A Little Bit Of History …

On the 1871 census Richard Sara, a miner, and his wife, Celia, lived here with their four children – William (also listed as a miner at 13 years old), Susan? 10, Laura 8 and Richard 6. It is likely that they worked for Wheal Jane tin mine and farmed here as well.

Thirty years later, in 1901, Richard Sara (the son) is listed as living here aged 36 with his wife Rosie 32 and their children Stanley aged 7, Gwendoline 6, Winifred 5 and Gordon 3.

Gordon and Gwendoline lived here until 1979. Gwendoline looked after the house and Gordon farmed the land. During the war Gordon was a conscientious objector and very unpopular with the local Homeguard who had a large machine gun pointed at Carrine from Killiow Lodge. The farmer from Goodern Manor (next door) visited here as a boy and remembers a 12 bore shotgun placed by the old Cornish range.

Gordon was not interested in the modern world and would not allow any modern conveniences such as electricity or running water despite his sister going blind in her old age. The only modern amenity allowed was a radio to keep her company when she could no longer read due to her failing eyesight. There was no mains water or electricity to the farm until the early eighties after Colonel Rundell (from a Cornish farming family) purchased the property on retirement from the army in 1979.

Even after Miss Sara became blind she had to obtain the entire household and farm water from the well at the side of Sara’s cottage. The roller is the original roller she would have used. The well is 30 metres deep and was just a hole in the ground when we moved here. We had the wall built around it for safety reasons. We wanted to keep her memory alive as it must have been a difficult task for an elderly blind lady.

Mr Sara did not wish to have a telephone or anything from the modern world. He had no method of communication other that his bugle. He would stand on the drive and blow his bugle to the neighbouring farms. Different sounds meant different requirements e.g. get the vet, or artificial insemination required. After his sister died Mr Sara left the farm and went into a home.

He was very superstitious. Above the top field is a Tumulus (ancient burial ground) and he used to say that when he saw apparitions coming from the mound one of his animals would die the same night.

From 1979 Colonel Rundell lived here, a bachelor until he met Fenella in the nineties and they married. I was informed by Mrs Rundell that she refused to live in the old dusty cob cottage so they extended the house in 1996. Unfortunately, Colonel Rundell died soon afterwards and the property was sold to us in 2001.

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