Tag Archives: Woods

Henry Woods, pig dealer

Henry Woods, and sons, had a large piggery off the west side of Church Road, on the allotments shown in this 1910 OS map, north side of Batsworth Road.

1910 OS map

Although not named as belonging to Henry Woods, that these allotments were used for piggeries can be seen in the swine fever notice from 1915:

Dorking and Leatherhead Advertiser – Saturday 27 March 1915
Image © Reach PLC. Image created courtesy of THE BRITISH LIBRARY BOARD.

In the 1904-1905 street directory he is listed as pig dealer in Locks Lane, although this may have been his residence as his family later occupied houses in what was later called Eastfields Road.

Henry WOODS, pig dealer

2, Mrs Emma SCHMIDT, laundress
James FLEMMING
Charles WELLER
Clement BELCHER
Richard TOOGOOD
Edward THUMWOOD, carman

These photos were taken at the piggeries off Church Road, and, although the date is not known, they were taken before 1922, when Henry Woods senior died.

Henry Woods senior is second from the left, and George E. Woods on far right.

Henry Woods senior is first on the left, and George E. Woods is second from the right, with piglets.

Henry Woods is first on the left, with his hand on he horse, and George E. Woods is second from the right.

The following biographical information is kindly provided by a descendant, who has also supplied photos from the family collection.

Henry Woods was born in Walworth in 1854. His Father Charles was born 1819 in Andover and was an Agricultural worker who moved to London and ended up doing one of the worst jobs in the world working in one of the tanneries along the South of the Thames.

Henry lived with Jane Harriet Billam who was born in 1858 in Lambeth. Jane’s family are listed as possibly Horse Traders. Why they decided to move to Mitcham is not known, but they seem to have become successful quite quickly.

Rose E Woods, born 1910, and daughter of George E Woods had said that Jane Billam ‘Held the Purse strings’ and would hold money in a purse hidden in her petticoats. By all accounts she was a formidable woman who George E Woods had a strained Mother/Son relationship with. At one point he left the family and went to Canada. He came back met and met Rose Bridger who was friends with Elizabeth Woods and they became engaged. In Canada he signed The Pledge and wouldn’t have alcohol in his house.

His extended family lived in Rosemary Villas, Eastfields Road.

Woods family group. Back row, 4th from left Rose Woods with her husband George E. Woods behind her, with his hand on her right shoulder. Third row, 2nd from the right is Elizabeth Hepworth nee Woods, with her husband, 1st from right, George Wheldon Hepworth. Second row, 2nd from right is Henry Woods with his wife, 1st from right, Jane Billam.

News Articles
Islington Gazette – Thursday 03 March 1904

A COACHMAN’S INJURIES

William Hetherington, coachman, 49, St. Helena place, Clerkenwell, v. Henry Woods, farmer, Lock’s-lane, Mitcham.

Claim for £50, as damages in respect of personal injuries received. Mr. Green was counsel for plaintiff, and Mr. Ward for defendant. The case came before a jury. Plaintiff stated that on August 11th last he drove a traveller to the Broadway, Wimbledon. His horse and brougham was standing outside a jeweller’s shop whilst the traveller was making a call, when a drove of pigs belonging to defendant came along the road. On reaching his brougham one of the pigs broke away and rushed underneath his horse’s legs. This caused the horse to take fright, and in trying to prevent it from bolting he was thrown down. – The brougham passed over him, and two of his ribs were fractured, causing his detention in the local hospital for 17 days. John George Field, who witnessed the accident, described the pigs as “a pretty ordinary lot., except one.” This one broke away, and on the drover smacking the whip, the pig squealed and dashed underneath the horse’s legs. He himself bad been a drover, and did not think the right means were used for getting the runaway pig back to the drove. It ought to have been lightly touched on the side of its head instead of being struck on the back with a whip.

