Rural scenes of Eccleshall

Hedge laying competition, Woodend, Adbaston, October 1938.
The winner of First Prize at the Eccleshall District Hedgecutting Match held at Mr H. Timmis’s farm at Woodend Farm, Adbaston. (Mr P. Trevor)

Rural scenes of Eccleshall

by Senior Museums Officer, Chris Copp at Staffordshire Past Track

Here’s a selection of scenes of rural life around Eccleshall and Stone in the 1930s and 1940s. As ever, if you can give us any more details about the people in the photographs and the events shown, please do get in touch. All these photographs and more than 35,000 others are or will shortly be available on the improved Staffordshire Past Track website (

To find out what’s new on the site just click on to the ‘Latest Additions’ tab. You might also like to try out the GPS Location Explorer feature on the site: when using a mobile device with GPS enabled, the page will show a list of resources nearest you. With ‘automatic updates’ switched on, the results will automatically reload every few metres you walk. It works particularly well where there are a lot of resources – give it a go in Eccleshall and Stone and see what things looked like in the past on the spot you’re standing.

If you have any images to lend, or any extra information, please contact the Past Track team: Staffordshire Past Track, Staffordshire Archives & Heritage, Shugborough, Milford, Stafford ST17 0XB. Telephone 01889 869137 or email You can also keep up to date with what’s new on Past Track by ‘liking’ our Facebook page.

Christmas Auction, Eccleshall, 5 December 1938. A prize-winning Polled Angus bullock owned by Mrs L. Foxley of Chatcull, pictured at the Eccleshall Christmas Auction in 1938. This livestock auction was held at Eccleshall Smithfield off Stone Road which stood on the site of what is now the Co-op Supermarket car park. (Mr P. Trevor)


Charnes Old Hall Farm, Wetwood, 1943-1945. Splendid wheat stacks or ricks built by Tom Oldbury at Charnes Old Hall Farm. In the absence of barns, the ricks were well thatched to keep the grain dry. From left to right: Tom Oldbury, Joyce Smith (Women’s Land Army girl), Edward ‘Ned’ Timmis, Jack Thornley, and Harry Timmis (eldest son of Ned Timmis). The horse’s name was ‘Tommy’. (Mrs M. Corp)


Hedge laying competitors, Eccleshall District Ploughing Match, late 1940s. A hedge laying competition was a regular feature of the Eccleshall District Ploughing Match which was held at farms around Eccleshall in October every year. Does anyone recognise any of these men? (Mr P. Trevor)


Charnes Old Hall Farm, Wetwood, 1943-1945. This photograph was taken during the Second World War at Charnes Old Hall Farm, near Wetwood. From left to right, Mr Edward Barlow Timmis (farmer, known as Ned), Joyce Smith (a Women’s Land Army girl from Eccleshall), Jack Thornley, and Tom Oldbury (a farm worker living at Croxton). Mr Oldbury built the wheat ricks in the background in a small field by the stack yard. (Mrs M. Corp)