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17 Synehurst, Badsey (present-day 31 Synehurst)

McDonald Family

31 Synehurst
No 17 Synehurst (present-day No 31) - Peter Stewart, 2008.

The first occupants of 17 Synehurst were siblings, Margaret (known as Maggie), Elizabeth and Douglas McDonald, but they remained living there for just a year or two.

The siblings were three of the five children of the late John Henry McDonald, the headmaster of Badsey Council School until his death in 1913.  The McDonalds had moved to Badsey in 1894 when John took up the headship of what was then the Board School.  They lived in the School House adjacent to the school.  Their sister, Jean McDonald McDonald, had married Frank Edmund Amos in 1914, who had taken over as Head.  Douglas served in the Great War, but it is thought that Maggie and Elizabeth remained at School House until the Council house became available.

The eldest sibling was Margaret Ann McDonald (1874-1950) who was a teacher at the school and acted as Head during the Great War when her brother-in-law, Frank Amos, was away at the war.  Elizabeth McDonald (1876-1956), like her sister, never married.  Douglas Scott McDonald (1886-1953) was the youngest of the five children.  He married Alice Mary Probyn in 1923 and moved to Stourbridge.

Maggie and Elizabeth also left the house in 1923, moving to Mostyn Villa, Chapel Street, Badsey, in the summer.  They remained there for the rest of their lives.  In retirement, Douglas and Alice also came to live there.  There was a huge turn-out for the funeral of Maggie McDonald in 1950, as she had been a very popular teacher.  Sadly, Douglas committed suicide in 1953.

Sealy Family

The new occupants of 17 Synehurst were a newly-married couple, Victor and Mabel Sealy and their young son.

Victor Charles Sealy (1900-1968) was born at Yateley, Hampshire, the second of four children of Richard Sealy and his wife, Annie (née Parslow).  Victor married Mabel Ellen White at Hornsey Rise, Middlsex, in January 1923.  Later that year, a son, Kenneth Royston (1923-1999), was born at Hartley Wintney.

As well as getting married and becoming a father, Victor also changed jobs.  He was a schoolteacher and, from 1st September 1923, he was confirmed as an Assistant at Badsey Council School.  With the Misses McDonald vacating No 17, the Sealys were able to move into the Council house.  A second son, Brian Richard (1928-2005), was born at Synehurst.

Victor Sealy resigned his post at Badsey as from 31st March 1932, as he had accepted a job in Uxbridge.

Bennett Family

The next people to live there, from the spring of 1933, were William and Winifred Bennett and children.

William Ernest Bennett (1907-1976) was born at Badsey, the second of four children of William Bennett and his wife, Elsie May (née Agg).  William grew up at Belmont Terrace, Willersey Road, Badsey.  He married Winifred Jane Lampitt in 1930.  By the time that they were able to move to the Council house, they had two children:  William John (1930) and June Margaret (1932-2017).  Two more children after they moved into 17 Synehurst.  At the time of the 1939 register, William and Winifred are recorded there with three children.  

The Bennetts were still living there in 1955 when Mavis married Romilly Ian Thomson and in 1956 when Joan married Albert Donald Driver.  William Junior had married in 1951.  The Bennetts from Synehurst in about 1964.  William died at Badsey in July 1976 and Winifred at Manor Close, Badsey, in November 1987; they are buried in Badsey churchyard.