The Slaugham Archives

Carpenters Arms, Slaugham
The Slaugham Archive
Carpenters Arms, Slaugham

The Carpenters Arms closed as a pub in about 1914 and standing on the right is Mrs Boniface, the landlady. I lived here for four years in the 1940s and over the next two decades visited my grandparents, Jim and May Longhurst, who lived there. The bar area was the front parlour with a large open fire and a serving hatch on the far wall in the style of a sash window. The counter was pewter and on the serving side just beneath the counter there was a wooden spigot pointing downwards. This was used to push the glass marble in the codswallop lemonade bottles downwards to release the gas and enable the drink to be poured.
Picture added on 21 June 2012 at 14:05
This picture is in the following groups
Pubs - Slaugham
This rare photo with the hanging sign was given by a lady in Haywards Heath to my wife, Valerie, who was providing home care. The middle house was probably built first, then the end house on the left added on, and the in-fill to Kent house last. The front of this house would have been taken right down to extend the frontage, hence the newer brickwork built over a beam.
Added by Arthur Shopland on 26 September 2012
I was born in that house in March 1961 and lived there until 1980 when I left to join the Women's Royal Naval Service.
Added by Lena Schriever (nee Botting) on 07 October 2012
I was wondering if houses might be having two bedrooms knocked into one to avoid paying the so-called "Bedroom Tax".
The Carpenters Arms, shown here, has windows blocked up to avoid a window tax, introduced over 300 years ago.
The centre house has had its upper window reinstated, and the window below, on the left, is now in the centre and the door moved to the left.
Added by Arthur Shopland on 31 October 2013
I lived in the middle cottage with my mother who was the cook at the Beeches from 1957 until her death in 1973. I left in 1962 when I left school.
The cottage had a living room/kitchen with a range; the room on the left was a scullery. There were two bedrooms upstairs. Outside we had a shed with a copper boiler and of course the outside toilet.
I remember Mr Longhurst who lived in the cottage on the right. It had a very large creepy cellar!
Added by John Stewart on 28 August 2014
John, my recollections are of the house having a mud room as you walk in the back door, leading to a dining room, kitchen, then on to a large interim room where the front door is located and stairs leading to three bedrooms with bath. After the interim room was the sitting room.
I have very vague memories of the stairs in the dining room being closed as the house went from a two-family to a one-family house as our family grew and after you guys had left.
Perhaps Arthur Shopland can spread some light here.
I agree with you totally on "Uncle Jim's" creepy basement!
Added by Lena Schriever (née Botting)(USA) on 29 August 2014
Lena, I helped your Mum and Dad (Rita and Hedley) move into the cottages; I was 14 at the time. They used to live at Oak Cottage, near Coopers Wood, Handcross.
John, I remember when you and your Mum lived at Coopers Wood. This is a small world.

