One hundred years ago – November 1917.

Children from Bideford schools have collected approximately two tons of horse chestnuts, which will save a ton of cereals in munitions work.

North Devon Appeals Courts: Many columns in every edition are given to reporting the proceedings of employers appealing about their staff being taken to go to war. Farmers are protesting that on one hand they are being asked to increase food production, yet threshing is not being done because engine drivers and the labourers are being conscripted. Another farm instance this month is William Cole (18) of Bucks Cross who works with his father, Edward, breeding and training farm horses. They have 4 agricultural horses and 9 colts to be trained and this cannot be done alone. His appeal was allowed.

At Parkham the continuous showery weather has allowed very little ploughing to be done but an experiment at Melbury using a tractor saw the land turned and cultivated with some success. However rabbits ate everything that sprouted, but continued trapping saw the problem diminished, the crop grew, and now sheep can be seen feeding.

R Dymond & Co is offering for sale: A detached villa formerly called ‘The Ferns’ but now known as ‘Straiton’ at Buckleigh; 2, Nelson Terrace, Westward Ho! house and shop, & ‘East Glen’, Orchard Hill, Northam.

Another agent is advertising: A two-stall stable and Coach House, Torridge Street Bideford, 1 Torridge Street, 33 & 34 Torrington Lane, 35 Clifton Street, (a corner dwelling) & 35 Torrington Lane, which has a large frontage and has been re-roofed.

The Governors of Edgehill College have purchased ‘Kiltrasna’, a large residence with 15 acres high up North Down Road. It will become a hostel for the increasing number of students attending the college.

An alarming accident occurred in Bideford later in the month. The Hartland to Bideford Brake pulled by 2 horses was descending Grenville Street and as it turned down into the High Street the shaft connecting the horses to the coach broke, causing the coach to run into the horses. They started off and the entire assemblage careered down the street, narrowly missing several shoppers. The driver, with considerable skill turned the horses around the National Provincial Bank corner onto the Quay towards the Kingsley statue whereupon the coach rolled over onto its side. The horses were unharmed and the driver proceeded to extricate six passengers from the wrecked coach.

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These and many more items of local interest are available to read at the Bideford Community Archive at the Council Offices, Windmill Lane, Northam. Tel: 01237 471714. Open Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday mornings or visit our website www.bidefordarchive.org.uk

The Archive’s Annual General Meeting will be held on Monday 20th November 2017 commencing at 7.15pm in the Council Chamber, Northam Town Council, 1 Windmill Lane, Northam. The Mayor of Bideford will preside. If you would like to consider joining the Archive’s Committee please email secretary@bideford.org.uk. There are numerous posts to be filled including Chair, Vice-Chair, Treasurer and Secretary.

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