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Visitors’ Book

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Helen Wagner - 20th July 2005 - 0:00

My sincere thanks to all those who took the trouble to transcribe the registries of births marriages and burials, as well as the monuments, of St James Badsey. I am a Seward descendant, and the discovery of your website has added immeasurably to my pitiful knowledge of the family, as well as confirmed the marriage of my ancestors Elinor Seward and Richard Hall, together with the date of their union.

The worldwide web is a wonderful research tool, but without the efforts of all of you, I would have struggled for years before finding any of this information, if at all.

Super website, really interesting, I shall visit Badsey (for the first time) when I am next in England.

Helen Wagner née Kingham

Although this website is run by a team of voluntary contributors, special thanks must go to the following members of that team:- Maureen Spinks for the collation and transcribing of the births, marriages and deaths, school records and census returns. Peter Stewart for the monumental inscriptions, and Richard Phillips, for the transposition of all of this data onto the webpages.

Dawn Kendrick - 10th July 2005 - 0:00

I grew up in Badsey and still feel that's where my roots are. When I was younger my nights were spent at the Badsey Cricket Club!! My great grandmother was Emma Knight who married John Collett and so linked these two well-known Badsey families together. I have traced my family history back to late 1500's and it's fascinating (it inspired me to write my first book!). I lived with my mum, Doreen Collett, brother Alan and Grandad (Samuel John Collett known as Jack) on the corner of Sands Lane. I still have family living in the village so I do come back to visit and it still feels like home.

Congratulations on your wonderful website.

Audra Taylor - 5th July 2005 - 0:00

I am very interested in the surname Badsey that you have been researching. My maiden name is Badsey and our family has lived at Leamington Spa for the past seventy years. I don't have much knowledge of our family history as I have not had time to research it. But since going on the Internet I feel I would like to find out more, and what better way to start than looking up the village Badsey. I have often driven passed the signs and wondered about it. If anyone has any information about the Badsey family I would appreciate hearing from them.

Audra Taylor
Leamington Spa

I am sure your forebears almost certainly came from Badsey. However, the Badseys had gone from Badsey by the end of the 17th century (the last recorded mention being 1682). If you can fill in the intervening 300+ years, then I am sure you will find a match with a Badsey of Badsey ancestor! All that is known about the Badsey family when they lived at Badsey is shown on the Badsey website. You will need to start from the present-day and work backwards, but I hope that you will find the research rewarding. As anyone who has delved into family history knows, it can be a very time-consuming hobby, but well worth it in the end.

Jonathan Braby - 1st July 2005 - 0:00

I have recently discovered a couple of photographs of Badsey Vicarage as it was when I was growing up there as a child.  Hope all is well in my favourite village.  

My eldest daughter is getting married at Broadway in November. I am taking a couple of days off before the wedding to take my young children on a short tour of the Evesham area to show them where I grew up, so I will obviously be including Badsey in the list.

Jonathan Braby
Cambridgeshire

John Bosher - 8th June 2005 - 0:00

The Idiens family suddenly swam into my field of vision when I discovered that Major Albert John Orchard (1881-1963), of the Indian Army took leave in 1914 to marry Miss Edith Mary Idiens (c1886-1981) at Christ Church Cathedral, Victoria, British Columbia, on 4 July 1914. He was stationed at Jubbulpore as a captain in the 8th Rajputs; she was the second daughter of Alice and John Idiens (a merchant) who had migrated from Evesham to 2625 Roseberry Avenue, Victoria, British Columbia, not many years before. In the English census for 1891 (RG 12/2335, p 3) John Idiens is recorded as a merchant, aged 38, and born in Birmingham, Warwickshire; and his wife Alice Idiens as aged 37 and born at Tettenhall, Staffordshire.

