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Visitors’ Book


James Rochat - 10th July 2002 - 0:00

I want to tell you what an incredible website this is... I am part of the Dore family and stumbled on it as I was killing time at work and thought I might check out Badsey and see what I could find.

My name is James Aaron Rochat (formerly James Aaron Dore) and I was born in Evesham Feb 15th, 1970. We lived in Willersey until my parents chose to emigrate to Edmonton, Alberta, Canada in 1979. The name Rochat is through my mother re-marrying about 2 years after coming to Canada.

My Grandparents were Arthur Edwin Evans Dore (Bill) and Eileen Louisa Dore. I was fortunate to see them on my Honeymoon in 1993. Grandad passed January 1995 and Nan in October 1997.

I see a picture under "Memories & Photographs" "Class Photo Standard 1" 1924. Arthur Dore is shown, middle row 2nd from the right. I guess this must be my Grandad as he would have been 8 years old in 1924.

I am truly amazed as I also found the picture of their Headstone.

I wish I was able to provide you with more photos to give you for the site but have lost touch with my Dad Jim Dore. I am going to look for my mothers family also.

Anyway congratulations on an outstanding website. It has put a big smile on my face today.

Regards, James Rochat, Edmonton, Alberta, Canada

Sarah Minney - 5th July 2002 - 0:00

Firstly let me say that I think this web site is fabulous!

I have been tracing various Vale of Evesham families for almost 20 years and I wish the other villages in the area had similar web sites!    I am currently researching the Dore family of Badsey as one of the daughters, Beata married a Mr. Gilbert of Bengeworth.  The Gilbert family were nail makers and agricultural implement makers of Castle Street, Bengeworth, but also lived at sometime (1880's) in Badsey.

Well done all concerned!  Sarah Minney, Twickenham.

Lee Gibson - 20th June 2002 - 0:00

Some of my ancestors, the Moore family, used to live at Ivy Cottage in Chapel Lane, Aldington. From your website I discovered they had children at Badsey School in the late 1800s. Do you have any additional information about this cottage? I have never ever seen it. Have you any old photos of Aldington which may show the cottage or is it still there and, do you know if it is still called Ivy Cottage?

I live in Doncaster, South Yorkshire. My parents are from Evesham and my Dad from South Littleton.

Can you tell me anything about Aldington Mill? Do you have a list of workers as one of my ancestors was a miller.

My Moore family ancestors also lived at the Old Turnpike, Aldington in the 1880s -1890s.

Yours faithfully Lee Gibson, Doncaster, South Yorkshire.

A mill at Aldington is mentioned in the Domesday Book in 1086 . There is no mill marked on the Aldington Enclosure map of 1807 but there is a mention of a Mill Lane in Aldington on the 1851 census. If you look in our Place Index you will find several other references to it. On the 1901 census I found references to three people working at the Aldington Mill including Jerry Sharp the miller.

Michelle Pekali - 10th June 2002 - 0:00

Hi, what a great website, long may you prosper and grow! I was googling when I came across your site and I was so impressed.

I am researching the KEYTE family, which is very extensive. They came from Chipping Campden, Blockley, Ebrington,Westington,Willersley & surrounding areas, covering Gloucester,Warwick, & Worcester. The KEYTEs married into the KEEN family (on several occasions), the EMMs, the HOLMES,TAYLORS & IZODS also feature in there at various times.

Good luck to all. Michelle Pekali, New Zealand.

Jane Watt - 1st May 2002 - 0:00

I just wanted to let you know what a great site it is. I noticed your piece in the Family Tree Magazine of February 2002 and immediately went to the website. Over here in Canada we get our British magazines about 6 to 8 weeks late. My husband and I visited the area in 1994, it seems like yesterday. We were touring the UK and doing genealogy, my HUGHES and TOMB families were from Evesham and Norton. We stayed in Evesham and had a great lady, Peggy Hancock give us the tour of the area. We really enjoyed ourselves and it is great to see some of the places we visited turn up on the website. It brings back great memories. It is going to take me weeks or months to go through all the parish records and census you have on the site. Again, thank you for a great site.

Jane Watt, Mississauga, Ontario, Canada

I'm glad you enjoy looking at the Badsey website.  Funnily enough, I met Peggy Hancock for the first time about a month ago.  She was doing some research at Worcester Record Office and spent ages talking to her friend about various Badsey names.  Eventually, curiosity got the better of me, and I went over to talk to me.  She has provided some photographs which can now be seen on the website.

Elizabeth Fisher - 20th April 2002 - 0:00

I came across your website, when actually doing a search for an Offenham bed and breakfast.  My husband and I are coming to England in November only for two weeks for a family wedding.   I want to have a nostalgia overnight stay in an old English bed and breakfast close to where I lived in Offenham.   However,  in my search it was so exciting to read of Badsey.  I live in Canberra, Australia now, where I came for a two and a half year posting back in 1969!  I lived in Offenham from 1954 until 1969 and my memories of Evesham and surrounds are so nostalgic.  

It was exciting to just see the words 'Littleton and Badsey Railway Station', where I pedaled my bike before catching the train from the station to Stratford-upon-Avon where I did my one year secretarial course at South Warwickshire College of Further Education.  

We used to go to the South Littleton Church. My sister, Jayne, was married there. In fact the main village of South Littleton was about the same distance as the main village of Offenham. We lived on the outskirts of Offenham, on the Evesham Road, in a semi bungalow, called "Maryland" then. The bungalow was in a group of six I think, directly opposite some market gardens in an area which used to be called Newtown. I used to go to Swan Lane Primary School and then I went to Greenhill School for Girls (not sure whether they exist any more).

