SOCIETY AT ROYAL TUNBRIDGE WELLS - Online Book

People, Society & Culture of Tunbridge Wells in the 18th Century & later.

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Development of Tunbridge Wells
room, its bowling-green, and its houses for the accommodation of visitors. " Thus, in the course of a few years, we find Tunbridge for­saken; Southborough and Rusthall raised and ruined; Mount Ephraim drooping; and Mount Sion in the full bloom of prosperity," Burr has recorded. " This last, indeed, not only rivalled but despoiled, her predecessors, and triumph­antly transferred their ornaments to herself; for many houses were brought from South-borough, Rusthall, and Mount Ephraim, to be rebuilt on Mount Sion; and some, whole and entire as they were, were wheeled on sledges to be fixed in this new seat of favour." * One shop, the same authority records, was actually brought in this manner from Mount Ephraim, with a band playing inside it, and a company drinking success to the purchaser. This savours of the miraculous, until we read in Mrs. Pitt Byrne's Gossip of the Century that in those days enterprising inhabitants had invented the ingenious and perhaps unique device of constructing little houses on sledges or wheels, which could be moved from one spot to another to suit the wishes of tenants. This, at least, was the ostensible reason for the 1 Burr, History of Tunbridge Wells, 45. d                                                                   49
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