ALL ABOUT
TUNBRIDGE WELLS

Page 2

 

THE HEROIC AND TRAGIC LIFE OF SYDNEY WILLIAM ALLEN

Written By; Edward James Gilbert-Thunder Bay, Ontario, Canada

Date: April 1,2019

OVERVIEW

Sydney William Allen (1861-1920) , who was born in Banbury, Oxfordshire, was the son of Baptist minister and school master Rev William Allen(1824-1904) of Oxford.

Sydney’s life began like most others, being educated at a local school in Banbury and then beginning his working career as an apprentice at a watchmakers shop In Oxford .

He had chosen a career as a watchmaker, jeweller and silversmith, a career which brought him to Tunbridge Wells by the time of the 1881 census, where he lived on the High Street and worked initially as an assistant to Thomas Edward Payne who had founded the historic Payne Jewellers shop at 37 High Street, which shop, noted for the clock on the exterior of the shop, still operates today (image above).

Thomas Edward Payne . born 1849 in Banbury, Oxfordshire, became ill and in 1882 took on Sydney William Allen as his business partner, which business operated under the name of Payne & Allen. A directory of 1882 recorded “Sydney William Allen ( Payne & Allen) 37 High Street.

In 1886, at Wallingord Berkshire, Sydney married Margaret Payne  who was the sister of his business partner Thomas Edward Payne and with her had two children, although one of them died before 1911.

When Thomas Edward Payne passed away in 1886 his wife Helen Elizabeth Payne, nee Stephenson, became the senior partner. In 1889 she dissolved the partnership with Mr Allen and he left Tunbridge Wells. In the years following, up to today, Payne’s Jewellers has been passed down to various members of the Payne family.

While living and working in Tunbridge Wells Sydney William Allen gained notoriety when he was visiting Hastings Sussex. On a stormy night March 1888 he was down by the beach when a giant wave swept two small boys off the breakwater where they were playing. Sydney took quick action and plunged into the sea and after a struggle got the boys ashore. He told the boy’s governess that his name was Mr Allen and a slip of paper identifying him as a Freemason with the Holmesdale Lodge in Tunbridge Wells led to his identification.  His heroic act was widely published in the newspapers of the time and it resulted in him being awarded a bronze medal by the Royal Humane Society for lifesaving. The boy’s father, Mr Edward Ashley, an overseas visitor on holiday with his family, wrote to the Holmesdale Lodge and forwarded to them 50 pounds and his gold watch which he asked them to present to Mr Allen with an inscription to be added to the watch expressing his gratitude.

When his partnership in Payne & Allen ended in 1889 Sydney moved to Hastings, Sussex. His departure from the town and his purchase of “a large jewelry business in Hastings” was recorded in the Courier of August 9,1889. The business he acquired, located at 39 White Rock, Hastings was that of James Foord.

At the time of the 1891 census Sydney and his wife Margaret were living in Hastings at 39 White Rock. With them was his married sister in law Emma Lowi and one domestic servant. While living in Hastings Sydney and his wife had a daughter Margery Pearl Allen and one other child who’s name was not discovered who died in infancy. Sydney was still running this shop in 1893 but by 1896 he sold the shop to John Atterbury and moved 6 miles west to Bexhill-On-Sea.

At Bexhill–On-Sea Sydney opened a jewellers and watchmakers shop and became a local celebrity in connection with the Bexhill Rowing Club, The Bexhill Cricket Club and the honorary secretary of a long list of committees, including the Agricultural Society, the Town Association, the Coast Amateur Rowing Association,  the Cottage Hospital Committee, the Diamond Jubilee Committee and others.

Numerous newspaper reports about his activities in Bexhill were found throughout the period of 1886 to 1899. The Bexhill-On-Sea Observer of November 13,1897 announced “ A curious controversy-People are wondering what is the matter with Sydney W. Allen. He seems to be in quite a resigning mood. He had given up the secretaryship of the Cottage Hospital Committer and several others”,. In fact several other notices appeared in this newspaper in 1897 announcing his resignations.

In interesting phase of his life was his service in the Boer War with a colonial unit in South Africa called Nesbitt’s Horse, a cavalry unit to which Sydney (a Corporal later Captain)  was attested May 17,1900 He was discharged, having been wounded, November 13,1900 and returned to Bexhill. The Bexhill-On-Sea Observer of May 18,1901 announced that “Mr Sydney W. Allen as the Public Minister of Health South Africa wrote several articles that appeared in the newspaper during the past two weeks and were exhaustive stores of information which demonstrated Mr Allen’s powers of observation”. This article was followed in the same newspaper dated 1902 stating “ Many of my readers will deeply regret to hear that Mr Sydney W. Allen, who left Bexhill for South Africa some years ago, and saw service in the late war, had returned to England seriously wounded.

Whether it was his war time experience or just the pressures of life, his life in the early 1900’s took a significant turn for the worse. His marriage to Margaret had broken down, most likely due to  him turning to drink. There is no record of Sydney and his wife and children living together after 1891 and in fact the 1901 census taken at Wallingford, Berkshire gave Margaret as married but the only people living with her were three visitors and one domestic servant. When the 1911 census was taken Margaret was living with her sister Isabel Harriet Payne ( a school principal) at a girls school on Earls Avenue in Folkestone where Margaret was once again listed as married but working as a “manager of domestic affairs” at the school.

The West Sussex Gazette of July 21,1910 reported “ Sydney William Allen, formerly a well-known jeweller of Hastings and Bexhill was charged at Bexhill on Saturday with stealing two clarinets from Kursaal (an amusement park). The instruments were recovered from the Wellington Hotel in London where it is believed Sydney was living. The Bexhill –On-Sea Observer of June 18,1910 reported on the same event stating that Sydney was arrested on a warrant of the Metropolitan Police and taken to London where he was sentenced for fraud.  This article was entitled “ The Sad Case of Sydney Allen”. The 1911 census taken at the Rowton Lodging House in St Pancras NW London gave Sydney W. Allen as a boarder and working as a jewellers assistant.

If the events of 1910 were not bad enough Sydney  got into trouble again in 1911. The Hastings and St Leonard Observer of June 18,1911 reported the “for the second time Sydney William Allen was charged with fraud at the Marlborough Police Court to 4 months imprisonment on a charge of obtaining by fraud silver goods”. But Sydney did not learn his lesson.

The Dundee Courier of August 22,1912 reported that “Sydney William Allen was formerly a well-known jeweller at Hastings but drink had been his ruin. He was sentenced to 9 months hard labour for stealing clothes from a hotel”. He served his time at the Pentonville Prison in north London. The Bexhill-On-Sea Observer of August 24,1912 gave further details stating he had been charged with stealing two suits of clothes, a pair of curtains, a tankard, a gold pin and other articles from the hotel in London, the property of the hotel proprietor and hotel guests.

Whether Sydney changed his ways after 1912 or not wasn’t established but newspaper reports about him after 1912 were not found except for a notice of his death stating he had died February 5, 1920 at Battle Sussex, where he was described as the son of the late Rev. William Allen of Oxford.

In this article I present information about the Allen family with particular coverage of Sydney William Allen. Also presented is information about his wife Margaret Payne and the Payne family of Payne’s Jewellers in Tunbridge Wells and some related information about the Stephenson family that is connected by way of marriage to both the Payne family and the Dodd family of Tunbridge Wells.

THE ALLEN FAMILY-THE EARLY YEARS

The central figure in this family is Sydney William Allen (1861-1920) who was born at Banbury, Oxford. His birth was registered in the 1st qtr of 1861 at Headington, Oxfordshire. He was the son of Baptist minister and school master William Allen of Oxford who was born in 1824 at Otham, Kent, and Sarah Emma Allen, nee Steame who was born 1833 in Oxfordshire.  Sydney’s parents were married in the 3rd qtr of 1858 at Oxford, Oxfordshire

The 1861 census, taken at Park Town, Oxford St Giles gave William Allen as a Baptist minister and school master. With him was his wife Sarah and their sons Arthur (born 1834 in Scotland) and Sydney William Allen born 1861 in Oxfordshire. Also there was William’s sister Eliza Allen who was born in 1839; two domestic servants, a monthly nurse; one schoolmaster and nine boys age 8 to 13 who were boarding at the school. Sydney also had a sister Agnes Jessie Allen who was born  1865 at Cowley, Oxfordshire.

The 1871 census, taken at 4 Henley Terrace (image below left) at Oxford, Oxfordshire, gave William Allen as a Baptist minister at the New Road Chapel (image below right). With him was his wife Sarah Emma Allen and their children Sydney William Allen, a scholar, and Agnes Jessie Allen.

 

 











Sydney William Allen received only a basic education, never going on to University. While living in Oxfordshire he took an interest in the jewelry trade and gained employment at a local jewelry shop where he learned to be a watchmaker. Being a watchmaker is a highly skilled trade and one where a person normally works as an apprentice to a master watchmaker. After working in this field in the late 1870’s he decided to move to Tunbridge Wells, a story which continues in the next section.

William Allen passed away in the 4th qtr of 1904 at Witney, Oxfordshire and was buried September 6th at Stanton Harcourt, Oxforshire. His wife Sarah Emma Allen had died in the 4th qtr of 1874 at Headington, Oxfordshire.

