The Dell - The 'Old' houses


The road called the Dell once formed part of the Baldwyns Manor Estate. The lands of Baldwyns Manor were auctioned off c1874 and partitioned in preparation for development.


Below - kindly supplied by Nigel Goldup - The Dell in winter before the 'Old Houses' were demolished looking towards Denton Road- date unkown.

The Dell - The 'Old' houses - History of Maypole, Dartford Heath

Before the modern houses of The Dell, Portman Close and Heathwood Walk there were the properties of Maypole House and four large houses. Before them was just Maypole Farm.

Below left shows the large houses x 3 1907
Below right shows the large houses x 4 which existed c1961 - from left to right 'Hillington' 'Brackenhurst' 'Hawthorn Dene' and 'Elm Lodge'

The Dell - The 'Old' houses - History of Maypole, Dartford Heath The Dell - The 'Old' houses - History of Maypole, Dartford Heath

The four large houses fronted the current road called The Dell. That original road was an unmade road. The four large houses were very detached and had spacious gardens. The residents, by the very fact that they occupied them, were of a social stata above those who lived on the Maypole Housing Estate. By and large, and to most accounts, there was little fraternisation between those living on the Estate and those living in Maypole House and the Dell. Personal accounts reveal that gardeners, cleaners and domestic staff were employed from the Maypole Estate to service the needs of those living in the aformention properties. Some children from these large houses did attend Maypole School - but generally for short periods until they could be placed - or relocated - somewhere in the Public School system.

Below image kindly supplied by Nigel Goldup - undated.
The Dell - looking away from the direction of Denton Road. The front of old houses would have stood behind the boundary walls to the left.

The Dell - The 'Old' houses - History of Maypole, Dartford Heath

Below image kindly supplied by Nigel Goldup - undated.
The Dell - looking towards the direction of Denton Road. The old houses would have stood behind the boundary walls to the right.

The Dell - The 'Old' houses - History of Maypole, Dartford Heath

Below photo (Courtesy of Brian Porter) is a view from the heath looking towards Maypole Estate and see the Hospital Tower in the background. The rear of the cameraman would be in the direction of Crayford / the old A2. There is a line of 'demarcation' shown in the photo running from left to right. This was the old sandy lane leading to Heathwood situated in the direction of the right of the photo.

The Dell - The 'Old' houses - History of Maypole, Dartford Heath


Elm Lodge was the first house to be built in the Dell (OS Map 1890). According to the later OS Map of 1897 it still remained as the only house in that location. The voters register of 1900 shows the occupant / owner as Frank FELL who had an address of 3 Broad Street Buildings, Liverpool Street, London EC. Records show he had a shared interest in Elm Lodge and 11 acres of the Maypole Estate. It turns out they were developers and owned a share in the sub divided plots of the land where the housing estate was to be. His name is shown on title deeds of properties to be developed shortly after that time in Beaconsfield Road and Denton Terrace at roundabout that time.

The Kelly's Directory of 1911 shows a change of occupancy to the Rev. John BROWNHILL and as being the Chaplain of Bexley Asylum. During an interview with the late Winnie BLACKMAN c1991, she referred to the Rev BROWNHILL as a man she contemporaneously knew when she was a child. She said that children of the estate had heard a rumour that the Rev had a son who was 'deranged' and that the Rev had him locked up in the house ! This may have been sparked by the fact thast he was the Chaplain of Bexley Asylum. As a result, she said that local children were afraid to pass the house. She never expanded on the topic.


The 1911 census shows that there was a son aged 22yrs who 'Helped in the garden'. This is neither an occupation or a means of living so there may be some truth in what has been said about the capacity of the son.


The Dell - The 'Old' houses - History of Maypole, Dartford Heath

The next occupancy, according to the same directory in 1927, was Walter Frederick ESSE. The Voters register of 1937 showed the following, with the same family name, as living there - Frank, Mildred, Minnie, Frederick, Walter. Also Mabel FURNELL. The 1945 Voters shows just Walter and Minnie ESSE as living there.
The Maypole School Register then shows the next family living there as being the HUTCHISON family. Records of that register dated below reveals the following information
1954 - Diane HUTCHISON as being a pupil at the school and her father as being William
1956 - Charles HUTCHISON as being a pupil at the school and the father as being William
1967 - Vctoria HUTCHINSON as being a pupil at the school and and the father as being William
In the 1960s, William HUTCHISON / HUTCHENSON / HUTCHESON was often seen daily walking to and from his house along Denton Road. He suffered Parkinsons Disease and had difficulty in his movements. It is purported that he was once a high ranking officer in the army.

The Voters Register of 1958 shows Daphne, Jennifer and William HUTCHESON as being resident. The same register of 1968 shows Daphne and William as living there. Beyond 1968 we have no further records. The house was demolished to make way for the new development in the early 1970s.
.
Hawthorn Dene.

Hawthorn Dene

The Dell - The 'Old' houses - History of Maypole, Dartford Heath

Above image kindly supplied by Nigel Goldup - undated.

The Voters Register (VR) of 1937 shows the following as living there - Olive BETHANY and John WARD. The 1945 VR shows the following as living there - Elsie and Stanley KENDRICK. The 1958 and 1968 VRs show the follwing as living there - Alice and Archibald WARR. Beyond 1968 we have no further records. The house was demolished to make way for the new development in the early 1970s.

Brackenhurst.

The Dell - The 'Old' houses - History of Maypole, Dartford Heath


Above image kindly supplied by Nigel Goldup - undated.

The VR of 1937 shows the following as living there - Lorna, Arthur, Mary and Sylvia PAULIN. The 1945 VR shows Arthur and Mary PAULIN and Adelaide BOLTON as living there. The 1958 VR shows Erica and Sylvia CORNISH and John MEEK as living there. Piano lessons were taught by Mrs CORNISH at the house. The 1968 VR shows Erica, Marion and Sylvia CORNISH and John MEEK as living there. Beyond 1968 we have no further records. The house was demolished to make way for the new development in the early 1970s. It is interesting to note that the Maypole School Register (MSR) of the 1940s shows pupils, Bernice and Eric CORNISH, as living at Suffolk Lodge, Wansunt Road, Bexley. These names then crop up in the VRs of the 1950s as living at Brackenhurst.
The 1910 OS Map shows the above built - but not the below indicating the below was the last house to be built in the road.
.
Hillington. The VR of 1937 shows Ronald, Willhemina and William ELLIS-BROWN as living there. The 1938 Kellys Directory shows William BROWN, Kenneth, Willhemina and William ELLIS-BROWN as living there. The VR of 1968 shows April and James CORNISH as living there. The 1976 VR shows April, Guy, Hazel, James and Jeffrey CORNISH as living there. Question - were they relatives of the occupants next door at Brackenhurst ? We are reliably told they are not.

More pages