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Underhill Area, Barrow Road

An area of significant historical interest due to the solutions made in adapting buildings to a hilly landscape and in using marginal land.
'Double click' on the photograph for larger pictures and more notes.

The cottages at this location are a unique example of their type. In the 1620s dwellings were built on manorial waste land, and the occupiers paid the Lord of the Manor a rent for the privilege.

The properties were built into the hill; it was on the most marginal of land.

These cottages hardly changed over the years until after the mid-19th century when the rents stopped being collected. In effect, the occupiers owned their freehold. This change alone fuelled a drive for improvement, as the new freeholders now had collateral for mortgages. This manifested itself as rebuilding or by major house improvements. Today what we see are mainly 19th century buildings constructed on the original footprint of their 17th century cottage holdings.

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