SYDNEY WILLIAM ALLEN-THE TUNBRIDGE WELLS YEARS

By the time of the 1881 census, Sydney had moved to Tunbridge Wells and worked as a watchmaker for Thomas Edward Payne of Payne’s Jewellers at 37 High Street.

The 1881 census, taken at High Street, Tunbridge Wells, gave Sydney William Allen as single with the occupation of “jewellers assistant”. With him was  Sarah Harriet Ling, a domestic servant.

In 1882, as noted in a directory of that year, Sydney William Allen became a partner with Thomas Edward Payne. The directory listed the following “ Sydney William Allen ( Payne & Allen) watchmaker. A second listing gave “ Payne & Allen, watchmakers, 37 High Street, Tunbridge Wells.

Thomas Edward Payne (born 1849 in Banbury Oxfordshire) became ill and passed away in 1886. Upon his death his wife Helen Payne, nee Stephenson, born 1854 in Banbury, Oxfordshire became the senior partner in Payne & Allen. In 1889 this partnership was dissolved and from that time forward (up to 2019) Payne’s Jewellers, who are still at 37 High Street, has been run by successive generations of the Payne family. Further details about the Payne and Stephenson families are given in late sections of this article.

In 1886, at Wallingord Berkshire, Sydney married Margaret Payne  who was the sister of his business partner Thomas Edward Payne and with her had two children, although one of them died before 1911. Further information about Margaret and his children are given in a later section.

In 1888 while with Payne & Allen Sydney went on a trip to Hastings where events transpired that made him a local hero.  One account about this event is given here from the book ‘ Tales of Old Tunbridge Wells’ by Frank Chapman. It reads “ Gold Watch For A Sea Hero- On a stormy evening in March 1888 Sidney ( should be “Sydney) Allen, brother-in-law and partner of Thomas Edward Payne in their Tunbridge Wells High Street jewellery and silversmith business, was walking on the beach at Hastings when a giant wave swept two small boys off the breakwater where they were playing. Seeing that their governess could do nothing to help them, Mr Allen plunged into the sea and after a struggle got the boys ashore. Her told them his name was Allen, but refused any other information. However, a paper had fallen from his pocket giving notice of a meeting of the Holmesdale Lodge of Freemasons. The children’s father, Edward Ashley, an overseas visitor on holiday with his family, wrote to the Holmesdale Lodge asking them to present Mr Allen with 50 pounds and his own gold watch to be inscribed: “Presented to Mr-Allen in recognition of his having, at the risk of his own life, saved the lives of two boys in a gale at Hastings in March, 1888.” A covering letter expressed Mr Ashley’s gratitude for “being able to take back to those nearest and dearest to me all that is mortal, whom I am sure would have been left behind in a strange country had it not been for an act in the performance of which it is surprising that all three did not lose their lives”. The watch was engraved by a fellow Mason in the Holmedale Lodge, George Farrer, another jeweller whose shop was a few doors away from Payne’s, and presented by the Worshipful Master”.

The George Farrer referred to was found in the records of the “Holmesdale Lodge” as a jeweller operating from premises at 19 High Street at the time of the 1881 census, where he was living with his wife Louise and five of his children. He had been born in 1840 and died in Tunbridge Wells in the 2nd qtr of 1901. At the time of the 1901 census George and his wife and six children were still at 19 High Street. Three of his sons at that time were working for their father as jewellers assistants. George had been initiated into the Freemasons June 21,1876 and had been working as a jeweller in Tunbridge Wells since at least 1871 when in that year he was living and working as a jeweller at No. 1 West Grove near Mount Sion Grove.  Sydney William Allen was also found in the records of the Holmesdale Lodge as a jeweller who had been initiated December 15,1886 and a certificate issued January 19,1888. The Holmesdale Lodge is reported to be the oldest Freemasons Lodge in Tunbridge Wells and one of the oldest in Kent. It had been established in 1862.

The heroic event of 1888 was widely reported on in various newspapers in Hastings, Tunbridge Wells and elsewhere. The Courier of May 18,1888 reported for example “ A Heroic Deed Well Rewarded- Mr Sidney ( should be Sydney) Allen was as readers are aware, one stormy evening in March last, our townsman. Mr. Sidney Allen, jeweller of the High Street, succeeded in rescuing two children who had been swept away from the breakwaters at Hastings. Mr Allen…….”

For his heroic deed, in addition to the gold watch, Sydney was presented with a bronze Lifesaving medal by the Royal Humane Society (RHS) ( image opposite). The RHS began issuing lifesaving medals in 1775 but the bronze medal did not begin being issued until 1837. The Courier of June 1,1888 reported “ Presentation of a Royal Humane Society Medal- The bronze medal has been awarded by the Royal Humane Society to Mr. Sidney W. Allen of the High Street for saving the lives of Mr Ashley’s two sons at Hastings March last…”

Several articles pertaining to Sydney were found in the Courier between January 4, 1889 and August 9,1889 which referred to him being a member of the local Tradesmen’s Association, and his involvement in the nominations for the County Council election. He also served as treasurer of a committee who in the Courier of March 2,1889 solicited for donations.

The last reference to Sydney in Tunbridge Wells appeared in the Courier of August 9,1889 when it was reported “ We have just heard on very good authority that Mr. Sidney Allen, late of the firm of Payne & Allen, is shortly going to leave Tunbridge Wells he having, we are given to understand, purchased a large jewellery business in Hastings…”  And so in the next section I pick up the story of Sydney’s life and career in Hastings in 1889.

SYDNEY WILLIAM ALLEN IN HASTINGS 

Sydney arrive in Hastings about August 1889 as reported in the Courier of August 9,1889 and it is known that his partnership in the Tunbridge Wells firm of Payne & Allen ended in 1889.

It is known from a review of records in Hastings that Sydney had purchased the jewellers shop of James B. Foord at 39 White Rock Road in 1889. James Foord senior, who began the jewellers business had passed away in 1883 but the shop was continued by his son James B. Foord until 1889.

A 1890 directory gave “ Syndey William Allen, 39 White Rock Hastings, Sussex, watchmaker and jeweller. Shown below is a photograph of White Road in which can be seen Sydney’s shop. Fred Judges photo shop was at No. 42. The carriage manufacturing firm of Rock etc is the large building with the arch front at No. 40 with No. 39 just to the left of it. Also shown in this image to the left is A.M. Breach & Co at No. 37 and the Palace Hotel next to it. Shown below right is another view of White Rock Road showing Sydney’s shop. Today 38,39,40 White Rock Road are high class flats. When Syndey left Hastings and moved to Bexhill-On-Sea the jewellers shop at No. 39 became that of John Atterbury who was found there in directories up to 1911.









The 1891 census taken at 39 White Rock gave Sydney W. Allen as a jeweller. With him was his wife Margaret, one domestic servant and Emma Lowi, a visitor and sister in law born 1843 in Banbury, Oxfordshire. No children were noted in this census, but it is known from the 1911 census that the couple had two children, both born in Hastings, although one of them had died before 1911. It was noted from birth records that they had a daughter Margery Peal Allen who’s mother’s maiden name was given as Payne.

The records of the Freemasons note that Sydney William Allen was initiated into the Derwent Lodge in Hastings May 18,1893 with the occupation of Jeweller.

The Hastings & St Leonards Observer of April 1 and April 8,1893 gave “ Important Notice- Sydney W. Allen of 39 White Rock Hastings begs to announce that, previous to extensive alterations (by Messrs Sage & Co of London) he intends offering the whole of his large and valuable stock at a great reduction in price for cash. Gold and Silver…..”

The Hastings & St Leonards Observer of May 13,1893 reported “ Hastings Museum-The secretary of the museum informs us that Mr Sydney W. Allen, White Rock, has presented the committee with two very serviceable plate-glass show cases”.

The Hastings & St Leonards Observer of March 18 and 25, 1893 gave “ Sydney W. Allen-A visit and inspection will afford convincing proof of the genuine character of this sale and feels that good opportunity is afforded to make a purchase. The sale comprises articles of much beauty and value, collected with careful regard to variety, taste and good workmanship”.

The marriage between Sydney and his wife Margaret broke down, no doubt largely due to a drinking problem, which you will read more about later. As a result Sydney, although remaining married, never lived together again.

The 1901 census, taken at 2 Thames Street in Wallingford, Berkshire gave Margaret Allen as married but of no occupation. With her as visitors were three members of the Taylor family and one domestic servant.

The 1911 census, taken at  23-25 Earls Avenue in Folkestone, Kent ( a girls school) gave Isabel Harriet Payne (the sister of Thomas Edward Payne of Tunbridge Wells and Margaret Payne (Sydney’s wife) as a school principal. With her was her sister Margaret Allen, listed as married, with the occupation of “manager of domestic affairs”. Also there were four members of the school staff and fourteen girls between the ages of 15 and 17. Today 23-25 Earls Avenue is a building of some 13 flats and called Winchester House (image opposite).

What became of Margaret after the 1911 census was not established.

The Hastings & St Leonards Observer of April 14,1896 reported on a jury that had been formed for a Grand Jury and that among those serving on the jury was Sydney W. Allen of White Rock.

By 1896 Sydney sold the shop at 39 White Rock Road to John Atterbury and moved 6 miles west to Bexhill-On-Sea. His life and career there is given in the next section.