On their wedding day, the couple left on the 3 o'clock boat for Vancouver on their way to England, where they were to stay for three weeks and then proceed back to India. Two of her brothers, both born at Evesham, joined the Canadian Army in the Great War (1914-18): Stanley South Idiens, a bank clerk, born on 18 May 1891, joined on 16 October 1916; and the other, evidently a dyslexic chap born on 24 December 1883, was what he called a "solisitor" who had two served two years in the "yemonary." Of course Edith Mary Idiens did not join the army and so I do not have her birth date, only her appearance, aged 4, in the 1891 English census (RG 12/2335, p 3). At some time in 1920, after the Great War, the Orchards settled in Victoria, where they had two sons and a daughter and lived mainly at 3329 Linwood Avenue. It was there that he died, aged 81, on 13 June 1963, leaving his wife and their daughter Alice at home. Mrs. Orchard lived to be 95 and died on 26 December 1981.

The Idiens seem to have migrated in force: several went up Vancouver Island to Comox and lived and died there.

John Bosher
Canada

Maureen Spinks - 9th June 2005 - 0:00

In reply to by John Bosher

Thank you for your email. The Idiens family had a few connections with Badsey: John Idiens had business connections in the village; he was a School Manager from 1902-1904; and his eldest son, Harold, married a Badsey girl, Elizabeth Helena Crisp, a former pupil and teacher at Badsey School.

I've just had a quick look in the index of the 1901 census and see that the Idiens were living then at Wickhamford (the next village to Badsey).  Five of their children lived there (Harold, Albert, Walter, Doris and Stanley). I couldn't find Edith Mary Idiens anywhere on the 1901 census. The story goes that the Idiens lived very briefly at Wickhamford Manor (a beautiful old building with lovely gardens) but then lost all their money and emigrated to Canada.  Are you descended from John and Alice?  If you are, if you're ever visiting England, it would be worth staying there (they do bed and breakfast accommodation) to see what your inheritance might have been!

John Bosher - 10th June 2005 - 0:00

In reply to by Maureen Spinks

In the 1901 census I find Edith Mary Idiens (indexed as Idiers), aged 14, living with Mary South at what looks like 11 Clarendon Street, Wolverhampton, Staffordshire [RG 13/2673, p 25]. Also there were her own sister Alice M. Idiens (aged 15) and two of Mary South's daughters: Sarah and Mary South.  There were only these five women plus a "general domestic" servant girl.

"Lost all their money" would explain why the Idiens emigrated. The agricultural depression in England towards the end of the 19th century, and heavier taxing of landowners, as David Cannadine explains in his books, certainly put pressure on the countryside. My Readings grandparents left rural Berkshire in 1905, where they had been brickmakers, and were followed in 1919 for similar reasons by my Bosher grandparents, gardeners on a big estate near Bracknell when it was still a village.  The Idiens were not my forebears! Still, it would be fun to stay at the Wickhamford Manor, but I won't manage it this year.

Wendy Ellis - 22nd March 2005 - 0:00

I have just discovered your website and was delighted to renew my memories of Badsey and I was particularly interested to see the enquiry about Claybrook Nurseries.

My parents, Claude and Irene Hobbs, and I moved to Badsey in 1953 from the Cheltenham area. My father managed Claybrook Nurseries for Peter Fearis of Barnwood, Gloucester. The Fearis family owned a chain of grocery shops in towns such as Gloucester and Worcester. The nursery supplied tomatoes and other salad crops to the stores, as well as growing carnations and many other flowers and pot plants. The Fearis business was bought by the supermarket chain Fine Fare who later sold it to Jimmy Collett who I believe came from Chipping Campden. My father retired about 1968 and we moved to 54, Bretforton Road. I don't know who owned Claybrook after Mr Collett but the nursery fell into disrepair and when I last visited it in 1994 it was in a derelict, sorry state.

I attended Badsey School and was intrigued to see pictures of the trip to Cheddar and Cardiff. What a mammoth excursion! I must have joined the school after this trip as I am sure I did not participate. We arrived in Badsey just after the Coronation. I can remember being given a Coronation mug by our neighbour, Mr George King. I still have it. I joined the class of a rather kind young male teacher whose name I cannot now remember and I think Mrs Peet was my teacher for the top class; such an elegant lady with her grey hair in a neat bun. I also remember Miss Barnard, Mrs Osborne and Miss Smith. Mrs Peet took the girls for needlework and I have vivid memories of struggling to make a half petticoat in our final year. Other memories are of singing in the school choir and attending a school music festival; held at Blackminster School I think. I remember being mortified on that occasion at finding, during the concert, a pipe cleaner still rolled into my hair. The evidence of mother's efforts to give me curls!

