Newspaper Stories 1910-1919 - Hartley-Kent: The Website for Hartley

Go to content

Newspaper Stories 1910-1919

11 October 1911 - Situation wanted
Eastbourne Gazette
Mr Marchant was living in one of the cottages near Hartley Green.  He would have been one of the people evicted by Small Owners Limited when they bought the estate, because they wanted to sell them.  As he had 5 children he clearly would need a school close by.

Cowman (head) seeks situation, early riser, abstainer, understands oil engine and all machinery, 9½ years in present place, age 42, near school. Apply J Marchant, Fairby Farm, Hartley, Longfield, Kent.
24 October 1911 - The Automatic Landowner - The Mecca of the Small Owner
Evening News
This advertisement, apparently under a pseudonym, relates the sales pitch from Mr Humphrey of Small Owners Limited to a prospective buyer at Hartley.

It was an English day.  A day of autumn compromise.

There was a blunt softness in the air, because across the Kentish downs the wind met no resistance, and was good-tempered accordingly.

The Darracq hummed smoothly along.

We could of course, have trained it straight to Fawkham Station, but we wanted to see what our neighbours were like.

The 1.37 from London Bridge had run us to Dartford in 30 minutes with only one stop.

The 'Bull' - memorable to lovers of Pickwick - was having its front elevation repaired, and was of no interest to us at the moment.  We were faring for Fairby Farm, and could do no more justice to the splendid open road than to skim over it, noting the presence of good breaking up gravel in the soil of the fields and ignoring the romance of a ruined Roman Villa to our right.  Because after all, we were concerned with the present - with its beneficent alloy which we term promise for the future.

A short cut through Fawkham Station over a stile, and we were tramping the good brown loam, over the protesting heads of young turnips (at this time of year!) up a slope crowned with woodland.

Here a hard, dry path revealed itself, carpeted with acorns.

Mr H pointed to a curly monarch on our left with scarse a leaft unmoored from its anchorage yet.

"What would you give for that oak in your garden? £5? £10?"

"Yes, and be glad of it."

The Valley Road

Leaving the wood we stood before long on a shelving slope with a wide view in front of us: undulating land leaning gently to a valley road, with flaming beeches in the middle distance, and away off in a hazy dip, more trees in diminishing masses.

"There is Fawkham Church just below, and a little to this side of it is the site of Fawkham Castle - an ancient keep now belonging to the legends.  Here where we stand would be a fine take off for your aeroplane: plenty of room, no chance of dangerous currents, and open to the west and south. A few acres would serve your turn - "

"The last aeroplane I had was a ____ "

"____ But this land", went on Mr H, "is almost too good for a mere jumping on and off place.  It is meant for a permanent alighting ground, with kisses at the front door, and tennis on a lawn and pottering about with a dibber and pruning hook and watching goldfish in a pond - just here, say."

"Well the friend I told you about has lately been married, and is thinking of coming to the country in order to be free from noise and the least suggestion of business.  This place is not far from the City, as the train flies it is as near as Hampstead or Brixton.  I know you told me so, but I came along to see for myself. What my friend wants is my report of the best 2 acre plot you have got, and it's your turn now."

We located this plot, but I shall not indicate it.  I will just mention that it included a bit of woodland, whether for appearance in the front or quiet enjoyment in the rear pleasance, I decline to say - and a delightful uninterrupted view.

I took out a chart.  Some people might call it a meaningless scrawl, but if you had drawn it yourself you also would refer to it as a chart.  Then I came to grips with Mr H.

"These are my friend's instructions.  First, as to the a house, he doesn't want anything reminiscent of the City; it must be, er, redolent of the soil __"

"In other words, a cottage.  We will make him a plan, free, to any style he desires__"
"With a billiard room?"
"And a motor shed?"
"And, let me see, a poultry run?"
"Yes.  We have an expert - that rare thing, a scientific farm manager - who will both provide the poultry and given him three weeks' lessons in the art of keeping them for both

Pleasure and Profit

"And the eggs, I suppose there will be eggs?"

"If he will put himself in the hands of our manager and is willing to take poultry seriously, he could pay for his two acres in two years, out of the poultry and what he takes out of the land."

"Oh! Will he have to work?"

"No need to.  But 10 to 1 this Fairby air will seduce him into doing it. And you can't worry about business while you are gardening."

"Most true.  Personally, I confine myself to looking on at the gardening, and I know I don't think about business then.  I can only think what a silly way the other chap has of doing things."

"Your friend can choose just how he will have his land laid out.  A well known firm of designers will make him a plan free, flowers here, for instance, vegetables there, fruit trees over yonder, or he can keep the garden for flowers and vegetables and take a portion of an orchard.  One of hte orchards we have is full of 5 year old trees and the price of the land would include the trees in their present perfection."

"Can you advise as to suitable furniture?"

"We will not only advise but suppy, if your friend wishes - and at practically wholesale prices - the kind of furniture that seems to me eminently countrylike and homely.  The sort of thing you pay dear for, as a rule, simply because it is both artistic and appropriate, but of course you friend will choose what pleases him."

"In a sentence - your friend simply tells us what he wants and we supply it.  Land, house, plotted garden, poultry, furniture; and if he buys now the best can easily be ready for him by the summer - the ideal time, of course, for a country life."

"And for health.  By the way, the water ____"
"Is company's water."
"The roads___"
"Council road frontage wherever he selects."
"Access to town easy enough"
"There is a splendid service of trains.  You can get to the city in 37 or 50 minutes, according to your choice of train, both morning and evening. There are even theatre trains from Victoria, Holborn Viaduct and St Paul's at midnight, reaching Fawkham about 12.50."

"Tell him that, in order to make the first year at his cottage more memorable, we will present your friend with a season ticket to town which will hold good to the end of June 1913.  We do not offer free trips to prospective buyers; this free season ticket is only for householders on the residential section of Fairby Farm.  We make the offer as one menas of settling the land quickly."

"It is possible he ay come down and check my report."

"He can do it this way; occupy all the morning with business, take the 1.37 from London Bridge to Dartford, and motor from there.  He could have an hour on the estate, 315 acres you know, get the 4.15 from Fawkham, and be back in the office to wind up business.  Or he could devote midday to the matter; take the 11.20 and return by the 2.46."

"How do your plots work out in shape?"

"We give, to an acre plot, at least 100 feet of frontage and about 400 feet of depth, for £120 to £130 the acre.  If you work out the latest offer I know of anywhere else you find the 20 feet frontage and 100 feet depth ome ou at £2,500 per acre - and more than that.  Our local rates, again, are very low, about 4 shillings in the pound."

