The Weald of Kent, Surrey and Sussex

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The Ashdown Forest Dispute 1876-1882
by Professor Brian Short
published by Sussex Record Society in 1997
Excerpts from this work have been reproduced on this site with the kind permission of Professor Brian Short

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William Augustus Raper
James Wheatley

Wheatley, James. Stone deaf. Yew Tree Cottage, near Forest House. Born in February 1818. I was about 9 years old when I first went to Shawhurst as a boy at 4d. a day with an ox team under old Master Hills (Edmund witness) for about 2 years when I was promoted to look after a horse team and did so about 9 1/2 years. Then went to Scotchford 1/2 year, then to Brighton 4 or 5 months. Then worked on the Brighton Railway about 2 years. Then returned home.

When I was a boy with the ox team and horse I was frequently employed to carry litter from the Forest to Shawhurst, Suntings, Shepherds for Jackson. I have cut litter on the Forest for many years for Mr. Hale and for Colonel Moor when at Forest House and at Pixton Hill and I daresay for every farmer in the parish. (Note: this man is a regular litter cutter for any who will buy.)

Dug stone and gravel and cut turf and peat, ever since he has been big enough, for all buyers and has never paid anything Dug an enormous quantity of stone for Mr. Mew's new house at Hartfield. Believes Mr. Mew paid a trifle. George Edwards the Reeve knows he regularly works the stone. Has dug a great deal of stone for Lord De La Warr.

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