My mother was a member of the WI so it was great to see a mention of the skiffle group. I remember it well. Mum played the tea chest double bass.

Does anyone else remember the Red Cross cadets? Badsey had no Girl Guides or Brownie groups but Mrs Brazier (whose husband was the local builder) ran the cadets from her home in the High Street. We were taught First Aid and the District Nurse (Miss Davies) prepared us for our Home Nursing certificate. We marched in Remembrance Day parades. In the summer, for some reason, we did needlework! Preparing us to do the odd bit of suturing maybe?

Wendy Ellis (nèe Hobbs)
Manningtree, Essex

Keith Houghton - 9th March 2005 - 0:00

May I add my congratulations to the many and well-deserved plaudits you have already received for your excellent website?

I have been researching my family's history seriously for only twelve months, and only recently stumbled across your website. It is a veritable goldmine of information, and it is particularly exciting to make such a find when labouring under the difficulty of trying to compile information from the other side of the world.

My great-grandmother was Charlotte Knight (b. 1833), a daughter of Valentine Knight (1799-1849) and Sarah Houghton (1800-1866). Charlotte married William Houghton of Harvington in December 1860. She spent the rest of her life in Harvington, where she died in September 1902, attended by one of her daughters, who lived next door to her. Charlotte produced two daughters and a son, William Edwin Houghton (1869 - 1918), who subsequently had twelve children, of whom my father was the youngest. My grandfather was an employee of the Midland Railway, at Upton on Severn, Gloucester, Bristol and finally Bromsgrove, where he was Railway Traffic Inspector at the time of his death.

I read with interest the entries in your Visitors Book from other Knight family descendants, and would dearly love to examine the 14-foot-long Knight family tree.

Please keep up the good work; your website is a benchmark for other local history groups to aspire to.

Keith Houghton
Sydney, Australia

Sara Westwood - 22nd February 2005 - 0:00

I would just like to say how much I have enjoyed your website. I am doing family history research at the moment and found the parish records and church records section the best I have ever come across.

I went to Badsey School from 1959-1965 so it was lovely seeing the faces I remembered and the names of the teachers. I have a class photo with Mr. Morton in 1963. I was Head Girl in the academic year Sept 1964 to July 1965 with Stephen Tucker as Head Boy. Stephen proposed to me on the school turtle/ tortoise when we were 5 but sadly I went to Evesham High School (Four Pools) and Stephen went to Blackminster so true love never blossomed!!.

I went on to have a successful academic career at Evesham High and was the first pupil at the school to get a place at an Oxbridge College. The year 1972 and I went up to Girton College, Cambridge It was a good year for Evesham schools, Wendy Thomas from Prince Henry's went to Newnham in the same year and our stories were covered in the Evesham Journal. Wendy and I both read Natural Sciences with both of us graduating in 1975.

I then went on to the Welsh National School of Medicine in Cardiff to do my Ph.D. followed by post-doctoral research at Birmingham University. I then worked for 21 years service in the Forensic Science Service, retiring early last year when I reached 50, after contributing to the development of the service including the implementation of the National DNA database.

I would like to pay a tribute to all the staff at Badsey both teaching and non teaching for making my early school life so happy and setting me on a wonderfully fulfilling career path. Thank you all.

Sara Westwood (nèe Kitcher)

Don Barnard - 15th January 2005 - 0:00

I have been researching the Barnard family for some years and have accumulated a lot of material on William (parish clerk, schoolmaster, postman and tailor through the 19th century).

I have all of my direct line back to William and their siblings linked up. Also, I know that the wife of a descendant of Joseph (William's son) is researching. Between us we should be able to cover two branches of the family.

However, there are cross links into other Badsey families (Addis, Walker, more recently Merrett, certainly more) and there might be some value in attempting a more ambitious Village Tree. I am too busy to do this at present (Birmingham Poet Laureate this year - Badsey seems to breed poets) but will be happy to share my tree with any willing volunteer.  "Intermarriage in a 19th century village" - would make a good research project for a student.

