Somerset & Dorset Notes & Queries

8. MAIDEN NEWTON TURNPIKE. - The following deed drawn up and signed and sealed by the nine trustees illustrates the methods employed a century and a half ago in improving Dorset county roads.

This Indenture made 18 December, 1778, between Sir John Smith, Bart., Samuel Cox, John Russell, the Rev. John , Plowman, John Field, Richard Nicholls, John Whittle, Joseph Henning and the Rev. Robert Pearson, being all of them Trustees nominated and appointed in and by an Act of Parliament passed the 18th year of the reign of his present Majesty King George III entitled An Act for amending widening, turning, altering and keeping in repair the roads from Whistle Bridge in the parish of Barwick, Somerset, to the turnpike road in the parish of Charminster, Dorset, and from the Cross in the town of Maiden Newton to a stream of water in the parish of South Perrott and from a place called Furzemoor Gate in Broad Winsor to Linhams water in Beaminster, and from Buglers Corner in Beaminster to the Dorsetshire Inn in the parish of Woolcombe and from Sydling Ewelease to the town of Cerne Abbas, and from the town of Frampton to join the Western turnpike road near Steepleton, ALL OF THE ONE PART arid John Bragge of Sadborough, co. Devon, Esq., of the other part, witnesseth that for £100 paid by John Bragge they the said Trustees have assigned and set over to the said John Bragge and heirs for twenty-one years all and singular the said tolls by the said act made payable and to be received at all and every turnpike gate or gates which shall be erected on any part or parts of the said several roads, Provided always that if the said trustees shall well and truly pay £100 to the said John Bragge, his exors or assigns with interest at 41/2 per cent. on the 4th of June next ensuing then this present indenture shall cease, determine and become void. Witness our hands and seals the day and year above written. (All sign and seal.