The new exhibition at Crewkerne Museum, which opened on March 24th and runs until June 16th, looks at farms in Crewkerne’s past from the time of the tithe mapping in 1844 to the present day. Farms In Crewkerne Past centres around the town and its immediate surroundings, covering the Parish of Crewkerne, some of West Crewkerne plus the parochial area of Easthams. Agriculture was and still is an important part of the economy of Crewkerne, but the loss of farmsteads within the town’s boundary over the years, will astound visitors to the exhibition.
One of the examples of a busy farm with farmhouse, cart shed, stables and milking parlour with a cow shippon, horse circle behind the barn and acres of farmland is Ashlands Farm. The farm is recorded on maps in 1889 and reported to have been completely lost to the town in the 1970’s. The location of the farmhouse and farm buildings was near to the busy road junction between North Street and Ashlands Road, with acres of arable land that originally stretched up to Bincombe Drive and beyond and is now a built up residential area.
Interesting facts about farming in the past, including maps, photographs and artifacts that include butter making equipment, a milk pail and milk cans, milk bottles and the top of a milk churn from Easthams Farm, compliment the exhibition. A model of a farmhand, dressed in a smock and wearing leather gaiters, the equivalent of today’s wellies, provides a rustic welcome. Crewkerne Museum is open on Wednesdays, Thursdays and Fridays from 10 am until 4 pm and on Saturdays from 10 am until 1 pm. Those who are interested in finding out more about Crewkerne’s farming past when the exhibition closes in June, are invited to join a new group to research and record farmsteads around Crewkerne. The group will be holding their inaugural meeting at 7 pm in the museum on Wednesday June 20th, 2018.