četvrtak, 03.11.2011.



Castle Valley Inn

castle valley inn

The Chequers Inn Hanham Mills c1910

The Chequers Inn Hanham Mills c1910

There are two pubs at the bottom of the lane – The Chequers Inn Originally the Chequers Tavern and The Lock and Weir.

The Chequers inn Hanham Mills this property was first build as a private house in 1904 Its stands next to a much older inn the 300 year old Lock & Weir (both pubs still trading today)

Hanham Mill existed prior to 1670 and the original lock opened in 1727, with the river downstream remaining tidal until 1809, This old inn dates back to a time before the River Avon was navigable. At that time the river right up to Bath was tidal, but only navigable on the high tides as far as Hanham Mills. When you talk about navigable on the high tides you mean that boats could proceed along the river for a maximum of 2 hours on each tide and it was not unusual for boats to take a week to travel from Avonmouth to Hanham Mills.

The river was however used quite extensively on a tidal basis and there was a coal wharf at Conham, Hanham in 1643. The improvements to the river were critical to the development of the industry in the Avon valley with stone from Bickley Wood quarries being loaded onto barges just below the weir. Today however the area is a secluded riverside charm.

The historic Old Lock and Weir Inn stands next door, there are a group of about six dwellings perched overlooking the river and weir. These cottages are set against an attractive backdrop of the mature wooded valley which rises steeply to the rear.

The rank of cottages known as Riverside Cottages, Hanham were formerly known as Couch’s Rank and John Couch is described as a quarry owner, barge owner, land owner, landlord, brewer, and church warden at St George’s Church, Hanham Abbots. He must have been one of the large industrialists of the valley and lived in his residence to the rear of Couch’s Rank, (Riverside Cottages).

He must have had a very queer sense of humour because a Latin inscription on the side of one of the cottages, translated, means that the foolish build from sacrifice for the wise people to enjoy life. Presumably he was one of the wise people.

John Couch died in 1864 at the age of 90 and, during a great many years of his life, he kept a record of activities in the Avon Valley. He referred to this as his ‘Ledger’ and indeed it was a ledger combined with a diary in which all his financial transactions were entered together with his comments of the day to day activities in the vicinity.

The Ledger referred to such things as what stone was used for, how it was dressed, to whom it was sold, and by what method it was transported, i.e.. either by barge or horse and cart. However, because of the sheer weight and bulk the barge eventually moved all the stone from the Valley until proper roads were constructed and wheeled traffic took over. Couch records the names of Hanham men who worked in the quarries, and their ages in many instances were quoted.

Despite theories about the expectation of life being not very great in those days it was common to read of men in their eighties still working. For instance March 6th, 1842 — Sunday morning at 10 o’clock William Britton of Hanham Mills killed in his 85th year. John Benjamin was killed in his quarry exactly under the road leading to the batch in Castle Farm Road Thursday February 27th, 1806 age 82 years; his wife died Sunday February 28th, 1858 age 101, and was buried at Bitton. On September 7th, 1826 Farmer Fry died at Hanham Green.

He also records that Sam Perriman stole some mutton from his dairy on March 7th, 1833. 'He carried it home but his wife would not dress it because it was stolen and he threw it at her and there is a stain now against the wall in the rank,' August 13th, 1836 - Boat racing at Hanham Mills.

Two men and a boy drowned. June 10th, 1834 — At about 1.00 am in the morning Mr George Day at Hanham Lock shot Sam Ward in the right shoulder as he was breaking into his house. Ward fell down the steps and broke his right arm. September 23rd, 1840 — Bob Dundhill killed in the gravel pit aged 88 years.

The name "Hanham Abbots" is derived from the Abbots of Keynsham Abbey who between 1330 and 1539 owned the original Hanham Court and much of the surrounding land. Rumour has it that there are tunnels running under the River Avon to connect the two sites. The original Court was also mentioned in the Doomsday records and was visited by King James II in 1686, the last heir to Kingswood Forest.

The present building is considered to be one of the finest mansions in Kingswood and dates from the 16th and 17th century. The tithe barn to the north of Hanham Court dates back to the 15th century, when it would have been used by the monks of Keynsham Abbey to store the "tithes" collected from the occupiers of the land.