I think the Badsey website is splendid, well-built and an enormous benefit to us exiles.  Thanks to all who work on it.

Don Barnard (son of Edwin "Ted", born Brewers Lane, had land at Horsebridge and later Knowle Hill).
Leamington Spa, Warks

See also William Barnard 1803 - 1892 an article written by Don Barnard.

Joy Earnshaw - 10th January 2005 - 0:00

 Congratulations on an excellent website and thank you to all who have worked to provide such a wealth of valuable and interesting information.

I am researching the family of my husbands great great great grandfather Samuel DONES, b. cl820 in Badsey, (son of Thomas DONES labourer) who married Emma VALE on 18 Nov 1847 in the Parish Church, Dumbleton, Gloucestershire.

After checking the information on your site I believe that our Samuel could be the Samuel DONES bpt. 9 Jul 1820 St James Church Badsey, son of Thomas DONES and Hannah JELFS who were married on 26 Dec 1816 in St James Church Badsey.

As this is still to be confirmed I would appreciate any assistance or advice you can give regarding the DONES and JELFS families.

Joy Earnshaw
NSW Australia

Steven Powers - 5th January 2005 - 0:00

Congratulations! Your website is fascinating, and a benchmark for excellence as a tool to help family research.

Your census strays show that John Harwood was resident in Leamington Priors at the time of the 1851 census. Although he is mentioned as having been born in Badsey in 1802 there seems to be no record of his birth in the parish records either in that year or thereabouts.

Were the Harward and Harwood families related?

Steven Powers

The John Harwood you mention is a bit of a mystery.  I am assuming he is the same person as John Harwood who died at Badsey in April 1876, aged 74.  As far as Badsey records are concerned, his burial is very much of a stray, as he occurs nowhere else in the records - no baptism, no marriage, and he does not feature in any census return.

The name HARWARD has featured in Badsey records since records began in the 16th century.  However, this name had died out in Badsey and Aldington by the mid 18th century.  The name reappeared as HARWOOD in the mid 19th century, but I don't know if they were descendants of the HARWARDs or not.  Certainly, there's no record of John or any other HARWOOD or HARWARD being baptised at the beginning of the 19th century in Badsey. There are still HARWOODs in the area today, and they are all descended from George Harwood, who was born at Church Lench about 1836, and who moved to Aldington in the 1860s.  George Harwood is described in an out-of-print book, "Grain and Chaff from an English Manor", by Arthur Savory.  Arthur Savory was a tenant farmer at Aldington Manor and George Harwood, or "Jarge", (the Asum Grammar pronunciation of George) as he referred to him in the book, was his foreman. This is an excerpt from the book:

"Jarge was one of the most prominent characters among my men. He was not a native of the Vale, coming form the Lynches (sic), a hilly district to the north of Evesham. He was a sturdy and very excellent workman. He did with his might whatsoever his hand found to do, and everything he undertook was a success. The beautifully trimmed hedge in front of his cottage-garden proclaimed his method and love of order at a glance. Jarge was a wag; he was the man who, like Shakespeare’s clowns, stepped on to the stage at the critical moment and saved a serious situation with a quaint or epigrammatic expression. Owing to the somewhat unconvincing fact of his wife’s brother being a gamekeeper on the Marquis’s estate near Jarge’s native village, he had acquired, and retained through all the years of my farming, a sporting reputation; he was always the man selected for trapping any evil beast or bird that might be worrying us; and when the cherries were beginning to show ruddy complexions in the sunshine, and the starlings and blackbirds were becoming troublesome, armed with an old muzzle-loader of mine, he made incessant warfare against them, and his gun could be heard as early as five o'clock in the morning, while the shots would often come pattering down harmlessly on my greenhouse. Jarge was an instance of superior descent; his surname was that of an ancient and prominent county family in former days; he carried himself with dignity and was generally respected; he possessed the power of very minute observation, and was of all others the man to find coins or other small leavings of Roman and former occupiers of my land. His eldest daughter was a charming girl and, when Jarge became a widower, she made a most efficient mistress of his household. She showed, too, quite unmistakably her descent from distinguished ancestry. Tall, clear-complexioned, graceful, dignified and rather serious, but with a sweet smile, she was a daughter of whom any man might have been proud, to my thinking, she was the belle of the village, and she made a very pretty picture in her sun-bonnet, among the green and golden tracery of the hop-bine in the hopping season accompanied by the smaller members of the family. At the "crib" into which the hops are picked, many bushels proved their industry, and there were no leaves or rubbish to call for rebuke at the midday and evening measurings."

