Last updated: 9 Dec 2022
| This page lists and describes a number of miscellaneous items which do not fall under the other Fastpath categories. An appropriate photograph or picture is included where Banstead History has one.
In Henry VIII's time in 1544, Banstead Village had to have a trained quota of archers, ready for home defence. They were paid 6d (that's less than 3p) a day. This high rate reflected the great effort being made at the time to maintain the use of the English long bow.
The field for Archery practice called Butts which is the name for the targets used in archery today, was on the edge of Banstead Downs, now the last houses on the right going down Sutton lane. In 1580 various Banstead people were taken to court for not having bows and arrows. Archery continues locally as a sport to this day.
'Book on the heritage of the longbow by Pip bickerstaff.'
|Banstead Athletic Football Club
One of the few clubs to be founded during the 2nd World War, Banstead began football activities in season 1944/45 under the name Banstead Juniors. During the close season of 1946/47 they changed the name of the club to Banstead Athletic F.C. In their first year in the league, Athletic won the Surrey Intermediate Cup and the following two seasons captured the League title. After five successful years at junior/intermediate level, Banstead achieved senior status and joined the Surrey Senior League for season 1949/50.
|The promotion to senior football marked the start of Banstead's Glory Days as the next decade brought them an abundance of honours.
Before the commencement of season 1950/51 Banstead moved from the Recreational ground to their present headquarters at Merland Rise. The first season at the new ground saw Athletic win the League title. They proceeded to win the title for the next three seasons, making it a record four continuous championships.
They joined the Spartan League for season 1965/66.
Banstead joined the Athenian League in 1979/80 and won the League Cup in 1980/81. 1984/85 saw the demise of the Athenian League and Banstead joined the Isthmian League Division Two (South).
Towards the end of season 1989/90 the club faced closure over a dispute with the local council on ground leasing. Fortunately the then Reserve team manager Terry Molloy, rescued the club and became the new owner and Chairman of Banstead Athletic. He then improved facilities at Merland Rise with the installation of new floodlights and the upgrading of clubhouse amenities.
During 1993/94 season, considerable ground improvements were carried out with the help of Epsom & Ewell, to acquire a Grade C rating and later, during 1994/95 further ground improvements secured a B grading.
|Banstead Downs Golf Club
|The Wallington and Carshalton Herald of 18th October 1890 tells us that
'A golf club has been got up upon Banstead Downs'.
In March 1896, the committee decided that the club uniform should be a red coat with green collar,and initials SGC (Sutton Golf Club). Unusually, the club had been founded as the Sutton Ladies Golf Club and the men were only let in afterwards.
The current name - Banstead Downs Golf Club has been in use since 1904.
The club have no web site but the history of the club is recorded in a book called BDGC, The first hundred years 1890-1990' available at Banstead library.
This picture of the clubhouse dates to around 1910.
|Bronze Age burial
|Colin and Jean Sutherland, Ridge House, Park Road,
Site where ancient human remains were found at Ridge House, Park Road, Banstead, Surrey.
We purchased Ridge House in 1984. The property had been a part of the 1913 development by Sir Henry Lambert of a new house, which he called Larklands, landscaped grounds and other buildings. Sir Henry's house is now called New Place. Our property comprises a house, which was formally for Sir Henry's staff and about an acre of land, which was part of the grounds, he laid out. We were aware, early on, that ancient remains had been found within our property because the Ordnance Survey map attached to the deeds is annotated to that effect. It was only in 2002, however, that we decided to investigate the matter more closely and came to the conclusion that the event and its location should be properly commemorated.
The correspondence between Sir Henry Lambert and the Royal College of Surgeons in 1913 is worthy of study. Briefly, however, when Larklands and its grounds were being laid out in 1913, Sir Henry had a tennis court formed in the side of the sloping ground that leads down to Park Down and then to Holly Lane. To level the ground for the court the workmen dug into the slope and it was during this work that the human remains were found. Firstly they came across an incomplete skeleton in a prepared grave, which incorporated a bed of flints. Shortly after they discovered a complete skeleton, also laid in a prepared grave but without the flint bed. Sir Henry took the bones up to London to the Royal College of Surgeons, who were the body responsible for such matters in those days. Professor Sir Arthur Keith at the College identified the first find as being the remains of a young woman and the second find as being the remains of a man of about 28 years old with well-formed lower limbs and delicate hands. Both were dated as belonging to the Bronze Age, which could put them any time between about 2700 BC and 700 BC.
|From Sir Henry Lambert's correspondence we were able to locate the general area of the burials. This is not the same place as is shown on the Ordnance Survey map. The remains were found where the sloping field was being dug out and was at a point where the original surface was more than 2 foot (600 mm) above the burials. From these clues its general position on a north south line across the eastern end of the tennis court can be deduced. Further, it was close to the area where Sir Henry planted trees above the tennis court. This places the graves at the northern end of the court, close to a dry stone wall built by Sir Henry at the time.
|After the Second World War the Royal College of Surgeons passed
responsibility for ancient remains to the Natural History Museum.
