Artington Parish Website. History

Artington historical miscellany

This page is devoted to random aspects of parish history

Lest we forget

Over the last few months, Vicky Good has been researching into the men of Artington who gave their lives in the First and Second World Wars. This has been done in parallel with the plan to erect a memorial to them at St Francis' church in Littleton later in the year. She has now produced a booklet with short biographies of these men.

Vicky is now attempting to find information about all those men and women of the parish who served in the armed forces and Home Guard. The results will appear on this website in due course.

Second World War defences

The Peasemarsh railway disaster

History of Braboeuf Manor

Arts and Crafts buildings in St Catherine's

The enclosure of the Pease Marsh

Drilling for oil in Littleton

Memories of Littleton

Littleton Farm House

Littleton Farm House

When the Phil Gorton is not being the parish clerk, he and his wife Sally research and write the history of houses.

Here is their history of Littleton Farm House (7.6mb), which was once the farmhouse of Orange Court Farm.

Images of St Catherine's Hill

St Catherine's Fair

St Catherine's Hill has long been a source of interest to historians and artists. Here are some nice images:

This etching of St Catherine's Fair is based on a painting by J .M. W. Turner from around 1830.

This lovely watercolour of St Catherine's Hill viewed from the meadows is by a rather more obscure artist, Francis Oliver Finch (1802 - 1862), and is reproduced by permission of the British Museum. (565kb)

Another picture by Turner showing the hill looking north from the Old Portsmouth Road.

Old photos of some parish cottages

Littleton Farm House

  • Pillar Box Cottage, Littleton

  • Long Meadow, Littleton

  • Little Cottage, Littleton

  • Manor Farm, Artington

  • Images reproduced by permission of the Surrey History Centre.

    Caleb Lovejoy almshouses

    Caleb Lovejoy almshouses

    The Caleb Lovejoy charity owns and administers four cottages that lie in Bury Street behind St Nicolas's church in Guildford. It was founded to provide for the poor of the ancient ecclesiastical parish of St Nicolas, Guildford, of which the modern civil parish of Artington is a part.

    It is governed by a board of eight voluntary trustees and day-to-day management is carried out by the clerk.

    The charity was founded by Caleb Lovejoy by his will of 1676 and the houses are one of four sets of historic almshouses in Buryfields, Guildford, that continue to provide homes for the older members of the community. The houses were built in 1841 but have been upgraded to provide all the usual modern conveniences.

    Caleb Lovejoy was baptised at St Nicolas Church in Guildford on May 8th 1603, the son of Phillip Lovejoy. He was an intelligent boy who was given a free education at the Royal Grammar School before being moved to Southwark by his parents at the age of fourteen.

    In London, Caleb was very successful. He was a member of the Merchant Taylors’ Company, one of the Great Twelve Livery Companies, which gave him the freedom of the City of London. He owned the Walnut Tree Inn and other property in Southwark and became a wealthy merchant who supplied wagons to Oliver Cromwell’s army during the Civil War.

    Caleb Lovejoy is primarily remembered in Guildford as a benefactor. In his will of 1676 he bequeathed property under lease in Southwark to form a charity for the benefit of the poor in Guildford. He appointed three guardians as trustees. Six pounds per annum was to be provided for “teaching of poor people’s children their letters until they could read their Testament.” The teaching to be undertaken, “by some honest poor woman.”

    He stipulated that, after 45 years, four almshouses should be built in the parish of St Nicolas as accommodation for four poor persons of good character. However, it was not until 1839, after the sale of Caleb’s estate, that land was purchased in Bury Street Guildford and four almshouses were built.

    To be eligible, applicants were required either to have been born in the parish or have lived there for fifty years. In his last will and testament, Caleb directed that he should be buried in St Nicolas’s churchyard and that the priest should be paid for a yearly sermon in his memory. A sermon has been preached in his memory every year since 1603.

    There are two brass plates in the church; one giving details of Caleb Lovejoy’s legacy and his death and burial in 1676 at the age of 74; the other has the following verse inscribed which is said to have been composed by Caleb himself:

    Caleb Lovejoy, her I lye, yet not I,
    My body being dead
    My soul is fled unto Eternitye
    There to injoye that everlasting Bliss
    Which Jesus Christ, my Lord
    Who’s gon before, prepared hath for his;-
    Wherefore my Body rest in hope till then
    When he shall joyne thee to thy soul agen
    And bring thee unto that most glorious vision
    There to enjoye thy God in full Fruition.

    Distinguished Artington residents:

  • James More-Molyneux of Loseley

  • Oliver Swann of Orange Grove, Littleton

  • William Cobbett's Rural Rides

    29 November, 1822.
    Went on to Guildford, where I slept. Everybody, that has been from Godalming to Guildford, knows that there is hardly another such a pretty four miles in all England. The road is good; the soil is good; the houses are neat; the people are neat; the hills, the woods, the meadows, all are beautiful. Nothing wild and bold, to be sure: but exceedingly pretty; and it is almost impossible to ride along these four miles without feelings of pleasure, though you have rain for your companion, as it happened to be with me.

    Cobbett was pretty scathing about many things and I imagine that his view of the journey from Godalming to Guildford would be rather different if he were to undertake it today (apart from his comment about the inhabitants of Artington, of course!)

    Old maps of Artington

    John Rocque's map of Surrey c.1760
    This map shows the area before the enclosure of the Pease Marsh common that occurred in the 1810s. Enclosure made a very significant change to the landscape - and to the lives of the cottagers who previously exercised their common right to pasture their animals on the marsh.

    Six inch to one mile Ordnance Survey 1871
    The National Library of Scotland seems an unlikely source of old maps of Surrey but it covers most of England. There are also 25 inch scale maps on the site so you may wish to explore them as well. A great way of wasting time!

    St Catherine's ferry

    St Catherine's ferry

    For many hundreds of years, travellers crossed the river using the St Catherine's ferry. This image appears to be from the first decade of the twentieth century.

    © Artington Parish Council