SYDNEY WILLIAM ALLEN IN BEXHILL-ON-SEA 

The earliest newspaper accounts pertaining to Sydney appeared in various editions of the Bexhill-On-Sea Observer in 1896. Sydney is referred to in the newspapers on several occasions as operating a jewellers shop in Bexhill. Details from every newspaper account about his business and activities in Bexhill are too extensive to provide in their entirety in this article and therefore below are given some significant samples.

Sydney opened a jewellers and watchmakers shop and became a local celebrity in connection with the Bexhill Rowing Club, The Bexhill Cricket Club and the honorary secretary of a long list of committees, including the Agricultural Society, the Town Association, the Coast Amateur Rowing Association,  the Cottage Hospital Committee, the Diamond Jubilee Committee and others.  Several newspaper accounts refer to the awarding of trophies by Sydney in connection with the rowing club such as one dated August 21,1897 where he presented a silver plated cup for a rowing race. The Bexhill Rowing Club was founded in 1893, its colours being red, white and green and is the oldest rowing club in Bexhill. A photograph of it taken July 29,1902 is shown below. During these years the local newspaper praised Sydney for his work in local affairs and was high thought of.

Numerous newspaper reports about his activities in Bexhill were found throughout the period of 1886 to 1899. The Bexhill-On-Sea Observer of November 13,1897 announced “ A curious controversy-People are wondering what is the matter with Sydney W. Allen. He seems to be in quite a resigning mood. He had given up the secretaryship of the Cottage Hospital Committer and several others”,. In fact several other notices appeared in this newspaper in 1897 announcing his resignations.

In interesting phase of his life was his service in the Boer War with a colonial unit in South Africa called Nesbitt’s Horse, a cavalry unit to which Sydney (a Corporal later Captain)  was attested May 17,1900 He was discharged, having been wounded, November 13,1900 and returned to Bexhill. The Bexhill-On-Sea Observer of May 18,1901 announced that “Mr Sydney W. Allen as the Public Minister of Health South Africa wrote several articles that appeared in the newspaper during the past two weeks and were exhaustive stores of information which demonstrated Mr Allen’s powers of observation”. This article was followed in the same newspaper dated 1902 stating “ Many of my readers will deeply regret to hear that Mr Sydney W. Allen, who left Bexhill for South Africa some years ago, and saw service in the late war, had returned to England seriously wounded. It is perhaps noteworthy to remark that no 1901 census was found for Sydney in England.

Everything appeared to be normal about Sydney until about November 1897 but his resignation from all the committee work he was involved in suggested that something was wrong with him. It is believed that his drinking problem was the root of the problem for as you will soon read his drinking was blamed for his criminal activities. Whether it was his war time experience or just the pressures of life, his life in the early 1900’s took a significant turn for the worse.

The West Sussex Gazette of July 21,1910 reported “ Sydney William Allen, formerly a well-known jeweller of Hastings and Bexhill was charged at Bexhill on Saturday with stealing two clarinets from Kursaal (an amusement park). The prisoner entered the police station to give information respecting the missing instruments and was confronted with a warrant for obtaining goods by fraud from the Dutchess of Sutherland’s Cripple Guild New Bond Street (another charge).The instruments were recovered from the Wellington Hotel in London where it is believed Sydney was living and the prisoner was committed for trial.

The Bexhill –On-Sea Observer of June 18,1910 reported on the same event stating that Sydney was arrested on a warrant of the Metropolitan Police and taken to London where he was sentenced for fraud.  This article was entitled “ The Sad Case of Sydney Allen”.  A photograph of Kursall is shown opposite.  It is located at Southend-On-Sea in Essex and opened in 1901.

The Bexhill-On-Sea Observer of June 18,1910 reported “ Imprisonment for Fraud –Kursall- Mr Sydney William Allen’s visit to Bexhill was brought to an abrupt termination this week when he was arrested on a warrant issued to the Metropolitan Police, taken to London and sentenced for fraud. About twelve years ago (1898) Mr Allen carried on a jewellers business in the town….”

The 1911 census taken at the Rowton Lodging House in St Pancras NW London gave Sydney W. Allen as a boarder and working as a jewellers assistant.

If the events of 1910 were not bad enough Sydney  got into trouble again in 1911. The Hastings and St Leonard Observer of June 18,1911 reported the “for the second time Sydney William Allen was charged with fraud at the Marlborough Police Court to 4 months imprisonment on a charge of obtaining by fraud silver goods”. But Sydney did not learn his lesson.

The Dundee Courier of August 22,1912 reported that “Sydney William Allen was formerly a well-known jeweller at Hastings but drink had been his ruin. He was sentenced to 9 months hard labour for stealing clothes from a hotel”. He served his time at the Pentonville Prison (image opposite)in north London. The Bexhill-On-Sea Observer of August 24,1912 gave further details stating he had been charged with stealing two suits of clothes, a pair of curtains, a tankard, a gold pin and other articles from the hotel in London, the property of the hotel proprietor and hotel guests.

Whether Sydney changed his ways after 1912 or not wasn’t established but newspaper reports about him after 1912 were not found except for a notice of his death stating he had died February 5, 1920 at Battle Sussex, where he was described as the son of the late Rev. William Allen of Oxford.

THE PAYNE FAMILY 

Two central figures form the basis for this section namely Thomas Edward Payne of Payne and Allen , the business partner of Sydney William Allen in Tunbridge Wells and Margaret Allen, his sister, who married Sydney in 1886 at Wallinford Berkshire. Details about the history of Payne’s Jewellers at 39 High Street was given in my article ‘ Payne & Son- Tunbridge Wells Jewellers and Silversmiths’ dated November 28,2011. A photo of their shop featuring their clock, which still exists today, is shown opposite. 
 
Thomas Edward Payne was the son of William Payne (1818-1857) and Mary Payne (born 1829) and was one of several children in the family. Thomas had been born 1849 in Banbury, Oxfordshire, the same place where Sydney William Allen had been born. It is to be expected that the Payne and Allen families came to know one another while residing in Banbury.  The future wife of Sydney was Margaret Payne who had been born in Banbury in 1859.

The 1871 census, taken at Wallingford, Berkshire (where Margaret was living at the time of the 1901 census) gave William Payne as the proprietor of the jewellers shop. Living with him was his wife Mary and their children Thomas Edward, Margaret, Bertin (age 10), Harriet (age) , Edith (age 8) and Ernest age 2. Also there was a shop assistant and two domestic servants. Thomas Edward Payne at that time was working for his father as a jewellers assistant.

In the 3rd qtr of 1876 Thomas Edward Payne married Helen Elizabeth Stephenson (born 1853 in Banbury, Oxfordshire). At the time of the marriage both of them were of St Giles. As noted earlier Thomas Edward Payne moved to Tunbridge Wells with his wife and children and established his jewellers shop at 37 High Street. The 1881 census, taken at 37 High Street records Thomas as the proprietor of the jewellers shop and living with him was his wife and several children.

Probate records for Thomas Edward Payne gave him late of 35 High Street, a jeweller and silversmith, who died January 6,1886 at 124 High Street, Guildford, Surrey. The executor of his 6,106 pound estate was his widow Helen Elizabeth Payne of 35 High Street. Thomas was buried in the Tunbridge Wells Borough Cemetery where he was joined later by his wife.

The 1881 census, taken at Guildford Holy Trinity, Surrey gave Thomas, his wife Helen and their children Helen and Herbert living as visitors with Helens parents (Thomas and Elizabeth Stephenson) and four of her siblings and two domestic servants. More about the Stephenson family is given in the last section of this article.

The 1891 census, taken at 37 High Street gave Helen Payne as a widow with the occupation of jeweller gold employer. With her was her daughter Helen Nora Payne (born 1878 in Tunbridge Wells) and her son Herbert Stephenson Payne(born 1881 in Tunbridge Wells). Also there was Christopher Penny, age 27 given as a jewellers manager and one domestic servant.

The 1901 census, taken at 37 High Street, gave Helen as a jeweller and shopwomen employer. With her was her daughter Helen Nora (a medical student) and her son Herbert who was an undergraduate. Also there was Edwin Baker, age 21 who was working for Helen as a jewellers assistant, and one domestic servant.

THE STEPHENSON FAMILY 

The central figure in this family is Helen Elizabeth Stephenson (born 1853 in Banbury, Oxfordshire) who married Thomas Edward Payne of Tunbridge Wells in the 3rd qtr of 1876.

Helen was one of at least six children born to Thomas Stevenson (born 1819 at Brentford) and Elizabeth Stephenson born 1814 in Jamaica. The 1861 census taken at 34 Bridge Street in Banbury, Oxfordshire (image above) gave Thomas Stephenson as a grocer. With him was his wife Elizabeth and their children Helen, Edith Lindley, Ada and George. Also there was a grocers assistant, one grocers apprentice and two domestic servants.

The 1871 census, taken at 124 High Street in Guildford, Surrey gave Thomas as a master grocer employing seven men. With him was his wife Elizabeth and their children Thomas,age 23(a shopman to grocer); George,Ada and Edith (all three of whom were in school). Also there was one shopman grocer and two domestic servants.

The 1881 census, taken at 124 High Steet, Guildford was given in a previous section of this article where members of the Payne family were visiting the Stephensons.

The 1891 census, taken at 124 High St Guildford Surrey gave Thomas (a grocer) with his wife Elizabeth ; his children George and Ada and three servants.