"And suppose my friend, as we rather think he has, has got rid of most of his immediately available cash over his recent celebration___"

" We are providing for any such case.  We will take 25 per cent down, and the rest can be paid next year or in 5 years or in 12 years, with a modest 5 per cent on the balances.  As you need hardly be told, all the money he pays is so much to the good, nor lost forever as in the case of rent; in fact, if he chose to avail himself of the 12 year period he would be paying less than rent and making hte place his own all the time.

Aladdin's Lamp

Really, seeing how easy it all is, he could hardly do better if he had Aladdin's Lamp!  We are the slaves of the ring and lamp.  Utter your wish - tell us what you want  - and you become automatically a landlord!"

This majestic wind up dazed me for a time, and we next drove slowly round the farm, Mr H pointing out everything with a modest, no not exactly a modest pride; merely the statistical kind of pride of the man who knows that what he is talking about is a good thing without the possibility of question.

We now took in the features of the land appropriated for small holdings - land into which, I was told, thousands of pounds have been put in fertilisers.  Certainly the look of it was decidedly promising; rich, dark land with a sufficiency of gravel for aeration.  As a sample of fertility, Mr Hu pointed to a field of standing brussels sprouts.  There was £600 worth in view, he said.

I saw a dozen or so of labourers' cottages on the estate; Fairby Grange, which did not pass with the land; orchards mature, and one lovely stretch of 5 year old beauties, trees so regular that one might expect see them labelled 'With care! From Noah's Ark Limited.'  This particular orchard is to go at £100 the acre.

The farm buildings, apart from the cottaage, cost some £2,000 and it is here that lessons will be given in dairying and agriculture.

"We will take the small holder's milk and separate it and make the cream into butter for him, if he likes.  If his produce, in fruit, vegetables, poultry, and the rest, is good enough, we will introduce him to a connection with hotels or institutions who must have the best, and with our methods and organisation we can always supply the best.

We ar ein the midst of

A Specially Fertile District

as you can see for yourself.  As for poultry, Orpington is not for all, to give an example.  Let the smallholder send us his produce; our manager will see to the rest.  Freedom from trouble again, you see our very object, one of the leading features which make our proposition different from any other.  That is the idea of the season ticket and of making you a home complete."

"And the price for this agricultural land?"

"From £32 per acre, and you can buy from 1 to 50, every acre with a hard road frontage.  We have 218 acres set apart for the smallholders; the residential sites account for 97.  That is a council school we are passing.  Grammar schools you can get at Rochester or Chatham, not far."

"Grammar schools remind me of golf.  I don't know why."

"There are links at Gravesend, 4 miles away.  At Rochester is the Royal Medway Club."

"Golf suggests church - naturally."

"There are three within a few minutes: Longfield, Hartley and Fawkham."

"Coming once more to the agricultural land, I notice that most of it is turned."

"Yes, cultivated right up to the date we transfer it".

"You have certainly thought the matter out very thoroughly.  I see no flaw in the proposition."

"My dear sir, we knew from the first what we were looking for.  It is the bare fact that we examined or considered hundreds of estates before we pitched upon Fairby Farm."

"Well you have partly verified our claim that your friend can do the business in half a day.  We shall catch the 4.15 badk to Town (we could have taken an earlier train at Fawkham), and a short talk in our office in our office over cottage plans, garden plotting and selection of furniture would relieve him of all trouble.  He would simply await our note to the effect that his cottage was ready, furnished and aired, the garden laid out, and the hens clucking out there are eggs, fresh eggs, for tomorrow's breakfast.  Let him ask for me at the offices of Small Owners Limited, in Temple Chambers, Temple Avenue, London EC.  I shall be pleased to see him, whether he is quite ready to proceed or not.  Let him ring up 13183 Central or he can call upon our surveyors, Messrs Leopold Farmer and Sons, 46 Gresham Street, EC."

I am asking y friend accordingly to meet Mr H.  I believe he will thank me next summer at 'Woodland Cottage' Fairby Farm.

John Dalma

9 October 1912 - Inquest on George Monk of Brickend (10)
South East Gazette
Hartley Hole is now called Brickend, Church Road.

Swallowed Fruit Stones - Schoolboy's death at Longfield - Jury and the Doctor

At the Gravesend Town Hall, on Thursday, the Borough Coroner held an inquiry into the death of George Arthur Wiliam Monk, aged 10, who died on Tuesday.  Mr W Lowe was chosen foreman of the jury.

Emma Monk, of Hartley Hole, Longfield, identified the body as that of her son, who was taken ill on Friday evening.  He had been to school all that day and then complained of pain.  He slpt all day Saturday and the following night.  On Monday she sent for Dr Lace, of Sutton at Hone, who came on Tuesday, having meanwhie sent medicine and a powder.  When he came he ordered the child's removal to the hospital.  The boy had been eating damsons and blackberried before being taken ill.  Witness expressed the opinion that had the doctor attended when summoned he might have been able to save the child's life.  The doctor lived 5 miles away.

Dr Herbert Temple Williams, house surgeon at the hospital, said the child was brought in early on Tuesday afternoon, in a very collapsed condition, and died about 6 o'clock.  He was too ill on arrival for anything to be done.  Witness made a post mortem and found obstruction of the intestines.  There were some damson stones in the intestines, and the only remedy was an operation.  Had deceased been operated upon on Monday, he might have been saved.

George Monk, a bricklayer's labourer, father of deceased, said when he went for the doctor he explained his son's condition.  Dr Lace told him he had several cases of persons eating sour fruit to attend, and he would come in the morning.

"He has got a motor car and it would not have taken him ten minutes", witness added.

The Coroner, addressing the jury, said it might be difficult for them to understand the action of Dr Lace, but had a proper explanation of the case been given him, he would no doubt have endeavoured to attend the child.  As it was, directly he saw the boy, he appreciated the seriousness of the case.

Eventually, after a long deliberation, the jury returned a verdict in accordance with the medical testimony, and added a rider to the effect that had Dr Lace been in a position to attend immediately he was notified, the child's life would probably have been saved.

17 March 1913 - Sale of Hartley Manor

Sir William Chance has disposed of his estate of 600 acres near Fawkham, Kent, known as Hartley Manor.  It is intersected by the South Eastern and Chatham main line.  The land, scheduled in the Domesday Book as belonging to Odo, Bishop of Baieux, was originally called Erclei or Arclei.  The lordship of the manor and the advowson to the living of Hartley are included in the sale, which was carried out by Messrs Nicholas.

13 May 1913 - Daisy crop at Hartley
Pall Mall Gazette

A Million Daisies - Specially grown in England for Today's Decorations

A million daisies (Marguerites) have been gathered from the small owners' farms and sent to all parts of the country for Empire buttonholes and decorations today.  The farms on which they were grown are at Great Leighs in Essex, the Histon District of Cambridgeshire and Fairby at Fawkham in Kent.

