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East Claydon South - 2


Carter’s Lane dives almost due south between the hills of Quainton and Oving (#1), a lonely little track on the edge of an expanding Aylesbury1.   Jonathan Kirtland2, who works on the lane, has shown me a surface-trace of the original (Roman) road.  A cross-section of it was revealed in the 1960’s, when a gas main was being dug.

 

#2 shows what is supposed to be the gravestone of the Gypsy King, Edward Bozwell.  It has been moved, probably more than once, and any markings on it have gone, but it lies by the side of Carter’s Lane at (approx.) SP 764206. 

 

The 1640 burial register of St Mary’s, Aylesbury, roughly reads: on March 20th Edward Bozwell King of the Gypsies was executed – with two other gipsies surnamed ‘Smith’.  The crime was, apparently, horse-stealing.  His last wish was to be buried in Carter’s Lane.

 

The Bucks Yeomanry was brought into Aylesbury from Buckingham to prevent riots, for every gipsy in the neighbourhood had crowded into town.  The stone is said to have appeared engraved with EB’s name and the date “the first day of 1641”.  (March 25th was New Year’s Day before the mid-1700’s.)

 

After Blackgrove (#3), a drovers’ inn, Carters becomes Berryfield (#4) becomes Aylesbury becomes tarmac all the way to London.

 

 

1 The photos on this page were taken in 2007-8.  What they show may well have been built on by now (2014).

2 JK told me there was a big gipsy funeral in 1958, when he was ten.  He wasn’t allowed to watch, which annoyed him because the man’s home was set on fire, Viking-style.  The lorry/caravan was pushed down the hill, blazing.