I think her lively humour which gave us Winklesea had struck again. Thankfully the Farm was rechristened 'Punchbowl' for the stories.
Just like Westling Harbour Punchbowl Farm is real.
Before the Edwards moved there it was known as 'Pitlands Farm', and still is on some maps. It
lies tucked away out of sight at the bottom of a valley a couple of miles from the Surrey Village of Thursley.
Hence the difficulty in getting photographs of the buildings.
Its location is shown in Geoffrey Whittam's illustration from Black Hunting Whip.
The valley with the farm leads into the big Devil's Punch Bowl, a major landmark in Surrey, around
the rim of which runs the main road (the A3) to Portsmouth and the South Coast.
It's hard to imagine that such a quiet spot should exist within a few minutes of such a busy road.
| This photograph, from the Estate of Monica Edwards, is a view of the
farm before they moved there.
It is very similar to that shown in Whittam's drawing.
When they arrived the house had no electricity, no mains water, no sewage. Water was wound up from the well, a privy was placed at a discrete distance from the house. Baths were taken courtesy of a friend.
This later picture, taken by Monica Edwards in 1953,
shows the approach to the house from the farm gate.
By this time the chimney on the right hand part of the house, visible in the earlier photograph,
had been dismantled by Bill. This was the kitchen chimney in the oldest part of the house
and it was in a precarious state.
Just visible in the end wall of the older wing, where a part of the house has long since fallen, is the window put in for the bathroom. The bathroom was created partly from chimney space and in part a 'Priest's Hole'.