This is the first year that hardy English daisies have been grown for Empire Day.  It is a crop that pays the small holder very handsomely, as much as £83 having been made by one grower from an acre.  Last year the daisies grown for the market made more per box than sweet peas  Now that they have become the flower of Empire - the white petals representing the Dominions and the golden centre the Mother country - their cultivation is expected to become increasingly profitable.

For purpose of decoration few flowers, if tastefully arranged, are more graceful.  The novice is sometimes apt to crowd too many in a vase.  Five or six blooms, as a rule, prove far more effective than a crowded bunch.

13 July 1913 - Flowers from Fairby
Belfast Weekly News

Honour for Small Owners
The bouquets and floral decorations of the Royal saloon in connection with the visit of HRH the Princess Henry of Battenberg to Herne Bay to open the King Edward VII Memorial Hall were supplied by Fairbys Limited of 17 Buckingham Palace Road, the distributing department of the Fairby Small Owners' Colony of Fawkham, Kent.

13 August 1913 - Cottages for Sale
London Evening News
When Smallowners Limited bought Fairby, this was bad news for the people who lived in the existing properties on the estate, because Small Owners did not want to be landlords, so they would have been evicted so the cottages could be put up for sale.

Ideal Weekend Cottages - Kent, 23 mies from London
In delightful country surroundings, 15 old fashioned cottages for sale at prices varying from £100 to £225.  Full particulars and photographs on application to: The Cottages Department, Small Owners Limited, 34 Norfolk Street, Strand WC.

19 March 1914 - The Fairby Village Farm
Ormskirk Advertiser
A very detailed description of the Small Owners Limited Scheme at Hartley, by director George Harold Humphrey.

Successful Small Holdings Experiment
An article which must be of great interest at the present time, when Small Holdings and their creation are so much in the public mind, appears in the March Official Circular of the Central Land Association, from the pen of Mr G H Humphrey.  The scheme, which is here outlined, and with which Mr Humphrey is so clearly associated, is claimed to be the most successful experiment of the kind in this country.

At the outset the writer of the article says it is gernerally admitted that agriculture should employ a larger number of the population of this country than it does at present.  Compared with other European countries, the area under agriculture in the United Kingdom employs barely one third of the number which aa similar area employs in other countries.  It was after investigation of small holdings and small holding societies in this country that the organisation under which Fairby Farm is developing was formed in 1911, Mr Humphreys continues:

"We found that small holdings suffered from lack of capital, and the failure and limited success which are generally associated with the movement is due to this fact.  I came to this conclusion that unless it could be proved that small holdings were sufficiently commercially successful to attract capital just in the same way as in any other industrial enterprise, all the propaganda work which was being done by the societies was to no purpose.

Investigating the price of land, it was found that under the Small Holdings Act 1907, many small holders were paying 50 shillings and some even more per acre, or a rent in many cases 50, 60 and 100 per cent more than the rental farmer had paid for the land as a large farm  But enquiry from some of the large estate agents showed that there were many estates in this country which were as suitable for small holdings as any which were being let for 50 shillings per acre, to be purchased at from £18 to £30 per acre.  Land which would be bought for £20 per acre was as good as that which was being let under the 1907 Act at 40 shillings and 50 shillings per acre.  Here then was an opportunity to prepare a scheme of land settlemen which should prove a sound commercial investment.

A scheme of small holding purchase by instalments was prepared and put into operation with such success that a small farm was secured in Essex, divided up into small holding and rapidly disposed of.  This land was sold to th esmall holders at £27 per acre.  As evidence of its suitability for the purpose, one of the small holders told me at the end of the second year that he had made a return of £50 per acre, and that he expected in a year or two's time to make £70 and £80 per acre nett profit from his holding.  I should mention here that I believe him to abe an exceptionally capable small holder, and therefore his figures are above the average return which may be expected.  But his fact also emphasises that a small holder who knew his beuness chose land which could be sold at £27 per acre, and has done extraordinarily well on it. He has told me that he considers this land equal to much of the land which is offered in Cambridgeshire at £80 and £100 per acre, where the demand for small holdings alone has sent up the price of land.  As had been expected, the success of this samll farm had the result of securing outside coercial capital, enabling the organisation, which had been started by my brother and myself, to purchase Fairby, a property sufficiently large for the development of those ideas of organisation and administration which we deemed essential in any large scheme for the creation of small holdings.

Fairby Farm in 1911 was 315 acres in extent and is situated 23 miles from London on the main Chatham line.  From the agricultural point of view it is a fair type of many farms to be found in this country.  It had been cultivated as an average Kentish farm.  50 acres were under fruit, about 40 acres under market garden crops, 60 acres under pasture, and the rest was farmed with straw and root crops.  The fruit plantations were 5 and 6 years old, and gave us admirable data as to what an established small fruit holding woudl produce.  The farm generally was suitable for almost every form of intensive agriculture.  This area was offered for sale in small holdings in the autum of 1911, and was very rapidly taken up. There are altogether some 60 small holders on the farm, and most of them go in for a mixed semi-intensive form of cultuvation.  With regard to the selection of applicants, as a commercial concern it is not possible to influence these very directly, but our policy has been to encourage rather the better type of agriculturalist and the small businessman than the ordinary agricultural labourer.  Although agricultural experience is of course invaluable in farming, it is not so necessary, and has proved indeed sometimes a hindrance when a man takes up a small holding.

The distinction between small holdings and farming has not been sufficiently defined in the past.  A small holder is not a little farmer, and to be successful has very little indeed to learn from a large farmer.  Niether have we found that the men who win the prizes at the local flower shows and grow the largest cabbages and the finest rhubarb become the best small holders. The important thing fo a small holder to learn is to grow what he can sell profitably, and in this way many men who have had something of a ound business trianing, bu tno agricultural experience, become excellent small holders.  A man who came to use 2 years ago with no experience and took up a 5 acre holding (??? fruit)  last year made £180 nett profit after paying all expenses.  I am persuaded in my own mind that there should be no difficulty in creating hundreds of similarly successful small holders in other parts of the United Kingdom.

