ancient  villages  linked  by  their  shared  history

~ FANTASTIC DAY today, with Years 3, 4, 5 & 6 from St James' Academy on Dorchester Rd visiting our Old School. Everyone was so supportive of what we do and the children enjoyed themselves, trying on costumes, ringing the school bell and lots more. Thank you to all of you, and teachers and helpers too .... 12 photos are now available, on EVENTS button or click link in menu .....
photos above : historic postcards of 1910

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Do feel free to leave us a message in our Guestbook; see entries from all over the world
Do feel free to leave a message .. ..

we deploy a ramp for diabled access into the Old School - do ask us for assistance free Wi-Fi inside the Old School - access code pinned up in tearoom over serving hatch

We are a local Folk Museum and Family History Centre
inside this Grade II listed school building of 1859;
the oldest former council school in Hull
still used for educational purposes:

now supported entirely by
Volunteers and Donations;
though we are now in need of a major sponsor
to keep the museum open into 2018

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You Can Click here to
enter Our Old School

. . . has anyone seen our ... little mouse!

Did you like our first image? ... here it is again

A Map to Find Us at HU7 4TL
we are the next building to the right of the arrow!

Our area covers the historic parishes of both
Sutton and Wawne: Sutton parish also included
Stoneferry, Wilmington, St Marks and The Groves.


every Friday 10 till 2
not just Sutton & Wawne;
ALL areas of the UK !

Wawne Primary School old school blazer badge - leads to School Visits Page

The Hull PALS
and Oppy Wood
click the poppy to go to a new page

We can take a photo of your child for you
in our re-creation of a Victorian School photo ?
We can supply child's cap or other props - have 2 photos, one smiling, one serious!

Click these Chalkboards for More Details!

regiments & squadrons

ships RN & MN
troopers & convoys
lost trawlers, etc

St James' Church of England School, Sutton on Hull - the boys' cap badge

A map showing the relative
positions of our ancient villages is

We are proud to have been supported so far by:
several local schools and
Sutton in Holderness Conservation Society
and many, many individual small donors.
But we are now in need of a major sponsor.
Can you help?

A full list of all our existing Friends and Supporters
appears on our Friends Page

We can also be found on

which leads to our 'Friends Page' . .

our website is hosted by Free Virtual Servers

Click Me ... I dare you
School Visits from All Schools very Welcome;
if you can get here, we'll entertain you !

Click the railway station sign above
to see our restored station seat

You can contact us at:

view our FACEBOOK page

Museum & Family History Research on Fridays in the Old School Rooms, a marvellous display of life in Sutton and Wawne in times past; much more to see when 				you visit .. Incredible list of resources. Use also with FAMILY HISTORY button below ... Wawne Village, links to church, Village Hall and history Family History enquiries and list of resources for St James', & St Peters's, Wawne ; Resources list as of 10 May 2011 .. Use also with OLD SCHOOL button above 				.. dozens of links to military history, both local,national and military, including both World Wars, all armed services, and more send an EMAIL to us direct to the volunteers at the Sutton & Wawne Museum Local Photos & Images of Sutton & Wawne St James Churchyard - a full list of graves and memorials Sutton War Memorial .. photos of each war grave now added, Nov 2009 Wawne War Memorial

for Clubs and Societies

To further the finances of our museum, we have two speakers for hire to talk to your group.
All proceeds from talks benefit the upkeep of this museum - no expenses ever deducted!

Five presentation subjects are available; all within the wider realm of history.
  1. The Air Defences of Hull During both World Wars - by Simon
  2. Posters & Poster Art - from both World Wars - by Simon
  3. Demolished buildings of Old Hull from the Sam Allon Collection - by Rob
  4. Family History and Old Maps from the Internet - by Rob
  5. Family Photos and their Digital Restoration - either as PSP tutorial, or general interest - by Rob
Available most weekday evenings; daytime Weds & Thurs only

A projector / screen / laptop / leads, can be provided; only your mains power required.

A Wi-Fi connection is useful for the Internet maps talk.

