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Mill End

Old Hammers.

Old Hammers' barn which used to be the Blacksmiths - with the Smithy, two forges and a shoeing place. Wellington's horse stopped here while he was at Julians. After the sale of Rushden, Old Hammers was bought by Mr Oldham but the Smithy had to be kept open until all the farms were sold which, in the 1920s, took several years. It was also difficult to sell the cottages (some of which cost about £28) and a fleet of carpenters was sent in by Mr Harman of Julians and the Cavendish Land Co. to paint and renovate them and raise some ceilings.

John and Charlotte Oldham used Old Hammers when on leave from Singapore and finally settled here. John Oldham ran the library during the war and was a Churchwarden and Chairman of the Village Committee. He organised VE Day and in 1953 the Coronation Day celebrations for Rushden. There was a meal in the Village Hall and beer and music on the Green and the coronation oak tree was planted on Church Green.

Charlotte Oldham, Jean, Geoffrey and Susan Chalk. Geoffrey Chalk was Churchwarden and Trustee of the Greens. He was responsible for providing the church car park and making Church Green as it is today.

The fourth generation - Amy and Charlotte Crump.

Old Hammers - the Dame School door.

George Field's sister ran the school in what is now the kitchen. It had an earth floor and a separate front entrance. The Fields were buried in the Redhill Chapel graveyard. The school closed in 1870 when the Day School opened in the Village Hall.

Old Mill and Anvil Cottages with Walter Dearman, the gardener. Anvil Cottage was thatched until a fire in the 1940s. There used to be an old Water Mill at the Mill Pond at the end of the lane.

Old Mill Cottage. The gardener, Walter Dearman, lived in Dearman's Cottage with his mother, who always wore a cloth cap.

Old Mill and Anvil Cottages were owned by the Managing Director of Shellmex. Not only did he and his wife have a cottage each but he also owned an aeroplane.

Old Mill Cottage was also the home of Harry Boot, the inventor of the cavity magnetron. He and his wife lived here for many years and he is buried in the churchyard. The magnetron was one of the most important discoveries of the Second World War. By vastly increasing the accuracy of the radar beam it enabled the Allies to win the Battle of the Atlantic and turn the tide of the war. Anyone who has a microwave oven still switches on a magnetron today. Dr Boot moved to the Services Electronics Research Laboratory in Hertfordshire after the war and died in 1983.

Henry Boot, 1977


Mill End floods - 1960s. Opposite the Moon and Stars. Mrs Pleydell-Bouverie built Gardener's Cottage which subsequently won an architectural award.

Snowed in near Cumberlow Green, Dec 1981. The A507 is also blocked at this time.

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