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Michael Adrian Elder ASHBY (1895-1983)

Biographical Details

Michael Adrian Elder Ashby (1895-1983), was the older brother of Juliet Sladden’s schoolfriend, Joyce Ashby.  He is mentioned in three letters in 1915.

Michael was born at Elmcroft, Gresham Road, Staines, on 12th November 1895, the fifth of seven children of Ernest Howard Ashby and his wife, Jane Mary.  Michael’s father was a brewery director and came from a long line of Ashbys involved with brewing in Staines.  Michael’s great-great-grandfather, Thomas Ashby (1762-1841), had founded a brewery on Church Street, Staines, in 1796, and the company (from 1899 onwards known as Ashby's Staines Brewery Limited) lasted until 1936 when it went into voluntary liquidation.  Michael’s father, however, died at the relatively young age of 52, on 8th February 1912.  The family was by then living at Roscrea, Cherry Orchard, Staines, having recently moved from Gresham Road (when his eldest brother, Howard, died in 1919, the address was given as Roscrea, Knowle Green).

Michael was educated at Haileybury College, Hertfordshire, where he was to be found at the time of the 1911 census.

On the outbreak of war, Michael joined the London Regiment.  On 28th March 1915, George Sladden wrote in a letter to his mother that she should tell Juliet when she next wrote that he hoped to see Joyce Ashby’s brother.  Michael was with the 1st/5th London Regiment, which was George’s Battalion.  However, a month later, Juliet wrote to her mother to say that Joyce’s brother had been wounded and invalided home; she thought his nerve had given way, too.  Juliet described him as only 17, but he was in fact 19.

Michael married Mary Taylor in 1936 in the Longtown district of Cumberland; they are thought to have had at least one child.  On the outbreak of the Second World War, Michael’s wife and baby were living with two of Michael’s sisters, Joyce Ashby and Dorothy Vaughan, in Wanborough.

Michael died in the Penrith district of Cumbria on 11th February 1983.  His wife died in 2000.

Letters mentioning this person: