Tyes and Greens


tyes and greens
There are a number of settlements in this part to East Angila with names containing the words ‘tye’. The world is Anglo Saxon in origin and the oxford English dictionary quotes the earliest usage of the term as dating from 832. Essentially a ‘tye’ was green or a small area of open common land, usually sited away from the main village or settlement, perhaps at the junction of two or more routes. Local people and passing travelers had the right to pasture their horses, pigs and other farm animals on the tye.
In the pebmarsh area there seem to have been five or six of these tyes, all except one at the margins of the parish. These marginal clearing are all away from the richer farming land close to the river and in the case of Cooks Green, Hayles tye and Dorking tye , close to the edge of still existing fragments of ancient woodland. It seems likely then that here as elsewhere in East Angila medieval freemen were allowed to clear a small part of the forest and create a smallholding. Such unproductive forest land would in any case have been unattractive to the wealthy baronial or monastic landowners. Most of the land around pebmarsh village belonged to Earls Colne Priory a wealthy monastery about 10 kilometers to the south and it may be that by the 13th and 14th centuries the tyes were maintained by tenant farmers paying rent to the priory.
Hayles tye seems to have got its name from a certain John Hayle who is documented in the 1380s, although there are records pointing to occupation of the site at a much earlier date. The name was still in use in 1500 and crops up again throughout the 16th and 17th centuries, usually in relation to the payment of taxes or tithes. At some point during the 18th century the name is changed to file’s green though no trace of an owner called file has been found. Also in the 18th century the original dwelling on the site disappeared. Much of this region was economically depressed during this period and the land and its dwelling may simply have been abandoned. Several farms were abandoned in the neighbouring village of Alphamstone and the population dwindled so much that there was no money to support the fabric of the village church, which became very dilapidated. However, another possibility is that the building at file’s green burnt down, fires being not infrequent at this time.
By 1817 the land was in the ownership of Charles Townsend of Ferrier’s farm and in 1821 he built two brick cottages on the site, each cottage occupied by two families of agricultural labourers. The structure of these cottages was very simple, just a two-storey rectangle divided in the center by a large common chimney piece. Each dwelling had its own fireplace, but the two families seem to have shared a brick bread-oven which jutted out from the rear of the cottage. The outer wall of the bread-oven is still visible on the remaining cottage. The fireplaces themselves and the chimney structure appear to be order than the 1821 cottages and may have survived from the earlier dwellings. All traces of the common land had long disappeared and the two cottages stood on a small plot of less than an acre where the labourers would have been able to grow a few vegetables and keep a few chickens or a pig. The bulk of their time was spent working at ferriers farm.
Both cottages are clearly marked on maps of 1874, but by the end of the century one of them had gone. Again, the last years of the 19th century were a period of agriculture depression, and a number of smaller farms in the area were abandoned. Traces of one, Mosse’s Farm, still partly encircled by a very overgrown moat, may be seen less than a kilometer from files green. It seems likely that, as the need for agriculture labour declined, one of the cottages fell into disuse, decayed and was eventually pulled down. Occasional fragments of rubble and brick still surface in the garden of the remaining cottage.
In 1933, this cottage was sold to the manager of the newly-opened gravel works to the north-west of pebmarsh village. He converted these two dwelling into one. This, then, is the only remaining habitation on the site, and is called files green cottage.

Leave a Reply