Stratton’s Folly

September 17, 2019

Stratton's Folly
There is a folly in the grounds of the Abingdon Children and Family Centre at the Net off Stratton Way.

With the ivy cut back it can be seen from near the Stratton Way bus stops. When the Net was a youth centre the general public often went in for events put on by young people, and the stone cave, beside the modern red brick building, was an anomaly.
Stratton's Folly
The folly entrance has a metal gate to stop anybody going inside. It looks like a hermit’s cell but I am told that it was built as a Victorian folly in the garden of Stratton House – now the other side of Stratton Way.

Filed under: heritage

6 Comments Leave a Comment

  • 1. Horsesmouth  |  September 18, 2019 at 1:00 am

    Sometime these were built by the wealthy for use as an ice store? There’s one in the corner of the rear garden of the Cosenors House too?

  • 2. ppjs  |  September 18, 2019 at 6:37 am

    The ice-store idea makes sense. Most follies were towers and were built at the tops of hill and gave their owners fantastic views of their estates (and beyond). The example at Faringdon is typical.

  • 3. Real another Steve  |  September 18, 2019 at 10:10 am

    The construction at Coseners House is a grotto. Perhaps these were just built to add interest to the grounds. An ice house would be underground.

  • 4. Horsesmouth  |  September 18, 2019 at 10:49 am

    From the telegraph
    Britain, causing the usual disruptions to modern life, spare a thought for the junior outdoor servant in the 18th-century country house. For them, a freezing morning meant getting up at first light to hack ice from the nearest shallow water, then carting the painful slabs back to be stored with layers of straw and sacking.

    Until the second half of the 19th century, when imported ice and refrigeration took over, the hacked ice was stored in a purpose-built ice house, usually on the north side of a house, usually near the kitchen, and often hidden in a shrubbery or fashionable wilderness. They were made of brick and normally, though not always, took the shape of a giant egg; two thirds below ground for insulation, a third above, with igloo-style doorways for access.

  • 5. Su  |  September 18, 2019 at 1:45 pm

    I believe this site was a pleasure ground (it was previously owned by Abingdon Borough), so it may be more likely that it was ornamental rather than functional.

  • 6. Junglejuice  |  September 18, 2019 at 5:42 pm

    In the early 1950s, we used to sneak through here from Fitzharry’s to the town & climb the “folly”. there was more to it back then, maybe a small tower. I don’t remember whose garden it was in.

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