Mr. Ward — Are you an expert in pig driving?
— No; I understand driving them.
Is a whip, and not a stick, the proper thing to drive pigs with?
— I have driven them with a whip and stick.
Then it is a matter of taste? Mr. Green
— Not so far as the pigs are concerned. (Laughter.)
Mr. Ward — Which do you think a pig would like best?
— You have asked me something now.
Is it not customary for a drover to use a whip?
— In nine out of ten cases they do.

Mr. Green — Did the cut from the whip make the pig squeal?
— Yes.
Did it sound like “There is nothing like leather? ”
— (laughter)
— No ; it was a short snappy squeal.

For the defence, it was stated that plaintiff had left his horse and was looking in a shop window when the pigs came along. Neither of the pigs broke away as stated by plaintiff. In fact, they had all passed before the horse moved. Defendant said he saw the horse starting off and he shouted to plaintiff. who was still looking in the shop window. Plaintiff made a run for the horse, and caught his foot in the reins, which were partly on the ground. This caused him to fall, and the brougham went over him.

Continuing his evidence, defendant said he worked for his wife, who carried on the business of a pig dealer. He had no interest whatever in the business.

Mr. Green thereupon applied for an adjournment, and asked leave to add defendant’s wife as a defendant. If plaintiff recovered a judgment against the present defendant be would not get the slightest benefit from it.

The Judge said he had no other course than to adjourn and accede to the application.

Addressing the jury, his Honour said :—

” I am sorry to have to bring you here again, but I know you are as anxious as lam for justice to be done. It is one of those cases in which the wife is said to be the owner of this business. I suppose that in a short time all our wives will be carrying on business and we shall be in the position of servants, happy in the fact that we are all free from legal lability.”

(Laughter.)

The jury then left the box.

Maps are reproduced with the permission of the National Library of Scotland.

Eastfields Road

Road that continues eastward from Locks Lane to the level crossing at Mitcham Eastfields station. All properties currently have the postcode CR4 2LS.

On this 1953 OS map, houses, that are only on the north side of the road, are numbered eastward as odd from 13 to 91. As described from west to east:

a terrace of 4 houses, numbers 13 to 19;
a separate building numbered 21 which had been used as a shop with accommodation, see below;
footpath to Sandy Lane (now Public Right of Way 147);
a row of 6 houses numbered 27 to 37;
number 39 was demolished due to bomb damage in WW2;
a gap which is now Roper Way;
a terrace of 5 houses numbered 49 to 57;
a terrace of 3 houses numbered 59 to 63;
a terrace of 3 houses numbered 67 to 73;
then Rialto Road;
a terrace of 4 houses divided into 2 flats each, numbered 75 to 91.

1953 OS map

This earlier OS map from 1894 shows that the road was part of Tamworth Lane, separated from the rest of it by the railway that was constructed in 1868.

1894 OS map

The 1914 electoral register lists the following occupants in Eastfields Road:

Martin’s Cottage, Edward ROGERS
Primrose Cottage, Richard TOOGOOD
Bird’s Cottage, James McATTEER
10 Rosemary Villas, Charles WILSON
9 Rosemary Villas, John GODDEN
7 Rosemary Villas, George Wheldon HEPWORTH
6 Rosemary Villas, Henry WOODS
4 Rosemary Villas, John Frederick WADE
1 Rosemary Villas, William Valentine BENSTEAD

George TURNER is listed as Eastfields Road only

The 1925 street directory lists properties from Lock’s Lane:

Richard C. TOOGOOD, shopkeeper

Rosemary Villas
10, George Wheldon HEPWORTH
9, Samuel AULD
8, James SULLIVAN
7, Mrs WILSON
6, Mrs WOODS
5, Albert Edward MEPHAM
4, Percy Charles RIGGS
3, Andrew DUNNING
2, Henry WOODS, pig dealer
1, William V BENSTEAD

Kirby Cottage, Charles DAVISON, stock breeder

George Wheldon HEPWORTH had married Elizabeth Amelia WOODS, daughter of Henry WOODS, in 1911. The Henry Woods at no. 2 in the 1925 directory was his son, as Henry Woods senior died in 1922.

