Wednesday, July 17, 2013

Fuller Furnace II

Heathfield Park: A private estate and a Wealden town
By Roy Pryce (Author’s Publishing Guild, Hadlow Down, East Sussex; 1996)

Major John Fuller of the Trained Bands bought Bayley Park from Frances Turvin in what would be called in modern terms a distress sale for £900 in 1708. It is not known who lived in the house during the Fuller’s ownership which lasted 13 years.  Tanners Manor at Waldron was home to the Fullers until John’s brother Thomas rebuilt the mansion at Brightling. It was renamed Rose Hill in 1705 by Thomas’ son, another John Fuller in honour of his wife, Jamaican sugar plantation heiress,  Elizabeth Rose.
When Major Fuller sold Bayley Park in 1721 for £2400 it was only a slightly smaller estate of 227 acres.  “But Fuller still contrived to safeguard the all-important rights to its water in a covenant under which he reserved the liberty to draw water from the several ponds belonging to the premise ‘as high as and including the Banqueting House pond’ for the use of his furnaces as long as the level did not go lower than ‘the sluices laid for that purpose’.  ESRO SAS RF 3/95; page 45.

Page 44
“Bayley Park  [now Heathfield Park] occupied a strategic position up-stream from the Furnace where a number of springs were located and where water could be collected in holding (’pen’) ponds ready for use when needed. Although it is not known precisely when those in the Park were constructed, it is almost certainly at this time: William Figg’s map of 1819 shows five of them.  According to one account they formed part of a continuing chain three miles in length containing eleven ponds in all. Even so they were not sufficient to enable the furnace to function throughout the year: its operations were largely confined to the winter months, and sometimes had to be curtailed as early as April.” 

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