The history of Clophill, Bedfordshire, UK
Including historical descriptions, maps and statistical analysis.

107 Years Ago - Places

To give an impression of what life was like in Clophill 107 years ago sources from 1911 have been transcribed and interpreted.

The Reading Room

"The annual meeting of the Reading Room members was held on the 26th ult. The Rector presided over a pretty full muster. The accounts were passed and it was proposed to devote the balance in hand to purchasing a full sized billiard table if possible. Lord Lucas was re-elected President; the vice-Presidents elected were Rev. C. L. Matthews, the Hon. G. D. Coleridge, and Messrs. E. Crouch and W. E. Seabrook. The other officers were all re-elected, and a first rate committee was chosen. The Reading room is quite an institution in the village, and its advantages are fully appreciated by the young men of the place."

Saturday, November 4, 1911. Ampthill News

"The members of the Reading Room are to be congratulated on the fact that they have been able to acquire a full-sized billiard table for use in their Club Room. Six years ago they were able to purchase a 7ft. Table. The game became popular, and was also a source of considerable income to the funds. For the last year or two it has been the ambition of the Club to get a full-sized table, and this year it has been realised. Nearly three weeks ago a small deputation went to various depots in London, and they selected a table at Mr. George Edwards' factory in Kingsland road. On Thursday, December 7th, the table arrived, and is now fully occupied each evening."

Saturday, December 16, 1911. Ampthill News

"It may be of interest to record what the Rev. G. Bosanquet wrote to the Rector of Clophill in 1929 about this building, as he regretted some bother that had arisen over the old school, this is what he writes: '. . . the Reading Room Committee have no right to it or claim upon it whatever .... The Council wanted to lay hands upon all the church property but the Charity Commissioners sent down an arbitrator and the finding was wholly in favour of the Church . . . it is only by an act of courtesy that the Reading Room lads are allowed to go there and till the class came to an end, it was held in the old schools. William Stimson would remember going to the old school on Sundays for school.' "

The Cleft in the Hills. page 54

The Parish Rooms

The following sums have been gratefully received towards the Parish Room Fund: Mrs Meyer £2, Mr Basil Wood 10s, Anonymous 18S and £5 and Mr W R G Moir £2 2s., total £10 10s. This brings the grand total to £124 19s.

Saturday March 24th 1905. Ampthill News

"... The old tithe barn had been converted into a beautiful Church Room through the Rector's efforts, and very useful it has been ..."

Saturday January 21st 1911. Ampthill News

"On Friday an enjoyable whist drive was held in the Parish Room, when 40 players sat down. The lady's prize was won by Mrs. Daisy Rosson, and the gentlemen's by Mr. P. Gudgin."

Saturday, February 25th, 1911. Ampthill News

"The annual meeting of the Cricket Club was held in the Parish Room on Tuesday evening Mr. W. E. Seabrook, the captain, presided."

Saturday, March 11th. 1911. Ampthill News

Tithe barn. (Parish Rooms)

The old tithe barn converted for use as the Parish Rooms.

Who lived where a 107 years ago?

If your house is over one hundred years old it might be possible to discover who lived there and what they did.

The Church Path


... He had given much time and trouble to settling the question of the approach to the Old Church, and at last had succeeded in arriving at a settlement, which would procure a good road at a very trifling cost to the parish. ..."

Saturday January 21st 1911. Ampthill News

The Old Cross Tree

"The Old Cross Tree, which stands in the centre of the village, has been lopped this week. It is an elm, and has stood for many years. It is quite hollow - a mere shell - but it still seems full of vigour. The oldest inhabitant can remember it when it had just begun to decay. It is lopped every six or seven years, or its head would become too heavy. The village boys love to climb up inside the tree, and look out at the top. Very soon it is to be enclosed with an iron railing as it is one of the few venerable things which the village possess."

Saturday, November 25, 1911. Ampthill News

"We mentioned the Old cross Tree last week. An iron fence, the gift of Mr. Crouch, has now been put round it to protect it from injury. The best thanks of the parishioners are due to Mr. Crouch for thus endeavoring to preserve the old tree, which they all prize much."

Saturday, December 2, 1911. Ampthill News