Elizabeth Hepworth nee Woods. Photo kindly provided by a descendant of the family.

Woods family gathering, believed to be in Rosemary Villas. Photo kindly provided by a descendant of the family.

The road was renumbered in 1929/30 as the 1929 electoral register shows these named houses, but the 1930 register and onwards show them as numbered.

This table shows the number or name of the house in 1929, then the number in 1930 and the surname of the occupants in 1930.

1929 1930 Occupants
1 13 MILLER
2 15 PENEGAR
3 17 EDWARDS
4 19 SCOTT
Stables Stables GUYATT
Primrose Cottage 21 TOOGOOD, STEWART
10 Rosemary Villas 33 HEPWORTH
9 Rosemary Villas 35 AULT
8 Rosemary Villas 37 SULLIVAN
7 Rosemary Villas 39 EXCELL
6 Rosemary Villas 47 WOODS
5 Rosemary Villas 49 MEPHAM
4 Rosemary Villas 51 RIGGS
3 Rosemary Villas 53 DUNNING
2 Rosemary Villas 55 WOODS
1 Rosemary Villas 57 BENSTEAD
Kirby Cottage 65 DAVISON

1934 OS map

Eastfields Corner

These houses, numbers 13, 15, 17 and 19, were owned by Renshaw, the marzipan factory in Locks Lane and initially rented out to staff. It was known as “Eastfields Corner”.

No. 21

The shop at no. 21 used by John Jayson after WW2. He had originally a grocers shop at 2 Fernlea Road which had been bombed in the war. A fellow on the Facebook group Mitcham History said that there was a wood yard at the back where, as a child, he would take cardboard for it to be weighed and exchanged for a few pennies.

At number 21 was Rogers Estate Agents, at least between 1959 and 1973. Listed in the 1973 Mitcham Chamber of Commerce booklet with telephone number 648 8527, and shown in this 1959 ad:

20th February 1959 ad in Norwood News

In March 1954 planning permission was given for 40 lock-up garages to be built at the rear and side.

This property was in use as an estate agents up to 2002, after which it was empty and was bought by Merton Council with a Compulsory Purchase Order on 17th December 2009. It was redeveloped in 2014 as flats, as described in planning application 13/P1383:

Demolition of the existing two-bedroom property at 21 Eastfields Road and the adjacent 40 domestic garages and construction of a new three-storey building providing 21 flats [9 three bedroom flats and 12 one bedroom flats] with 14 off street car parking spaces with vehicular access on to Eastfields Road, landscaping and a freestanding building providing cycle and bin storage.

The flats are numbered sequentially from 1 to 21, with the address of 21 Eastfields Road.

39

This house was added to the row of 6 houses numbered 27 to 37 in around 2009/10, as described in planning application 09/P0193:

Erection of a part one, part two storey end of terrace 2 bedroom dwelling house

The original number 39 had been damaged in WW2, and the rebuilt house reproduced the frontage in keeping with the rest of the terrace:

Front elevation of no. 37 and 39 from planning application

71

At number 71 was W. Steptowe & Sons, boot and shoe repairers.


News Articles and Ads
The newspaper articles below are via the British Newspaper Archive

From The Evening Herald (Dublin) Saturday 30th August 1930

A few minutes after Mr and Mrs Albert EXCELL and their five-year-old son, Johnny, of Eastfields Road, Mitcham, had left their bedroom at 2 a.m. the house was struck by lightning and plaster fell in large sheets from the ceiling on to the bed.

Newsagents T.G. COOPER, 96, Eastfield Road, stocked ‘Action’, a newspaper of the British Union of Fascists, according to this ad of 23rd July 1938:

23rd July 1938 ad in Action


Maps are reproduced with the permission of the National Library of Scotland.