EVENTS None this week
OUR SALEM BASE from 9am – 2pm every Tuesday and this week we have Susan (nee Ridgway) who has researched her family tree looking at the Ridgway photographs we have in our archives and we have over 100 of them.
REQUESTS Neil Benton emails from Slaithwaite in Yorkshire – ‘Whilst trying to Google The Lord Nelson Inn I came across the Cheslyn Hay website and was delighted to see that you may have information pertaining to the family tree of both the Benton and Hassell families. My g-grandfather was, or so I believe, the landlord of The Lord Nelson Inn sometime after the Great War. It is all very sketchy and something I knew frustrated my father, Les Benton, greatly. My father used to take the Mens Keep Fit Class at the Leisure Centre in the 80’s and 90’s and owned Leslyn Transport. My father’s uncles, Bernard, Frank and Colin Hassell, were very reluctant to divulge information regarding their oldest brother Leslie Hassell, who I believe was born out of wedlock and consequentially raised by another family member (possibly a sister?) Elsie Benton, who lived off the High Street in Bloxwich. At some point, for even more reasons unknown, he adopted the name Benton . My mother (Linda Benton, one time landlady at The White Horse on Mount Pleasant, remembers Bernard Hassell Snr living in flats on Hunter Road in Cannock.’ Neil adds that he is researching his family tree for his own children and would appreciate any information on the Bentons and the Hassells.
Mike Rowledge is also researching his family tree emailing ‘It contains a Simeon Tuft (1813-1892) who seems to have spent all or most of his life in Cheslyn Hay. Googling him led to your site, and searching on your site gives 6 results for him on your weekly newsletters. I’ve found his 1892 Death Index record and 1851-1891 census entries (but not 1841), 1837 marriage to Lucy Brough, and 1836 conviction for poaching. Is there more information about him available via yourselves?’
RESPONSES We were able to look into Sylvia’s last week’s request on more information on her grandfather, Sgt Leonard H Bowker, and his military career and it is certainly has provided an interesting story. Apparently Leonard H Bowker never enlisted but on 19th February 1919 he received the Victory and British Medals with his Service Number of 1084 and thanks to the efforts of our WWI Researcher, Jon Barton, he discovered that a Leonard H Smith enlisted on 22nd August 1914 with the same Service Number. So he registered under the name of Smith and his award of the Military Medal is therefore recorded and named L H Smith. No wonder the family has never come across his medal. However we have a photograph in our archives of Leonard Bowker with all of his medals!
More information has been found in our archives to help Derek Bullock in his search for information on his Bullock/Smith family. We have got a 10 page combined history of both the Bullocks and Smiths together with photographs and even a mention of Derek himself of owning a BSA Gold Star motor cycle in the 1950s!
Now a response from our French émigré from off the Bonk – Alan Brown, who is, of course, fluent in French, but now with questionable English from how he remembers it!
We moved “up” (!) to 61 Low St from “down” Station St in…June 1964, on the back of a Ben Tarbuck‘s coal wagon. Cheslyn Hay must be the only place where you could move upwards to a street named “Low”. 12th Dec 1914: “A fine specimen of the swine kind” : they doe mek jernallists like that no moo’er. Many thanks Mike B for that porker corker. Nine ‘undred an three pound in wairte! They’s a bonloada scratchin’s theer ah bet. Finally, what a delight to read of Lynne’s recollections. I can taste that peppermint custard now. Merci Madame Cartwright & co.
