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1866: Finally ... tollgates done away with

Updated: Dec 3, 2023

Sussex advertiser-Saturday 10 November 1866

Abolition of Turnpike gates

The gates on the Cuckfield and Hodges Rd, leading through Newick, Maresfield et cetera to a place called Hodges Green, not far from Hadlow Down, 15 miles, were thrown open on Thursday last, much to the joy of the inhabitants of the district, the act having expired on that day. The Trustees gave notice last year of their intention to apply for a renewal of the act, which it was determined to oppose, as the tolls were enormously heavy, and the road, especially at the Cuckfield end, where there was the greatest traffic and most oppressive toll, in a shameful state of repair.

A meeting was accordingly held at Cuckfield, to consider the steps to be taken, at which it was resolved to raise by subscription a sum equivalent to a large portion of the debt, and make an offer to the Trustees and in case they did not accept of it, to oppose tooth and nail the passing of the bill.

This (colourised) photo of Butler's Green tollhouse was taken pre 1866

Terms were come to, and the Act allowed to die out, and the road will, in future, be kept up by the parishes, in much better form that has been the case for years. Butler's Green gate has been a terrible impost on the road from this to the station, and collected a heavier sum in tolls than all the rest put together, much to the injury of the Borde Hill parish lane, and that has been terribly cut to pieces by the heavy traffic going that way to avoid the gate, at the bargate at Tylers Green also a great nuisance, both being a heavy expense to the trade of Cuckfield, but they are gone forever, as well as Skaynes Hill, Newick, Piltdown, and Buxted gates, and the numerous side gates on the road.

This is the third case of the kind in this neighbourhood, within a few years, this, the Ansty and Hurst, the Harley Road, and this, by which four tollgates in the vicinity have been done away with.

Visit Cuckfield Museum for ‘Horsepower – Before machines altered the pace of life forever’ display and much, much more. Follow the link for details

Other articles on Cuckfield Connections about toll houses and turnpikes:

1819: Notice: auction of Mid Sussex Turnpike Tolls

Detested but essential turnpikes ... 1

The tollbooth at Whiteman's Green ... 2

Fury at Butler's Green tollhouse ... 3

Bolney tollhouse - keeps moving ... 4

The mystery of the Hickstead tollhouse ... 5

Four tollhouses ... 6

1867: The challenges of maintaining Cuckfield roads after the abolition of turnpike gates


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