In dividing Fairby a basis of ownership was decided upon for two reasons. Firstly that ownership would be more attractive to the commerial poeple we desired to interest, as it would offer a better return on their capital.  Secondly, we found that ownership had much greater attraction for the best small holders than any system of tenancy.  With the Fairby system which is now fairly well know as the 'depot system' of agricultural organisation, we carry on the farm staff, buildings, horses, implements, just as they were conducted under the later owner and farmer.  Most small holders in other districts have a stable, a horse or pony, a cart, a plough [.......................................................................] labour is used to cultvate the farm and to keep all the unsold land in at least as high a state of cultiviation as it was when we took it over.  Similarly, the requirements of small holders wiht regard to seeds, implements, netting, fencing etc are met through the Buying Department. The farm staff is in charge of a foreman who is chosen for his experience of market garden and fruit crops.  In additiona to the use of the buildings as a Depot, ertain portions of them have been adapted to provide the other departments which the scheme includes.  In the Machinery Building there is an efficient oil engine and shafting runs to the chaff cutting machine, root pulpers and oat crushers, also to the Joinery Shop where the window frames and other joinery used in the Building Department for the erection of houses and temporary buildings are made.  Teh power is also used in connection with some of the machinery in the Jam Factory.  With the Jam Factory on the spot the small holder at Fairby is sure of anett market price on his holding which is nearly always better than the nett price that he could expect on an exceptionally good day at Covent Garden.  In connection with the Depot there is also a 5 acre market garden, including a long glass and mushroom house whih is being developed to provide experimental data for the small holders.  It is hoped during the coming year to instal several similar glass houses on the small holdings.  Many small holders would go in for glass were it not for the captial involved.  It is proposed at Fariby to build  glass  houses for the small holders and sell them to them on a deferred payment system over a term of years.

Another development which is also under consideration is a plant for the dessication of vegetables.  This it is considered will deal wiht the surplus of vegetables just the same as the Jam Factory deals with the surplus of fruit.  We have always considered that a small holding colony should not only produce successful small holders, but should promote the prosperity of the district in which they are situated.  That this has been the case at Fairby is very evident.  Under the old system of farming, Fairby in 1910 employed only about 7 men per 100 acres.  Under present conditions the estate is employing 25 men for each 100 acres. The local tradesmen testify to the increased prosperity which they have experienced as a result of the settlement at Fairby.  Even the Railway Company last year considered it advisable to open a new stateion in the district.  With these facts in mind we welcomed the opportunity which arose last year to purchase an adjoining 600 acres, being the Hartley Manor Estate, which in its turn is developing as satisfactorily as Fairby has done.

In conclusion, I consider that we have abundantly proved at Fairby the economic soundness of small holdings and the suitability of the Englishman for intensive cultivation.  Further we have showen that the United Kingdom can offer better opportunities than any of our Colonies to any man who wishes for an agricultural life and is willing to work hard.  Several of the returned Colonials who have settled down at Fairby have made similar remarks to me.  One in particular who approached us 2 years ago would not believe, afeter 22 years' experience in Canada that a living could be made off less than 100 acres of land.  After being assured that 5 acres under our system was sufficient to provide a good income, and with the additional proisse that if he could not make a living from it, we would take his house and 5 acres of land back at the price he paid for them, he decided to settle at Fairby.  Last year he tells me he made £164 nett profit off his 5 acres.  Comment is needless.  What has been done at Fairby can be done in many other parts of the country.  Fairby is the first serious attempt to bring sound finane, business organisation and suitable applicants together, for the extension of small holdings in this country.

With regard to the question of cooperation, I feel sure that ultimately Fairby will become entire cooperative.  Our system of organisation takes the place of cooperation for the time, as the capital it represents provides the implements and organisation for combined working  When, however the small holders have put their individual undertakings on a osund comercial basis, they will know aht they require and jut how far cooperative management will benefit them."

20 June 1914 - Woodlands, Ash Road for sale
Kent Messenger
To those desirous of residing in a beautiful part of the county, with a pleasurable and remunerative occupation.


1½ miles from Fawkham Station, 22 miles from London.  

A perfectly unique freehold property, comprising picturesque small residence, approached by carriage drive with pretty gardens and lawns in front, and containing 3 reception rooms, kitchen, scullery, 3 bedrooms, bathroom (h & c) etc.  Company's water.  Modern drainage

4 acres thriving fruit plantation.  A part of the property has been highly cultivated for market gardening, and the remainder includes paddock and poultry runs, the whole extending to about 14 acres.

Denyer and Collisn are instructed to sell the above by auction, at the Mart, Tokenhouse Yard, EC, on Friday June 26th at 2 o'clock precisely....

27 June 1914 - Obituary of William Packman
Kent Messenger

The Packmans originally lived for many years at Hartley Hill Cottage, and William was still employed at New House Farm.

Ash - Sudden death
William Packman, aged 74, who had been employed for a number of years by Mr Joseph Thornton, New House Farm, Hartley, died suddenly on Saturday morning last.  He was heard as usual about the house at 6.30am by his sister, Mrs Russell of Russell Villas, Ash, with whom he lived.  Shortly afterwards she heard him calling to come downstairs, and on arriving found him lying prostrate on the kitchen floor.  Dr Smith was sent for, and on arriving shortly afterwards found that life was extinct.  The cause of death was attributed to heart trouble, and the coroner decided that an inquest was not necessary.

10 October 1914 - Sale at Hartley Poultry Farm
Kent Messenger
Hartley Poultry Farm was at Fairhaven, Manor Drive.

Hartley Poultry Farm, Hartley Kent - within easy distance of Fawkham Station.

Mr Philip Champion has received instructions to sell by auction, upon the premises as above, on Friday 23rd October 1914 at 1 o'clock pm, the live and dath poultry farm stock, comprising:

500 head of pure bred fowls (all Cook's strain direct), including White and Buff Orpingtons, White Wyandottes, Rhode Island Reds, Red and Speckled Sussex, White and Salmon Faveroiles and Indian Game,

60 portable houses and sheds.  Poultryman's living house, portable stable, 5 incubators, 10 foster mothers, fatting coops, a large quantity of wire netting and stakes.

2 stacks of hay.
Mare, Van and Harness

The very complete and extensive equipment of a new and up-to-date appliances and utensils and a few lots of household furniture,..

2 January 1915 - Progress at Fairby
Kent Messenger

Village Industry
The new Hartley Agricultural Colony is making satisfactory progress.   The Rural Development Company has taken over the business of Small Owners Limited, on the Fairby Farm and Hartley Manor Estates, is providing additional facilities for the promotion of local industries, including poultry farming, pig-keeping and a bacon factory.  The colony has, of course, been somewhat affected by the war, 14 of the residents and the company's staff have joined the colours, but there is a good prospoect of business being greatly developed by the increased demand for produce of all kinds.  The projected Fairby Fair had to be indefinitely postponed, but a poultry conference is to be held on January 4th.  The social side is not by any means overlooked, as the Cooperative Society and the Ladies' League and the Social Club are all flourishing.  In spite of the war, several newcomers have taken up residence during the last few months.

2 April 1915 - Soldiers' Joke with an amusing sequel
Western Gazette

According to a local journal, a farm labourer at Hartley, Kent, captured a military balloon, but the only reward he received for his bravery has been ridicule.

Whilst at work he heard voices overhead, enquiring the position of Hartley.  At once, imagining that enemies were upon him, he asked "Are you Germans?"