NEW PHOTOGRAPHS This is typical of one of the many reactions we get from the new photographs handed in and it comes from John in Reigate and we can all imagine our own delight in the same circumstance. ‘Can’t believe you have a photo of my g-g-grandmotherElizabeth Hall (1834-1911)! Please send me a copy’
This week we have more names added to the John Martin Collection of photographs of the Pinfold Lane School – Warren Adshead, Ruth Allan, Craig Aston, Michael Ball, Jason Barlow, Jason Bayliss, David Bedward, Melanie Bird, Wayne Bolger, Dominic Bradburn, Roger Brown, Sonny Burke, Matthew Caine, Joanne Cartwright, Paul Cash, Rachel Clarke, Michelle Clenton, Darren Cookson, Stuart Cresswell, Dean Cumberledge, Chloe Dolman, Carl Eades, Craig Fielding, Matthew Ford, Richard Green, Jason Harlow, Victoria Harris, Wayne Hewitt, David Hill, Heather Hill, Christopher Hollis, Ian Hollis, Carla Holloway, Lloyd Holyhead, Lisa Horton, Nicola Horton, Richard Horton, Stuart Humphries, Mark James, Andrew Jones, Leslie Jones, Paul Lever, Debra Mayer, Louise Moody,Trevor Moore, Phillip Nash, Rachel O’Connor, Nina Pearson, Michelle Perks, Nicholas Palmer, Emma Powis, Claire Reeves, Emma Reynolds, Yvonne Roe, Louise Rudge, Neil Sambrook, Kelli Selvey, Joanne Skelding, Richard Sleigh , Jenny Smith, Christopher Sprague, Lee Stewart, Richard Swain, Carl Taylor, Susan Walker, Hayley Webb, Adrian Whitehouse, Christian White, Victoria Whitmore, Nicola Willetts, Mark Williams, Claire Woollaston and Rebecca Woolley. £1 per 7×5 Photographic Print.
OLD NEWSPAPERS researched by Dave Washington More court cases involving Henry Russell (24 Aug 1894), Ann, Annie Elizabeth & Lizzie Banks (10 & 17 May 1895), Charles Bates, Isaiah Bate, David Brough, John Wilkins and Francis Rowe (17 May 1895).
WHAT HAPPENED THIS WEEK 50/100 YEARS AGO by Mike Belcher
19th December 1914 A good company assembled at the Working Men’s Club, on Monday and Tuesday evening, the occasion being a Crib Tournament for three good prizes offered by the Competition Committee. After enjoying the various games Mr T Bickley, one of the committee, announced the results as follows: – First Prize: Mr William Wesley(for Mr J Pratt), Second Prize: Mr Ernest Holmes, Third Prize: Mr J Wesley.
MEMORIES The Cheslyn Hay School magazine began in 1928, the brainchild of Mr Ernie Carter. Each edition contained news of school events, sports records and scholars’ contributions but news of past pupils was also welcomed and reported and these excerpts are taken from the 1934 edition.
We find that quite a few of the boys were abroad in the forces. Driver Joseph Roberts of the Rocket Troup and Guardsman Harry Benton met up in Egypt , where Harold James was also stationed. Cyril Hand of The 11th Light Battery R.A., Don Stacey, a trouper in The Royal Dragoons, Bombardier Horace Parr and Alfred Newell and Sidney Hulme of The South Staffordshire Regiment were all stationed in India . Harry Jukes was also in India , but was recovering from Enteric Fever, an infectious disease caused by bacteria. Alfred Benton had recently been recruited into The Grenadier Guards.
At home some of the lads were working in the local pits. Frank Ridgway was at Mid Cannock Colliery; Ray Worsey was at Hilton Main Colliery. David Warnsby was now working at the colliery after giving up farming and Wilfred Thomas was on the staff at Harrison ‘s Colliery. Ben Warnsby had also left farming and was working at Goodyear, Wolverhampton alongside Roy Hickman andReg Kirby. Steven Turvey however, was still farming and had moved to Four Crosses, William Plant was working on Mr Noden‘s farm and Sidney Dunn had a position at Mr Morris‘s poultry farm.
Working locally were former Head Prefect Robert Perks, who was at Glenthorne Stores in High Street, and Harry Poxon who worked at Mr Shorter’s. Two of the lads were working with their fathers, George Felton was bricklaying and Stanley Robinson worked on his dad’s motor lorry. Arthur Baker had become a decorator and Herbert Whitehouse was working at the L.M.S. Goods Department, Walsall . Glen Ridgway and Tom Cooper worked at Messrs Stanton’s and Joseph Simms was sole proprietor of two family butcher establishments in Wolverhampton . Bert Berry was working in Wolverhampton too, at ‘Efandem’, as was ‘old girl’Florrie Wood.