Denis Freel - 18th November 2004 - 0:00

First of all I would like to thank you very much for the work that you have done on the Badsey website. This is a model example of how parish records, censuses, school records and surname family histories can be presented. What an amazing accomplishment.

My mother's mother was a Hartwell and I have totally enjoyed tracing her family from Ebrington to Badsey to Pensham to Aston and to Trenton and Niagara Falls, Ontario. You have certainly brought to life the Hartwell family in Badsey and confirmed to me that they previously came from Ebrington. Now I have a question about Thomas William Hartwell. You say in your Surname Notes that "Elizabeth Hartwell (1852-), married John Crane in October 1874. Earlier in the year she had given birth to an illegitimate son, Thomas William Hartwell, who was baptised in Badsey in February 1874." Your transcription of the baptismal records, however, shows Sarah Hartwell as the unwed mother of Thomas William Hartwell on 15 February 1874. The IGI name extraction of the parish records also shows Sarah Hartwell as the mother of Thomas William Hartwell. When the census information is added it is clear that Thomas lived with John and Elizabeth Crane. And when Thomas Hartwell's second son was born and the Vicar wrote "commonly known as Crane", more evidence is added. I think that your conclusion is correct. However, there is still the oddity of the baptism. Did the Vicar just mistakenly record Elizabeth as Sarah? Did Elizabeth have two Christian names?

Denis Freel
Warren, New Jersey, USA

Maureen Spinks - 19th November 2004 - 0:00

In reply to by Denis Freel

Many thanks for your kind email; it is always good to receive letters of appreciation. I have gone back to my notes about the Hartwells, because as soon as I saw your heading, I remembered there was an issue with this person. I was aware of the inconsistency but had not had a chance to check the parish registers to see if I had transcribed the name correctly. However, I am grateful to Diana Daffurn who checked the register for me. The name in the "Mother" column is most definitely Sarah BUT, in the margin, someone has written "Elizabeth was the mother". So evidently an error was made which was later noticed and a message added. It was as a result of Diana's investigations that I was able to write with confidence that Thomas was the son of Elizabeth. What I forgot to do, however, was to have the note added to the baptism transcript. I will ask the webmaster to add this in.

Pat Widdows - 20th August 2004 - 0:00

I have found some wonderful information about the Malin family on the Badsey website, and would welcome more news, especially from Malin relatives!

My grandmother Ruby Henrietta Malin was born at Hidcote Bartrim in 1888. Her family moved to Badsey and grandmother attended Badsey School from 1891. Her parents John and Susannah Malin were married in 1876.  The marriage was registered at Shipston on Stour. Grandmothers Grandparents were Louisa and Thomas Malin.  Thomas was born in Broadway in 1815. Grandmothers family moved to Birmingham around 1900 and are mentioned in the 1901 census living at Old Farm, Dad's Lane, in the Parish of Kings Norton. Grandmother died in 1969 in Birmingham.  She married Robert Smith of Yardley Wood in 1908?

Pat Widdows

Jessica Byrd - 10th August 2004 - 0:00

I have been doing my family tree for about 6 months now and a friend of mine showed me the badsey.net website and to my amazement I have found my relatives. I was so pleased to know where they lived and what they did had me speechless. Thanks to the website and you're hard work and time, I found my 6th generation. Hopefully now I can go on and find out more about my Byrd family and hopefully know more about their lives back then.

Thank you so much I feel I have filled the missing pieces.