"Yes" replied the occupants of the balloon in chorus, whereupn Hodge at once seized the rope hanging from the aircraft and secured it round a telephone post, and made off for help.

The occupants however, were British soldiers, who were forced to deflate the balloon and return by rail!

11 June 1915 - Walkers, Don't bother visiting Hartley!
Evening News
The article includes a map and pictures of Southfleet Church, Cottages and the Wheatsheaf Pub

The Footpath Way - No. 14 The Land of Shrimps, Apples and Hops
On leaving Gravesend Central Station you will probably wish to spend some time in exploring the picturesque purlieus of the town.  The narrow High Street and the riverside district are full of character.

You will pick up the walk by returning to the ain road that runs parallel wiht the river, then either walk or (better still) take the tram ot Northfleet Church.  Getting off here, go through the churchyard left of the building and, turning left when out of it, another path will be found that continues to Springhead.  At first it is not inviting.  But it soon improves, and runs alongside the stream running down from Springhead.

When you come at last to a road there is an open path opposite which should be noted as continuing the walk.

But you may care first to turn a few yards to the right and get some light refreshments at the house beyond, which is famous for its fare and is much patronised by the Gravesend folk.  It has pleasant gardens, watercress beds, a monkey house, an ancient giant of a willow tree, and bubbling waters of the spring that gives the place its name; in all sufficient attractions to make it almost worthy to adopt the phrase of Rosherville Gardens as its motto: The Place to spend a happy day.

But suppose we get on with the walk.  Take the aforesaid path and continue along it to a crossroad.  The follow the Betsham road rightwards (sign-posted) to that hamlet at another crossroads.

Here turn to the left and go up the Longfield and Fawkham Road, through hopfields and apple orchards, till you reach the next crossroad at the oddly picturesque corner by the thatched public house, the Old Wheatsheaf.

A land of small holdings

Turn to the right past this a little way to a stile on the left, and over it, take the left path forward and down to the road in the valley below.  If you like to follow the indicated route on the map from this point to Fawkham church, which I took, it will be easy to pick up.

The path is signposted from the lane ahead.  But I do not advise it.  There is little of interest at Fawkham Church, and the land between it and Hartley, to the Black Lion, is cut up in small holdings.  However flourishing these may be they do not add to the beauty of the landscape.

It is better to turn along the road leftwards, instead of going on to Fawkham church (The SE and C Railway station lies to the right as you pass the Railway Hotel).

Note when just beyond the second right turning, a signposted footpath on the left ('To Southfleet').  This rises sharply up an unfenced, stiffish hillside, almost opposite Longfield Church in the valley.

A good view point

This path is to be followed.  It commands fine views when the crest of the hill is reached, over rolling fields, orchards, and in the distance the river.

It ends at length in a rough cart track.  By turning left along this and keeping forward on reaching a road with a better surface, you will come into the very pleasing and pretty village of Southfleet.

A fine grey old church, many gabled ancient cottage, and wide branched trees combine to make Southfleet one of the prettiest villages in Kent.

With a look at the map you will be able to see how to reach Southfleet Station, or to return via Springhead by footpath from the churchyard here.

But my route was to leave the church and follow the land that dips downhill past the Ship Inn and then rises to another lane that opposes it.  By turning right here for a little way you will pick up a path on the left (an obvious continuation of another on the right) that leads into Perry Street, a hamlet of Gravesend.

Then, keeping forward by the continuing rough road, and following the same direction when in town, you will come to the tramlines, and can so rach the Central Station.  For the curious in gastronomy, Gravesend natives (freshly boiled shrimps) are to be had in the little shops in West Street.

And, mind you, they are not to be despised eaten with thin brown bread and butter and lashings of hot tea at the end of a 12 to 14 mile walk, such as this, through Kentish orchards, hop gardens and cornfields.

Outward: Victoria, Charing Cross etc to Gravesend, 3 shillings return.  Or (a cheaper route) from Fenchurch Street, 1s 9d return, including ferry, whichever is convenient.

13 August 1915 - Put that light out
Kent Messenger

The Lighting Order - More Summonses
Several summonses under the Lighting Order were heard at Dartford on Friday.

Percy Dennis of Hartley, was summonsed at the person in charge for not keeping the lights at the Hartley Social Club's premises effectively shaded on July 18th.  Harold Bare and Albert Humphreys, two other officials of the club, were also summoned in respect of the same offence.

Police Sergeant Binfield said he saw a bright light coming from a billiard room occupied by the club.  He went to the room and found Dennis and Bare playing billiards.  There were 6 acetalyne lights over the table, and the windows were only shaded by linen blinds  Bare told witness when the Order came in he had the blinds put up, and if they were not sufficient he would have some of darker material supplied at once.  Witness replied that he would be reported.

Bare said he had no intimation from the police that the curtains were not sufficient, though they had been in use for a long time. 30 or 40 people used the room.

Humphreys, the owner, said until the officer called he had not the slightest idea the lights were not sufficiently obscured.  He immediately ordered the club to be closed, and this was done.  Had they been notified they would have covered the windows at once.

The case was dismissed.

Annie Sales, Minchin Cottage, Hartley Road, was charged with a similar offence on the 19th and pleaded guilty.

Police Sergeant Binfield said he saw a light pass the front door and go upstairs lighting 4 windows.  He told defendant there was too much light, and she put the light out in all but one window, and that was darkened by a cloth.

Mrs Sales said she had to have a light for the baby.

Defendant's husband, it was stated, had enlisted, and she and a sister occupied the house.

Fined 5 shillings.

3 November 1915 - The Gables for Sale
The Bystander
The advert contains a good picture of the house.  The Gables is on Ash Road at the top of Hoselands Hill.

The Gables, Hartley, near Longfield, Kent.  For Sale £1,100 Freehold.
This charming little property occupies a very attractive situation on high ground, overlooking one of the prettiest rural districts.  Only ¼ mile from station, village and church; 3 reception and 5 bedrooms, bathroom (h & c), and usual offices; motor garage and other out-buildings; tennis lawn and spinney; with well stocked gardens of about 1 acre.  For further particulars address 'Owner' as above.

1916 Cases before the Dartford Rural Tribunal
When conscription was introduced, so was a system of appeals against conscription.  This might be on the grounds of hardship, occupation or conscientious grounds, for example.  The tribunal was reluctant to grant exemptions on the grounds of conscience.

28 July 1916 Dartford Chronicle
John Rich, a bricklayer, of Hartley, as a socialist objected to any form of military or naval discipline.  He said society was wrong.  They could not live by killing.  He did not think the cause was just or right for which England was at war.  His son, who was serving, did as he wished.  He was hostile to every party that was not a socialist party.  He had a right to his own opinion

The Rev S Morgan said no man had a right in his opinion if that opinion was wrong.

