I begin this series by referring to an article previously published in the Wrambler under the title “The Writing on the Wall”.

This writing, discovered on an internal wall of an old barn at High Coppice Farm, is in the form of a pencil written poem.

Some of it is difficult to decipher but we now believe it reads,

When you and I my love shall part
Shall leave a sting inside our hear
I to some distant land shall go
Sleep deaths cold sleep as many others do
All this I’ve said have more to say
Night calls me now I cannot stay
With meditation read these lines
You may perchance a question find
My question is please find it out
Love is a thing without a doubt

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In May 2020 Tony Brownbridge’s solution to the question set in the poem, was “When shall I sleep all night with you my love.” This is arrived at by forming a sentence from the first word of each line in the poem.
Underneath the poem is a single line which would appear to say, “There is joy in every bed when there is love at home”.

Other pieces of writing refer to the weather and to farming practices such as,

“Started sowing April 4th 1908 6 acre barley” and “Started harvest Aug 10/1911”.

We still don’t know who wrote the poem though a farm worker about to depart for the front in the Great War would certainly be a possibility as some 1914 dates can also be seen. A name, probably James Tren ? or Fren ? does appear on the wall, as does that of Maud Jemmison. Were these the loving couple? Unfortunately the latter part of the man’s surname is illegible. However ,this spelling of Maud’s name appears on the 1911 census as a 22 year old servant at the farm. She had been born in Rosedale and would marry George William Metcalfe, a farmer aged 32, at St. Lawrence Church, Rosedale 0n May 10th 1922. Does anyone know more of her story?

Such writings as these are rare but give us a glimpse into times past.

Any information can be passed to Richard Young on helenyoungy52@hotmail.com.