Despite extensive searches the Museum is, unfortunately, unable to
trace the complete skeleton. It is thought that the incomplete
skeleton has been destroyed but it is inconceivable that the complete
one would have been as not all that many in such condition have been
found. It is interesting to note that Sir Henry's last letter of 1st
July 1914, brings to the attention of the Royal College the fact that
they had wrongly described the skeleton in their catalogue. Perhaps
it all went awry then.
|Our erection of a plaque to commemorate the finding of the skeletons is intended to mark this important Banstead event. The unveiling of the plaque by Mrs Sarah Goad JP, Lord Lieutenant of Surrey, on 29th June 2003 is most appropriate because she is the great niece of Sir Henry Lambert.
|Banstead Cricket Club
|The earliest record of the Cricket Club is that of a home match against Twickenham in 1842. Tents and sheds were used for fifty years until a Pavilion was built.
In 1898, the ladies attending the club donated a marquee and 25 chairs and it was not until 1919 that they were allowed into the Pavilion - and then only to make tea and wash up!
Tom Gilbert, landlord of The Victoria Public House was related to W.G.(Gilbert) Grace, the famous cricketer and he was instrumental in getting Grace to play at Banstead.
The water pump and horse trough are located outside number 19 Garratts Lane.
Around the year 2000/1 a vehicle collided with the original pump which was subsequently replaced, as the damage to the original pump could not be repaired and an identical head could not be obtained.
A copy of the postcard on the right was sent to the council to show them the correct positioning of the pump in relation to the trough, however the information never got to the workmen, who installed the pump at the left hand end of the trough instead of the middle. Furthermore, in order to ensure that the pump was not stolen, a substantial amount of concrete was used, so it remains in the wrong position today.
At one time, builders working on the other side of the wall found the pipework leading to the well in Little Garratts. The house, the wall and the trough are Grade II listed.
|The exact history of the trough is not known although in the mid to late 19th century, hundreds of troughs were erected by the Metropolitan Drinking Fountain and Cattle Trough Association. These were usually made of granite, however, the Garratt's Lane trough is made of iron...BHRG research continues.
|New Village signs
|Banstead has two brand new signs at the entrance to the village
courtesy of the Banstead Village Residents Association.
The signs have been erected to mark the Golden Jubilee of Queen Elizabeth II and were made by Steven Scobell and his staff at the Oyster Hill Forge in Headley.
|Nork Park Estate Sign
|Ralph Maciejewski of BHRG writes - I suspect that this sign must have been placed near to the entrance of the Nork Park Estate whose entrance gates were almost directly opposite the junction of Garratts Lane and the Brighton Road. The estate was not sold until 1924/5 by which time there were frequent bus services to and from Burgh Heath which also went to Banstead. The clue as to the location of the sign is that it states that it is 15 miles to London. This places its location as being closer to the Nork Park Estate gates rather than Banstead Railway station.
Terry Chapman writes -
Ralph's idea would seem to tally with mine that this was a sign that would have been positioned near an entrance to the estate on the Brighton Road. I suppose it could also have been a sort of mock up railway sign for placement near Banstead station to advertise plots/houses on the new estate and their close proximity to the capital thus trying to appeal to commuters?!
All conjecture I know and unless someone actually remembers seeing this sign in situ then I suppose our opinions will remain as such. You can mail any information to the Webmaster.
As for the sign, I did a deal with the owner and and am happy to say I am now the new keeper! It's in a bit of a state! These enamel signs are restorable but I doubt if I'd ever find time to undertake the necessary repairs.
| Well Terry, if you ever do get around to restoring it, it might look something like this!
|Poultry farming in Banstead
|Noel Phillips recollects his boyhood, growing up on a poultry farm in Croydon Lane.
"In the 1930s, I had various tasks to do every morning before going to school. Outside the five sheds, there were galvanized troughs of water. My job was to take off the covers of these drinking troughs, and in cold weather the ice had to be broken. The little trap-door in each shed had to be opened to let the hens out.
