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Sat Feb 14, 2009 12:40 am
This week, as he was studying farming and land documents from the 19th century, Alan was intrigued by the names given to farmer's fields.
Most of us ignore field names as we pass by on a Sunday stroll. But they can tell us much about the history of that particular field, and many speak of the hard work our ancestors endured while toiling on the local farms. Many are amusing, some are wonderfully ironic, and most reflect some aspect of a farmer's experience in past centuries.
Have you ever studied records of land use in previous centuries? Did the field names strike you?
Are we in danger of losing the heritage and history bound up in these field names?
Do you know of any fields that tell stories about the history of your area?
Click [link=http://www.bbcwhodoyouthinkyouare.com/localhistory.php]here[/link] to read the blog and have your say below
Sat Feb 14, 2009 12:56 am
Yes, unfortunately many fields and field names were lost in the decades following the 1960s as farmers grubbed out hedges and pulled down walls and fences to increase the field sizes to cater for modern machinery. Most fields had their own individual names which had lasted in some cases back to the enclosures. Of course that is simply a stage in the every changing English landscape formed in main by the agricultural or industrial needs of the people. There are very few acres of natural landscape in England most has been moulded by man. Cheers Guy
Sat Feb 14, 2009 10:53 pm
And isn't it interesting how local authorities and builders choose to ignore the obvious message contained in field names. I can think of a classic where I used to live. The field was called The Marsh, what a surprise it was when all the houses ended up under inches of water when the nearby river burst its banks.
Mon Feb 16, 2009 12:26 am
The 'field' near where I live had been 'farmed' by the same family for years and then was left to overgrow as no-one left in family to care for it in the same respect and the brambles grew. It was eventually sold off for development and the developer kept the name as it was being developed 'The Brambles'. However when it came to naming the road that was built on it the local Council did not go with its history - instead named it after a character from the BBC TV series 'Porridge'! I'm sure there is some good explanation for it, but its lost on me!
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