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| Botyl Well |
[780 x 585 jpg]
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|Description ||Reports of its death may be premature (but only just!). Shown on the 1885 OS map I visited Berrowood Farm, just beyond the village pond, and got directions to the well. It is in the angle of the adjoining L-shaped field, and on private land. The well is covered by a concrete slab with a brick surround, but if someone lifted the slab....|
|On a visit 3 weeks earlier the farm owner (the name incidentally is Bernwood Farm) said they had no knowledge whatsover of the well. This structure was completely moss-covered at the time and I am far from convinced that it is the well.|
By the way, this "well" lies not 6' away from a right of way across the field.
|Some farmers know little about the history of the land they "manage" whereas older locals may well recall lost wells because they and their forebears used them long before the present farmers arrived. Some landowners might be inclined to deny the existence of a well or barrow because they do not want to encourage visitors - particularly if they tote a camera and say they want to put a photo on a website. I had just such an experience in south Glos. where a farmer denied existence of a Holy Well yet I found it in a barn capped with concrete - he was not amused and I was unable to photograph it! Not sure what Enkidu is saying here, but 6' from a right of way strengthens the case for the well. People had to use footpaths to get to wells. Only way to be certain is to return to the site and lift the stone slab.|
|Thorgrim appears to be a little confused. The point I'm making is that the same farmer only 2 weeks earlier said he had no knowledge of the well whereas he told David where to find it. I suspect we were both camera-toting visitors. And none of the locals (including one who lives only 50 yards away from the farm and has done so for over 50 years) had no knowledge either. All of which is the exact reverse of the scenario suposed by Thorgrim. The reference to the proximity of the path is that David's reference to private land may give the impression that access is by permission only.|
Incidentally, I have never found farmers to be unco-operative. I suppose it depends on one's attitude when you approach them.
|Enkidu - your comments appear contradictory so perhaps that is why I may be confused. You say that the farmer told you that he knew nothing of the well yet two weeks later he told David where it was. Then you say that you have never found farmers to be unco-operative! I wonder why David was directed to the well and you were not - attitude? Anyway - after your earlier assertion that David was mistaken, I am glad to see you now accept that he was correct. |
|Farmers have been a great source of extra info for me. They have always been interested in what I'm looking for, and seem to enjoy taking time off to show me around their fields!|
|Could, of course, have been a different farmer ? I knocked at the door and spoke to the guy who answered - could have been the son, brother, etc. of the other ? He was, I would guess, in his thirties - younger than me (51), anyway.
He seemed happy to talk, interested and quite knowledgeable about the wells/springs in the area.|
|I think you've identified the problem David. The guy I spoke to certainly appeared to be not many years shy of 60. Father possibly, although you'd normally expect the older generation to be more likely to have known.|
And Thorgrim, you must not put words into my mouth. I have never said David was mistaken, I said I was far from convinced - a different thing entirely.
|Semantics. You implied that he was mistaken if you doubted that his identification was correct. Nothing wrong in that and you accepted the validity of the site when further provenance was forthcoming. We should all question sites and photographs that cause us concern if we are to maintain high levels of accuracy on the Portal. People trust us to present reliable information - anything less than that is misleading. My original comment merely pointed out that stated local knowledge was not always reliable - a point you seem to have accepted elsewhere.|
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