Plumtree - A Working Village
Although a small village, (population approx. 200), Plumtree has retained most of the traditional facilities and amenities of the English village. A busy road running through the village ensures a regular bus service and provides customers for the post office, village stores and pub.
The Church has a healthy congregation and the Church of England school, closed down by the L.E.A. in 1974 is now a thriving, independent primary school.
The railway line by the village is now used by British Rail as a test track and is maintained in good order. The station is now a popular restaurant.
A village cricket green, 3 working farms within the village boundary and a well-used village hall complete the traditional scene.
The Village Ghost
Bradley's Yard, once a farmyard, but now a small housing development, is haunted by the ghost of a farmworker who hanged himself in the 19th century.
The yard, tucked away by the Church and rectory, now contains the original farmhouse, a converted barn and several modern houses.
The man is said to have committed suicide in the barn and his ghost can be seen crossing the yard at dawn during the winter months.
One of the villagers who, until recently, delivered the milk, reports that although she saw the ghost cross her path on many occasions, she felt no threat or malice from him. She describes him as a "friendly" ghost.
Plumtree Telephone Exchange
The Telephone Exchange serves 5 villages: Plumtree, Tollerton, Keyworth, Stanton on the Wolds and Normanton. The Exchange was built in 1958 and is next to Plumtree School. There are 4600 telephones connected there. Because each telephone needs 2 wires, there are 9200 wires going into the building. Each call is timed on a meter and photographed. The numbers on the meter are used to work out the bill.
In about 2 years the Exchange will be totally modernised. All the testers, meters and 4 point setters will be replaced by micro chips. The Exchange is run by 1 person, Mr White. To make it safer for him the Exchange runs on 50 volts. If there is a power cut a generator is automatically switched on. If that fails there are batteries which could keep up the power for 24 hours.
Blacksmith's Forge, (Forge Stores) Plumtree, Nottinghamshire
The forge ceased to be a working smithy in the 1950s. It is now a private residence and a storeroom for the village shop. It still has an unusual horseshoe shaped arch around the doorway, built into the brickwork. There are only three like it in the country, two of the others being in Nottinghamshire.
Once a listed building, it still attracts a good deal of attention, particularly from people taking part in "car rallies" who want to know how many nails are in it.
The Survey Team
The ladies of Plumtree Women's Institute who took part were:
- Eva Barrett
- Margaret Brown
- Mavis Cockayne
- Kathleen Dodgson
- Dorothy Henton
- Rosemary Jordan
- Diana Simons
- Rita Wain
They acknowledge the assistance of their menfolk, of various inhabitants of Wysall and Widmerpool, including the Rector, of a local school headmaster who allowed his printer to be used, of the Bursar of Widmerpool Hall, and of members of Plumtree W.I.
Data input completed 26.10.85