Christmas in England 2006

DAY 11: Monday 1 January

Lambley Lodge - Belton in Rutland

Today was an important part of our holiday, as we were to visit Rutland and the locations related to the Goodliffe family history. Arnold Goodliffe (my Great-great-grandfather) was born at Lambley Lodge in May 1807, and his story is told elsewhere on this website.

Monday dawned fine and cold after a night of heavy rain, so we headed south from Nottingham to the small county of Rutland. Belton is a small village set amongst rolling hills of farmland. The old farm of Lambley Lodge is on the crest of a rise.

Lambley Lodge

The Name: In early documents and headstones, the Lodge is referred to as "Lamley", but in later documents a "b" had appeared - Lambley.

Apparently the area of Leithfield Forest was, and still is, well known for "The Hunt" and for rambling over the farms. In the early-1800s the number of visitors to the Lodge increased and some mistakenly pronounced the name as "Lame-ley" , ie "lame" as in disabled. Arnold's Mother - Mary (Arnold) -  is reported to have taken exception to this, and insisted that the "b" be added to the spelling so that the visitors would pronounce it correctly - "lamb-ley" as in "lamb".

The Lodge and farm passed from Thomas and Mary to their eldest son, John (1798-1864), who in turn passed it on to his son Simpson Stokes Goodliffe (1842-1922).  Simpson and his wife Sarah had four daughters and a son, but none of these took up the farm so it was sold following Simpson's death. The farm was leased out for many years and the buildings fell into disrepair, until again being sold in the mid-1970s. The new owners demolished most of the buildings but restored one, so the buildings seen today are mostly post-Goodliffe era. The current owners are also not interested in the Goodliffe heritage of the farm and apparently are not welcoming of visitors. As it was New Year's Day when we visited, we perhaps wisely chose not to disturb the occupants.

The old road sign in the village of Belton in Rutland
Lambley Lodge on the crest of the hill, as viewed from Belton
The road up to Lambley Lodge
The Lodge from the driveway
Lambley Lodge in 2006
Sign for walkers at the end of the road to Lambley Lodge

St Peters Church, Belton

Many of the Goodliffe family records relate to the church of St Peters in Belton, and there are several Goodliffe headstones near the church door. (There is more detail about the church and the Goodliffe headstones here.)

St Peters, Belton in Rutland.
Some of the Goodliffe headstones
The derelict Baptist Chapel at Belton, used by some of the later Goodliffe family

Barrowden Baptist Chapel

Arnold's Mother, Mary ARNOLD, was associated with the Baptist Chapel in Barrowden, and many of the Goodliffe family went there as well. Today the chapel is abandoned and has recently been sold for conversion to a private residence. However there are conditions to the sale, including the preservation of the appearance of the exterior, and the satisfactory relocation of the headstones. But first we had to find the chapel, hidden away in a small lane in the village of Barrowden.

The only remaining windmill in the Rutland district
A cottage facing the square in Barrowden
Detail of the thatching on the cottage
A reminder on the gate into the chapel that Thomas Cook was an early preacher here
The baptist Chapel in Barrowden. Note the similarity of design to the chapel in Belton, pictured above
Plaque over the door
The headstone of Sarah (Goodliffe) and her husband James Ayre Andrews. Sarah was Arnold's youngest sister
The Goodliffe family memorial at Barrowden
The Goodliffe memorial with headstones for Thomas and Mary Goodliffe on the left and John Culpin and his wife Anna (Goodliffe), Arnold's older sister, on the right

Rutland Water and Braunston

Rutland Water is the largest lake in England, and is well known for its birdlife. On New Years Day the birds were scarce, but there were plenty of people about. There was a cold wind blowing across the lake by mid-afternoon, so we poured a cup of tea from our Thermos, then headed on to Braunston. This village was another Goodliffe location, so we visited the All Saints Church, then settled into the Old Plough pub. Our room was excellent, well heated and with a large bathroom. The pub had a welcoming fire, and a large dining room with superb food.

Rutland Water
A cup of tea beside the lake - "Me? Cold????"
The Church of All Saints, Braunston.
Celtic stone idol outside the church
Welcome to Braunston
The Old Plough, a "free house" in Braunston. We stayed here the night - a welcoming pub with good food. Our room was the left-most window.
The view from the window in our room

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Last updated: 30/06/2017