Sibbertoft: The wellington and washing


This is the final village visit of my section of the walk. The Old School house features a brickwork date on the gable end, next door stands the church which has some lovely detailing in the porch area – the door hinge and decorative floor tiles in particular.

05 sign not mine

This above image of the plaque is one I have found since the visit – and have subsequently researched further. As it states, in 1941, a Wellington of 305 (Polish) Squadron returning from a raid on Cologne crashed near Sibbertoft. All six crew members were killed. After removal from the wreckage the crew’s bodies were placed in out-buildings at the Red Lion public house in Sibbertoft to await collection by the military.

Pictured here is Flight Officer Golacki the second pilot who was only 22 years old, the other photo is believed to be the crew.

There is also a nineteenth century reference to the Red Lion pub from the Sibbertoft village website which records that at this time the village saw major improvements being made, ‘this was due to the new Lady of the Manor, Lady Villiers.  She had acquired Sulby Hall and its lands by the middle of the century. Lady Villiers was a stickler for propriety. Tenants of hers (and most of the villagers were) could not hang out clothes on Sunday. All had to attend church and line up outside to doff their caps or curtsey to her after service.  Those that didn’t abide by her rules were thrown out of their homes. Despite this picture of Victorian rectitude the village had quite a reputation as being a wild and lawless place.  Heavy drinking in the Red Lion and poaching on an industrial scale seemed to be the order of the day.  Running fights between the local ruffians and the Constabulary were not unknown’.

Something else to note, up until the Industrial Revolution, flax weaving and farming formed the principle trades of the village. I wonder if, like in one of T’s previous posts regarding Silver Street, there are any street or house references to flax weaving?



    1. Eclectic is the right word(!) I worry that my posts are not as singularly focused as your section; perhaps the next stage is to start identifying which aspect of each place I want to focus on, I think this will make the development of the project easier. Should there be an over-arching theme? I am currently drawn to several possibilities at the moment: 1. people/the community – and the references to past inhabitants. 2. cottage industries and the connection to house names. 3. a combination of the above two! 4. the pubs – it is interesting to see in the directories that there were lots of women land-ladies or beer sellers in each village. Or perhaps there doesn’t need to be a singular theme. Lots to discuss when we eventually meet in the middle in March!


  1. I could go with either or all themes! Through my research I have enjoyed finding out about individuals – little snippets of social history amongst the present visual landscape – I’m drawn to using a wide range of facts – although it could be interesting to start to order and catalogue our findings taking a similar approach as our initial sorting of the contents of Vera’s Vanity Case?


    1. I like the idea of taking a systematic approach – I have recently spent time organising my own research into a series of envelopes – acting as files to contain all relevant information regarding each place… working with books from the library, internet sources and found material meant that things were becoming unruly(!) and disorganised, the system has helped me reflect on my findings so far and gain an understanding of what further research is required.


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