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A Chronology of Rode

by P J Harris, 2010

The Chronology of Rode

                        Stone age long barrow (Devil’s Bed and Bolster) on Rode Common

                        Bronze age barrow on Mogg Hill near Barrow Farm

                        Iron age ring ditches at Monkley Lane and coin found near St. Lawrence

                        Romano British artefacts found near Park Gate Lane

pre1066          Domesday book recorded that Rode was held by seven thanes

1086                Domesday Survey. Rode is recorded as having 3 manors and several mills in the possession of Geoffrey bishop of Coutances (King William’s chaplain).

1226                First priest recorded at St. Laurence, Rode – John de Thorenden

1254                Nicholas de St. Maur granted a charter to hold a fair on the St. Lawrence’s Day – 10 August.

1283                Laurence de St. Maur obtains a grant to hold a weekly market in Rode on Thursdays and a fair on St. Margaret’s Day – 20 July.

1348-49          Black Death. One third of the population died; 2,000 villages were deserted.

1410                Alice, daughter of Richard St. Maur, marries William, Lord Zouche of Herringworth and brings to him 440 acres of Rode

c1520              William St.Maur leaves a moiety of his remaining estates at Rode to each of his sisters – Margaret who married a Bamwelland Anne who married John Stawel.

16th C.             Benedictine Priory (6 & 8 High Street and Habersfield House)

1551                Much of Lord Zouche’s land holding sold to King’s Treasurer

1559                Rode Bridge Mill built as a tucking mill

1566                Thomas Webb buys the Bamwell and Stawel moeties  of Rode

1578                Deed of Thomas Webb (Lenten Bread)

1581                Sir Walter Hungerford of Farleigh acquire lands in Rode from the Zouche family

1587                Opening of parish registers at St. Lawrence, Rode

1589                The Webb family sell their Rode estates to the Hungerford family

1625                Service of thanksgiving  at St. Lawrence, Rode for the staying of the plague

1651                King Charles II at St. Lawrence, Rode after battle of Worcester?

1650s              Break-up of Hungerford Estates.

1664                John Webb, churchwarden

c.1700             William Yerbury left £50 to churchwardens of Rode (see Thomas Webb)

1703                Mr. F. Wheeler of Rode invented new fulling apparatus

1705                Henry Whitaker builds dye factory and the Millers House at Rode Bridge

c1720              Old name of Rode changed to Road (based on wording in wills)

1730                Henry Whitaker dies and his dye factory, the Millers House and Barrow House pass to his son William who leases them to his brother Thomas Whitaker

1737                Manor of Road bought by Mr. Andrews, Bristol merchant, and Northfield House (Road Manor) built.

1738                Parishes of Road and Woolverton united (Road-cum-Woolverton)

1741                John Batten dies

1746                John Wesley preaches under walnut tree at Townsend

1752                Until 1752 the legal year began on 25th March, not 1st  January.

1755                Alms houses in Church Lane erected

1760                Thomas Noad dies and his estate, including his cloth manufacturing business at Rockabella, passes to his protégé Jonathan Miller (otherwise Noad)

1762                Thomas Whitaker’s daughters Sally marries Jonathan Noad; and Rachel marries Samuel Ledyard

1782                Thomas Whitaker dies and his sons-in-law; Samuel Ledyard inherits Road Bridge estate; Jonathan Noad inherits Shawford estate

1786                Baptist Chapel built

1790                Henry Batten dies

1790s              Cottages developed into Southfield House for Jonathan Noad’s 1st son Thomas Whitaker Noad

1792                Road Common is enclosed

1792                Road Hill (Langham) House built by T. Baldwin for Thomas Whitaker Ledyard, son of Samuel Ledyard

1795                Jonathan Noad in residence at Rockabella House

1796                Manor of Road sold to Samuel Day of Hinton

1800                Serious fire in Road in Moberley Pond area

c1805              Shawford House developed for Jonathan Noad’s 2nd son Humphrey Minchin Noad

