These documents are a small selection from those recovered by the Estate Committee from storage in Cambridge in 2012. The complete archive gives an immediate and poignant insight into the history of the estate but, above all, into the energetic and driven ambition of the original covenantors to create a uniquely special environment. Early covenantors signed up to the new way of life enshrined in the Deed of Mutual Covenants even before the final conveyances to purchase the land area of the estate were completed.
The documents on this site were selected because they impart a sense of the history of the estate rather than particular detail. The complete collection will ·from time to time be put on display by the Estate Committee and then you may see and enjoy the detail it has been our pleasure to encounter in compiling the inventory -the colour and vibrancy of the. ink pen signatures and wax seals of the original covenantors can not be properly replicated on this site.They are the signatures of driven and idealistic, often comparatively young people intent on creating for themselves and their families a way of living in a tranquil rural environment far from the dirt of the cities regulated by the democratically determined collective will of the majority of their like-minded fellow covenantors. Each was willing to cede his individual financial benefit in developing his own plot to any opposing financial or environmental interest of his neighbour and the common good as perceived by his fellow covanantors and expressed and enforced through an elected Estate Committee.
We hope you enjoy this selection.
If you are interested in the history of the Painshawfield Estate you will certainly enjoy reading a copy of “Four Valuable Farms”. Details as to how to purchase copies are available elsewhere on this website.