There is considerable contrast within the conservation area. To the north and centre the area is characterised by the rolling Hanham Hills and open fields around Hanham Court, whilst to the south, along the river fron

Deva Forress Transylvania (13th Century): Jules VERNE's "Castle in the Carpathians"

Deva Forress Transylvania (13th Century): Jules VERNE's

Deva Fortress. was built in the XIIIth century, on a volcanic hilltop bordering the Mures River valley in central Transylvania. "Castrum Deva" is first mentioned in 1269, in a document of Stefan, king of Hungary: it was part of a defensive system against the scourge of the Tartar invasion which devastated Central Europe in 1241 .Between the 14th and 15th centuries it becomes the princely residence of the local Wallach (Romanian) voyevodes.
In1453, Iancu de Hunedoara, mindful of the rise of Ottoman power takes up residence in the castle.The Turkish iin their expansion towards Central Europe besiege the castle on several occasions, first in 1550, then in 1552 and finally they take it in 1557, during the invasion of Sultan Suleiman the Magnificent. The Sultan gives the castle to Queen Isabella of Hungary and her son John Sigismund.
Deva castle held as prisoners some illustrious leaders of Transylvanian history such as David Ferencz, the founder of the Unitarian church and Moise Szekely, leader of the Transylvanian nobles hostile to the Austrian imperial power.which annexed Transylvania from 1686 until the first world war.

The last siege of Deva castle took place in 1786, the year of the great peasant uprising whose leaders were Romanian from the Transylvanian Alps: they were trying to regain ancient civil freedoms and were demanding to be enfranchised from serfdom.
By the end of the XVIIIth century, the fortress loses it's strategic importance, and is abandoned for some time, until 1817, when emperor Francis I, passing through Deva decides to restore it and makes it a garrison castle. The revival of the castle is short-lived as it comes under threat from the 1848 revolutionaries.At this point, he garrison commander of the castle decides too have the fortress blown up, as a pre-emptive strike, rather than having it surrendered.

What we see here in this set of photographs is all that remains today from this old castle-fortress, still very impressive with a lot of the curtain walls intact.

The Deva volcanic hill which dominates the town below and the whole of the Mures Valley is a natural reserve, known for its micro flora and fauna.
Here one could see the Horned Vipers (Vipera Amonytes). At the northern foot of the hill there are still signs of post-volcanic activity in the thermal springs of bicarbonatic clorosodical mineral waters, whose medical cure was used since the 17th century for salt baths.

Jules Verne and DEVA Castle

The French author visited Transylvania and a series of castles Including that of Hunedoara and Deva) before he wrote his cellebrated novel: "Castle in the Carpathians"

his may be the castle which inspired Jueles Vernes romanesque story: "Castle in the Carpathians", written in 1892, after he visited Transylvania.

The book belongs to the series "Extraordinary Voyages" which Jules Vene completed over a period of forty years:

Close to the village Werst, in Transylvania, there lies the Castle of the Carpathians, which has been completely deserted since the last representative of his masters, Rodolphe de Gortz, left. One day, smokes comes out of the castle and a mysterious voice is heard at the inn "King Mathew". The young forester, Nik Deck and doctor Patak, in spite of their fear, go to the Castle of the Carpathians to investigate, but their mission fails. Short after these events, the count Franz de Telek who is travelling in order to forget about the death on the stage of his fiancee, the singer Stilla, arrives at Wrest. Finding out that the castle of the Carpathians belonged to the one who cursed him when Stilla died, he decides to go there. He is taken prisoner and he thinks he hears the voice of Stilla who has become crazy. He manages to escape and he overhears a discussion, Rodolphe de Gortz and his assistant Orfanik. Rodolphe listens to a recording of Stilla and dies in a great explosion of the castle. The baron was so much in love with Stilla that Orfanik reconstituted Stilla, her voice, her image under the form of a small cinema. There, Stilla died on the stage.

The book mentions the following places: Cluj (Klausenburg), Turda (Thorda), Alba Iulia (Kalsburg), Sebes (Mulbach), Sibiu (Hermanstadt), Deva, Hateg (Hatzeg), Hunedoara (Hunyad), Petrosani (Petroseny), Petrila, Vulcan, Bistrita (Bistritz), Curtea de Arges (Curte d'Argis), Craiova (Krajowa)
The mountains Bihar (Bihor), Retyezat (Retezat), Paring, Parajd are mentioned.
The river Mures is called Maros.

castle valley inn

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03.11.2011. u 20:45 • 0 KomentaraPrint#

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