In Jersey local roads, in particular those which led down from the Island plateau surface were notoriously bad. They were worn down by the passage of cattle and carts. Such roads have since been tarmacked and can now be very attractive, particularly in spring. An example La Rue du Jutize, Grouville is shown below.
Jutize is a surname and derives from someone holding a judicial office (on the Royal Fief?)
The restructuring of Jersey roads happened in stages and arguably remains (by modern standards) incomplete. General Don, was Lieutenant Governor of Jersey from 1806 to 1814, a period of almost continuous war between England and Napoleonic France. General Don constructed 18 roads radiating from St Helier. The roads are often distinguishable by their names, here La Rue ȧ Don, Grouville.
Following General Don’s changes often a narrow old road was left beside the straighter, wider Don Road. The example here parallel to La Rue ȧ Don is Le Vier Mont, Grouville.
The second big change occurred with the Loi (1914) sur la Voirie. It like General Don’s roads was introduced at wartime. The 1914 Law divided Jersey roads between Grandes Routes, for which the States assumed responsibility, and the Chemins Vicinaux, the Parish Roads, for which the parishes remained responsible. The Parishes remain responsible for Road Names, which is why there is a Grouville Parish road sign for La Rue ȧ Don.
If anything, increasing fuss is being made over the naming of roads. Pictured is Limpet Lane, a very short cut through in Gorey village, given the Jersey French name of La Sente ès Bainis. The road name was put up in 2016 by the then Deputy Bailiff, now Bailliff, Timothy Le Cocq, on a Visite Royale. The road sign covers a considerable part of the road’s length!
The word Sente originally meant footpath. Here’s another one which has become a Parish Road. It seems not to be straight on the wall.
There remain some roads in the Parish without road names. The plaque below awarded in 1997 recognises La Rue des Vaux as a Jersey Scenic Lane. However there is no road name nor on another Parish Road nearby, which is unmade.
Some other Grouville Roads:
Petite Rue du Nord. It is nowhere near the North Coast and doesn’t run north. Presumably it is called Rue du Nord as it is in the north of Parish of Grouville.
Les Fonds de Longueville ( at the bottom of Grouville Hill). There was a Feudal Fief of Longueville. There are adjoining Vigntaines of Longueville in Grouville and St Saviour, so when the Vigntaines were created (in the 16th Century?) as subdivisions of parishes the two Vigntaines probably reflect the then extent of the Fief and were named after it.
La Rigondaine. It means something like elusive. It is a tortuous uphill road. Across the field behind the road sign is the Le Bourg Transformer Station built during the German occupation.
Rue Mathurin, a surname not found in Jersey. Les Mathurins were an order founded in 1198 for the rescue of Christian captives from Barbary.
There is a small Ruette Mathurin running beside Rue Mathurin, divided from it by a meadow and a stream which runs into Grouville Marsh. Next to the Ruette is a wood, its gift to the National Trust for Jersey recognised in one of their distinctive plaques, this one Le Don Picot, presumably a gift by a member of the Picot family.
La Charrière du Bourg, A Charrière is a cart track here that leading to Le Bourg. Le Bourg is Jersey place name for a hamlet, this one sited above a Valette draining into Grouville Marsh.
La Route de Francheville. Ville is another place name in Jersey for a cluster of houses or hamlet, possibly originating in a single extended family, Francheville indicates a free hamlet, free presumably of feudal dues.
La Route des Cotils. The road runs to the Parish church around the base of a steep slope, which marks a former coastline. The road sign has been placed very low down. Note the fine granite pavement kerb. The Place Name, Cotil, a steep slope is encountered frequently in Jersey , many planted with Jersey Royal potatoes.
Next Parish Iconography in Grouville other than Road Names…..