THE BCH ARCHIVE

LOCAL HISTORY FOR

BIRTSMORTON

CASTLEMORTON

HOLLYBUSH

And The Surrounding District

Pink Cottage 2

In the 1930's, it was famous for children's outings, the cream teas and scones. One local lady remembers going there on many Sunday School trips. Another lady recalls how, every year, the children from her school, St Matthias in Malvern Link, piled into a charabanc which took them up to the foot of British Camp. From there they all walked up to British Camp, then on to Pink Cottage for lemonade and cakes. It was the highlight of the year, she added, remembering that the sun always shone on those occasions.


In 1931, Albert and Blanche Baldwin lived there, with Julie (Hilda Mary Tyler who lived there from about 1931 to 1935 as waitress and cook. She later married George Brenton - Brent). They had a parrot called Polly and a dog called Jerry. Albert and Blanche retired to Bank Crescent, Ledbury and are buried at Hollybush.


In 1937, 10 July, Trustees Further gifts of land are being made under the National Trust scheme for the preservation of the southern half of the Malvern Hills. Another addition is the Pink Cottage between Swinyard Hill and Hangman's Hill, one mile south of the British Camp and within one mile of the Gullet quarry at the southern end of Castlemorton Common.


In 1939, 14 August, sold to the Countryside Trust for £650. Charles Dalley took up the lease, which imposed upon him the obligation to provide teas and light refreshments for the public.


In 1955, 10 June, sold to the National Trust for £1000.


For years, first chars-a-banc then cars pulled into the British Camp car park and eager walkers followed the sign to Pink Cottage, but then there was a change. By the early 1960s there were complaints that the outbuildings at Pink Cottage were untidy, that the tea room was often shut and that the teas weren't up to the expected standard. Disappointingly for the hungry walkers it didn't open at all for the May Day holiday in 1964. The cottage got increasingly shabby, the teas increasingly rare, and the sign at British Camp was covered up.


In 1965, The Conservators posted notices preventing vehicular access to the cottage and Castlemorton Parish Council objected to this. They were keen to take over the lease, but it went to Mr Sutherland's brother, M C Sutherland in June 1966.


In 1968, the lease was taken on by Frank and Toni Taylor, who now live at Bricklands, Eight Oaks.


Pink Cottage was solely reliant on spring water until 1984 when its owners, the National Trust, asked the Malvern Hills Conservators for an easement to lay a 19mm pipe from Foxhall and Pink Cottage to the mains water supply.


The National Trust paid for the cottage to be repainted every five or six years, but the Taylors were responsible for everything else. The rent was initially £4 a week, rising every time they made improvements.


They served teas until the hang gliders started to use Swinyard Hill and this attracted a hot dog van and ice cream van, to park at the end of the track reducing their trade.


In 2005 Pink Cottage was sold by auction for £297,000 to the present owners, Daniel Bowker and Zoe McKeeman.


I more comprehensive story of its life