their origins in mediaeval times and although we cannot categorically state that the material in them is that old we can safely say that some of them do still contain the flints, stones, mortar and structure from at least the 17th century.
One such wall is that on the north-west corner of North Street with John Street, it contains Caen stone remains from the ruined Norman nave of St. Mary’s church that fell into disrepair in the mid 17th century and was demolished in the early 18th century.
Some years ago when announcing its conservation areas and policy the town commendably emphasised that our street walls were also an important part of its historical character. This statement was backed up in the practical sense during the rebuilding of the old Burtenshaw’s blacksmith building in Middle Street where the walls were finished to a high degree of quality including the use of traditional material and mortar.
Can the recent standard of refacing the North/John Street corner wall be considered of a reasonable quality, traditional finish? Hopefully over the years the bright yellow modern mortar will weather to grey, the finish around the flints will become less obvious and at least an ancient wall has been given extended life.
Title: Re: Preservation or Vandalism?
Post by: Spinalman on July 14, 2017, 07:10:52 pm
I agree with you Nelson.  Some of my favourite walls are those that are the boundary between the allotments and the victorian gardens in Victoria Road.  I wonder if they predate Victoria Road and were the retaining walls of Green Dam.  Likewise the large walls in the Meads that were part of the Swiss.  And not forgetting the Western Road wall - probably 1840:
Title: Re: Preservation or Vandalism?
Post by: Nelson on July 14, 2017, 07:25:38 pm
Interestingly the 1833 tablet placed in the wall at the allotments (alongside ours actually!) suggests a wall construction date some considerable time before the houses were built (they were circa 1900 or Edwardian). As you suggest, the wall boundary follows the western edge of the 18th century Little Dam field or croft. The 'T T' initials probably relate to Thomas Tillstone, (rope maker and sailmaker) who owned one or two fields in the area perhaps for to dry his tarred sails - remember the upturned boats in the field above? - they were probably for his use too.
As a sad aside, large sections of this wall at the northern end have collapsed.