Moss Cottage, Iron John's Farm and Cedar Cottage
Moss Cottage was a detached cottage with extensive frontage to the main road near Alphington Cross. The cottage was stuccoed and slated and had a hall, drawing room, dining room, kitchen, wash house, coal house and a scullery. The first floor had four bedrooms, a box room and a bathroom. The outside of the residence had a back yard with out buildings and the garden had a lawn, flower beds, vegetable garden and a garage.
A record in the Western Times dated 7th November 1846 shows a birth ' . . . the lady of John Follet Esq. Southernhay of a son Oct. 29th at Moss Cottage Alphington'. Records from 1848 and 1851 show Fanny Lillies/Lillie and two of her daughters living in Moss Cottage. Fanny died in 1858.
Records from 1871 and 1881 show George Smale and his family residing in the cottage. In 1891 his wife and son were recorded as the residents. Francis C. Park, a railway clerk, and his family were shown to be living in the cottage in 1901.
In 1910 George West, a house painter, and his family took over the cottage.
Iron John's Farm
From Alphington's Tithe Map the land owners of Iron John's were recorded as the Earl of Devon and the executors of Blackmore; the occupier was Richard Loram. Richard was christned in the village on the 28th May 1780 and he married Jane Yabsley on the 24th December 1810. Records from 1841, 1851 and 1861 show him farming at Iron John's. There was also an additional cottage and in 1861 Richard's son, Frederick, was recorded residing there with his family. Records from 1871 show Frederick living in the main farm house. The farm grew from 70 acres in 1851 to covering 160 acres in 1871.
In 1901 William Leach was recorded at Iron John's Farm and Frederick Leach, a dairy man, at Iron John's Cottage. In 1911 William Hookway was residing in the farm house and James Francis in the cottage.
Cedar Cottage was situated on the corner of the Alphington Road and Marsh Barton Lane. On the first floor was a landing with four bedrooms leading off, also a bathroom. On the ground floor was a dining room, store room, drawing room with a glazed verandah, and entrance hall with staircase, kitchen, larder and a conservatory adjoining a boiler house. Outside was a garage, a wash house, a tool shed, a store shed, a potting shed and a greenhouse. The pleasure gardens had lawns studded with fruit trees, paved paths, herbaceous borders, rose beds, a rock garden, a terrace in the front of the cottage. There were also a fruit and vegetable garden, a well, a water wheel and a small strip of orchard land. The whole area covered just over an acre.
From the Alphington Tithe Map Captain Berkley was the land owner and occupier of Cedar Cottage.
From 1851 the cottage remained in the Beavis family for many decades. Records from 1851, 1861 and 1871 show John Beavis, a butcher, living in the cottage with his family. In 1881 his son, George, had taken over the cottage and he was recorded as a farmer of five acres employing one man who could well have been his nephew, John Bastin, who was living with him. In 1891 George Beavis was recorded as a small farmer and his nephew, John, an agricultural machinist.
In 1901 George and John were still at the cottage running the small farm. John had married and had a son named George Beavis Bastin.
The Exeter and Plymouth Gazette dated the 27th June 1901 recorded the following deaths: 'Deaths – Bastin – June 22nd at Cedar Cottage Alphington George Beavis Bastin aged 7. June 22nd at Cedar Cottage Alphington George Beavis aged 74'.
In 1928/1929 and 1937 A. N. Pitts Esq. was the occupant of the cottage and D. H. Physick Esq. leased the small orchard.
Copyright © Rowena Kirkpatrick