Probate records gave Thomas Stephenson of 124 High Street  Guildford, Surrey, gentleman, when he died January 5,1892. The executors of his 18,096 pound estate were Thomas Henry Stephenson, his son and wholesale grocer, and Charles Beck, an inspector of schools.

One of Thomas’s daughters Edith Lindley Stephen,who had been born 1859 in Banbury and died January 11,1944 married in the 4th qtr of 1889 at Guildrford, Surrey John Fletcher Dodd (1867-1952) and with him had the following children (1) John Fletcher Dodd (1893-1972) (2) Edith Violet Dodd (1897-1906) who was born in Tunbridge Wells (3) Charles Tattershall Dodd (1898-1976) who was born in Tunbridge Wells June 5,1898 and died 1976 at Cambridge, Cambridgeshire. Charles had married Ethel Ridyard Breakell (1901-1997).

The name of Charles Tattershall Dodd is well known in Tunbridge Wells in connection with the family of noted painting artists. Details of the family and their careers were given in my article’ The Dodds-A Tunbridge Wells Family of Artists’ dated October 4,2011. John Fletcher Dodd, referred to above, was the son of Charles Tattershall Dodd (1815-1878) and the brother of Charles Tattershall Dodd (1861-1949) both of whom were local artists.

THE LIFE AND TIMES OF SOPHIA ANN CORFIELD

 
Written By: Edward James Gilbert-Thunder Bay, Ontario, Canada

Date: March 29,2019

OVERVIEW

Sophia Ann Corfield (1842-1931)  was the wife of John Corfield (1854-1939) a post office employee. Both of them were born in Tunbridge Wells. Sophia was one of several children born to Frederick Henry Ravenscroft (1801-1877) and his wife Ann Ravenscroft, nee Whalley, who were married in London in 1827.

The Ravenscroft family lived initially in London where Frederick worked as a hairdresser and perfumer but in 1835 he and his wife and three children moved to Tunbridge Wells where the remainder of Frederick’s children were born.

At the time of the 1841 census , taken at Montpellier Lodge in Mount Ephraim, Frederick was the proprietor of a hairdressers business. With him was his wife and six children, the three youngest of which were born in Tunbridge Wells between 1836 and 1840.

The 1851 census, taken at Mount Ephraim gave Frederick as a hairdresser. With him was his wife Ann, who was born in Liverpool in 1801, and their four children. Frederick’s  20 year old son Frederick James Ravenscroft was working for his father as an assistant hairdresser.

The 1861 census, taken at Oldenburg House, located in the vicinity of Hanover Road and 1 Grosvenor Road, listed Frederick as a hairdresser. With him was his wife Ann; his son Charles,age 24 (hairdresser) and his daughter Sophia Ann of no occupation.

The 1871 census, taken at 45 Mount Ephraim gave Frederick as a widower with the occupation of hairdresser and perfumer. With him was just his daughter Sophia Ann of no occupation.

Frederick passed away in Tunbridge Wells February 28,1877 at Mount Ephraim leaving a under 100 pound estate to his married daughter Sophia Ann Corfield of Mount Ephraim.

Sophia Ann Ravenscroft married John Corfield  in Tunbridge Wells in the 2nd qtr of 1877.  John Corfield  was one of six children born to John Corfield (1808-1869) and Mary Corfield,nee Constable (1821-1888). The Corfield family lived at Denny Bottom in Rusthall, where John Corfield senior was a labourer and his widow Mary and two of her daughters were laundresses.  Sophia’s husband, a post office employer ,and was working as a telegraph clerk at the time of the 1871 census.

After Sophia married John Corfield she and her husband took up residence  at 27 Grosvenor Road (1881 census). Advertisments , like the one shown above, began to appear in the Courier between early 1880 and the fall of 1883 giving Mrs J. Corfield as the proprietor of a hairdressing business at 35 Mount Pleasant Road.

By the time of the 1891 census Sophia and John and their five children (all born in Tunbridge Wells between 1878 and 1885) were living at 33 Mount Ephraim where Sophia was in charge of the sub-post office and John was a postal clerk there.  The 1901 census, taken at the same address gave John as a chief clerk of the GPO and his wife Sophia was the sub post mistress. With them were one son and two of their daughters, namely  Mary, age 23 and Annie,age 20 who were both working as post office clerks for their mother.

By the time the 1911 census was taken Sophia and John had left Tunbridge Wells and their children had moved away. The 1911 census recorded John and Sophia living in Torquay where John was the postmaster. The census recorded that the couple had seven children with five of them still living.

Probate records gave Sophia Ann Corfield passing away in the 2nd qtr of 1931 at Reading, Berkshire but was buried in the Tunbridge Wells Borough Cemetery June 12,1931. It appears that she was away on vacation at the time of her death but still a resident of Tunbridge Wells. Her husband John passed away in Tunbridge Wells October 28,1939 at the Kent & Sussex Hospital but was a resident of the Rockmount Hotel in Mount Ephraim. The executor of his 1,532 pound estate was his spinster daughter Annie Ethel Corfield (1881-1943). John was buried in the Tunbridge Wells borough Cemetery on November 2nd.

The Ravenscroft and Corfield families of Tunbridge Wells are both interesting and some members of them were largely connected to the hairdressing business in the town. In this article I present information about both families with particular coverage given to Sophia Ann Corfield, nee Ravenscroft.  Sophia’s daughter Mary Home Corfield (1878-1914) married Robert Harry Burslem (1881-1960) of the well-known Burslem stonemasons firm in Tunbridge Wells  and Sophia’s daughter Evelyn Lucy Corfield (1879-1959) went on to marry Sidney Stimson (1881-1935) the manager of a timber business.

THE RAVENSCROFT FAMILY

Frederick Henry Ravenscroft (1801-1877) was born in Westminster London March 2,1801, where he was baptised on April 26,1801. He was one of ten children born to Thomas Ravenscroft (1750-1807) and Mary Ravenscroft, nee King (1763-1810). Thomas was born December 5,1750 at Market Drayton, Shropshire and died there on January 7,1807. His wife Mary was born January 17,1763 at Shoreditch, London and died at Market Drayton January 4,1810. Thomas and Mary were married December 24,1781 at Shoreditch, London. Frederick’s siblings were born between 1783 and 1805 with Frederick being the second youngest of five sons.

On April 16,1827 Frederick Henry Ravenscroft married Ann Whalley, who was born 1801 in Liverpool, at Walton-On-Hill, London. The couple had the following children (1) William , born 1828 London (2) Frederick James, born 1830 London (3) Josiah, born 1834 London (4) Charles, born 1836 Tunbridge Wells (5) George, born 1838 Tunbridge Wells (6) Walter, born 1840 Tunbridge Wells (7)Sophia Ann, born 1842 Tunbridge Wells(birth registered 3rd qtr 1842).

From the birth records of the children it was established that the Ravenscroft family took up residence in Tunbridge Wells in 1835. Before 1835 Frederick was working as a hairdresser in London and when he arrived in Tunbridge Wells he established a hairdresser and perfumer shop on Mount Ephraim.

A directory of 1840 gave “ Frederick Henry Ravenscroft, Mount Ephraim, hairdresser and perfumer”.

The 1841 census, taken at Montpellier Lodge on Mount Ephraim gave Frederick as a hairdresser. With him was his wife Ann and six of their children. The children were all educated locally.

The 1851 census, taken at Mount Ephraim, gave Frederick as a hairdresser. With him was his wife Ann and four of his children (Frederick,Charles.George,Walter). It appears that his son Josiah died at an early age in Tunbridge Wells.

A directory of 1855 gave “Frederick Henry Ravenscroft hairdresser , perfumer, and agent for the British Empire Fire & Life Company and post office receiving house Mount Ephraim”.

The 1861 census, taken at Oldenburg House, which according to the order in which the census was taken was between a residence on Hanover Road and No. 1 Grosvenor Road. At this residence was Frederick (a hairdresser), his wife Ann, his son Charles (a hairdresser working with his father) and his daughter Sophia Ann Ravenscroft, of no occupation.

The 1871 census, taken at 45 Mount Ephraim gave Frederick as a widower and working as a hairdresser and perfumer on own account. With him was his spinster daughter Sophia Ann Ravenscroft who was assisting her father as a hairdresser.

A directory of 1874 gave “ Frederick Henry Ravenscroft, 45 Mount Ephraim, hairdresser and perfumer and post office”.

Probate records note that Frederick Henry Ravenscroft was late of Mount Ephriam Tunbridge Wells when he died February 28,1877 at Mount Ephraim. The executor of his under 100 pound estate was his married daughter Sophia Ann Corfield (wife of John Corfield) of Mount Ephraim, the sole executrix.

SOPHIA ANN CORFIELD (NEE RAVENSCROFT) 

Sophia was the youngest child born to Frederick Henry Ravenscroft and his wife Ann. Sophia’s birth was registered in Tunbridge Wells in the 3rd qtr of 1842. Up to the time of her marriage in 1877 she lived with her parents in Tunbridge Wells and as noted in the census of 1871 she was working as a hairdresser in her father’s shop at 45 Mount Ephraim.

