Vesey Cottage – off Withy Hill Road

Above the fields of Wheatmoor Farm on High Heath’s lonely hill
A Vesey Cottage still remains – in isolation still

 High Heath Cottage 1

Where Bishop Vesey had decreed
From his private Police Force he would need


A man called Stout Keeper as he was known
To guide and protect those travelling alone


For High Heath Cottage to become his abode
To aid those journeying to the London Road

High Heath Cottage 2

To keep a lantern burning bright
Assisting travelers of the night


Where ruffians roamed and highwaymen
With Dick Turpin based at Muffin’s Den


With his trusty mastiff at his side
The keeper acted as a guide


To cross Collett’s Brook when the hour was late
Where thieves and vagabonds lay in wait

High Heath Cottage 3 

There was a tale of a Ne’re Do Well
Who at High Heath did one time dwell


Stole some sheep which he did slay
From the common across the way


For a hanging offence – as it was then
The law arrived with a group of men


Barricaded in – not wishing to die
The thief threw missiles from on high


Although the officers were much aggrieved
It remains unknown if justice was achieved


As a result of the ensuing hassle
The cottage became known as Mutton Castle

High Heath Cottage 4 

Now – all is calm, serene and still
At High Heath Cottage on the hill.

 High Heath Cottage 5


Anne Nash 

Photography by Eileen Donohoe