Jessica Byrd, Australia

Jessica's initial joy at tracing her ancestors may have been a little premature, as it was based on a precarious link between Jessica's great-grandfather Sampson Byrd and the Byrds which appear on the Badsey website.  Further research has shown that Sampson was not related to the Badsey Byrds but to a family of Byrds from Staffordshire.

Family History researchers, particularly from overseas, please check your links carefully from the present day back to the data which appears on the Badsey website.  Because of Data Protection issues, the parish registers and census returns have only been transcribed for dates of over 100 years ago. It is up to you to fill in the gaps for the last 100 years.  Even if the name you are researching is fairly uncommon, please be aware that in some families there are often frequent occurrences.  If you are unable to search the paper records, the internet is a useful tool, particularly www.familysearch.org, www.1901census.nationalarchives.gov.uk and www.1837online.com.  However, with the first website, not all parishes are covered, so always be aware of what information might be missing as well as what is there.  The census website is a valuable resource, but also be aware that there may be transcription errors.  For example, in the 1881 census, the notable Badsey family of SLADDEN appeared as HADDEN.

Dawn Cole - 15th June 2004 - 0:00

My Aunt and I are trying to trace our family tree and were delighted to find the Badsey website.  Most helpful is the section on the churchyard - congratulations and thanks to Peter Stewart for his hard work - we have quite a few relatives buried in the churchyard, such as my great grandparents Florence and Walter Jelfs, and he has made the job of finding their graves so much easier.  We are particularly interested in information regarding the following names:- Jelfs, Lloyd, Cull, Chamberlain and would appreciate any assistance.  My mother was Jo (Josephine) Jelfs who was brought up in Ivy Lane, Bretforton with her 4 sisters and 2 brothers and had various relatives living in Badsey and Childswickham.

Dawn Cole, Bath

Trevor Clark - 15th March 2004 - 0:00

How delighted I was to find the Badsey website and particularly the section about the school. As the Headmaster between 1981 -1987 I look upon it as the happiest time in my professional career! This was made so by a combination of the staff, children, parents and the whole village. How pleased I was that Jean James should be such a large part of the last 30+ years at the school. What a true professional who I'm sure will be remembered with affection for many years to come. I was particularly interested to hear that she now has connections with Murcia in southern Spain, as I myself now live very close by. Does anyone in the village have a contact address or e-mail for Jean? Perhaps someone could pass my address onto her. I shall continue to browse the website and remember a true piece of England!!

Yours, Trevor Clark

Alan Solomon - 10th March 2004 - 0:00

My maternal grandparents (Will and May Bigglestone) moved to Badsey in the early 1950's. They owned a house in Badsey Fields Lane. It was situated past a plot of land on the left hand side going towards the footpath to the recreation field. I believe that this piece of land was subsequently used to build a house. Next door to my grandparent's house lived an old lady who I recall was called Mrs. Dore and on the same side of the road a fisherman called Mr. Bunce who set me on a hobby for life when he taught me to fish - visits to the Avon at Evesham and a stream outside the village where there was an old mill pond if I recall correctly. The stream was full of dace.

As a boy I used to spend holidays in the summer in Badsey and got to know some of the village lads and lasses who spoke in a dialect if they did not want me to know what they were saying. To them I was known as "Cardiff" because I came from there. Still do!! We would meet on the rec. in the old wooden stand and climb the tall trees at the Sands Lane end. One boy lived with his family on the right hand side of the road after turning left out of Sand's Lane - he was called Jim. My grandparents name was Bigglestone and they moved away when my grandfather retired from the railway to live in Gloucester. He worked as an inspector of railways based at Honeybourne, I believe.

I remember going to the Blacksmith's shop just past the church and was thrilled to help him pump the huge hand operated bellows to make the fire glow. I cannot forget the smell of the burning hooves when the red hot shoe was presented to the hoof. Fantastic memories of the place.

In a field near the Wheatsheaf Pub was a donkey called Simon who we would visit with titbits. Is the tall tree in the churchyard still there? I have so many memories of your village but I have not been back for many years. I am 60 years of age now but the memories of Badsey are as fresh as though it was only last year.

