Snooping around is part of my job and I end up in all sorts of weird and sometimes possibly illegal situations especially in the old City of London or out in the country.
Two days ago I noticed that there was a possible old-fashioned well in the garden of what centuries ago was the village vicarage and the building may well predate that as it is very grand. Apparently it was built over sometime after piped water became a thing but when recent new owners moved in, they discovered it and rebuilt it in the style we all imagine old wells to be.
When I was a boy I actually used to wash the car of the person who lived here, a man with a white jaguar and hair something like the footballer Kevin Keegan.
It is said there may be a well in my garden or an immediate neighbour, if so it must be quite deep as we sit on the very top of a 500 feet hill which isn’t the first place you look for running water.
I’ve actually found something in the back garden just a half a shovels depth beneath the surface of the soil but it’s very large and I think some of it goes into a neighbouring garden which would lead me to think it may be the remains of a WW2 air-raid shelter. Imagine if that were so, I could do tours in my very own garden!
The garden with a well is only 6 or 7 houses from me but whilst I live in a 200 year old workers cottage which is almost on the street, a vicar obviously has something a bit grander and the building is now in a small but very old complex with a gravel drive, ornamental trees and other grandiose paraphernalia.
I thought I might sneak in unnoticed but I had only gone a few houses when a friendly neighbour saw me with my iPad and the game was up. Additionally the house between us and the well-house was having work done on it so the builders all heard it too. I may was well have gone in with half the street behind with me!
I felt a little like when I went to the home of Edward Adrian Wilson a few months ago in Stanmore when I went to take photos of the old prison cells in the garden but again it was a total success and here is the old well and it even has a bucket attached though sadly no rope!
Or if wells are your thing (aren’t they everyones lol) then head to Looking for and finding Waxwell, a Holy Well in Pinner (London)
Incidentally, my new book Secret Gardens of the City of London is now at number 3 of the Amazon section charts.
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