THE 1910 VALUATION RECORDS FOR MORDEN
ROSEMARY TURNER is transcribing these recently released records, for publication by the Society. Here she describes the records for Morden, with some sample extracts.
The Valuation Office originated in 1909, as a branch of the Estate Duty Office. In 1910 it undertook a general valuation of land in Great Britain. Its purpose was to access the value of property to assist with the collection of land value duties.
At first sight the records would seem to be too modern for local historians, but Morden at the time was still mostly agricultural, and its buildings often of a great age. The Valuation includes very detailed information about the fabric of the buildings, and the sizes and functions of their rooms. Its closeness in date to the 1911 census enables us to obtain an insight into how many people were living in the buildings at that time.
The Valuation was divided into regions. London is IR121, and includes Morden. This reference is to the Ordnance Survey maps, which have plot numbers marked on them. They are mostly 1886-1912 25-inch OS maps, except for more remote areas. The maps and field books are at The National Archives, Kew. Unfortunately all but one of the maps referring to Morden IR121/1/110, equivalent to XIII.7, have gone missing.
The field books also have an IR prefix, and their full reference is found in a set of books which lists places alphabetically by civil parish, within each registration district. The field books contain entries which correspond with the numbers on the maps. For Morden there are 500 entries. The amount of detail in each valuation varies, and some entries are linked to plans within other valuations. They all include a description of the plot and its situation, acreage where appropriate, occupier and owner, whether it is freehold or rented, and the term of the tenancy.
There then follow details of the residential and working buildings, and also land usage. There are sometimes extra notes, where relevant, and finally a breakdown of the value of the property. Some entries have a detailed plan.
The valuations could be disputed, and notes about the outcome are written in red on the pages.
The numbers are not sequential, and do not seem to relate to landownership or usage of the property. I have included a section of the OS map covering the land around St Lawrence church. This shows the range of numbers within an area. Nos 110 and 111 are 1 and 2 Church Cottages and are described together at 110:
Semi-detached cottages: 110 occupied by Mrs W Stockbridge. On the 1st floor 2 beds and on the ground floor, sitting room, kitchen, scullery, WC and front and back gardens. It was built of yeo [sic] stocks, with tiled roof, and a back addition built of timber, roughcast and pantiled. No.111 was unoccupied.
Both properties were owned by G Hatfeild.
The 1911 census lists Church Cottages, London Road; head of household was Rachel Stockbridge, a widow aged 63 born at Woodcote. Also in the house were James Mansfield, her son-in-law, who was a bricklayer on the railway; his wife Lily; Mildred Stockbridge, another daughter; and Harold Stockbridge her grandson. In the 1901 census her husband was named as William Stockbridge, builder.
No.158 is the parish hall and schoolhouse:
School House, Central Road, described as cottage and garden, buildings used for parochial purposes; occupant Alex McLean; owner school trustees per the Rector George Preston Kelsall Winlaw. Occupier: tenancy weekly 7/6.
Description cottage: built of stocks and tiled roof. 1st floor: 3 beds, one of which is small. Ground floor: 2 sitting rooms, kitchen, outside coals, wc, small garden.
Parish Hall: built of brick, part old building & part cement-faced & tile roof, comprising large hall, side hall divided by rolling shutters & classroom; 2 cloakrooms, lavatory and stoke hole.
Caretaker’s apartment above comprising 2 attics, living room, scullery, wc, yard and plot of vacant building land. There is an added note: ‘rifle range erected Jan 1914’.
Total value of property £1410.
I could not find this entry in the 1911 census, but in 1901 Alex McLean is living at Hill House Lodge.
It always amazes me when looking at the census entries that people with large families possibly living in one room often find space for a lodger. It conjures up scenes from medieval times when people slept on the floor of the hall or kitchen. In the case of some houses in the census one room served as kitchen, hall and bedroom.
I found these records extremely interesting, and well worth a second look.