The two breeds kept were Rhode Island Reds and White Leghorns; I remember that the R.I.Rs were lovely, very quiet, good layers and a large bird for eating, and the W.Ls were easily panicked which put them off laying, they were a smaller bird for the table.
Dogs were an ever present menace to the hens; they came through from Fairlawn Grove and could wipe out a whole pen of hens in no time. Whoever spotted them first would shout 'Dogs! Dogs!' and run out to the pen, hoping someone else had heard and would follow up close behind.
Another threat to the hens were the badgers which occasionally got into the hen-houses at night and killed the birds. There were also foxes in the area, but they did not seem to touch the hens."
Bill,our assistant,with the Rhode Island Reds and White Leghorns.
Noel's full account and more about life in Croydon Lane, can be found at www.norkbooks.com .....NB Click on the 'SIDELINES' tab.
This information was sent in by Wendy Henningsson.
|Transport in Banstead
|As early as 1845, a horse drawn coach left the Woolpack Inn for London
every weekday morning, returning in the evening. By 1855, it only ran as far
as Sutton to the railway station.
Banstead began to enjoy better services when the motor bus eventually replaced the horse drawn variety around 1913.
Within a few years of the Great War, Banstead had gained its own bus route, the 113. By 1924 there were six routes going to and from Banstead.
There is much more on this topic in the BHRG publication, The History of Banstead
|This photograph, hand-coloured for the production as a postcard, shows a London Brighton & South Coast Railway (LBSCR) "I class" 4-4-2T (T is for tank) locomotive, introduced in 1907/08 and a standard LBSCR choice for the Royal train to Epsom Downs until 1924.
The caption on the postcard reads "Royal train near Banstead"; the
towering signal on the left is one of the "intermediate signal boxes" (in use only on racing days), which means the train is either crossing the Downs between Belmont and Banstead or approaching Epsom Downs only a few hundred yards after passing through Banstead station. Which of the two locations is hard to tell.
There is more information on Banstead railway station (historic and contemporary) at http://www.wymann.info/EpsomDowns
This information was sent in by Adrian Wymann from Switzerland.
|Scouting in Banstead (1950)
To whet the appetite of your Scouting enthusiast (Colin Sutherland member of BHRG), I attach two images.
One is 3rd Banstead Cubs assembled prior to going off to summer camp in Sussex, taken on the left hand side of the goods entrance at Banstead Station, circa Aug 1949 (I am second from the left, peeping through!). Even at that age we were all in love with the Scout Mistress in the foreground!!
The second photo shows me, now a Scout, on the doorstep of 88, Wilmot Way, going off to the summer camp the following year - 1950!!( I think!!)
Banstead Scouting in the 1950s
Our Hut, Scout Ridge, was beside the footpath opposite Banstead Station. Between us and the deep railway cutting was a rifle range, of all things. Every summer we loaded a massive trek cart with all our tents and gear, and we pushed and pulled it to camp beside a farm in Banstead Woods. That was no mean feat as we had to toil up, and later down, Bolters Lane… a very long and steep hill. We did so with rope and harness
The 3rd Banstead Scouts are marching,
So hitch your packs boys,
Sun or moon or rain in our face
So hitch your packs boys
I suspect our Scoutmaster wrote this to a wartime troop marching tune. At least it kept us in unison and eased the pain, though I never understood “tiddly pom” as we couldn’t stop for a pee break!
The last time I trekked, I didn’t make the return journey. I had been expelled from the troop at camp for selling and smoking cigs I made from dry grass and the hollow stems of elderberry bushes – looking back, I should have got badges for resourcefulness and enterprise! If I had thought about it, I should have snuck out in the evening and taken incriminating photos of the scoutmasters puffing pipes and cigs behind the camp HQ; then blackmailed my way back into the troop!
A couple of good things about the scouts is that I learned to sew on buttons and use scarves as emergency arm slings. Though I suspect that if another war had come, we senior scouts would have been among the first to be conscripted. Ah, those were the days!
Bryan Cook, Ottawa, Canada, September 2021
|This photograph taken in 1906 shows a handpump over a well in
the front garden of Ivy House.
Piped water came to Banstead High Street in about 1878 but many people still preferred to use water out of their wells rather than pay for the new supply.
The full photograph is included in the item for the High Street.
This photograph, was sent in by Wendy Henningsson and appears in Wendy 's book, Home Hills & Beyond. It shows the neighbourhood Victory party for the children living in Croydon Lane.
Many of these children attended
Woodmansterne school as the boundary was half way down the lane.
This postcard was posted on the 24th of December 1910.
The message reads:
received the card, thanking you for same.
Hoping you will have a happy Xmas.
love from Aunty.