See a list of Groups and Societies that have already supported us
for which we have already given talks and presentations.

please email for details

new photo-DVD - out now
Computer DVD

Price is £10 each

a digitised version of Merrill Rhodes' book of the same with extras.
Read the whole book, just like on a Kindle !
And enjoy the photos and maps like you've never seen them before!

Also now available in Town, at the HULL PEOPLES' MEMORIAL SHOP
in Whitefriargate ... Tues - Sat.

An Overview for Visitors
explaining this background map
~ the full screen map can be seen
if you scroll right to the end of this page

Here in Sutton on Hull, at the Sutton and Wawne Museum,
we were also anciently known as Sutton in Holderness.
We're just down the road from St James' Parish Church,
from which this old church school takes its name.
St James', in Sutton, was a daughter church of St Peter's at Wawne,
formerly known as Waghen, and now pronounced 'Worn'.
Both villages have War Memorials, and here we research
Genealogy and Family History for our visitors,
all linked in to a more general Yorkshire and British History.

When Was Bransholme ?
This month's stylised background map is a slightly closer view of the area to the west of Sutton than we had previously, and dated here at 1889 on the earliest decent scale map we can get for free, at 1:2,500 scale. We know the area now as Bransholme, though it wasn't always so. These maps should be best viewed as a form of 'art', as for a desktop, rather than as accurate maps for research. Thus any 'distress marks' of imaginary ink blots and paper wear and tear on parchment paper are mine, as are any extra objects and symbols that may have been placed purely for decorative purposes. The actual maps can be viewed, and for free, at Dates available range from the 1850s up to modern times.

So to answer the question: Bransholme was always there, but only in the names of a couple of farms to the far north-east of our area. If our area did have an overall name for the farms and fields between Sutton and Wawne villages, it was all part of the wider Sutton parish. Early Ordnance Survey maps mark "SUTTON and STONEFERRY" right across the whole area to the west and north-west of the village but also across the swathe of flood-prone field over the north of the village and right round to the east towards Gandstead. Stoneferrry, itself a mere hamlet and not a parish in its own right, is a mile or so to the south west, on the River Hull - where there was indeed, a ferry.

Prior to the Second World War, this was predominantly a dairy farming area and had been so for hundreds of years. In very ancient times, few crops could be grown, particularly on the lower ground, as the ground never stayed dry long enough for crops to take root and grow to a meaningful size - only grass. A lot of that grass being a tough type of sedge, not at all palatable to sheep or cattle. The restricted narrow ridge of higher ground to the north east supported some essential crops, like turnips, and corn, and there were indeed several mills in the area over those aeons of time to grind their corn.

As well as the more recent dairy farming, we know that the influence of the great abbey at Meaux just to the north of Wawne, who held pasturage rights in Sutton, would have seen a great number of sheep grazing in the carrs and wet meadows of both parishes over the centuries, just as sheep graze today in the Kent and Suffolk salt marshes. England's abbeys were renowned for their expertise at sheep farming, and indeed the wealth of the country in the middle ages increased massively on account of the famous wool trade, and no doubt it benefitted the Sutton and Wawne areas greatly too. But before the land could even support a grass good enough for sheep, there had to be considerably extensive drainage. Medieval monks were good at that. But all that was some seven centuries ago or more.

In this year of Bransholme's 50th Birthday as an estate, and effectively now almost a small new town, it is interesting to see how open the land still was, not so long ago, with just that scattering of mainly dairy farms. Many of those farm names live on today, either as the general name for the area, or in the names of new roads, avenues or garths. The close proximity of the River Hull is just off this map, but one main main water course can be seen, almost certainly one dug by monks some 700 years ago.

The River Hull is tamed now (so we like to think) but it wasn't always so - for it once had a mind very much of its own. In the past couple of thousand years or thereabouts, the river had taken several different courses to the Humber, until the time of Wyke, the town that became Hull. Those industrious monks of Meaux, and the later fortifications of Henry VIII, more or less fixed the river mouth to where it is today. But there was a time when weather, storms and tides all combined to let the river make it own decision as to where it discharged out into the Humber. The River Hull was nothing if not capricious, and may well be so again one day. We have to thank those ancient monks for their efforts in draining this land with its numerous dykes, drains and ditches, that brought it to a point in the last two or three centuries when crops could be grown on the very fertile lower fields nearer the river, a fertility maintained by frequent floodwaters right up until fairly recent years. Some of those drains are still evident today.

