Laxton, situated to the east of Ollerton, south of Tuxford and just a few minutes from the busy A1 is a chance to step back in time. The village is the site of the last remaining open field farming crop rotation system still managed by a legally constituted Court Leet and Jury. Over the weekend of 28–29 June Laxton History Group invites you to come to learn more about this unique place and also to help us to discover more about the village as it was between 1900 and 1920.
Laxton is a busy working farming village. To keep the narrow roads clear and visitors safe, the experience begins at the bottom of the village where ample parking is available. Collect a guide to the history behind the sights you would miss as you take your choice of route to the hub of the event at Crosshill Farm via the road, the Twitchill or the fishponds. There is a ‘spotting’ game for the children. Be sure to pick up your spotting quiz sheet before you leave the car park and look out for the sheep or fish you pass along the way. Every child gets a small reward and there is one cash prize for the winner which will be drawn from all correct completed forms.
The event hub opens at 10.30am both days and will be hosting a wide range of activities based at Crosshill Farm. Learn more of the village’s history from the Group’s display and the range of speakers. These will include Prof. John Beckett from Nottingham University, the well-known authority on Laxton’s history, and Alistair Millar of Tallent’s Solicitors, the current Steward of the Court Leet.
Those who would like to see the open fields and more of the estate, now owned by the Crown Estate, can join one of the tractor and trailer tours. The land is private and not normally open to vehicles other than those of the farmers, so this is a rare opportunity to see the field strips at close quarters with a guide to tell you all about it. For the more energetic, there is a chance to take a guided walk to the castle to see the motte and bailey castle, which is no longer generally accessible to the public, and to learn more about how the village and its farming system work.
Laxton History Group has recently begun a Heritage Lottery Funded project to research the period 1900 – 1920 in depth. Project Leader Roger Cottee and Co-Chair Joan Cottee will be giving presentations about the work on both days. There will be opportunities for anyone with information which might help the project to speak to members or to indicate that they would welcome a call. If you have any family heirlooms from the WWI period which you feel you can safely bring to show Group members, they would be delighted to see them and talk to you about them.
You will be able to buy refreshments throughout and entertainment from Rattlejag Morris (Saturday) and the Bowmen of War both days, as well as a wide range of heritage crafts being demonstrated by local artists and crafts people. Don’t forget your shopping bag as there will be plenty of chances to buy gifts and treats from those demonstrating their skills.
For more information and advance ticket sales, please see www.laxtonheritage.org.uk