Monday, 15 September 2008

Old Street No 1

And now the first in an occasional series of what's to be found on England's disappearing, and indeed vanished, highways. Yet another collection, and in collaboration with Commentator Diplomat, his roofless Landrover and battered motion picture camera, may even result in some little films. So I'm sure we'd both appreciate any sober and/or well thought-out comments. For my initial research for these improbable adventures, I drove on Saturday afternoon down the old Great North Road that still runs parallel to the A1(M) from Alconbury to Stilton, where huge tin motorway signs tower over the hedges. At one time this red brick farmhouse once stood right on the verge of the old road; difficult to date but I would say anywhere from the late eighteenth to the mid nineteenth century. The doubtful bay windows would have been plonked on the front at least forty years ago. The farm has gone, broken-up in the sixties, and what you see here is about to be demolished anytime now. A very slow death for what was once a family home with everything from the latest landau to the latest Standard Vanguard speeding past the door. This banner has been up for five years and didn't need planning permission like wooden hoardings do. Look out for it over the hedge just before junction 14 (the A14) on a southbound journey, and pip your horn in recognition of the disappearance of a home from quiet, forgotten Huntingdonshire.

5 comments:

Thud said...

It is a rather bitter sweet experience visiting this site sometimes...today was one of the former.I know life cannot remain in a state of statsis but I mourn for what we have needlesly lost...bloody hell I'm a miserable sod today!

Fred Fibonacci said...

John Major's from Huntingdonshire. He used to toot his horn at Edwina Curry, even when he wasn't driving up the A1. Snarf.

Talking of Johns, Jon's gone very quiet. Has anyone been round to pick up all the milk bottles and newspapers before the neighbours complain? We could get Ron to go; Mrs Combo might appreciate him having a 'period of quiet reflection' following his intemperate behaviour recently.

Oh, and Thud: cheer up, could be worse, as I quipped earlier whilst walking out of Lehman Bros. boardroom, whistling.

Peter Ashley said...

I bet if you stood on the chimney of the farmhouse you'd be able to see Major Manor on the hill at Great Stukeley.

And yes, I was getting worried about Mr.Dudley. Probably got himself locked in Harvey's cellar in Lewes.

Philip Wilkinson said...

A shame such wrecks are allowed to deteriorate like this – what a waste.

Re Mr Dudley: how do you get yourself locked in Harvey's brewery? Sounds like the place I'd like to be.

Diplomat said...

I have to report that the cine camera is bolloxed - i have a tape recorder so thought we might do a piece for the wireless. This would challenge the comentator somewhat but might in some way steady the headlong rush to embrace some of this rather superficial technology - more of less ! i say.