Alan Solomon, Cardiff

Mrs Sarah Horton - 5th March 2004 - 0:00

Having just visited Church Stretton in Shropshire and noticed their big sign with the website address of the town attached I wondered if this would be possible for Badsey? The Bretforton road only has a very small sign " to village Centre" which has to compete with a tree in the summer and a sign for recycling centre the rest of the year. Perhaps a sign which had our website address would generate interest in the village and could be financed with lottery money for example?

Mrs Sarah Horton, Badsey

We would certainly like to see WWW.BADSEY.NET on the village signs. We looked into this about a year ago and suggested it to the Parish Council. I gather getting permission to do this involves miles of red tape. I know of one village (not Church Stretton) who have just gone ahead and done it without getting proper permission and I would personally not object if signs just appeared!

Jeremy Cowell - 1st March 2004 - 0:00

My Grandfather Emile Anton Ollsson known as Jack owned Claybrook Nursery in Badsey early last century until 1948. I would be interested to know if the nursery is still going.

Jeremy Cowell, Eastbourne, East Sussex

Richard Phillips - 1st March 2004 - 0:00

In reply to by Jeremy Cowell

We believe Claybrook Nursery has closed although the farm buildings are still there. Can anyone provide more information?

Alison Brain and Terry Smith - 25th February 2004 - 0:00

Just a quick line to say how touched my brother, Terry, and myself were for the lovely comments that have been made about Aunty Norah on your wonderful website. In fact until Aunty's death I was not aware of there even being such a website in existence.

Both Terry and myself would like to thank the many people of Badsey who were friends of Norah's. Until her illness she really had been a stalwart of village life and I am proud to say that she was one of the few really "good" people I have ever come across. She gave willingly of herself, her time and her finances in many ways to many people.

Once again many thanks - Alison Brain and Terry Smith (niece and nephew)

Max Sinclair - 20th February 2004 - 0:00

My uncle Maurice Harvey lived at the Manor when he came with the evacuees to Badsey from Birmingham. Up in the attics there was all sorts of graffiti left by the German Prisoners.

Maurice Harvey was a schoolmaster at Prince Edwards Grammar School, Birmingham before the war living in Quinton. At the outbreak of hostilities the school was compulsorily evacuated to the Evesham area. Maurice, his wife Madge, and two children Pamela and Richard were housed in the Manor House. This sparsely furnished rambling house was a cultural shock after their modern home. Having survived a terrible winter trying to keep warm with open fires they moved to a house on a market garden, from memory along the Littleton Road.

I remember helping to sterilise soil using steam pipes from a large portable steam engine. This started my interest in engines which has been a lifetime hobby. When the war was drawing to a close and the school's return planned, uncle decided to try and stay. He had become a countryman growing asparagus and teaching my father the tricks. He applied for the Badsey School headship and moved into the School House.

While war is a terrible business for Uncle it was a blessing and the family enjoyed their Badsey involvement. He lost his brother Henry in the First World War so was well aware of the tragedies. Incidentally his Great Grandfather was Thomas Winter (alias Spring) of Fownhope, Herefordshire who was Champion of England at bare fist boxing having won his title before 40,000 spectators on Worcesters Pitchcroft racecourse. He is honoured in the American Hall of fame. No doubt Maurice stopped many a playground fight. I hope this will give ex-pupils a little insight into their headmaster.

Max Sinclair, Lower Broadheath Worcester

Betty Syril - 15th February 2004 - 0:00

I am trying to find any info on George Syril. He was in the 3rd Gloucester Regiment. He came to Badsey while he was in the army as a friend of the Bayliss Family. George married Linda Hodgkins on 17th November 1919 at Childswickham. George died in 1944 and is buried in the church grounds at St James Church Badsey. If you have any info it would be helpful.

Betty Syril and I live at Guiseley. Leeds

Tony Jerram - 16th February 2004 - 0:00

In reply to by Betty Syril

I passed on Betty's enquiry to Desmond Syril of Green Leys Badsey. He is a son of George Syril and he has offered to give Betty information about his father.