In the 2nd qtr of 1877 Sophia Ann Ravenscroft married John Corfield (1854-1939) in Tunbridge Wells. Although some information about John Corfield is given in this section, further information about the Corfield family is given in a separate section. John Corfield was born in Tunbridge Wells and was one of six known children born to John Corfield senior (1808-1869) and Mary Corfield,nee Constable (1821-1888). The Corfield family, originally from Shropshire and later London,  lived in Tunbridge Wells since 1844 but by 1860 had moved to Denny Bottom in Rusthall where they were still living at the time of the 1871 census.  Shown above is a photograph of Sophia and John Corfield.

The 1881 census, taken at ‘The Ravenhust’ Guestling parish in Hastings, Sussex gave Sophia Ann Corfield as a telegraphers wife. Sophia was living with her brother Charles Ravenscroft and his family. With Sophia were her children Mary Home Corfield (1878-1914) and Annie Ethel Corfield (1881-1943) .Charles Ravenscroft was working at that time as a hair restorer master employing 3 men.

References to Mrs Sophia Corfield as the proprietor of the hairdressers business were found in the Courier between April 2,1880 and August 3,1883. Those from the 1880’s gave her place of business as 27 Grosvenor Road and noted that she was a ladies and children’s hair cutter and general perfumer and the sole distributor of various hair care products. Advertisments for the business from 1881 to 1883 gave her operating from premises at 35 Mount Pleasant Road. A directory of 1887 gave “Mrs Sophia A. Corfield, 35 Mount Pleasant Road, hairdresser”. A postcard view of Grosvenor Road is shown below left and one of Mount Pleasant Road (Mount Pleasant Hill)  is shown below right.

Women’s hairstyles in the Victorian Era were quite elaborate as can be seen in the image opposite dated 1898. Curling and dying of the hair was popular and designed in such a way that hats could be worn for no respectable women would be out and about without wearing an equally elaborate hat. There are several websites that provide information about the history of hairstyles through the ages.






The 1881 census, taken at 27 Grosvenor Road, Tunbridge Wells gave John Corfield working as a postal clerk. With him was his daughter Eveline Lucy Corfield (1879-1959) and one domestic servant.

Sophia and John had the following five children, all of whom were born in Tunbridge Wells (1) Mary Home Corfield (1878-1914) (2) Eveline Lucey Corfield (1879-1959) (3) Annie Ethel Corfield (1881-1943) (4) Frederick John Corfield (1883-1953) (5) Harry Vincent Corfield (1884-1945). The 1911 census recorded that they had seven children but two of them had passed away by 1911.

The 1891 census, taken at 33 Mount Ephraim gave John Corfield as a postal clerk employee. With him was his wife Sophia who’s occupation was given as “ receiver post office employer”. With them were all five of their children who were attending school. Also there was one domestic servant and one post office assistant.

A directory of 1891 gave “ Mrs Sophia A. Corfield, 33 Mount Ephraim, ladies hairdresser. A directory of 1899 gave “John Corfield 33 Mount Ephraim post office”. A postcard view of Mount Ephraim is shown above.

The 1901 census, taken at 33 Mount Ephraim gave John Corfield as “chief clerk GPO Tunbridge Wells employee”. With him was his wife Sophia given as “sub post mistress”. Also there were their daughters Mary and Annie who were both working as “clerks to post office”. Sophia’s son Harry was also there but had no occupation.

Sometime after 1901 and before 1911 Sophia and her husband left Tunbridge Wells and moved to Torquay. The 1911 census taken at The Elms, 8 Chelstone Grove, Rathmore Road, Chelston, Torquay gave John Corfield as the postmaster of the Torquay post office. With him was his wife Sophia of no occupation and one domestic servant. The census recorded that they were living in premises of 8 rooms;that they had been married 33 years and that of their seven children five were still living. A postcard view of Torquay dated 1900 is shown opposite.

Death records noted that Sophia Ann Corfield died in the 2nd qtr of 1931 at Reading, Berkshire. Her body was returned to Tunbridge Wells for burial in the Tunbridge Wells Borough Cemetery on June 12,1931.

Probate records for John Corfield gave him of the Rockmount Hotel, Mount Ephraim, Tunbridge Wells when he died October 28,1939 at the Kent & Sussex Hospital. The executor of his 1,532 pound estate was his spinster daughter Annie Ethel Corfield (1881-1943).

The daughters of Sophia and John Corfield married well. Their daughter Mary Hume Corfield married Robert Harry Burslem (1881-1960) in the 2nd qtr of 1903 and with him had three children between 1905 and 1911. Robert Harry Burslem as a monumental maker employer, of the well-known local stonemason business “Burslems”. At the time of the 1911 census the family were living at 77 Calverley Road, Tunbridge Wells. Details about the Burslem family and their business were given in my article ‘BURSLEM’S –A FAMILY OF STONEMASTONS’ dated November 27,2012. A postcard view of their business premises is shown opposite.

Sophia’s daughter Evelyn Lucy Corfiled married Sidney Stimson (1881-1935) at Medway, Kent in the 1st qtr of 1909. Sidney was the manager of a timber business. By the time of the 1911 census Evelyn and Sidney were living at Caversham, Oxfordshire with two nieces and two servants in premises of 7 rooms. The couple at that time had no children.

Sophia’s daughter Annie Ethel Corfield never married. She was living in Tunbridge Wells as a visitor at the time of the 1911 census. Probate records gave her of 24 Dudley Road Tunbridge Wells when she died in Brighton, Sussex on November 3,1943. The executor of her 1,698 pound estate was her widowed sister Evelyn Lucy Stimson and her solicitor.

Although research was not conducted on Sophia’s other children it was noted that at the time of the 1901 census her son Frederick John Corfiled as living as a boarder at Milton near Sittingbourne as a single gentleman and working as a post office clerk.

THE CORFIELD FAMILY

The central figure in this family is John Corfield (1854-1939) who married Sophia Ann Ravenscroft (1842-1931) in Tunbridge Wells in 1877 and with her had five children. Details of his life and career were given in the previous section.

John was one of five children born to John Corfield (1808-1869) and Mary Corfield, nee Constable (1821-1888). John Corfield senior had been born in Ludlow, Shropshire and  died April 15,1869 at Rockview Cottage in Rusthall, Kent. His wife Mary had been born October 1821 in Speldhurst and died June 18,1888 in Rusthall. Robert senior and his wife Mary were married June 12,1843 at St James, Paddington, London.

The eldest child in the family was Harry Corfield (1843-1915) who was born in Marylebone London. As noted in a Tunbridge Wells directory of 1882 Harry became a hairdresser operating his business from premises at 45 Mount Ephraim. He died during service in WW1.

From a review of birth records it was established that the Corfield family moved from London to Tunbridge Wells in 1844 . While living in Tunbridge Wells John and Mary had the following children (1) Ellen Corfield (1844-1928) (2) Annie Corfield (1849-1900) (3) Mary Mahala Corfield (1852-1934). After 1852 the family moved to Denny Bottom in Rusthall where their six and last child Lucy Corfield was born in 1858.

The 1861 census, taken at Denny Bottom, Rusthall gave John Corfield as a labourer. With him was his wife Mary, a laundress; their son Harry, a porter; the daughter Ellen, a laundress;and their children Ann, Mary, John and Lucy who were all in school. Four members of the Dewile family were living there as boarders. A postcard view of Denny Bottom is given opposite.

The 1871 census, taken at Home Villa in Denny Bottom gave Mary Corfield as a widow and working as a laundress employing seven women. With her was her daughters Ann and Mary who were both laundresses and her son John, a telegraphic clerk at the post office, and Lucy who was in school. Also there was one domestic servant.

John Corfield senior had died in Denny Bottom, Rusthall in 1869 and his wife Mary died there in 1888.

 

REVEREND AUGUSTUS CLISSOLD OF 4 BROADWATER DOWN

Written By: Edward James Gilbert-Thunder Bay, Ontario Canada

Date; March 20,2019

THE CLISSOLD FAMILY

The following account appeared in an article entitled ‘AUGUSTUS CLISSOLD-FROM STOKE NEWINGTON TO TUNBRIDGE WELLS’ written by Charmian Clissold-Jones (Augustus Clissold’s three times great niece, descended from his brother, the Rev. Henry Clissold, 1795-1867).

Broadwater Down is a noble thoroughfare, 50 feet in width, planted with an avenue of ornamental trees and situate about 400 feet above the level of the sea. On both sides are handsome Mansions, 46 in number, each surrounded by spacious ornamental grounds of from one to ten acres. It is therefore an exceedingly choice residential position .” So ran the advertising promotion in a sale catalogue for No.1 Broadwater Down in 1885. It was a road inhabited by affluent, respectable families, such as (in 1881) Henry Hewitson at No.3, a retired merchant and shipowner, William Woodward Doke at No. 2, a retired stockbroker and William Newbold at No. 7, a director of a Mexican Railway Company in London.

At No. 4, lived the Rev’d Augustus Clissold MA, a retired clergyman from London, who spent time at his country home in Tunbridge Wells from the 1860’s. The Census Returns of 1871 reveal that, aged 73, he lived there with his wife Eliza, his sister-in-law Mary Wood, and five servants. However, his main residence was in Stoke Newington in London, in a fine house built by Joseph Woods for his uncle Jonathan Hoare in about 1790 and set amidst 53 acres. Formerly known as “Crawshay’s Farm”, then “The Park”, it eventually became  known (from 1889) as “Clissold Park”. The story of how the property came into the Clissold family is very romantic, but tinged with sadness and mystery.

