The Old Hyde

The Old Hyde is a farm property situated in Cutnall Green, Worcestershire, England.

Located five miles from Stourport-on-Severn, the property was purchased by Led Zeppelin drummer John Bonham in early 1972, and turned into a working family farm. Situated on the brow of a hill with sweeping views of the Worcestershire countryside, Bonham believed it was an ideal place to raise his family, and to start his passion for farming. Bonham had previously lived at Hunt End, Redditch, with his parents. The original farmhouse was demolished and rebuilt to twice it's original size, under the direction of his father Jacko Bonham, an experience builder and carpenter who owned a construction company J. H. Bonham & Son. The farm cottage and outbuildings were also heavily renovated, and barns and stables built. One of the barns was converted into a car workshop. Local contractors Stan and Peter Blick were also employed for the brickworking, and Tuffy and Andy Reeves the flooring and roofing. Overseeing the rebuilding was architect Grace Plant, who was married to Robert Plant's cousin Malcolm. Work was completed by 1974. In 1976, John Bonham later set up J. H. Bonham Developments, a building renovation business, from his experiences with rebuilding the Old Hyde.

The farm also reared pedigree Hereford cattle, free-range chickens, held John Bonham's antique car and motorcycle collection, his cabin cruiser Staysea, and Jacko's horses. The farm's prize winning Hereford bull was called 'Bruno'. Deborah Bonham also owned two horses on the farm, Mustang and Achilles. Due to John Bonham being away for long periods on overseas tours, Lincolnshire farm manager Brian Treble was appointed to oversee the farm in late 1972. After 1974, Matthew Maloney and John Bonham's brother Mick Bonham also assisted in managing the estate. Glenn Hughes, Bill Ward, and Ozzy Osbourne would often visit the family at the Old Hyde.

Melody Maker journalist Chris Welch interviewed John at the farm in June 1975. Part of Bonham's fantasy sequence for the 1976 film The Song Remains the Same was filmed at the farm in late 1973. The sequence features Bonham with his wife Pat Bonham, his son Jason Bonham on a miniature drum kit, and John driving a Model T Ford Ice Truck as well as a chopper motorcycle on local roads outside the New Inn (other motorcycle footage was shot in Blackpool). John and Pat were also filmed riding on a cart with their farm's horse 'Old Sam'. The snooker scene was shot at the local Conservative Club in Studley. There were also brief cameo appearances of family and friends, including Mick Bonham.

The Bonham family still owns the property.

In 2004, Deborah Bonham recorded an album entitled The Old Hyde. The title song 'The Old Hyde' features Jason Bonham on drums, and is a tribute to John Bonham, Mick Bonham, and Jacko Bonham.

Bibliography

  • Bonham, Mick (2003) Bonham by Bonham: My Brother John. London: Icarus Publications. ISBN 978-0-9545717-0-2
  • Bonham, Mick (2005) John Bonham: The Powerhouse Behind Led Zeppelin. London: Southbank Publishing. ISBN 978-1-904915-11-9 (OCLC 61302889)
  • Welch, Chris; and Nicholls, Geoff (2001) John Bonham: a Thunder of Drums; the powerhouse behind Led Zeppelin and the Godfather of Heavy Rock Drumming. London: Hi Marketing. ISBN 978-0-87930-658-8 (OCLC 47232599)

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