BRATTON FLEMING - MISCELLANEOUS
* THE HIGHWAYS *
Like other parishes, Bratton Fleming had a "Surveyor of the Highways" who was empowered to
raise rates, and employ "Statute labour" for the maintenance of roads. This post (like the "Overseers of the Poor")
was voluntary. Names of holders of both posts are listed in the surviving Vestry Books (DRO) for the late 18th century.
The old system ceased in 1835. This may have been a factor in the raising of a "Turnpike Petition" in 1840. Whybrow lists the signatories to this petition.
* INTERESTING EVENTS *
In 1814, the inquest on John Southcombe of Bratton Fleming, was reported in the "Courier", a London paper. He was travelling to London in a chaise cart and was hit by a recklessly driven mail coach on its way to Bath. The coroner said that "Such conduct in the mail drivers on that road has become a crying evil and general complaint". (There is more about this family in "George Milton Southcombe - his Dad, his Mum and his Kid" - published by John Southcombe, Ohio, USA; copy in North Devon Local Studies Centre)