Augustus Clissold was born in 1797 near Stroud, Gloucestershire, one of 13 children, of  whom 5 sons and two daughters grew up. His father, Stephen  Clissold,  had founded the Ebley Cloth Mills, but none of his sons followed him into the business. Augustus took his BA degree at Exeter College, Oxford in 1818 and his MA in 1821. In 1823 he was admitted to priests orders and held for some time the curacies of St. Martin-in-the-Fields and St. Mary in Stoke Newington. He fell in love with Mr William Crawshay’s daughter, Eliza, who was a regular worshipper at St. Mary’s, but marriage was out of the question  as Eliza’s father  refused consent, and even threatened to shoot the messengers whom the lovers were forced to employ.

William Crawshay (image below) who lived at Crawshay’s Farm, came from a remarkable family of ironmasters. His father Richard, had built up the ironworks at Cyfarthfa in South Wales, transforming it from a sleepy backwater into a boom area in the early days of the Industrial Revolution. In 1803 the Cyfarthfa ironworks were the largest in Britain and renowned for the quality of output. Guns for HMS Victory were made there and in 1802, Nelson visited the ironworks with Sir William and Lady Hamilton.  In 1810, William had inherited £100,000 from his father, from an estate valued at well over a million pounds – a truly astronomical figure at that time. (Indeed, in the Sunday Times Rich List of April 1999, they placed Richard Crawshay at No.6 of the ten richest people in England in 1799. -The value, in the year 1999, being £240m)

William had inherited a highly complex business arrangement with many partners, including two of his highly competitive brothers, and a convoluted interlinking between the Cyfarthfa Works, the ‘London House’ that sold the products and the Rhymney Ironworks. His success at resolving the many incompatible issues,and strengthening his own position within the company, revealed him to be a master manipulator and businessman, able to exploit rifts and weaknesses in his opponents and grab opportunities whenever possible.When he died, he was said to be the largest individual ironmaster in the world.

The  Crawshays were men of strong, unyielding and independent character, with a driving ambition to make the most of the opportunities which presented themselves. While William I lived in his beautiful house in Stoke Newington and attended to the trading business carried on there, his son, William II managed the Cyfarthfa works at Merthyr Tydfil. There was much personal conflict between each successive father and son.

William I was wealthy, powerful, shrewd and autocratic but he was far fonder of his children than Richard had been of him. Nevertheless, he expected them to be subservient to his dictates, while they were strong-willed and resented his autocratic rule. Fear of dis-inheritance (as William I had at one time been disinherited by his father) kept the sons from open rebellion. So, William remained the paternal autocrat until his death in 1834, only defeated by his daughter Mary, whose dowry he paid in full although she persisted in marrying against his wishes. He refused to attend the wedding or have anything to do with her husband, Capt. Wood.

So it was against this background of family character and history that Eliza faced defeat in her wishes to marry the Rev’d Augustus. She appears to have been of more gentle and considerate nature than her sister Mary and her brothers. During Mary’s quest for permission to marry, Eliza wrote to her favourite brother William II, begging him not to take sides or do anything “either as friend or foe”, that might offend their father. She was frightened lest William II went too far and lost his promised inheritance, the Cyfarthfa ironworks. She was always urging him to be prudent, calling her father,” the king”, and pointing out the futility of opposition, “The king, my dear William, is quite determined to have his own way and I hope his three legitimate sons, the Princes Richard, William and George will never oppose him.” She was a shrewd, witty woman, particularly devoted to her mother and middle brother, William. It must have been a dull existence for her.

Poor Eliza. Her father was said to have an incurable aversion to the church and its ministers (but possibly to one in particular!) In 1812, Mr Crawshay built a wall on the north side of the churchyard (adjoining his property) with foundations 10 feet deep, to prevent, it is said, the sexton thrusting surreptitious coffins under his estate. In 1816, he proposed building a wall 10 feet above the ground of the churchyard.

The Rev’d Clissold came from a respectable family himself, but it would appear that the main opposition to him from Mr Crawshay was for his unorthodox religious beliefs. He was well thought of by the congregation and was hard working and conscientious, but was greatly troubled by points of doctrine. While in this frame of mind he read a book called “The True Christian Religion” by Emmanuel Swedenborg and became an enthusiastic student of his writings.

So it was not until Mr Crawshay died in 1834 that Eliza was finally able to wed Augustus,which she did on the 6th May 1835. She was by then 45 years old. The marriage was attended by her brother George and by Stephen Clissold, brother to Augustus, which suggests that it was acceptable to both families. Eliza brought a beautiful house and great wealth to the marriage. It gave financial independence to her husband, so that after 1840 he practically withdrew from Church of England work and devoted himself to study and to writing and to advancing the cause of the New Church.

He became a member of the Swedenborg Society in 1838 until his death, and was the author of a large number  of ecclesiastical works of reputation, such as  “The Spiritual Exposition of the Apocalypse,” “The Practical Nature of Swedenborg Writings” and “The Re-Union of Christendom”. He was on the Committee of the Society for a number of years and served some time as Chairman, helping to resolve an internal dispute within the Society with William White in 1861. During the whole of his association with the Society, he was most generous financially, giving regular financial donations and purchasing for them the lease on their new headquarters in Bloomsbury Street. At his death the Society  received a legacy of £4,000. Altogether he must have contributed something like £8,000 to them.

This generosity to the Society caused some concern amongst some of his family, prompting a great niece to write, “to think that wicked old Augustus in his old age, took up Swedenborgian religion, and left them his fortune of £30,000 which should have come to my father. Aunt Diana, who lived with her brother, turned too, and the Society got her £5,000 as well.” (The legacy to the society, left by Augustus  in his will, was in fact £4,000.)

After Eliza’s death in 1877, Augustus spent most of his time at No.4 Broadwater Down and there he died in October 1882. They are buried next to each other in the cemetery in Tunbridge Wells. His sister, Diana, wrote of him that “ he led so studious a life that it is difficult to find external incidents to relate. When at Stoke Newington he lived in his library, and here I never disturbed him.”  He was buried in the Tunbridge Wells Borough Cemetery November 2,1882. No probate record for him was found.  

The Swedenborg Society paid him a well- deserved tribute, acknowledging “with gratitude the munificent assistance of Mr  Clissold for many years, and also the benefit of his Christian counsel at all times, as well as the example of his Christian character.”

The couple had no children, so after his death, Augustus’s life interest in “The Park” in Stoke Newington, held by virtue of his wife, reverted back to the Crawshay family. It was eventually sold to the London County  Council in 1886 and opened as a park in 1889.  It was a minor Botanical Garden which had been designed as the grounds of a gentleman’s residence. Today, the fine house is sadly rather neglected  and used as a tea room, and in much need of renovation and care, but it is the name of Clissold, and not that of  Crawshay that has remained permanently attached to the estate.

And the mystery? Early one morning in 1982, a lady was walking her dog, along one of the paths in the park. She saw a figure wearing mourning clothes, a long black skirt and coat with a black hat and veil, approaching along another path. She thought they would meet when the two paths crossed, but the figure just disappeared. Puzzled, she asked a Park Keeper about the incident. He confirmed that she had just seen the ghost of Clissold Park!

FROM WIKIPEDIA

Augustus Clissold (c.1797–1882) was an English Anglican priest, known as a Swedenborgian active in later life in publishing on behalf of his views.

Born in or about 1797, the fifth son of Stephen Clissold (1764–1834) of Stonehouse, near Stroud, Gloucestershire, he had Stephen Clissold the writer as elder brother. He matriculated at Exeter College, Oxford, on December 6,1814, the same day as his elder brother Henry. He took the ordinary B.A. degree on  November 19,1818, proceeding M.A. on  June 13,1821.

In 1821 Clissold was ordained deacon, and in 1823 was admitted to priest's orders by Thomas Burgess, the Bishop of Salisbury. He held for some time the curacies of St. Martin-in-the-Fields and St. Mary, Stoke Newington.

Having become a follower of Emanuel Swedenborg, Clissold withdrew from the Anglican ministry about 1840, but remained nominally connected with the Church of England to the end of his life. He continued to reside at Stoke Newington. He died on October 30,1882 at his country house, 4 Broadwater Down, Tunbridge Wells, in the eighty-sixth year of his age.

The Swedenborg Association was started in 1845 for the publication of Swedenborg's scientific works, and merged, after its task had been accomplished in a great measure, in the larger Swedenborg Society. Clissold was chosen president of the Association; in 1838 he joined the Swedenborg Society as a life member, and in the same year he was placed on the committee. In 1840 he was elected chairman of the annual meeting. In 1854 he purchased for the use of the society a seventy years' lease of 36 Bloomsbury Street, London, which later became a distribution centre for "New Church" literature.

During the troubled time through which the Swedenborg Society passed in 1859 and 1860 Clissold supported it financially. His will left it £4,000.

Clissold translated and printed at his own expense Swedenborg's Principia Rerum Naturalium, 2 vols., London, 1845–6, and Economia Regni Animalis (edited by J. J. Garth Wilkinson), 2 vols., London, 1846, both of which he gave to the Swedenborg Association. He was the author of:

[1]The Practical Nature of the Doctrines and alleged Revelations contained in the Writings of Emanuel Swedenborg … in a Letter to the Archbishop of Dublin (R. Whately), London, 1838 (2nd ed. as The Practical Nature of the Theological Writings, London, 1860 [1859]).

