Imber – Now

The 6th January 2013 was a misty, murky day. But Imber was open to the public and was due to close by daylight on the 7th, so we went.

In truth, not all was open when we were there. This was the church entrance.

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But had we been a couple of hours later, it would have opened up for visitors. That’s an improvement for in times past it didn’t open.

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These modern military buildings have replaced most of the village. They are used to enable soldiers to learn how to do house to house fighting and clearance.

Here we have Seagrams Farm.

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This was once a large house for it was all two storeys and housed a large farming family.

The Grange was one of the grander houses in the village. It has military uses now and at different times has worn different roof lines.

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This was the village pub – The Bell Inn. No doubt it was a friendly meeting place for the locals. In 1943, the entire village was given notice to leave. Villagers had 47 days to get out.

The pub has survived quite well. No trace remains of the Baptist church although its burial ground still exists.

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John and Emma Wyatt, born, bred, married and raised their family in Imber before they died and were buried in Imber Baptist burial ground.

The building that has fared best is St Giles Church. This has recently been restored to good order and the tower boasts a new peal of bells. They were rung on Christmas day 2012.

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If you leave the village and travel the permitted routes – you see signs of activity by the local tank corps.

image016Where bustards once roamed, we now find dead tanks scattering the downs.

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2 Responses to “Imber – Now”

  1. Mom Says:

    Amazing pix and story. Is the pub used still, or just never shelled upon? The church photo between valleys is super!

    • locksands Says:

      Hi Mom and thanks for comment. The pub is totally shelled in the sense that it is no more than a shell. It’s never used except as a training ground for soldiers – like the rest of the village. The church was recently re-roofed. I thought the misty conditions added to the rather forlorn atmosphere. If you want to see it on a busy day then my website at http://lavington.99k.org/ . ou’ll have to navigate to 2011 and then you’ll find posts about the day the bus enthusiasts ran an intensive bus service to Imber. It was great fun. I expect they’ll do it again this year. I certainly hope so.

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