2nd April 2017
Local archives, large and small, have been a fascinating source of material about the past life, and lives of the village of Mells.
The Horner / Asquith family archives are extensive, and hold a small collection of village views which, though they probably date to the mid to late 1800s, bring to life a village which would have been very familiar to residents at the time of the First World War.
Mells is lucky to be a village that has changed little over hundreds of years, but these photographs still document changes: past residents of all ages, horses still dominant for transport and farming, cottage shops, former bridges and the elm trees now disappeared due to Dutch Elm disease sweeping the countryside in the 1970s.
Several other smaller family archives have also revealed images of the time, including the photograph kindly loaned by the Hames family; showing the family, gamekeepers for Mells Park, outside their estate cottage. The cottage no longer exists, and the Hames lost their son Wyndham whilst he was serving in the Somerset Light Infantry as part of the Egyptian Expeditionary Force in Palestine; a very different landscape to home.
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