Matt & Martine Johnson - 10th February 2004 - 0:00

We've just enjoyed browsing through the website and have found it very interesting. We were hoping to find out a bit about the history of our cottage, The Dovecote (formerly known as Stewart Cottage) in Aldington. We would be very interested to know if you have any details, pictures, etc or if not where we could possibly try to track these things down. We hope that you might be able to help.

Many thanks, Matt & Martine Johnson, Aldington

Ted Heath - 5th February 2004 - 0:00

I was very interested in the information about Thomas Walter Green (father and son) in your recent article on Houses that no longer exist. I am researching T.W.Green junr. because he published postcards (or had them published on his behalf) at his toy and confectioner's shop at 58, High Street, Evesham. I have attached some information about him which I found in the Evesham Journal 1914 (he died on 31 July 1914) plus various directory entries. My main interest is researching Worcestershire postcard publishers, e.g. Crisp's Series of Badsey published in Teesee Series (Thompson of Coventry) and Worcestershire history in general. This is a bit difficult as I live in Greenwich which is why I find your website so useful. Hope the information is of some use.

Ted Heath, Systems Librarian Southwark College, London

Dick Mathews - 1st February 2004 - 0:00

First let me congratulate all those responsible for a truly amazing website. My late father in law was one of the many bearing the Knight name to hale from Badsey, and it's been an absolute godsend to me in trying to discover his ancestry. Clearly such a wealth of material is bound to contain some interpretations of old writing which others with the benefit of additional material might conclude are probably not correct. I think I've found one such, and I hope you'll be able to check and correct if necessary.

In the index there are references to my wife's ancestor Edwin Knight born in 1844, who married at Badsey church on 30 Nov 1868. According to your index entry to the marriage registers his bride was Sarah DANBREY. The copy of the marriage certificate which I have from the General Register Office shows her surname to be what I read as DAUBNEY, rather than DANBREY. Edwin and Sarah appear in several census entries, all of which give her place of birth as Longborough. In the 1851 census for Longborough (HO 107 / 1790 pages 331 et seq) on schedule 99 are John DAUBNEY and his family, including a daughter Sarah, aged 3. There are six other schedules featuring people bearing this surname, which I assume must be a common one there. By contrast the FreeBMD site, which contains over 70 million entries from the civil registration indexes, has only one person named Danbrey!

With best wishes, Dick Mathews

Kathleen Harris - 20th January 2004 - 0:00

I first want to commend you on such a beautiful website. My name is Kathleen Harris, and for the last few months I have been conducting a genealogical search for my surname. In my search, I came across family records from a departed uncle that had kept some family information showing me that my family originated in Badsey England.

Through your site, I have grown fond of what it must have been like to have grown up and lived in Badsey. I have never found another site like this out there. You should be proud.

Now, the most interesting information that I would love to see if you can assist me in. I was looking through the Badsey School photos, and one in particular caught my attention. Badsey School History: The Earliest Years lists a reference to Elizabeth Harris the grandmother of Geoffrey Hancock, and I believe it was submitted by Geoffs wife Peggy. (I have her surname in our records as Margaret Mary Ingles) This is my family - the Harris/Hancock side. I would love to see if there is a way to get this message to them, and confirm such.

See Elizabeth, was the sister to my Great Great grandfather, who left England for New York, USA. I had been stuck for many years at his line, until I found the records. To know that there are others with relations to me still living, let alone in the Badsey area makes me more than interested to reach out and learn more. Could you offer advice on how I could get the word to them, and others?

If you can, I greatly appreciate it. If not, then I shall continue to search and will remain a faithful visitor to this site. Wishing more towns/villages would take the effort to document their history as you have done.

Much appreciation, Kathleen Harris, Boston, Massachusetts US

Thank you very much about your kind comments about our website. Peggy Hancock is a keen family historian and a member of The Badsey Society, but is not a computer user. She lives in Evesham, so I will put a copy of your e-mail through her door. In the meantime, could you let me know your postal address, please, so that I can pass this information on to her. I see that Elizabeth Harris had two brothers, Thomas and David. Which one are you descended from? When did he go to the USA? Do you have any information which would be of interest to the website?