Stationmaster's House

Winteringham Local History and Genealogy

The Stationmaster’s House


    Anthony Robinson lived in the Stationmaster’s House in the 1950s and 1960s.  Here he describes the house in detail when it was still owned  by the railways, and still included some of the original fittings from the early years of the twentieth century.  We would like to point out that since those days it is now a private and updated dwelling.

The House and gardensWinteringham Stationmaster's House 3

Travelling north down Low Burgage as you reach the bottom of the hill and the houses finish on the left hand side you will find the Railway Station and the large red brick house before it was the Station Masters House.

Standing in its own grounds its boundaries were defined by the railway line that runs alongside the garden fence on the north side and on the south side the footpath used by the public. The direction of the path was changed as it originally ran through to where the Station was built. On this path at its Western end was a kissing gate. Between the garden and path was a dividing fence.

At the rear of the house was an enclosed yard which contained a single storey block of buildings that included the wash house, coal house and toilet - that had to be emptied each week by the Council "Dilly man" into a specially designed lorry for such waste.

The front of the house, had a gable end with four long sash windows two upstairs and two down. Above the top windows was a large wooden beam with five wooden uprights coming out of it cut to fit the shape of the roof angle and filled between with pebble dashing. The lower windows had bricks stood on end over each one. Set back from the front of this part of the house four or five feet was the porch that covered the entrance and front door. This area was approximately four foot by twelve foot and was covered by a slopping roof that started about eight foot high at the front and ended at the ridge. The porch walls were made of brick and topped with a sandstone capping, between that and the beam under the front edge of the roof are wooden pillars to support it. You had to walk the length of it to reach the front door.
 Winteringham Stationmasters House 1
A large garden divided by a path covers the front and north side of the property. The gate in earlier years was in the front fence at the left hand side next to the path on the southern boundary and now was opposite the porch entrance roughly in the centre of the fence. Following the path down the side of the house (which was another gable end) there were two more single windows the same size as the front ones - the first about half way up the wall was the landing window as it lets light onto the stairs and landing. Underneath was a small mesh covered window for the pantry.  The last window was for the smallest of the bedrooms. Between the pantry window and wall that surrounds the yard gate was a wooden cased pump that drew water from the well at the side of the house. Passing by the gate into the yard a few more steps brings you to the gate into the back garden and orchard.

The garden ran half the way down the length of the property - the orchard being the other half.  The garden on the south side was thick clay, but the centre and north side had large amounts of fine cinders mixed into the clay that had helped to break it down into a workable soil from which vegetable crops were grown. From just inside the garden gate between the centre and north side of the garden were the two posts for the washing line. Walking along side the washing line on a path made of cinders and compacted ash, the shade of orchard was reached and the grass path way between the trees. The first trees that stood before us on the left were a variety of eating apple and on the right a pear tree, and behind these were two more trees that produced big green cooking apples. Once beyond the trees the boundary fences taper inwards to about six feet at the end of the property.

Walking back up through the garden the back of the house with the rear bedroom window could be seen, and the chimney belonging to the wash house. But to on the right of these buildings was a strip of garden six feet wide that ran the full length of the house.

The house downstairs

Winteringham Stationmaster's House 2
Facing the front door your eyes were drawn to the highly polished brass letter box and door knob. Opening the door one noticed the sturdiness of its construction and when inside the two heavy bolts on it, one at the top and one at the bottom, and also the large key protruding from the lock. Another thing that may have been noticed was the colour of the paint, most of the wood work was a dark chocolate brown, the other colours were green and a shade of cream. These would have been the colours used by the railway company as they came at regular intervals and repainted their properties. Looking down the hall four doors can be identified, two on the left, one straight ahead, the other on the right. The stairs could be seen once the front door was closed on the right.

The first door on the left was into the front room.  It was a large spacious area with high ceilings and a picture rail running round the walls about eighteen inches from the top. These rails were so formed so that special hooks could be placed on them to allow the hanging of pictures. In the wall opposite was a black slate or marble fire place that had flower and leaf patterned tiles angled inwards towards the grate and the mantle shelf stood roughly five feet tall. On each side of the fire place was a recess. Looking further round the room the two large windows looked out over the front garden, Low Burgage and into the fields beyond. A single light fitting hung from the ceiling over a wooden floor. The switch for the light was on the wall just inside the door. From the quality of the fireplace the room may have been `the Best Room` or used on special occasions.

The next door in the hallway opened to reveal a room of similar proportions. The fire place looked to have been changed at some stage to a much smaller one of about four foot square and covered entirely in four inch beige coloured tiles along with a hearth covered the same way. On the left side of it was two cupboards one above the other from floor to ceiling, but the other side had only a recess with a shelf. The lighting was the same set up as the previous room. Each of the rooms had a single electrical socket of the three pin type but the pins were round and an adaptor was used to allow smaller sized plugs to be used. The single window looked out into the walled yard and the single storey buildings. Once again wooden floorboards were used.