[2]Illustrations of the End of the Church, as predicted in Matthew, chap. xxiv., London, 1841.

[3]A Letter to the Rev. J. Bonwell of Preston, upon the Subject of his Sermon on the Perishing in the Gainsaying of Core, London, 1843.

[4]The New Church … addressed to the inhabitants of Preston, London, 1843.

[5]A Review of the Principles of Apocalyptical Interpretation, 3 vols. London, 1845.

[6]A Reply to the Remarks emanating from St. Mary's College, Oscot, on Noble's Appeal in behalf of the Doctrines of Swedenborg, [London], 1849.

[7]The Spiritual Exposition of the Apocalypse, 4 vols., London, 1851.

[8]A Letter to the Vice-Chancellor of the University of Oxford on the Present State of Theology in the Universities and the Church of England, London, 1856.

[9]Swedenborg's Writings and Catholic Teaching, (in answer to the Rev. William James Early Bennett, by A. Clissold), London, 1858 (3rd ed., London, 1881).

[10]Inspiration and Interpretation: being a review of seven sermons … by J. W. Burgon, … with some remarks upon “The Beginning of the Book of Genesis,” by I. Williams, 7 parts, Oxford, London [printed], 1861–4.

[11]The Reunion of Christendom, London, 1866.

[12]Swedenborg and his modern Critics, London, 1866.

[13]The Literal and Spiritual Senses of Scripture in their relations to each other and to the Reformation of the Church, London, 1867.

[14]Transition; or, the Passing away of Ages or Dispensations, Modes of Biblical Interpretation, and Churches; being an Illustration of the Doctrine of Development, London, 1868.

[15]The Centre of Unity; What is it? Charity or Authority?, London, 1869.

[16]The Prophetic Spirit in its relation to Wisdom and Madness, London, 1870.

[17]The Present State of Christendom in its relation to the Second Coming of the Lord, London, 1871.

[18]The Creeds of Athanasius, Sabellius, and Swedenborg, examined and compared with each other, London, 1873 (2nd ed. in the same year).

[19]Paul and David (by A. Clissold), London, 1873.

[20]Sancta Cœna; or the Holy Supper, explained on the principles taught by Emanuel Swedenborg, London, 1874.

[21]The Divine Order of the Universe as interpreted by Emanuel Swedenborg, with especial relation to modern Astronomy, London, 1877.

[22]The Consummation of the Age: being a Prophecy now fulfilled and interpreted in the Writings of Emanuel Swedenborg (extracted from Swedenborg's Arcana Cœlestia, with a preface by A. Clissold), London, 1879.

Clissold published also a sermon preached on the death of the Rev. George Gaskin, London, 1829. In 1870 he busied himself in forwarding the publication of the work known as Documents concerning the Life and Character of Emanuel Swedenborg 2 vols. 1875–7, based on originals collected, translated, and annotated by Johann Friedrich Immanuel Tafel; and during the last two years of his life he assisted the publication of Swedenborg's posthumous work on The Brain, 1882, part of the Regnum Animale perlustratum.

Further information can be found for Augustus in the Dictionary of National Biography.

NO 4 BROADWATER DOWN  

No. 4 Broadwater Down was one of the early homes built in the Broadwater Down development in the 1860’s. Work on the development began by contracts with a local builder in 1862 and 1863. Details about this development was given in my article ‘ The Broadwater Down Estate Development’ dated November 22,2013. A photograph of the home is given opposite along with a site map from 1907 highlighted in red.

From the aforementioned article is the following occupancy record for this residence.

“#4-Misses Kayes(1867);Augustus Chissold,73,M.Clergyman(1871)Rev Augustine Chissold(1874);Augustus Clissold,83,W,clerk holy orders(1881)Rev. Augustus Chissold(1882);William Grindley,72,M.glass merchant(1891);Miss Moore(1899);Emma H.Moore,55,W,own means(1901);Emma Hannah Moore,65,S,private means(1911);Mrs Moore(1913);Miss Faithfull(1918);S.E. Coad(1930);S.E. Coad(1934);S.E. Coad (1938)

From a review of Planning Authority applications it was noted that in 1975 an application by Mr James Rufferty was refused for demolition of the coach house which can be seen near the road in front of the main house on the 1907 OS map.

 In 1975 and 1976 an application by J.H. Brewster was approved for redevelopment of the land at the rear of 2,4,6,8 and 10 Broadwater Down to accommodate 51 homes.

In 1980 approval was granted for the division of No. 4 into two residences, which home was described at that time as “The Old College House 4 Broadwater Down. When the home came into institutional use was not established but it predates 1975. This application changed the use from institutional to residential.

In 1981 an application was made to change the building into a nursing home but the application was withdrawn.

From 1998 onwards various applications for The Coach Hose of 4 Broadwater Down were made regarding the construction of a conservator and work on trees.

Both No 4 and The Coach House at No. 4 still exist today. Although several homes were requisitioned in Broadwater Down for war use in WW1 No. 4 was not among them.

 WILLIAM PAWLEY OF THE CALVERLEY HOTEL

Written By: Edward James Gilbert-Thunder Bay, Ontario, Canada

Date: March 28,2019

OVERVIEW 

The history of the Calverley Hotel, one of Tunbridge Wells premier hotels located on Crescent Road overlooking at the rear the Calverley Grounds, is a long one as described in my article ‘ The History of the Calverley Hotel’ dated May 9,2014. This hotel began as a large private home in 1762 but in 1839-1840 it became a hotel run by George Robinson. Edward Churchill ran the hotel from 1841 until at least 1862. In the 1870’s and 1880’s it was run by William Pawley (1839-1907). At the time of the 1891 census the hotel was owned by Calverley Hotel, Ltd. Since then the hotel has had a number of managers and owners.

At the time of the 1841 census William was living with his parents William and Charlotte and his sister Maria at the White Hart Hotel/Inn, where William’s father was the innkeeper.

William Pawley had been born 1839 in Bromley, Kent, one of two known children born to William Pawley born 1803 in Horsmonden, Kent, who by 1861 was a farmer of 300 acres employing 18 men, 3 boys and 3 women.  William junior’s mother was Charlotte Pawley who had been born in Pembury, Kent in 1810/1811.

Sometime after 1862 and before 1871 William and his sister Maria moved to Tunbridge Wells. The 1871 census, taken at the Calverley Hotel gave William as  the proprietor of the hotel, with his sister assisting in the business. At that time the hotel had 16 visitors with a staff of 14.

In 1873, at St George’s Hanover Square, London, William Pawley married Angeline Howard (1857-1904). Angelina was a well-to-do spinster who at the time of the marriage was living at Bloombury St George. Angelina had been born at Cornwall, Orange County, New York, USA, one of four known children born to her parents Henry K. Howard and (born 1821 in England) and Jane Elizabeth Howard, nee Simpson (born 1827 in England).  Angelina’s father was the proprietor of a successful brewing business in New York, a business that he founded as the Henry Howard Brewery by 1850. His brewery operated under various names throughout the 19th century until becoming Howard & Childs Co. in 1884, which brewery closed in 1907.

Angelina was quite an attractive lady and a woman of independent means, who later in life inherited part of her parents estates. Angelina was last found living in New York at the time of the 1870 census. She sailed from New York, arriving in London in 1872 and took up residence in London.

William Pauley and Angelina had just one child, namely Ethel Howard Pawley, who was born at the Calverley Hotel on August 16,1875. She was quite an attractive women of independent means and travelled extensively. Ethel’s first marriage was to Major George Hall McLaughlin (1859-1914) and with him had two daughters, one in 1901 and the other in 1902. At the time of the 1901 census Ethel and her husband and one daughter (who was born in London 1901) and five servants were living in the village of Hopesay, Shropshire, where George was a retired Major of H.M. Army and an employer of a business. George  came from a distinguished family largely associated with service in the military and the church. In 1916 Ethel married again, this time to John William Tait (1889-1942) but the marriage was not a success for they had no children and it ended in divorce. Although Ethel travelled extensively abroad her home base was London. Ethel died in Rome, Italy in 1961 but her body was returned to England where she was buried December 8,1961 at Kensington and Chelsea.

William Pawley was found at the Calverley Hotel in a 1874 directory and was still there at the time of the 1881 census which at that time his wife Angelina and their daughter Ethel were with him. A large number of guests and servants were also at the hotel. A directory of 1882 listed William at the hotel but left the hotel by 1891 for in that year he was living with his wife Angeline and his daughter Ethel and one domestic servant at Belgrave Mansions at St George Hanover Square. All three of them were listed at living on own means.

The 1901 census, taken at the Berkeley Hotel  at St George Hanover Square gave William living on own means. With him was his wife Angeline. Probate records gave Angeline Pawley of ‘Heatherdene’ Weybridge, Surrey (wife of William Pawley) when she died December 3,1904. The executor of her 38,112 pound estate was her husband. Her husband William died in London in the 2nd qtr of 1907.

THE PAWLEY FAMILY-THE EARLY YEARS

The central figure in this family is William Pawley junior (1839-1907) who had been born December 28,1839 at Bromley, Kent and who was baptised January 24,1840 at Bromley. He was one of two known children born to William Pawley (1803-1899) and Charlotte Pawley (1813-1873). His sister was Maria Pawley who was born in Bromley in 1839. Shown opposite is an image of William Pawley junior, a rather distinguished heavy set gentleman, which image was taken later in his life.

