Kiln Road

Kiln RoadKiln Road at the top of the hill, with the larger ex-parkland houses on the left and various ex-industrial houses on the right.

Despite its importance to the brickmaking industry, the northern edge of Fareham doesn't hold a lot of detailed history. Kiln Road is a good example of this - everything was built and stayed as it was. Its name wasn't really documented in the early days, but its purpose appears to have been to link the industrial sites of the brickworks and potteries, as well as the various clay pits, and then providing access to Knowle and the hospital via Funtley.

Starting at the crossroads by the tollgate, where Park Lane and Old Turnpike and North Hill join in the fun, we come to Park Cottages, which would have been used by potters. These were joined by a couple more houses in to the 20th Century, as the pottery got smaller. By the 1940s, large houses on the boundary of the site of Maylings Farm were being developed. This takes us to the 1960s by which time all of the land around Uplands House had been developed, leaving Kiln Road similar to how it looks today. This includes the suitably named Potters Avenue, built next to the cottages, which is a mixture of '60s and '70s housing. Burnham Wood completed the job in the 1980s, occupying the site of the shrinking Uplands House and the large gardens these houses had.

Kiln Road's defining feature is being ridiculously straight, running along the top of a ridge and offering unrivalled views over the motorway. Fareham Common is now green belt land having withstood development from each end of the road, but it was once extended over much of north-western Fareham. Two narrow lanes met Kiln Road and provided access to Maylings Cottage and Kneller Court, which can still be seen today.

You could be forgiven today for thinking Kiln Road's main purpose is to give Highlands Road something to meet. Today's road has a sharp bend taking it to Funtley Hill. Of course this isn't natural, and the 19th Century alignment had it continuing straight on to what is now Red Barn Lane. Here was the Fareham Common Brickworks. In the 1930s this became the Holly Grove Estate, and the first few houses on Red Barn Lane were added, down the side of the embankment on which the road appears to be built. The railway tunnel under the hill on which this area is built made it a lot easier to develop many years on.

Like the eastern end, Kiln Road itself became slowly more developed between the 1930s and the 1960s. The rest of Red Barn Lane was developed in the 1980s, leading on to the Hill Park Estate, over what was once Red Barn Farm. Cattle from the farm would have been taken down to West Street for selling.

Orchard Lea School was previously called Kennedy Avenue Infants, and before that Highlands. The housing here was built on Skelly Woods, which had been popular with local children, not least for its sand tunnels.

Funtley Hill Board School 1880Part of the former Board School, a plaque dates it back to 1880.

In to Funtley

For now this will be our only foray in to Funtley. Funtley Hill (or Fontley - the former was pushed for by a headmaster and became the modern spelling) is now the main route. It then curves sharply again at what was the Hope Farm, next to the Fontley Brick Works. School House was used by children up to the age of 6 - an additional primary school was later built further up the hill, now Funtley Court.

The village thrived after the construction of the railway opened up new clay mining opportunities, which went on to be used at places such as Knowle Hospital and the original West Street bus station. This is evidenced in one of the pubs here, The Miner's Arms. Even so, the majority of the housing was added in the 1980s, after the lake (a former clay pit) was shrank following the opening of the motorway.