Back in the hallway, the door opposite reveals the pantry .  To gain access there was one step down to the concrete floor of this eight foot square room that had part of one wall and ceiling sloping as it was tucked away under the stairs. A small window with a mesh covering on the outside allowed in air and a small amount of light. The white washed room had wooden shelving at two different levels running round it. There was a bulb fitted above the door way on the inside.

The other door off the hall was to the kitchen .  On entering the kitchen immediately in front of us was the back door and the kitchen window.  To the right on the wall next to the window was what was a Belfast Sink and on the top at the side of it was a small hand pump that drew water from the well in the back yard. To get this to work a small amount of water had to be placed into the top to prime it. A small bore lead pipe fed a tap above the sink and provided mains cold water. It was possible that this had been put in some time after the house was built. On the same wall as the sink was the oven and fire which was enamelled in a beige type colour.  I think this unit may have been an update from a Yorkshire Range that was found in most houses of the time as a attempt at modernisation.

To finish on that wall there was a narrow alcove with shelves from floor to ceiling next to the fire. The lighting was the same as the rooms with the exception that a switch was near to both doors.

The Outhouses

Looking outside the back door revealed the back yard with the outbuildings that housed the toilet, coalhouse and the washhouse. The washhouse had a copper, a brick construction with a hole to place a fire and large cast iron bowl. This had a wooden lid that was lifted on and off during use. A single lead pipe with a tap on it was fastened to the wall near the copper, but this too was thought to be a later addition when mains water was added. The only other thing in here was a freestanding bath which was not connected to anything and had a pipe sticking from underneath to allow water to drain from it. One thing to note was that there was no electricity connected to any part of this building and if you looked up the underside of the tiles were visible. On a personal note not a very nice place to have a bath and then to have cross the yard back into the house even though there was a six foot wall joining the two buildings. A large square stone slab dominated the centre of the yard under which was the well.

The paint used on the doors and gate was green.


Winteringham Stationmaster's House 4
Back in the house and to the stairs which climbed a short distance and then turned through ninety degrees and started to rise again passing under the window to where they turned again and continued up to the landing. Once standing at the top of the stairs your attention was drawn to the large cupboard on the left.  Its size must have been at least eight feet wide and four feet tall with two doors and possibly eight feet deep. It was of note because of its flat top under the slope of the roof and once again the dark brown chocolate paint. Opposite the cupboard was the door to the smallest of the three bedrooms, at the other end of the landing was the door to the back bedroom and along side that door on the left was the front bedroom door.

In the front bedroom, one was drawn to the two large windows that allow light to flood into the room and take up at least half of the wall.  Looking out can be seen the gardens and road but been upstairs there was a greater view than downstairs. On one wall was a small cast iron fireplace and grate just right for warming the room on a cold winters night, and set into the floor just in front of it was a stone slab to form a hearth. Just like the lower rooms this one had the picture rail round the walls, the single light fitting and wooden floor boards.

The back bedroom was a replica of the room below it, the two cupboards from floor to ceiling and recess on the other. The fireplace this was a small cast iron one with stone slab in front set into the wooden floor boards. In the far wall was the window that looks out over the yard. From this window when the trees were small most of the western end of the station complex would have been seen but as they grew the view had become more restricted. The single light fitting and switch was in much the same place as the other rooms.

In the smallest bedroom , the window and fire place were on the left. The window was on the right between the chimney stack and the outside wall, the centre of the chimney stack had the same small cast iron fire place as the other bedrooms with the stone slab set into the floor boards. Looking out of the window the entrance to the station was to the right with its big white gate held between large concrete posts. Just through the gate was a brick building with the long metal weighbridge in front and a window overlooking it and facing towards the house. Looking towards the right the edge of the goods platform railway lines and Station Buildings could be seen, and beyond a glimpse of the line as it made its way to the haven and beyond. From this vantage point the River Humber with the ships sailing past could be seen and in the distance the hills of Yorkshire.

Leaving the house from the front door and up the path, we might stop for a last look at the roses on the fence along with the lilac bush and its companion a bush with flowers that look like snowballs hanging from it then through the gate onto Low Burgage, and away with a final look back at a much-loved house.

Have you tried the other Winteringham Websites?
Winteringham, Parish Council (includes current news items, photographs, weather forecasts, calendar of events, etc etc)
Don Burton World of NaturePhoto Archive (modern photographs of the village), What the Papers have said about Winteringham (since July 2004),
High Resolution Historical Photographs, Winteringham Film Archive, Winteringham Football Club, Winteringham Nature Site , Winteringham Recipes, Winteringham Sales, Winteringham Camera Club, Winteringham Village Hall

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