The 1841 census, taken at the White Hart Hotel/Inn (image opposite dated 1905) in Bromley at 138-140 High Street  gave William Pawley born 1803 in Kent with the occupation of “Inn Keeper”. With him was his wife Charlotte, born in Kent and his two children William Junior and Maria (born 1839 in Bromley).  This family unit were still at the Hart Hotel at the time of the 1851 census. A review of licencees of this establishment lists William Pawley there since 1832 but by the 1850’s he had been replaced .

Sometime before 1861 William Pawley senior gave up the occupation of innkeeper and went into farming. The 1861 census, taken at the farm house in Bromley, Kent gave William senior as being born in Horsmonden, Kent and a farmer of 300 acres employing 18 men, 3 boys and 3 women. With him was his wife Charlotte, given as born 1810 in Pembury, Kent and his two children Maria and William. Also there were two carters and one domestic servant.

THE TUNBRIDGE WELLS YEARS   

Sometime in the late 1860’s William Pawley junior and his sister Maria left Bromley and moved to Tunbridge Wells where at the time of the 1871 census William was the proprietor of the Calverley Hotel (image opposite) and his sister was assisting in the business. Also there were 16 hotel guests and 14 servants.

The history of the Calverley Hotel, one of Tunbridge Wells premier hotels located on Crescent Road overlooking at the rear the Calverley Grounds, is a long one as described in my article ‘ The History of the Calverley Hotel’ dated May 9,2014. This hotel began as a large private home in 1762 but in 1839-1840 it became a hotel run by George Robinson. Edward Churchill ran the hotel from 1841 until at least 1862. In the 1870’s and 1880’s it was run by William Pawley (1839-1907). At the time of the 1891 census the hotel was owned by Calverley Hotel, Ltd. Since then the hotel has had a number of managers and owners.

An allegation of marriage dated August 15,1873  between William Pawley and Angeline Howard (1857-1904) suggests that the couple were married later in 1873. Their first and only child was not born until 1875.  The marriage too place in London and at the time of the marriage Angeline was living at Bloomsbury St George and William was living in Tunbridge Wells, although in preparation for the marriage had taken temporary accommodation in London. Details about Angeline Howard and the Howard family of New York, USA are given in the next section

William Pawley was listed as the proprietor of the Calverley Hotel in a 1874 directory. The 1881 census, taken at the hotel gave William as the proprietor. Living with him was his wife Angelina and their only child Ethel Howard Pawley who had been born at the Calverley Hotel August 16,1875. Further information about the life of Williams daughter Ethel are given in a later section of this article.

The last record found of William Pawley at the Calverley Hotel was a listing of him there in a directory of 1882. It is known that by the time the 1891 census was taken that he had left Tunbridge Wells and moved to London.

WILLIAM AND ANGELINE PAWLEY IN LONDON

The 1891 census taken at Belgrave Mansions (image below left) at St George Hanover Square, London gave William Pawley as living on own means. With him was his wife Angeline and their daughter Ethel, who were also both living on own means. Also there was one domestic servant.

The 1901 census, taken at the Berkeley Hotel (image below right ) at 1 Berkeley Street St George Hanover Square gave William and his wife Angeline both living on own means.

 













Probate records gave Angeline Pawley of ‘Heatherdene’ Weybridge, Surrey (wife of William Pawley) when she died December 3,1904. The executor of her 38,112 pound estate was her husband. Her husband William died in London in the 2nd qtr of 1907.

THE HOWARD FAMILY

In 1873, at St George’s Hanover Square, London, William Pawley married Angeline Howard (1857-1904). Angelina was a well-to-do spinster who at the time of the marriage was living at Bloombury St George. Angelina had been born at Cornwall, Orange County, New York, USA, one of four known children born to her parents Henry K. Howard and (born 1821 in England) and Jane Elizabeth Howard, nee Simpson (born 1827 in England).  Angelina’s father was the proprietor of a successful brewing business in New York, a business that he founded as the Henry Howard Brewery by 1850. His brewery operated under various names throughout the 19th century until becoming Howard & Childs Co. in 1884, which brewery closed in 1907.

I begin my account of the Howard family with the 1850 census, taken at Newburgh, Orange County, New York, USA. With Henry K. Howard who was born 1821 in England with the occupation of brewer. With him was his wife Jane Elizabeth Howard born in England. Also there were (1) Sophia Howard, born 1847 in New York, died 1894 (2) Mary Jane Howard, born 1848 in New York. Also there was John Colwell, age 18, a lager maker working for Mr Howard at his brewery.

The 1860 census, taken at Newburgh, Orange County, New York gave Henry K. Howard as a master brewer. The value of his personal estate was given as $1,000. With him was his wife Jane and their children Sophia, Elizabeth, ANGELINE and Robert Henry Howard, born 1860 in New York. Also there was one domestic servant.

The 1870 census, taken at Orange County, New York, gave Henry K. Howard as a brewer. With him was his wife Jane and their children Elizabeth Jane Howard (1852-1947) , ANGELINE and Robert Henry Howard (1860-1893)who was at school. Angeline’s occupation was given as “at home”.

In 1872 ANGELINE sailed from New York, arriving at London where she lived up to the time of her marriage to William Pawley in 1873.

ANGELINE (image above) was an attractive lady from a prosperous family who upon the death of her parents was left an inheritance. When her father passed away was not established but he was still living in New York in the early 1900’s and his wife Jane was still alive in 1873 but appears to have predeceased her husband.

A review of New York brewery records noted that the Henry Howard Brewery was still operating under that name in 1874 but later that year and from a directory of 1880 the business was listed as ‘Howard Brewery”. In the years 1882 to 1884 it was operating as Henry Howard & Co Brewery but later in 1884 to 1907 it became known as the ‘Howard & Childs Brewery. Later in 1907, when it closed, the brewery was known as the Howard & Childs Co. Brewery. Shown opposite is a bottle from this brewery.

ETHEL PAWLEY 

From the previous sections it was recorded that Ethel Pawley was born August 16,1875 in Tunbridge Wells at the Calverley Hotel and was the only child born to William Pauley and Angleline Pawley, nee Howard.  She had been baptised August 17,1875 at St John’s Wood All Saints Church. Also previously noted was that she moved with her parents to London sometime after the 1881 census and before the 1891 census.

At the time of the 1891 census Ethel was living with her parents at Belgrave Mansion in St George Hanover Square. London.

In the 1st qtr of 1899 Ethel married Major George Hall McLaughlin (1859-1914) who had a distinguished career in the H.M. Army. A photograph of him is shown opposite. Further information about the McLaughlin family are  given in the last section of this article but at this time I report that George had been born at Woolwich, Greater London and was one of four children born to Major General Edward McLaughlin (1838-1912) and Annie McLaughlin, nee Bromilow (1840-1911).

Ethel and George had the following children (1) Sheila Howard Annie Home McLaughlin (1901-1970) who was born in Kensington (2) Daphne Howard McLaughlin (1902-1987) who was born in Kensington.

The 1901 census, taken at the village of Hopseay in Shropshire, gave George Hall McLaughlimn as born 1860 in Portsmouth,Hampshire with the occupation of “retired Major H.M. Army employer”. With him was his wife Ethel Howard McLaughlin and their daughter Sheila. Also there were five servants.  The family were back in London at the time of the 1911 census. Shown in this section are three images of Ethel, namely the two opposite and the one below.

George Hall McLaughlin died 1914 in London naming his widow Ethel as one of the executors of his estate. He was buried in London.

Ethel Howard McLaughlin then married John William Tait(1889-1942) but the marriage was not a success. They had no children and were later divorced.

In the years after the divorce Ethel reverted back to the name of Ethel Howard McLaughlin and although she travelled extensively abroad her home base was in London where she is found in a number of directories .

Ethel died in Rome , Italy in November 1961 while vacationing. Relatives arranged for her body to be brought back to London and she was buried December 8,1961 at Kensington and Chelsea.

THE MCLAUGHLIN FAMILY 

The central figure in this family is George Hall McLaughlin born 1859 in Woolwich. He was the son of Major General Edward McLaughlin (1838-1912) of whom an image is given opposite and Edward’s wife Annie(Ann) McLaughlin, nee Bromilow (1840-1911).  Edward and Annie were married in 1857. Edward was one of eleven children born to Hubert and Frederica McLaughlin.

George had three(some say five) siblings namely (1) Rev. Edward Crofton Leigh McLaughlin (1858-1939) (2) Lt Col. Hubert James McLaughlin (1860-1915) (3) Vivian Guy Ouseley McLaughlin (1865-1917). All of the siblings were born in Woolwich. Shown opposite is an image of Rev Edward C.L. McLaughlin.

In December 1878 George received a commission in the Royal Horse Artillery, signed by Queen Victoria. In 1886 at Woolwich he was promoted to Captain and in 1890 he was promoted to Major and at the time of the 1891 census was living in Woolwich.

George’s mother died in 1911 and his father died in the 4th qtr of 1912 at Herefordshire. George himself died in London in 1914.

 

                                                                 GO TO PAGE 3 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 
Web Hosting Companies