Hidden well discovered in Fernhurst

A hidden well has been discovered in a garden at Fernhurst.

John Spears thought he had put his foot in a rabbit hole, but quickly realised the incident could have been more serious.

He was clearing brashing and timber rubbish from a section of his garden and pulling on a log when the ground under his foot gave way.

He came to a halt with one leg deep down the hole, landing on his backside with a painful thud. Extracting himself, he started digging around to find out what he had fallen into.

A small stick disappeared, followed by a long length of wood so he started digging carefully around the hole, clearing away some nine inches of soil to discover a well shaft.

Made of thin bricks, it was very clean and seemed to have no cover on it apart from a half-broken cement collar around the edge reducing the diameter of the entrance. Beneath that the well was about nine feet deep, with the floor appearing to be full of rubble.

Mr Spears is now waiting for someone qualified on safety ropes to lower themselves down and explore.

His preliminary research has revealed that before his house was built in the 1960s, the area of the well is where the buildings for Tybalds Farm stood.

He is hoping there will be people who remember the farm, or even worked there, and who will recall the well.

Iain Brown of Fernhurst Archive said the well was not marked on any Ordnance Survey maps as some are.

"The archive hopes to trace all the wells in the village, in use or dried-up, visible or hidden, and I hope that people will come forward not only with the wells in their own gardens, but also wells that they remember from their youth which are no longer obvious," Mr Brown said.

He can be contacted on 01428 653081.

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