1807                John Pooll, grandson of John Batten, dies

1808                Scuttsbridge Mill occupied by brothers Thomas and Henry Batten Pooll

1808                Factory added to Road Bridge Mill.  Clock installed in Baptist Chapel.

1808                Merfield House built for Jonathan Noad

1809                Methodist Chapel built

1810                Clock installed in Methodist Chapel in Road

1814Jonathan Noad dies and leaves Merfield House to his 3rd son Jonathan

1820                Thomas Whitaker Noad of Southfield House dies

1822                Manor of Road and Northfield House owned by Thomas and Henry Batten Pooll

1824                Christ Church built by archbishop Daubeny

1820s              Remains of market cross in evidence

1829                Jonathan Noad dies but his wife Helen and family continue to live at Merfield

1834                National Schoolroom opened in Langham Place

1839                Baptist’s Schoolroom opened

1840s              Closure of Rockabella Mill

1841                Brick Works owned by Mrs. Emily Noad and operated by John Dunford

1851                Thomas Pooll and sister Alice are living at Merfield

1851                Road Bridge Mill converted to corn milling till 1920s

1857                Henry Fussell acquires the Cross Keys Inn

1859?              Methodist school built

1860                Road Hill (Langham) House murder.

1861                Henry Batten Pooll dies at Merfield and his estate, including Northfield House, passes to his great nephew,  Robert Pooll Langford, of Timsbury, on condition he changes his name to Robert Pooll Henry Batten Pooll

1866                Service at Road during pestilence of cholera and cattle plague

1868                Silcocks’ Hall built by Edward Silcocks for free use by the village

1874                Restoration of St. Lawrence, Road

1875                Henry Fussell dies

1876                Invention of the telephone.

1879                R P H Batten Pooll enlarges Northfield House and changes its name to Road Manor

1886                Sidney Fussell acquires sole ownership of Cross Keys Inn and brewery

1887                Celebrations of Queen Victoria’s golden jubilee, United Counties Institute founded by R. P. H. Batten Pooll and Rev. Brickmann of Christ Church opened and Jubilee Clock installed above window of Institute hall.

1894                Parish Council formed to administer civil matters in lieu of Vestry overseers

1897                Celebrations of Queen Victoria’s diamond jubilee

1899                Will of Mr. E. Silcocks (Road charities)

1900                Last Cloth made at Scutt’s Bridge Mill

1903                S. Fussell & Sons Ltd. builds new brew house

1904                Closure of Scutt’s Bridge Mill

1908                Lectern at Christ Church donated in memory of Sophia Dunn

1913                Sidney Fussell dies and Percy Fussell becomes head of the brewery

1919                Order of Somerset County Council restores the spelling of ‘Rode

1920                WW1 memorial erected on the Green

1923                Living of Christ Church, Rode Hill united with that of Rode/Woolverton

1927                Church Parishes of Rode and Rode Hill amalgamated

1928                George W Stokes and E Blick retire from Parish Council after 34 years service

1930                R P H Batten Pooll dies, Walter Stewart Batten Pooll inherits Rode Manor and lands.

1930                Reading Rooms (United Counties Institute) close

1935                S. Fussell & Sons Ltd. extend 1905 brew house

1936                Electricity and mains water come to Rode?

1937                Civil parishes of Rode and Rode Hill amalgamated

1938                Houses for brewery employees built in Marsh Road

1940                Invasion defences installed along east side of river Frome, air raid wardens formed

1953                Walter S Batten Pooll dies

1954                Rode Manor sold, much of house demolished, developed as Tropical Bird Gardens

1955                Memorial Hall opened

1957                Jubilee Clock stopped working

1962                S. Fussell and Sons Ltd. bought out by Bass, Mitchell and Butler

1964                Percy Fussell dies.

1966                St. Lawrence lych gate knocked down

1985                Wesleyan Chapel closed.  Jubilee Clock restarted

1986                Central Stores closed

1991                New Scout Hut opened

1992                Brewery Distribution Depot and Cross Keys closed.

1995                Christ Church closed

2000                Tropical Bird Gardens closed

2000                Village sign erected and Memorial Hall refurbished

2002                Cross Keys reopened and brewery site redeveloped

2008                Jubilee clock restored

6 August 2023
Last Updated
12 January 2024