Author Topic: Four Gun Field  (Read 153 times)

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Mike Gunnill

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Re: Four Gun Field
« Reply #3 on: March 02, 2020, 09:51:53 AM »
What interesting subjects you get into - Mike Gunnill.

Was there no other means of objection ? : No, by the time I found out Maidstone said, it was done and dusted.

`Hartley ` is local : Not to Otterham Quay Lane!


I like the  `John Woods Estate `


Can you imagine if it was called - ` Trotter`s Estate` : I was expecting Parish Chairman's Close!

` Four Gun Field ` an unusual name !  : Named after guns which used to be stored on the land. Used by early navy gunboats, one based at Otterham Quay to protect the River Medway and protect Chatham Dockyard. The brickfield was also named Four Gun Field. Shame the name has gone.


Thx Mike


castle261

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Re: Four Gun Field
« Reply #2 on: March 02, 2020, 01:19:51 AM »
What interesting subjects you get into - Mike Gunnill.

Was there no other means of objection ?

`Hartley ` is local


I like the  `John Woods Estate `


Can you imagine if it was called - ` Trotter`s Estate`

` Four Gun Field ` an unusual name !

Mike Gunnill

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Four Gun Field
« Reply #1 on: March 01, 2020, 07:56:18 PM »
I wrote the following, two years ago and I was angry! All about the development of the last brickfield in Otterham.





The site owned by Matthew Homes in Otterham Quay Lane, Upchurch, next to the Three Sisters public house is marketed under the well known local name of Four Gun Field.
Four names have been chosen for the development.   Based on the names of brickfield owners they are: Eastwood Meadow, Woods Edge, Butcher’s Green and Quilters Yard.
Historic details on the names:
Edward Frederick Quilter.
A businessman who also bred horses from Hill House, Belstead in Suffolk.  Later the property, a 106 acre farm was called Belstead House. Used in modern times as a Judges Lodgings and an office for Suffolk County Council. One of 5 children, he died July 20th 1905 aged 57. He never married.  Buried in St Mary’s Churchyard, Belstead.
Joseph Edward Butcher.
Businessman from Frindsbury, Rochester.  He owned several brick field sites in Kent including Four Gun Field. His bricks carried 4 large capital B’s.  He used nearby Otterham Creek to transport his bricks directly to London in his own barges. These were Hartley ( 1860 ), Mid Kent ( 1863 ), Othello 1864, Princess ( 1866 ) and Trotter ( 1875 ). The largest sailing barge, Trotter could carry 45 tons of bricks.
John Woods.
From Singlewell, near Gravesend. Owned brickfields in Lower Halstow and a bargeyard in the village, building many fine sailing barges. Some of these were, Director, Sophia, Fanny, Arthur James, Nile, George and Ellen 1845, ABCD, Adelaide, Arthur and Eliza and Aboukir.
John Francis Eastwood.
He started the Eastwood Company in the early 1800’s. He had military connections and was once a serving commissioned officer, probably with the Duke of Wellington. Certainly John Eastwood owned Wellington Wharf, in Lambeth, which is named after the Duke of Wellington.  A clever businessman, his company soon became the main force in brick building.  It was suggested in 1880 that Eastwood would merge with five other brick field owners, Edward Frederick Quilter of Belstead - Suffolk, Joseph Edward Butcher of Frindsbury - Rochester, Josiah Jackson of Shoebury - Essex, John Woods of Singlewell - Gravesend and Charles Richardson of Vauxhall, London. Together the new company would be called Eastwood’s Limited.
It would appear that the suggested names came Matthew Homes Limited, owners of the site, who put forward the brickfield owner names and a list of sailing barge names.  Upchurch Parish Council agreed the brickfield owner names.  The names were sent to Swale Borough Council, Naming Department now run by Mid-Kent, Maidstone. 
At no time did anyone check that the names for the new housing estate met the required basic criteria adopted by Upchurch Parish Council and Swale Borough Council.
Woods is local to Lower Halstow.  Quilter is local to Suffolk.  It is true that all names plus Josiah Jackson of Shoebury and Charles Richardson of Vauxhall were the five brickfield owners in 1880 who merged into one company.
Shouldn’t someone have checked the suggested names had a historic connection to Otterham Quay Lane, Upchurch?  Isn’t it, a basic condition when suggesting names, to make sure your information is correct.  Only two of the names conform to the requirements, Eastwood and Butcher.
Helpfully the GIS Operative & Street Naming and Numbering Officer for the Council Naming Department says, the names can not now be changed or renamed. “ The decision will not be overturned.”  New residents of Four Gun Field are bound to ask about their names!  Local relations of brickfield workers, will also ask the question, WHY?
I was asked to help with the naming and given the four names.  After very basic research, I found the names didn’t all conform to the council requirements.  This was mentioned to the parish clerk but I was told, four hours after been given the four names, it had been passed onward to Swale Borough Council.
It would seem both Matthew Homes Ltd., and Upchurch Parish Council were suddenly in a rush to complete the process.  When asked later, UPC said a ‘historian’ had checked the information, which on further checking was an employee of Matthew Homes in Potters Bar.
What a shame the area’s great heritage has not been remembered correctly.