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Sturminster Newton Castle, 1827.

The Exeter Road The Story of the West of England Highway 1899

                              Highways and Byways of Dorset, Sir Frederick Treves illustrated Joseph Pennell 1906. This picture remains essentially unaltered today.

The bill for inclosure was brought to the house in February 1824 and sailed through the various readings and the House of Lords by June in that year. After that however the House of Commons Journal mentions it no further but we must presume it was enacted at some time in the year. For what must have been an important inclosure it is strange that there are no newspaper advertisements concerning it. William Jennings was the commissioner and it was to be the last that he was to take part in.

The parish of Sturminster Newton was large and the extent or scope of John Martin’s inclosure is not known. The tithe map of 1840 shows an area of the parish at Bagber with extensive commons that was just waiting to be inclosed – which it was in 1844, but not by John Martin. The same tithe map shows at least five areas of the area around Sturminster Newton Castle which still had common meadow in quite substantial amounts. The award was finally enrolled in 1828 so in some respects this was a relatively quick inclosure and the diary for 1827 has several entries pertaining to it. None of the entries is particularly interesting although by the time he was writing most of the work measuring had been completed. In January we find him making out the various allotments due to the proprietors, a process which took him 8 days which he tell us must be charged for. In February he prepared the schedule for the repair of the private roads [charged 2 guineas] and wrote to Mr Harvey sending him a draft of proposed allotments. Who Mr Harvey was is not known. In August he was making maps of the new roads to be made and preparing the advertisement to announce them. There are several such entries in the diaries about advertisements for inclosures but none ever appeared under his own name always those of the Commissioner. On October 31st he finished his award maps and no more entries appear for that year.

22nd – 26th January 1827

Sturminster Inclosure”

making Award of Allotments

31st January 1827

Sturminster Inclosure” making Draft of Award ½ a day.

1st February 1827

Sturminster Inclosure”

making Draft of award Numbering Allotments &c

2nd February 1827

Sturminster Inclosure”

Allotting the small Allotments on the Map Proposed to be Stocked in Common

3rd February 1827

Sturminster Inclosure”

completing award of Allotments ½ day

Measuring Fences on Bincombe Map other half

8 days in the whole for award

5th February 1827

Sturminster Inclosure”

making Schedule for repair of Private Roads £2 2s 0d

8th February 1827

Preparing for Tarrant Hinton Inclosure Award and writing to Mr Harvey on Sturminster Inclosure and sent his Draft of Allotments for award.

1st June 1827

Writing & Examining Sturminster Bill of Inclosure

5th25th July 1827

Working upon Sturminster Award Maps

15th August 1827

Making advertisement of Sturminster Private Road

16th August 1827

Do Maps of Roads charge

17th August 1827


Finished Maps of Private Roads

Charge 3 Guineas

20th August 1827

Went to Mintern to meet Mr Percy the 3rd Man between Mr Benjew and myself upon Cerne Turnpike and went to Cerne to get Mr Cockeram to sign notice of Meeting on Sturminster

17th September 1827

Sturminster Inclosure

attendg Commnr hearing objections to private Roads

18th September 1827

Making Draft of Award

25th – 29th October 1827

Working upon Sturminster Award Maps

31st October 1827

Completed the Sturminster Award Maps


Next         Tarrant Hinton, 1827.

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