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Appleby History > History Tour > Rectory Lane

Rectory Lane, Appleby Fields and Tamworth Road

Rectory Lane, the former Golden Way, is lined with old hedgerows and grassy verges. On the way from the village centre the lane passes the old Weslyan chapel (now a cottage), the new rectory (home of our current local vicar), and the lovely, Georgian Old Rectory, hidden from the road behind tall hedges but presenting a beautiful view from the footpath that runs from Rectory Lane to Atherstone Road. When Aubrey Moore chose the title A Son of the Rectory for his autobiography, this is the rectory he was referring to. (A Son of the Rectory by Aubrey Moore, now available as a pdf download on this site.)

The picture below shows the Old Rectory as it is now. This was taken in 2002 by Walter Smith.

Old Rectory
Click for larger view

At the top of the lane next to the Old Rectory is the site where a Romano-British farm stood.  Located in the field between the old main roads and Rectory Lane, this was discovered by archaeologists who dug the site before the new hotel was built.

From the top of Rectory Lane it is just a short distance to the crossroads, now the motorway junction but once the site of the Red Lion Inn and Appleby Fields.

Red Lion Inn
Appleby Fields Farmhouse, the former Red Lion Inn, which was demolished when the motorway was built. The Fina petrol station and McDonalds are now on this corner

Around the corner along Tamworth Road stood Heath House. Built in the 19th Century and demolished in the 20th, this house stood where Heath Lodge is now.  Its last occupant is believed to be Mrs Hunt. (With thanks to Alain Skelding for sending the picture below, which is a scan of a photograph of a photograph.  The original belonged to Charlie Ellis who lived in the Alms Houses over 30 years ago.)

Heath House
Heath House, a photograph of a photograph, with thanks to Alain Skelding of Normanton Photography. Click for larger view

More about Rectory Lane

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