Added by Mick Feist (Canada) on 29 August 2014
Hi Mike! I remember you!!
Added by Lena Schriever (née Botting)(USA) on 30 August 2014
Correction, my mother (Rose) worked at Slaugham Park (not the Beeches).
Lena, our back door led into the scullery which just had a large shallow stone sink and water tap, a pantry and a table and chairs. I just remember it being very cold in the winter as the only heating in the cottage was from the range in the living room.
Are you related to Hilary Botting, her mum and Rose were very good friends?
Added by John Stewart on 30 August 2014
Hi John, our kitchen had a Rayburn which was the main heat source for the house with a small fireplace in the living room. No other heat source, which was typical I guess.
Did your living room have the Rayburn? I'm not sure where the scullery was.
I'm not related to Hilary Botting, so far as I know. My Dad was Hedley and his siblings were Colin, Peg and May.
Added by Lena Schriever (née Botting)(USA) on 31 August 2014
Hi Lena.
I lived at Ditton Place, Staplefield and remember you well from the Chequers. I knew Dave Arnott well at the time.
I left in 1985 to start a new career in t'North.
Dick Leech was one of your near-neighbours.
Added by Dennis Grant on 28 January 2015
Hi Lena Schriever, I'm almost sure we're related!
My dad was Percival (Percy) Bailey. He and your dad were first cousins I think.
I have a picture of your dad at my parents' wedding in 1958. He always talked about your dad with great affection.
(Private email address has been sent to Lena. BR)
Added by Clare Bailey on 09 October 2015
I am fascinated by these comments as I, too, was born in this row of cottages on the night of January 28th 1945 in the room to the right of the blank window of the end cottage of the three. My father was in Belgium at the time fighting for King and Country having gone over to France on D-Day plus 1.
For a long time I was puzzled (until I learnt the facts of life!) that my father was not there at the my birth. Once the facts of life were explained to me and I was told that my father had been given special leave in the month prior to the D-Day landings, everything fell into place and I felt reassured!. If you compare a photograph of me as I am now and one of my father towards the end of his life there is absolutely no doubt that we are chips off the same block!!!
The cottage was, I believe, owned by the (?) Secretans at Slaugham Park and I believe my step-grandmother may have worked for them as a daily help at one time. The names Hilary Preston and Mrs Benn spring to mind perhaps they were sisters. She subsequently worked as a daily help for the Mordaunts at Furnace Pond Cottage and then the novelist, Denise Robins, when she took over the house.
My grandfather, George Etherton, who worked as a forester on the Ashfold Estate for most of his life, started his working life as a shepherd (as his own father was for his whole life) and used to regail me with tales of driving sheep across the Downs to Lewes Fair towards the end of the 19th century. He was born in 1881 (the date on the church clock) in the cottages next to the Hammer Pond at the back of Plummers Plain a little way along from The Bunk and Money Mound.
How come I was born in Slaugham (as it proudly says on my passport!) when at the time my family home was The Lodge, Beacon Hall? Simple. My father being absent doing his duty for his country, my mother headed for her father's house in Slaugham with my sister, Eileen, just before I was born. I used to spend most of my school holidays there as my sister is 10 years older than me - not that there were many children of my "class" in Slaugham to play with either. I remember one, Roger Cooper who lived a few doors down but my grandmother for some unknown reason regarded him as a bad influence and therefore it was only rarely that I was allowed to play with him. I therefore spent most of my time reading or resting or taking Timmy the dog for walks or trying to be useful in the garden. We did have the occasional holiday in Winchelsea or on Hayling Island, but my father's last employer was a bad payer and often kept him waiting for his pay which meant that on occasions he felt working to be more important than holidays. The concept of paid holidays did not enter our family life until sometime after they were introduced!
Trips to visit my grandparents were courtesy of Daley's taxis at the garage at the Five Cross Ways. They were invariably late and sometimes did not turn up at all - so we and my grandparents were disappointed! We had no telephone and my Dad had occasionally to leg it up the road to remind them that we were expecting a taxi! It was a great experience for me whether it was the car whose doors opened the wrong way or the one with the two little pop-up seats between the front and back seats.
With regard to the cottages I was told that there never had been a window where the blank appears at the head of the rather steep stair case. Maybe they were built during the time of the Window Tax and no one ever got round to making the blank a window once the tax was repealed? I was however also told that at one time there was a picket fence about a yard from the face of the cottages enclosing the open drain and stone slab across it from the front door. Interestingly this photo does not show it. My grandparents rarely, if ever, used the front door and the only time I saw it used was when Sir John Smith, of Ashfold, called one December evening to give my grandfather half a gold sovereign. Sir John was connected with the banking family of that name and went on the establish the Landmark Trust which owns and lets out a vast range of historic and quirky buildings as holiday lets.
I have many memories of Carpenters Arms Cottages. The end one, which I believe used to be the Beer House was the home of Jim Longhurst and his wife and I think a single lady (who may have had a son) lived in the middle one (but I may be mistaken). The Abbotts lived the other side in the Gardener's Cottage. I used to cut my grandfather's small patch of grass with his sheep shears - antique items now and help my Granny operate her mangle in the shed. I was also paid a penny for every cabbage white butterfly I caught in the garden and exterminated!
There was no mains drainage; nor even a septic tank and business was done half-way down the garden in the privy. Not so good on a cold, wet winter's night! It was made more memorable by the fact that my granny's brother Jim Powell, who lived at Oakley Cottages, Handcross, where my parents moved to in later life, drove the "hammer handles" cart, as my grandfather called it, which arrived promptly every Monday morning, I recall, to remove the deposits of the previous week. It was a two seater and I was instructed to use the bucket on the left as you entered as this was my grandmother's and would not fill up as quickly as the one on the right which was reserved for my grandfather!
Happy Days!
Added by Ian Stenning on 09 May 2018
Ian, I was born at the Carpenters Arms. The two cottages on the left were made into a one cottage, but the one on the right remained separate. They were owned by Mrs Benn and Hilary Preston who eventually sold the 1-2 Carpenters Arms to my Mum and 2 brothers in 1984.
Jim Longhurst lived in the beer house and when he died, Dick Leech bought it.
We had indoor loos by the time I grew up, thank goodness! After my mum died in 2000, my brother Mark sold it for a pretty penny.
Added by Lena Schriever (née Botting) (USA) on 10 May 2018
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