Applicant said it was impossible to be a Christian and a Socialist was well.

The Rev S Morgan "Oh, is that so, then I am done.  There is nothing to prevent a Socialist being a Christian.

Applicant said a socialist must be an athiest.  He was a creature of circumstance.   There was no such thing as having a will of his own.

The Military Representative said what was the serious hardship that applicant complained of.

Applicant explained that his son had joined the army voluntarily, and applicant had to pay his son's clubs in case of his returning wounded  He had not received a farthing for the whole time he enlisted.

Granted exemption so long as on munitions work.

1 April 1916 Kent Messenger
Henry Thomas Bentley of Hartley Green, Longfield, a market gardener, employed by the Rural Development Company, was refused exemption.  The same company appealed (with the same result) for H Brock of Hothfield, Hartley, who, it was stated, would not be of military age till July.

15 April 1916 Kent Messenger
The application of Percy W Dennis, of Elinville (Elm Villa), Hartley, Longfield, fruit grower and market gardener, was not granted.

29 April 1916 Kent Messenger
H Williams of Elin Cottage, Hartley, who had been before the Medical Board, was passed for home service.

14 July 1916 Dartford Chronicle
The Fairby Construction company appealed for G V Lynds, painter, and J H Skinner, smith, both of Hartley... H Munday, foreman, Hartley ... A Munday, Longfield, carpenter .... E C Wood, manager, Longfield .... L J Dumnall, joiner, Longfield; A E Dumnall, joiner, Longfield.... The firm's representative said they had a great number of contracts.... All the men granted conditional exemption, a report of the whereabouts of their employment to be issued to the Military Representative at intervals.

28 July 1916 Dartford Chronicle
Ernest Locke, Orchard Cottage, Hartley, clerk, on personal grounds, [temporary exemption] 1 month.

28 October 1916 Kent Messenger
Thomas C Stuart, 32, Market Gardener, Hartley - certificate [of exemption] withdrawn.
Percy Shipp, carman, Longfield - refused.
E R Hoadley, 18, horseman of Middleton Farm, Longfield - [appeal] dismissed.
Benjamin W Pankhurst 27, White Hill, Longfield, employed at Curtis & Harvey's Chemical Works - Conditional Exemption

4 November 1916 Kent Messenger
Frank C Hammond, 30, married, manager to the Fairby Construction Company, Hartley - appeal dismissed by West Kent Tribunal.

17 November 1916 Dartford Chronicle
The appeal of the two brothers TW and F Crouch, of Longfield, was reheard.  One of the brothers had been adjourned to see whether on medical examination, the other was fitter to serve, and it now appeared that both were in the same class.  The chairman "That means the army must have the younger" - "Can we have time to get up the potatoes?".  The older brother was granted conditional exemption, and the younger was given until January 1st.

17 November 1916 Dartford Chronicle
George Bassano, the Croft, Hartley, poultry farmer, previously granted temporary exemption, was an appeal by the military for review and withdrawal of his certificate.  He said the output of eggs per week was 3,000 and he had 120 fruit trees.  He was ordered to go before a medical board.
27 May 1916 - Army fly posting
Kent Messenger

A hint to Churchwardens
The Churchwardens of Longfield on the Saturday after Easter Day affixed their annual statement of accounts to the  church notice board, but on Sunday a large Army poster was pasted in the centre of the board, nearly covering the balance sheet, and also totally covering a notice just affixed by the clerk of the Parish Council.  Complaint was made to the Secretary of State for War, and inquiry having been made through the officer of the Eastern Command and the recruiting officers at Maidstone and Gravesend, and explanation was given of the cause of the incident.  Other Churchwardens may find similar difficulty in providing for all the notices for which room must be found on church boards at the present time, and be glad to know that their rights may be respected if due representations be made.

7 June 1916 - Local Postal Service Reorganisation
Kent Messenger

Postal Services
On and after Monday next there will be considerable alterations in the despatch of letters from Longfield.  The present outward mails will be abandoned, and the despatches on weekdays will be at 2.50 pm and 5.20 pm, and on Sundays at 9.40 am.  The times of collection at the outlyiing letter boxes will be altered to correspond.  The mails will all be sent to Dartford, and not to London direct.

Price in 1914
Tea (1½lb)
3s 6d
2s 6d
Butter (2lb)
3s 2d
2s 4d
Bottled or tinned fruit (2 var)
2s 6d
1s 10d
Cocoa (1 tin)
1s 0d
0s 9½d
Cheese (1½lb)
1s 8½d
1s 4½d
Soap (7lb)
4s 2d
3s 8d
Soda (7lb)*
0s 6½d
0s 3d
Bundle wood (per doz bundles)*
1s 0d
0s 5-6d
Stove Polish (per tin)
0s 4d
0s 2½d
1s 2d
0s 9d
* There is considerable difficulty at times in obtaining supplies of such things as soda and bundle wood.
26 May 1916 - Price Increases since 1914
Dartford Chronicle

Saving of Food - Failure of Voluntary Restrictions
There is on the part of the purchasing public as a whole no evidence of a marked reduction of consumption of food.

An understanding of the difficulty of giving the family what it is 'used to', without an inordinate increase of expenditure, a housewife has quoted the following figures for present purchases as compared with May 1914.

Compulsory restriction of the quantities purchasable might not, one suggests, be attractive in itself, or even popular, but it would at least help the housewife to make ends meet.

27 May 1916 - Fundraising for Gravesend VAD Hospital
Kent Messenger

VAD Hospital Yacht Club
The Commandant wishes to thank most sincerely the following for their generous gifts and subscriptions to the above hospital.  The Countess of Darnley, Mrs Dann, Mr Branon, Mrs Paterson, Mrs Smith, Mrs Tolhurst, Phyllis and Jack Wilson, Mrs J Davis, Standard V (Wrotham Road Girls' School), and staff of Henley's Engineering Works - pound day.  The Commandant again thanks all who contributed pound day offerings.  The appeal from the Hospital met with a most generous response in Gravesend and District.  To all in Hartley and Longfield special thanks are due for their enthusiasm and generosity.  The following is a list of the gifts received:- Tea 53 lb; rice 184¼ lb; sugars 258 lb; jam 84 lb; marmalade 26 lb; tapioca 44¾ lb; cornflower 14 lb; coffee 8¼ lb; cocoa 12¼ lb; Quaker Oats 38½ lb; bread 5½ lb; other groceries 233¾ lb; fruit and vegetables 179½ lb; household stores (soaps, soda etc) 136 lb; eggs 163.  Subrciptions in money £6 10s 2½d.

