And The Surrounding District

Dees Cottage

Other names          Dees, Dees Corner, Days, Stephens's, Cobb's Cottages

Origin of name     Family name. Cobb's after Cobblers – Dee's profession.

            A survey identified the timbers as mostly elm with some cherry and pear.

The Dee family of Castlemorton can be traced back to Thomas and Mary Dee who married in Coddington in 1670.

John Dee (1527-1608), Rector of Upton upon Severn (1559-1584), astronomer, Astrologer, Occult Philosopher and Advisor to Queen Elizabeth I does not seem to be related.

Thomas's grandson, John Dee (1699-1761) was buried at St Gregory. He married Ann Barnes and they had five children, all baptised at St Gregory:

Hannah (1728)

Ann (1732)

Mary (1734)

John (1738-1826, buried at St Gregory) – John Dee (junior)

Thomas (1745-1814, buried at St Gregory)

John Dee (senior) had a cousin, Thomas Dee 1715-1760) and he had a son William, baptised at St Gregory in 1770.

It was John Dee (senior) who bought Biddles Farm from Nathaniel Reeve in 1741. Documents relating the sale and mortgage have been transcribed and are published under the history of Biddles Farm. He also owned The Bannut Tree.

In 1746 he is listed in The Gentleman's Magazine and appears to be a bankrupt

His son, John Dee (junior) inherited Biddles and the Bannut Tree. In 1813, he sold The Bannut Tree to Edward Jakeman. In 1821, he was a Churchwarden. At his death, his two properties: The Bannut Tree and Biddles Farm were sold by auction.

John Dee (junior) married Elizabeth Stone (1725-1824, buried at St Gregory) and they had five children, all baptised at St Gregory:

Thomas (1745)

Elizabeth (1767-1767, buried at St Gregory)

John (1768)

William (1770)

James (1773).

The eldest son, Thomas married Mary Webb in 1775 and they had ten children. By 1839 he owned Micklefield Farm which he rented to his brother William, although he lived in what is now Dees Cottage.  

The 1839 tithe award shows William also renting other land in the Parish, and renting out Pink Cottage – which he owned. William was forced to sell Pink Cottage in 1838, to pay off his creditors.

Thomas married Betty Beale (1776-1846). Thomas was a Shoemaker and after his death Betty lived at Micklefield with William and by 1841 at The Club House (now Penbode). In 1823, he is recorded selling seven fields in Castlemorton to Daniel Green.

His son, Thomas Dee (1808-1893) was also a Shoemaker and in 1841 was living with his wife Maria and family at Stephens's, now known as Dees Cottage. His other sons, William (1813-) and Joseph (1815-) were living elsewhere in Castlemorton, probably at what now is the Old Smithy. In 1841, William was a Shoemaker and Joseph an Agricultural Labourer.  

By 1835 Thomas was insolvent.  

On 8 July, by direction the Trustees and Assignees of Thomas Dee, of Castlemorton - aforesaid, Shoemaker and Farmer, at the Feathers Inn, Castlemorton, Wednesday, the 22nd July, 1835, at four o'clock precisely, in the afternoon, subject to conditions then to be produced: Lot 1. Two convenient and substantially-built cottages, with pigs' cots, Workshop, millhouse, and very productive gardens, well planted with  fruit trees, containing one acre, now occupied William Dee and Betty Beale, and situate in the parish of Castlemorton aforesaid, adjoining the Highway leading from Little Welland to Upton-on-Severn. Lot 2 - A very productive and well-planted pasture orchard, adjoining Lot 1, containing about two acres, more or less. The greater part of these lots are of freehold of inheritance, but a small portion of the land adjoining the hedge rows is held for Lives, two of whom are now living The proprietors of these lots will have the privilege of a Right of Common the Malvern Chase. Lot 3. - One undivided fifth part or share, and also one fourth of another one fifth part, of and in a cottage or tenement, brewhouse, dairy, cider mill-house, stable, barn, and piggery, called Stephens's, in Castlemorton aforesaid, together with a large and productive garden and parcel excellent orcharding adjoining, containing together about three acres (more or less), and now in the occupation of the said Thomas Dee. This Lot is freehold. The land is in the very best state of cultivation, the plantation of fruit trees in its prime; the fences also are well filled with young thriving timber trees This Lot also entitles the proprietor to a Right of Common on the Malvern Chase. Lot 4 - A crop of mowing grass, growing on Lot 2; and also about three-quarters of an acre growing a parcel of land adjoining Lot 3. Lot 5 - An excellent crop of wheat, growing on the orchard mentioned in Lot 3, containing about two acres. Lot 6 – the fruit growing on the whole of the land mentioned in Lots 2 and 3. Lot 7 - The whole of the garden stuff and produce growing in the garden of Lot 3.  At the premises forming Lot 3, on the same 22d of July, at 10 o'clock in the forenoon; all the household goods and furniture, shoemaker's stock in trade and other effects, of the said Thomas Dee comprising a general assortment of useful household furniture, stock-in-trade, with several lots of boots, shoes, and leather, hogsheads, cider, Farming Implements, and other requisite and useful Effects. For further particulars apply to Messrs. Allies, Curriers, Worcester, or to Mr. George Sexty, Grocer, or Mr. James Gregg, Solicitor, both of Ledbury.

Notice to the creditors and debtors, the said Thomas Dee having by Deed duly assigned over his Estate and Effects to the said Mssrs Allies and Sexty, for the equal benefit of such of his creditors as shall execute such Deed before the 30th December next: Notice is hereby given, that the same Deed is now lying at the office of James Gregg, Solicitor, Ledbury, for the signature the said creditors; and all Persons who do not execute the same within the time aforesaid will be excluded from the benefit thereof. All persons who are indebted to the Estate of the said Thomas Dee, are requested pay the amount of their respective debts, without delay, to the said James Gregg, or legal measures will be taken to enforce the payment. Ledbury, July 13th, 1835.