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Ice Houses

Before refrigeration was readily available, large houses would often built ice houses for the storage of ice and fresh food.

Ice houses would be built largely underground, depending on the ground level, they could be built into a slope, or, where the natural lay of the land was flattish, space could be excavated and once built, earth built up over the top.

Ice was usually placed in the ice house in layers of straw to delay its melting, in later days commercially produced ice (there was a factory in Newport) would be used rather than that collected during the winter months.

A number of ice houses on the Island are documented - those surviving include:
Appuldurcombe, Fernhill (Wootton), Norris Castle, Osborne and Westover.

(By Admin: last updated - 6 Jan 2021)

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