Wells and Pumps Introduction
There are at present (March 2015), 12 known sites of wells on the Northfields Allotments. The current wells appear to have been created after WW2 with my belief that most of these wells were built in the 1950s -1960s. The main reason for this belief is the construction materials and current condition: The well on plot 198 is concrete and this concrete is is still in good condition. I have learnt that this well was constructed in 1957 by the plot holder. The well on plot 229 was built by a plot holder who started his tenancy in 1946. Other wells have a internal construction of metal barrels and these barrels are still intact in most cases. It is possible that there were wells before these current wells or some were adapted from earlier wells but we have no fact of this at this moment.
Water sources in early years of the allotment
The information we have about water sources in the early years of the allotments are that:
- There were two ponds on the allotment. One at the top of the current site and one at the bottom of the current site. The 1832 map of Ealing Dean Common shows a pond in the top right of the current allotment in what is now plot 241. The 1841 tithe maps again shows the two ponds, the second pond being at the bottom left of the current allotment in what is now plot146. The 1865 Ordanance survey map again shows these two ponds, The water that fed the bottom pond appears to come from the large pond where St. John's Church is now situated. In 1902 Charles Jones in his book Ealing: From Village to Corporate town states regarding St. John's Church "About the year 1866, some three years after the formation of the Local Board, the drainage of the village, . . . The work ws entered into heartily so that in 1876 the Church of St. John was complete. The drainage of this land from a pond may have reduced the waterflow leaving the allotment ponds to dry up over time. In the 1895 maps there is no ponds on the allotments and even a glass house in the top right area where the pond was in 1832. Right is the 1865 ordanance survet map showing the pond in the bottom left of the current allotments
- There was a water course mention in the Tenancy agreement in 1844. the agreement states "and will keep the Quickset Hedges at all times well weeded and cleaned, and mended when necessary, and the Water courses clear, . . ." The statement regarding the water courses was an addition to the earlier 1834 tenancy agreement showing a definate decision to include this feature in the agreement.
- There were known ditches running down both side of what is now Northfield Avenue which were fed via the large pond where St. John's Church now stands. The 1832 map of Ealing Dean common show the ditches that ran down North field Lane and cut across Mattock lane. The ditch appears from the map to come inside the attoment at the top of the current site. Right shows a portion of the 1832 map.