40 – 52 Whielden St
Nos. 40 & 42 – 17th century timber-framed building listed grade II with an old tiled roof.
No. 44 & 46 – 16th century houses with brick re-fronting a century later, hence the date 1693 on the façade with the letters HWK (see photo above left), which refer to William & Kathleen Hailey who then kept the Saracen’s Head Inn, which was then in The Broadway, not in Whielden St. The Hailey family were glaziers and plumbers and lived there until a Miss Hailey married Thomas Morten in he early 19th century. Their business premises were then in what is now The Worthies in the High Street. Originally one house, it was where the famous Amersham black lace was made, which must have been particularly difficult to work on with the very poor lighting then available. An enormous bread oven was found, big enough to be a children’s playroom. It is thought that it was the communal bakehouse for the town in the 19th Century. The building is listed grade II.
Nos. 48 & 50 – (above right) built late 17th century in red and grey brick with an old tiled roof and is listed grade II. Bright’s shoe shop was in no. 48, but it later moved to 6, The Broadway.
No 52 (Crown Farmhouse) – (left) an early 19th century house with a Welsh slate roof and is listed grade II. It is on the site of another farmhouse owned by the Child family (who ran The Crown Inn) in the early 18th century and was bought by Thomas Tyrrwhitt Drake in 1816. The house was restored in 1993 aqnd it has a large barn at the rear which was restored in 2005/6 after a major fire (see photos below).
Listen to Gerald Lee talking in 2004 to Diana Goodbody about the two parts of “Wilson’s Farm” and carrying gas masks as a boy in WWII
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