Portslade woman finds Victorian headstones in garden

A woman has told how amazed she was after finding 18th-century tombstones in her garden.

Lesley Robins, 61, said she was “fascinated” by the stones after unearthing them during construction on her Victorian home.

Since then she has dug deeper into the history behind the stones, with the oldest footstone apparently dating from 1787.

Lesley, who lives on Trafalgar Road in Portslade, said: “I found it all quite fascinating. I’ve always found local history interesting, but I never expected that to happen to me.

“When we dug them up, we worked them up with little shovels and paint choppers, it was pretty amazing.

Lesley Robins finds the stones in her gardenLesley Robins with the rocks she found

“I’m originally from Brighton but my father worked in Portslade so having that connection to local history feels like it’s come full circle.”

Photographs of four footstones show several different dates from the late 18th and early 19th centuries. A stone bears four different dates and is said to have been used for a family tomb.

Two other stones have been found on the property since the pictures were taken, but have not yet been explored.

Lesley said that with the help of local historians they were able to unearth more information about the stones and the land.

Lesley Robins finds the stones in her gardenOne of the tombstones from the garden

Original copies of the 1882 land deeds record the sale to Henry Scrase, a local stonemason. The footstones are believed to have originally stood in St Nicholas Church in Portslade and were then reused around the house when they fell.

Lesley, who runs a small animal shelter, said she intends to go to the church to see if she can see the graves where the footstones originally came from.

Lesley Robins finds the stones in her gardenThe original deeds for the house

She added that she intends to donate the original deeds for the house to the Portslade and the Past archives.

Lesley said: “I would also like to donate the original certificates. I love the story but it’s useless to me and I think it needs to stay in the local archives.”

https://www.theargus.co.uk/news/23050291.portslade-woman-finds-victorian-gravestones-garden/?ref=rss Portslade woman finds Victorian headstones in garden

Fry Electronics Team

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