By Lt Colonel William Sykes
(William Sykes, son of Rev. John Heath Sykes, Vicar of Haselor 1867-1912)
This fascinating account of Life at Haselor Vicarage in the 19th century has only recently come to light in 2007. A chance meeting with Martyn Davey (Churchwarden) in Haselor Church by William Sykes, the grandson of the author and great grandson of Rev. John Heath Sykes.
To make it more interesting, I have added pictures with names to correspond with the story.

John Finnemore, Walcote Farm




In these days of shifting values, superficial security, scientific inventions, of noise and speed and mass production, it is sometimes a relief to turn back to the experiences of a childhood, not without its hardships, but lived in a more leisurely, less complicated world. Memory often draws a veil over the harsh and unhappy things. and blunts the edges of childhood’s sufferings, so that, re-living those vicissitudes, excitements and matters of absorbing interest consisted in and were created by the simple realities of a life lived in the heart of the Warwickshire countryside.

In those days the Vicarage was the centre of village life in Haselor. The house, not old as houses go, for my Father had it built, yet has a certain mellowness in its warm red brick which gives an impression of age, as it stands today, pleasantly modernised and dreaming in the spring sunshine. The rooks still build in the elms nearby. Across the lane and up the steep incline the little church stands, gathering around it, on weathered, crooked tombstones, the names of many who were the life and essence of the village community into which, in 1867 I was born. I was the fourth arrival in a family which, year by year, with almost clockwork regularity increased until it reached a living total of fourteen - six girls and eight boys.

This firsthand account of "Life at Haselor Vicarage" and "Corners of the Earth" in the nineteenth century is now being published in one booklet, with all the profit going for the upkeep of Haselor Church. The booklet is on sale in the church for £5 or £6 by post.

If you would like this opportunity to purchase a copy then please send a cheque for £6 to "John Finnemore" at the address below. Please also send an email to confirm that you have sent a cheque. Thank you.

John Finnemore, Walcote Farm, Walcote, Alcester, B49 6LY.