The dusty line of the lane to Wawne, that umbilical track that has conjoined both villages since time immemorial and certainly since before the Norman conquest - is clearly marked heading north-west from Sutton to cross the drain before rising to Carlem Lane top, and then dropping the short distance into Wawne itself. We can picture solemn parties of Sutton mourners over the centuries, carrying their dead at shoulder height for burial within the churchyard of St Peter's at Wawne. For Sutton folk were not allowed to bury their dead in their own village, because until 1349, Sutton didn't have a church of its own, nor consecrated graveyard, just a small chapel. All major religious feast days, and there were many, would be celebrated by mass at St Peter's, and attendance was to all intents and purposes obligatory for everyone, including villagers at Sutton.

The same rules applied to the aforementioned hamlet of Stoneferry, off this map another thousand or so yards down Leads Road to the south west. Incidentally, a 'lead' has another ancient meaning in these parts, connected with smaller drainage channels, wetness and a surfeit of water. Though why Sutton parish, when it was formed in 1349, extended so far south, way beyond Stoneferry, right down to Witham, is a mystery today. Given the bad roads, very wet, muddy and virtually impassable in winter, it is a wonder why those southern hamlets did not look to the far nearer church of St Peter's at Drypool for their weekly ecumenical doctrine. More accidents of history, I suppose.

This map is not at all clear in this view, even at 1:2,500. But one well known farm, at Soffam, shows clearly at top left. All the other farms of the area, Bransholme High and Low, Ings, Frog Hall and Gibraltar Farm (just, on the far western edge by the river) are all close about, just off the edges of this map. It is a moot thought that the new estate could just as easily have been named Soffham, for oddly, neither of those two Bransholme farmsteads have actually been built upon. We could have seen buses with 'Soffham Centre' instead of Bransholme in their destination displays. The name Soffham, incidentally, derives from an ancient word for sedge, and so describing a farmstead surrounded by fields of that marshy grass, which then as now, needs a great deal of water to thrive.

So how ancient is the land around here? We have below just a few of the names of the many farms on the land that surrounded Sutton by the end of the 19th century, and most of that land to the west and north west is what we now call Bransholme. So many of the names you may well recognise, and so many of them have their origins in ancient words and field names, often old Norse, that described perfectly to those peoples the old landscape and topography.

Frog Hall ~ Gibraltar ~ Ings ~ West Carr ~ Spring Cottage ~ High Bransholme ~ Noddle Hill ~ Castle Hill ~ Soffam ~ Carr House ~ Low Bransholme ~ Salt Ings

Most of those names are over a thousand years old, in their original form, though now anglicised to what we recognise today. The ghosts of those old Norsemen, if they could come back today, would recognise the name 'Bransholme' and know exactly what it meant - though it's very doubtful if they'd know or guess where 'The Cenner' was.

This aerial view is from the Hull Daily Mail collection, and dated c.1970. It opens in a full new window. Astral Way is just being built, Dorchester Ave barely started, with Stroud Crescent West, the flats on Honiton Rd, and the large trees of Lambwath Hall, all just visible in the distance. A few fields, the last reminder of this predominantly dairy farming area, are all that are left of a way of life that dated back hundreds of years. Keen viewers will note the line of the railway, already closed for some 6 years though visible by the line of the opposite platform at the end of which are three small, individual trees. Also visible are the last remaining sheds and buildings of the RAF station.

If you scroll this box right up, dump the side menu, and use F11,
it's possible to see the map Full Screen on 1366 x 768 displays,
even more so if you select to just view this frame, and lose the side menu.

Here's a treat for railway historians, to see what part of
Hull's dock railways mapped like in 1928:
Click anywhere along this line to go to Old Maps
When it loads, the centre of your map will be 'blued'; that's the print area.
Click the buttons top right to turn the blue off, and make Full Screen.
You may have to Scroll Out three or four times for the free maps to appear.
Then just scroll around to your heart's content. Wow indeed!
By Golly, there weren't half some railway steel hereabouts!!
The bit you will be looking at is now Sieman's turbine blade factory.

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