Skip to Content


The Village Lock Up

A cache by Annie Glipta Send Message to Owner Message this owner
Hidden : 08/24/2017
1 out of 5
1 out of 5

Size: Size: virtual (virtual)

Join now to view geocache location details. It's free!


How Geocaching Works

Please note Use of services is subject to the terms and conditions in our disclaimer.

Geocache Description:

The Village Lock-Up.

This is a Grade II Listed Building.

This Jail, formerly a wellhead, was built in the 17th Century and restored in the 20th, and is made of Limestone ashlar.

It is circular in plan, stands 2 metres high with an ogee cap, surmounted by a ball finial. It has a single doorway with a plank door, and has moulded chamfered ashlar jambs, it is similar in design to those at Coleby, Wellingore, and Leasingham.

Village lock-ups' are historic buildings that were used for the temporary detention of people in rural parts of England and Wales. They were often used for the confinement of drunks who were usually released the next day or to hold people being brought before the local magistrate.

A typical village lock-up is a small structure with a single door and a narrow slit window or opening. Most lock-ups feature a dome or spire shaped roof and are commonly built from brick, large stones, or timber. The village lock-up is found in a variety of shapes often round or polygonal in plan, usually freestanding but some are attached to or incorporated in other buildings. Variations in design, materials and appearance occur although they were all built to perform the same function. The majority of surviving village lock-ups date from the 18th and 19th centuries when rural communities struggled to police thefts, burglaries, shootings, drunkenness, the obstruction of watchmen and the stealing of livestock. During this period a number of lock-ups were built as a temporary place of detention for local rogues and miscreants until they could be removed to a town.

Over time they became synonymous with drunkenness and many references to this coupling can be found in famous works of literature, including Barnaby Rudge (1841) by Charles Dickens, and The Water-Babies, A Fairy Tale for a Land Baby (1863) by Charles Kingsley, which contains the following line:

"Put him in the round house till he gets sober!"

An 1830 description of a lock-up in Taunton describes:

"... a hole into which drunken and bleeding men were thrust and allowed to remain until the following day when the constable with his staff of office take the poor, crippled and dirty wretches before a magistrate, followed by half the boys and idle fellows of the town."

Some lock-ups also had stocks, ducking stools, pillories, or pinfolds alongside them and the origins of the 18th century village lock-up evolved from much earlier examples of holding cells and devices. The Oxford English Dictionary, for example, refers to a round-house as a place of detention for arrested persons and dates its first written usage to 1589.

1. To claim the find: You must include a photograph of YOURSELF and the lock-up, together. For the camera shy, your face doesn't have to be in the photograph, but YOU do! Photographs from the camera shy, can have your face obscured, can also be those taken from behind, or in a hoodie, or from the shoulders down etc, but must show as much of you as you can! A picture of a couple of finger tips holding something barely recognizable, is not acceptable!

The photo of you, must be posted with your OWN log and not on someone elses' log. For each log, you need a separate photo, a group photo will NOT count!

Important: The decision on whether your photo fits our requirements or not, is down to us. If you don't agree...don't log the find!

2. Optional: Please message or e-mail us, the answer to these two questions:

a. What is Ashlar?

b. There are three very famous places in the world where DRY ashlar construction is an important feature, can you name them all?

Virtual Reward - 2017/2018

This Virtual Cache is part of a limited release of Virtuals created between August 24, 2017 and August 24, 2018. Only 4,000 cache owners were given the opportunity to hide a Virtual Cache. Learn more about Virtual Rewards on the Geocaching Blog.

Picture: By Richard Croft, CC BY-SA 2.0,

Additional Hints (Decrypt)

Gjb sbe gur cevpr bs bar? Qba'g bireybbx gur pbecbeny pnpghf pnpur: Puhepu Zvpeb 5409 Qvtol (TP5038D) nqwnprag!

Decryption Key


(letter above equals below, and vice versa)



  • Alfriston lock-up.This curious structure, built in the local flint, stands by the main car park in Alfriston, East Sussex. Image by Roger W Haworth
  • Bisley, Gloucestershire Lock-up.Lock-up at the village of Bisley, in Gloucestershire, England. Image by Jongleur100
  • Bradford-on-Avon lock-up.Village lock-up in Bradford on Avon, Wiltshire, with the unusual fish-shaped weather vane. Image by Anon
  • Breedon On The Hill Lock-up.Village lock-up at Breedon on the Hill, Leicestershire. Image by Robdav69
  • Bromham Lock-up, Wiltshire.Bromham village lock up, Wiltshire. Image by Doug Lee.
  • Castle Cary Lock-up, Somerset.The Round House, Castle Cary, Somerset. A village lock-up built in 1779, and reputed to have inspired the shape of the British police helmet! Image by Chris Downer / Circular lock-up / CC BY-SA 2.0
  • Digby Lock-up.Local drunks or miscreants were kept in here by the local constabulary, while awaiting trial by a Magistrate! A bit cosy if required to accommodate more than one person at a time though. Image by Richard Croft
  • Hilperton Lock-up, Wiltshire.A local Lock-up in Hilperton, near the village centre.
  • Shrewton Lock-up, Wilthire.The Blind House, Maddington Street, Shrewton, Wiltshire, built about 1700. The brass plaque on the door states, "The Blind House, Village criminals were kept in this 18th century prison". The last sentence on the plaque reads, "Property of Shrewton Parish Council. Protected by law as an ancient monument. Silver Jubilee Year 1977". Image by Brian Robert Marshall / The Blind House, Shrewton / CC BY-SA 2.0
  • Tollesbury Village Lock-up, Essex.Village "Lock-up" or 'Blind House', Tollesbury, Essex. One of only a few wooden gaols. Image by: Recent Runes
  • Trowbridge 'Blind House' Wilthire.The "Blind House", used to lock up drunks overnight, in Trowbridge, Wiltshire. Image by Rodhullandemu
  • Typical interior of a small Lock-up.Interior of village lock-up in Lacock, Wiltshire. This is the entire interior of this single cell lock-up. Image by Rwendland
  • Wavertree Lock-up, Liverpool.Wavertree Lock-up. Situated opposite the old Abbey cinema building and near the Wavertree clock-tower, this funny little round house on the village green was an overnight lock-up kept busy with drunks from the numerous hostelries nearby. The green was used as a venue for fairs, bull baiting and cock fighting. Wavertree still retains some of its village atmosphere despite being engulfed by Liverpool. Image by: Sue Adair / Wavertree Lock-up / CC BY-SA 2.0

58 Logged Visits

Found it 54     Write note 3     Publish Listing 1     

View Logbook | View the Image Gallery of 70 images

**Warning! Spoilers may be included in the descriptions or links.

Current Time:
Last Updated:
Rendered From:Unknown
Coordinates are in the WGS84 datum

Return to the Top of the Page

Reviewer notes

Use this space to describe your geocache location, container, and how it's hidden to your reviewer. If you've made changes, tell the reviewer what changes you made. The more they know, the easier it is for them to publish your geocache. This note will not be visible to the public when your geocache is published.