Cambridge Villas

Photo: Illustrative image for the 'Cambridge Villas' page
Photo: Illustrative image for the 'Cambridge Villas' page

86 and 88 High Street

by Cliff Jenkinson

Cambridge Villas were built in 1892, as you can see carved over the front porch.  They are the only example in Ashwell of a pair of typical late Victorian semis.   Both houses retain many of their original features. 

The houses were built for Mr Westrope, the village grocer, whose family owned them for many years.  In fact number 86 has had only four owners since 1892.  The fronts of these houses are built with bricks from Arlesey but the sides have more ordinary bricks from Stotfold.  When they had a joint extension at the back in 1996 the Victorian brickwork patterns and mortar were carefully copied for the new part. 

At one time there were iron railings in front of these houses.  We think they might have been taken down as part of the war effort during the Second World War. 

Mrs Gwenda Westrope, the district nurse and midwife, lived here until 1979 and the medical connection has continued: the people living here since then have included two doctors, three nurses and another midwife.

Number 86 is currently home to the Jenkinson family.  Cliff Jenkinson was the headteacher of Ashwell Primary School from 1984 to 2009.

Number 88 is currently (2011) home to the Whiteley family.

The lower picture shows the Chalkley and Ayres family in the garden of number 86, circa 1928.

This page was added on 11/01/2011.

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