28 October 1916 - Collection for Soldiers' Comforts
Kent Messenger
This is principally of interest because it shows the number of houses in Hartley had rapidly increased in a short time, following the acquisition of most of Hartley by Small Owners Limited.  At the 1911 Census there were 61 houses, but 5 years later there were 106.

£14 6s 9d from 92 houses.  In answer to an appeal made by Lord Harris for funds to provide comforts to Kentish soldiers at the fighting fronts and Kentish prisoners of war, it was resolved that a collection be made.  The parish comprises only 106 houses, but of these 92 contributed and the sum of £14 6s 9d was the pleasing result.

1917 - Dartford Rural and Tribunals

13 May 1917 Kent Messenger
K H Glover, 18, ploughman and horseman, Hartley - appeal dismissed
H C Williamson, 41, artist lithographer, Longfield - allowed 6 months

9 June 1917 Kent Messsenger
Charles English, 27, The Stores, Hartley - exempted for 3 months
Ernest Hoadley, 18, ploughman, Longfield - exempted for 2 months
Stephen Simes, 19, labourer, Longfield - exempted for 2 months
Henry G Green, market gardener and boot repairer, [Hartley Cottage] Longfield - exempted 2 months
James E Pepper, poultry farm manager, [Hartley] Longfield - appeal dismissed KM - 30.6.1917 says he was given 1 month's exemption and was aged 35.

21 July 1917 Kent Messenger
E A Grant, Longfield, slaughterman - 3 months' [exemption]
W Macaulay, [Hartley] Longfield, poultry farmer - adjourned for medical examination
P Harris, 37, [Hartley] Longfield, poultry farmer and market grower - 6 months' [exemption]
A J Haselden, 32, Railway Tavern, Longifeld - 6 months' [exemption]
19 January 1917 - Charles English of the Black Lion
Dartford Chronicle
Charles's brother had recently been convicted of handling stolen goods, but it appears his innocent family also suffered at the hands of some of the locals.  The nominal fine in this case suggests the Magistrates thought Mr English was more sinned against than sinner.

Charles English of the Grocery Stores, Hartley was summonsed by Mr Robert William Emmett, solicitor, on behalf of Dennis Clements Edward Danby (14) his stepson, Mr G Clinch appeared for the defendant, who pleaded not guilty.  The youth stated that on January 2nd he was on his bicycle, in company with his nurse and a younger brother on the road leading from Dartford Heath to the defendant's grocery stores, which adjoined the Black Lion, when he observed English thrashing his horse with the butt end of his whip, in his opinion in an unmerciful manner.  The nurse shouted out to him that it was not the horse's fault, and he (complainant) afterwards called out to him, telling him that he was a "confounded wretch".  Defendant then caught hold of him by the collar, and pulled him off his bicycle, throwing him to the ground, when, he knelt upon him and dealt him two or three slight blows across the head, saying that if he said such a thing again he would take the law into his own hands and put his eyes out.  Witness afterwards went away on his bicycle.  Cross examined - he knew defendant's brother had got into trouble, and it was the common talk of the place.  Mr Clinch - "And the parishioners have been jeering at the family.  Have you done it yourself?"  Complainant - "Once or twice I have done it".  In further cross examination he denied using abusive language to the defendant, only that he was a "confounded wretch".  Mrs Ethel Bevan of Longfield, who was with her perambulator at the time, said she saw defendant thrashing his horse and the complainant knocked off his bicycle.  Afterwards English said "They must not insult everybody".  Florence Hodge, nurse to the family stated that she saw defendant thrashing his horse.  She exclaimed "If you don't leave off, you awful man, I'll watch you".  Defendant complained that Master Dennis had insulted him, and said he would take the law into his own hands.  Witness remarked "You have already done so".  Defendant replied "Yes I have and I will".   Mr Clinch for the defence, said that his client's brother had got into trouble and was being punished, and that was part of the cause of people casting imputations about matters that had nothing to do with them.  The horse which defendant used in his grocery van was a 'jibber' and troublesome, but he only chastised it with a small whip.  The complainant used strong language, insulted English, and jumped off his bicycle of his own accord, and defendant merely put his hands on his shoulder.  English gave evidence and produced a small whip which he said he had used on the horse.  The youth called him a _____ cruel beast and dirty fool and, having jumped off his bicycle, hesitated, expecting he would get a box of his ears, and then sat down on the ground, but he (defendant) merely placed his hand on his shoulder and remonstrated with him.  He denied knocking him down or kneeling upon him.  Richard Woodward, living in a cottage near the Black Lion, Hartley, said that when about 200 yards away he saw complainant get off his bicycle, and sit down in the road, afterwards riding away.  He knew the defendant's horse jibbed.  A young nephew of the defendant, who takes the horse out with the van, said the animal was a jibber, but h e only used the small whip produced.  Mr Emmett intimated that he could call his wife Lady Alexander Emmett, to throw some further light on the case, if the magistrates desired, but the chairman said they had heard sufficient.  Having retired, the chairman observed there had been an assualt, and fined defendant 2s 6d.

2 November 1917 - Obituary of Charles Haygreen
Dartford Chronicle
Sadly, before the war was out Mr and Mrs Haygreen was to lose another son, Ernest, both are commemorated at Fawkham.

For their country - Corporal C Haygreen (pictured)
Mr and Mrs Haygreen of 7 Park Road, Dartford, are mourning the loss of their 4th son, Corporal Charles Haygreen, aged 28, who was serving with the RGA (Royal Garrison Artillery).  He joined up on November 23, 1914, had been in France since August 30, 1915, and was last home October 7, and had only just rejoined his regiment, being killed on October 10.

Before enlistment Corporal Haygreen was employed by Mr Humphries of Hartley, and was a scholar at Hartley Schools.

Mr and Mrs Haygreen have two other sons serving.

12 January 1918 - News from Longfield
Kent Messenger

A correspondent writes: The parishioners are feeling the pinch of food restriction, as they are not entitled to the full benefit of the food economy arrangements in force at Gravesend, where so many of them were accustomed to do their shopping, but it is hoped they may soon benefit by arrangements to be made by their own district and parish committee.

At the Churches
Last Sunday there wre unusually large ongregations at the church intercession service in response to the King's appeal, and the offertories to the Red Cross Fund were large and generous.  Services were held at the Mission at Longfield Hill, conducted by Mr Thurnell. The services there have been very infrequent for some time past, as the railway arrangements have made it very inconvenient for preachers to get here, but it is hoped that the services may be held more often in the future.  The choir Christmas Tree was held on Wednesday at the house of Mr Cromer (?Cromar), and was greatly enjoyed and appreciated by the youthful choristers.

