Tinsley was once a picturesque rural area which boasted beautiful scenes of babbling rivers, herds of cattle and flocks of sheep in the meadows, golden fields of wheat and barley, with the sounds of agriculture echoing through the landscape. Rather than the busy roads present in Tinsley today, the road infrastructure was built up of cobbled streets, with the sight of horses and carts clopping over these being a common one. Between these cobbled roads and fields were picturesque cottages dotted about Tinsley in small rows. Children played care free in the streets and meadows, and church bells would have rang every Sunday to call the community to church, a central point which became a hub of activity and giddy laughter would arise from weekend fetes held on the village green. These memories of rural Tinsley are still in the minds of some of the local community, those who grew up in an era when Tinsley still had an air of the rural village about it.
Horse and cart with two women and a man in the cart with the Manor House in the background. With thanks to Freda Whitfield for the image.
There has been a church on the site of the current St Lawrence church for over 800 years, potentially being the location for the private chapel for the aristocracy of Tinsley who lived at Tinsley Hall and Manor Farm. St Lawrence Glebe was land which the church rented out to be cultivated to support the churches priest. These lands are referred to the Chapel Flats in the Court Rolls and can bee seen in 18th century maps of Tinsley.
Needham family at Manor House circa 1900. With thanks to Freda Whitfield for the image.
Further presence of the past rural life that dominated Tinsley are presented by the farms which once stood in Tinsley. Most of the farms were in close proximity of St Lawrence Church. Bank House Farm was located at the junction of Bawtry Road and Ingfield Avenue. This was once the home of William Coupland of Tinsley House. Bawtry Lane Farm, otherwise known as Jenkinson's Farm was located on Bawtry Road near the junction with Town Street. This is one of Tinsley's oldest farms. Firs Farm, was set back from Bawtry Road, on the site of the old Tinsley Primary School. The Dyson family lived at this farm for over 200 years, members of this family can be found in St Lawrence graveyard. Hall Farm was a late 19th century brick farmhouse located at the junction of Bawtry Road and Highgate on the site previously occupied by Tinsley Hall, this building was demolished in 1930s to allow for the widening of Bawtry Road. Pear Tree Farm, some of the remains of which can still be seen today, was located on Bawtry Lane roughly opposite the Carnegie Library. White Hill Farm was located in an area known as Tinsley Detached which lay to the east of St Lawrence's church. Yew Tree Farm was located at the junction of Bawtry Road and St Lawrence Road. This farm was demolished in the early 1950's for road widening purposes.
The Lodge/ Pear Tree Farm, with thanks to Sheila Neil and John Allchurch for the image.
Tinsley's Agricultural industry is mentioned in 1086 in the Domesday Book which discusses a mill and the Tynslawe Mille is referred to in the accounts of the Sheffield Town Trust in 1585. Crops which the Tinsleys fields yielded included potatoes, wheat, barley, oats and turnips. Some of grain would have been stored in the Tithe Barn, owned by the Spencer Family in the 1600-1700s, also mentioned in the Court Rolls. Fields were also used for growing animal fooder and grazing pastures. Various old maps show in detail the field names such as The Home, The Shaw and Parson's Close.
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