Riseley Historical walk – NE

Heading North-East along the High Street towards the school and the garage.

To be developed – this is work in progress.

As you continue your walk past the shop maybe you’ll drop in for some light refreshment. Maybe this is the Adams family waiting to invite you in?
The old village hall which was built on land opposite the shop where 98a and 98b High Street now stand. It was built after the First World War. The much improved village hall in Gold Street was opened in 1979.
On the left there is the Old Swan Pub now known as White House, which was granted a beerhouse licence in 1869.
Cobblestones is on the right next to where the old village hall was sited. Joseph & Mary Gell with their baby are posing for the photo. The barn on the right was a workshop for making parts for shoes. Shoemaking and leatherworks were a major industry in this area.
101 High Street, now known as Swan Cottage, was the home of Charles Dunkley, the village thatcher, who stored his materials in the barn beside the house.
(Drag the slider in the middle to see how the old and new two views compare.)
105 High Street , the home of John (Cub) Westley who ran the livery stables in what is now Hunters Yard.
The Royal Oak Pub, now 107 High Street.
The Royal Oak Pub in the early 1900s. Samuel Rootham was the occupier of the pub then and is probably pictured here. Records show the pub was operating in 1792. It closed in the 1990s after 200 years of serving the local community.
109 High Street, now called Millbrook House is next to the Royal Oak pub site.This was the home of Frank Felce and was once a shop selling confectionery and groceries. The Felce family farm in Riseley to this day.
Frank Felce at the rear of 109 High Street.
110 High Street, Timbers, dates from at least 1630.
The Moravian Chapel in the 1920s.
The Moravian congregation. Services were held on this site from around 1745. The old chapel was demolished in 1810 and the new one built, with new front added in 1862. The new front had a door on both sides, the left door for men and the right for women. The chapel closed in 1966 and after some time became an Art Gallery. It is now a private house.
A Moravian tea party in the 1920s held in Great Crooks field opposite 105 High Street. The field was part of what is now Paulson’s Close which was built in 1965.
Ivy lodge, 118 High Street, the photo was taken when the name was appropriate.
Ivy Lodge with the ivy cladding long gone. Roger Evans, the local thatcher, is working on the new thatch. His signature acorn mark can be clearly seen.
Hall Cottage, for many years the village Post Office run by Mrs Edit Westley pictured here.
Betty Nicholls and Margaret Rootham outside the Co-op in the late 1940s. This has been demolished and replaced by 125 High Street.
The Coop in the 1980s and 125 High Street as it looked in 2009.
(Drag the slider in the middle to see how the two views compare.)
Sheep passing down the High Street near the end of Bowers Lane. The old George and Dragon pub sign can be seen in the background. The George and Dragon was first licensed as an unnamed beerhouse in 1869. It was owned by Saint Neots brewer William Paine. In those days Bowers Lane was called Brick Yard Lane.
The old George and Dragon at the end of Bowers Lane closed in the late 1950s and became the home of Henry and Cis Waldcock. Henry had a forge in the outbuildings.
A US Airman on his bike, and a local Jock Westley on his horse, taken during WW2 at the Bowers Lane junction.
135 High Street is probably the oldest house in North Bedfordshire. It was constructed in about 1480 as a ‘one up one down’ dwelling. This snowy picture shows some of the timbers. The stoat oak box frame is an unusual structure in this area.
This is the side view of 135 High Street showing the mullion windows. The house was renovated in 1722 and in 1990 an extension was added. More recently the house has been coated with fresh lime and ferrous sulphate to retore it to its original splendour.
A winter’s scene with 149 High Street in the background. The group on the road are probably taking a stroll after church in their Sunday best clothes. 149 High Street was built in 1873. The manager of the brickyard, W Bailey, lived there.
Betsey Fairey with her lace cushion outside her home, Whitegates, now 153 High Street. The glass globe on the right, filled with water, magnified and concentrated candle light on to the lace cushion.
An American B-17 Flying Fortress from 303 Bomb Group based at Molesworth crashed behind 170 High Street on 14th October 1943. The crew survived and returned the next day to collect their belongings. The film stars Clark Gable and James Stewart were with the 303 Bomb Group at that time – maybe they made a visit to Riseley!?
170 High Street in the 1950s painted by Charles Brooks. an artist and a village postman. It was behind this house that the B17 Flying Fortress crashed, scattering wreckage into the old brickyard.
Joseph Gell, the gamekeeper, outside Porter’s Lodge. This picture shows the original gates of the Riseley entrance to Melchbourne House, the home of Lord St John.

We are now at the North East end of the High Street. If the Giddy Goat Coffee Shop is open behind the garage you just passed you can reward yourself with hot drink and snack.

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