For War Funds
Two successful entertainments given by Mr and Mrs Fielder and their friends, in the Village Club Room, realised £11 1s 4½d on behalf of the Local Wounded Sailors' and Soldiers' Fund and the Kentish Prisoners of War in Germany.  The room on each evening was well filled, and it must be gratifying to the promoters to see teir efforts on behalf of such a good cause so well supported.  The programme was a lengthy one.  Each item was very efficiently rendered and gained well merited appluase from an appreciative audience.  Although it would be invidious to specially refer to any individual artiste, mention may be made of Miss Jessie Moon, who gave great assistance as pianist.  The programme consisted of mandolin duiet by Mrs Trevillian and friends; pianoforte solo Miss Ridgers; songs by the Misses Goodwin and Wells, Mr Fielder and Gunner Ball; children's sketch "The Green Dwarf", the Misses Leigh, Fielder, Caller, Longhurst and Robinson and Masters Longhurst, Caller, Richard Fielder, Simes and Foster; sketch "Doing our Bit", Mesdames Fielder and Allen, and the Misses Grenby, Peacock and Grant; sketch "The Railway Waiting Room", Mrs Fielder, the Misses Grant, Peacock, Harris and Morris, and Messrs T and R E Fielder.
7 September 1918 - Fruit wanted for the Jam Factory
Kent Messenger

Plums, apples, damsons, marrows, rhubarb and blackberries - Allen's Confectionery Co Ltd, Fairby Farm, Hartley, Longfield, Kent are buyers of same in large or small quantities, delivered at Fawkham Station, or at their jam factory at the above address.

29 October 1918 - Sale of Potatoes at Wellfield
South Eastern Gazette
The uncultivated land at the Payne and Trapps estate in the Wellfield area was requisitioned by the War Agriculture Committee.

Hartley, Kent
Mr Philip Champion has received instructions from teh Kent War Agricultural Committee to sell by auction on the ground at Payne Trapps Building Estate, Hartley, on Wedneday 30th October 1918, at 10 o'clock am precisely, the crop of growing potatoes, as follows:

Lot 1 - about 2 acres President (grown from Scotch seed)
Lot 2 - about 1 acre Lochar (seed one year from Scotland)
Lot 3 - about 3½ acres King Edward VII (ditto)
Lot 4 - about 4 acres Arran Chief (Scotch seed)

The above lots will be sold with the pemission of the Ministry of Food, subject to the Forward Contract No 2,659, dated 10th May 1918.  Under the above contract all the Ware potatoes dressed over 1 5/8 in riddle will be taken by the Ministry at a minimum price of £6 per ton or at the controlled price whichever is the higher.

Lot 5 - about 1½ acres King George and King Edward VII, not subject to the above regulations....
12 May 1919 - Relief funds for Conscientious Objectors
Daily Herald
Many conscientious objectors were sent to prison, and when they were released they were in very poor state, due to the conditions they were kept in.  Dr Salter made Fairby Grange available to them to recuperate.  This charity sent money, books etc to the men there.

Dartmoor Settlement for COs.
Final statemetn regarding disposal of cash and property belonging to men in the above settlement at 19th April 1919.

Sent to Fund for the Relief of Dependents of COs.
March 31st - From Canteen Funds (£50)
April 19th - Balance of cash from Canteen (£118 1s 10d)
April 19th - Balance of cash from general funds (£8 5s 3d)
Total £176 7s 1d

Sent to Fairby Grange Convalescent Home
Cash (Donations and Social Com.)(£6)
Surplus stock in canteen value (£29)
All settlers' library, books, magazines sent to Fairby Grange.

All books were duly audited and found to be correct by Samuel Broomfield, of Broomfield and Co, accountants and auditors, Newport.  Balance sheets and books have been deposited with NCF at 5 York Buildings, Adelphi, London, where they may be seen for inspection.  Copy of the final balance sheet may be seen on application to undersigned, the secretary of men's committee in session, at close of settlement.  G B Eddie, 88 Canning Street, Glasgow.

3 December 1919 - Bankruptcy of George Harold Humphries
G H Humphries was a key figure in the development of Hartley, as the managing director of Small Owners Limited.  Later he went into the aircraft industry, but said his financial troubles were down to the end of the war.

George Harold Humphrey, director of public companies, 23 Hangar Lane, Ealing, and late of 4 Ellison Place, Newcastle on Tyne.

The first meeting of creditors under a receiving order made against this debtor on his own petition was held on November 27th at the London Bankruptcy Court.

Mr F T Garton, Official Receiver, who presided, said that a statement of the debtor's affairs had been lodged showing gross liabilities £8,500, unsecured £17,770 and contingent debts £58,500, which were not expected to rank for dividend.  The assets were valued a £10,065.  The debtor had stated that in August 1914, he and another person formed the Rural Developments Co Ltd, of which he was appointed managing director.  The comapny was successful until November 1915, but two years later went into voluntary liuidation.  In June 1914, a company in which he had been interested having given up certain works near Fawkham, Kent, he registered the Fairby Construction Co Ltd, to work in conjunction with the Rural Development Co in building cottages on the Fairby Farm Estate.  He was appointed managing director and acted in that capacity until 1917 when he became an ordinary director.  In January 1917, at the suggestion of a representative of Armstrong Whitworth and Co who promised him contracts, he took the Victoria Works, Newcastle on Tyne, and formed John Dawson and Co (Newcastle on Tyne) Ltd, to take over his interest and manufacture aircraft wings.  The nominal capital of the company was £10,000.  The debtor became managing director and took up the issued capital of £2,100, but later he transferred some of his shared to other persons who became directors.  The company was financed by payments made on account of contracts with Armstrong Whitworth and Co until December 1917, but afterwards the company made contracts direct with the government, who paid week by week  The company was very successful until the Armistice, when notice was given terminating the contracts, and differences arose between the company and the Government as to the amount due to the company.  Pending the settlement of these differences the debtor endeavoured to sell his interest in another company (Allan Jones and Co (1918) Ltd) to George Clare and Co Ltd, and out of the money so raised he paid the accounts and financed John Dawson and Co.  On June 4th last the Government settled the claim for £30,000, which was less than the amount expected.  The debtor then endeavoured to amalgamate the company with Allan Jones and Co (1918) Ltd, a company of which he was governing director, which carred out contracts for aircraft parts.  In anticipation he guaranteed debts of John Dawson and Co to the amount of £15,000.  Eventually the amalgamation fell through and John Dawson and Co went into liquidation.  The debtor was pressed on his guarantees and decided to file his petition.  He attributed his insolvency to the failure of the company, of which he claimed to be a creditor for £10,000.

The creditors appointed Mr Oliver Sunderland, accountant, as trustee of the debtor's estate.  A committee of inspection was also nominated.

© Content P Mayer 2000-2018.  Created with WebSite X5
Weather Underground PWS INEWASHG2
Back to content