In the meantime can anyone recommend an Evesham, Offenham, close-by oldish bed and breakfast with a bit of character, which is not expensive?  The rate of exchange is terrifying and we need somewhere charming and not expensive.  

Elizabeth Fisher (nee Adams), Canberra, Australia

I hope you have a really good trip over here. I am afraid Littleton and Badsey station is gone but I am sure there will be a lot you will recognise. On B&B, there are a few possibilities in Badsey - see the details on the website.

In a follow up message in July 2002 Liz Fisher added:
My husband, Vince, and I are coming to England for a family wedding. We are staying at Buttercups House in South Littleton for two nights on 3 and 4 December 2002. My parents left Offenham in about 1967, and I have not been back since then. I left home to work in Oxford when I was 18 (1965 I think!).

Just an offchance, but I thought I might mention, in case anyone remembers us, my name was Elizabeth Adams of "Maryland" on the Evesham Road (near Newtown) in Offenham, and my parents (now both dead) were Cyril and Margaret Adams. I have a sister, Jayne. We lived next door to the Cole family (Ray and ? (Mrs??) Cole and children, Margaret, Janet, Audrey and Alan). Audrey lives(?) in Pershore now. (I hope to contact her.) I was very friendly with Audrey and I know her grandfather when he was alive lived in Badsey (a lovely old fellow, very stooped over and went everywhere on his pushbike). Our local church was South Littleton Church which we went to, vicar, Denis Russell.

Alexandra Withnall - 10th April 2002 - 0:00

Thanks for such an interesting website. I am a granddaughter of George and Julia Moisey who owned the house called 'Bredon View'. My mother, Margaret, now 87, is the youngest of their children and the only one still surviving.  

Last summer, I was in Vancouver and met up with two cousins, Bernard and Gordon Agg and their families. Their mother, Rosa Moisey was my mother's eldest sister and she emigrated to Canada shortly after WW1, having married into the Aggs, another well known Badsey family.  

My mother still has amazingly clear memories of growing up in Badsey, especially of the village school, the blacksmith and many of the other families who lived in Badsey in the 1920s.  My mother and I now live in Walsall, West Midlands, although she has lived in various places over the years since she left Badsey - she volunteered to join the army in 1940, I think. I occasionally take her to Evesham for the day but she scarcely recognises the place now.

We have often wondered about the origins of the name Moisey - one suggestion is that it is derived from a family of French Huguenots, possibly weavers, who came to England to escape persecution. Does anyone know?  

With best wishes Alexandra Withnall, Walsall, West Midlands

Roger Savory - 5th April 2002 - 0:00

Hello, My name is Roger Savory and I spent the first 19 years of my life living and growing up in Badsey. I'm now 72 years young, and have been living in the United Sates of America since 1978, when my work took me there - and I never returned. Of course, I have visted friends and relations in Badsey during these last 23 years, but it is my childhood memories, in what seems like a distant era now, that still endears me to the village where I grew up.

The reason I am writing is to ask if you would be interested in including a summary of all the "Full Peals" that have been rung on Badsey bells. You mentioned the peal of 5056 changes in the existing web section on Badsey Church bells, which was conducted by my old friend Gerald Hemming from Hampton.

So I was wondering if you might be interested in some "additions" to this section, such as the Peal List for St.James church bells. There were two or three rung on the old six bells at the back end of the 19th Century, but since their augmentation to eight bells in 1902, I would guess there have been about 100 rung.  As you've probably guessed by now, I'm an avid bell ringer and manage to still do a bit, though the chances this side the pond are few and far between. When I do come back to visit the UK, it's definitely for a "fix" of (proper) beer and bells!

I was introduced to the bells in St.James Church by Mr. Charles A. Binyon, on whom you already have an excellent account, of his life and work in the Vale, and Badsey in particular. Did you know he was a bell ringer too?. I've got lots I could tell you about Mr. Binyon and the long lasting influence he had on me and many other youngsters who were fortunate enough to know him and experience his wisdom and kindness.

Well, a love of bell ringing was one of those wonderful things he gave me. And it is still my number one interest and hobby to this day - and thousands of friends later - and from here to Australia and back. By the way, I can answer the question about Canon Allsebrook's surplice going up in flames in the pulpit that not-to-be forgotten Sunday evening - (first hand!).

Very best wishes, and congratulations on a super website, Roger Savory, Chatham N.J. USA

Brian Davies - 25th March 2002 - 0:00

I'm trying to find some information on the Hartwell family:  George and Letititia Hartwell and their children, Lillie, George William, Rose and Violet.  I know the history of Rose and of Violet; Violet was my grandmother whom I knew very well.  My mother was Violet's daughter.  I spent my childhood in Badsey; I was born in Chapel Street.  The records only go up to 1909.  Hope you can help me or give me a website.

Brian Davies

Maureen Spinks - 25th March 2002 - 0:00

In reply to by Brian Davies

You ask if I can give you a website to help you with your researches into the Hartwell family. Well, you’re on the right track already, as the Badsey website contains most of the information you require to take you back six generations. By looking at the surname index, you will be able to see all the Hartwell listings. This is what seems to be your line of descent:

  1. George Hartwell (1760-1823) and Mary (1757-1847)
  2. William Hartwell (1793-1878) and Mary Gray (1802-?)
  3. William Hartwell (1823-1896) and Charlotte Sharp (c1825-1899)
  4. George Hartwell (1866-?) and Letitia Elizabeth (c1871-?)
  5. Violet Annie Hartwell (1899-?) and your grandfather
  6. Violet (your mother) and Mr Davies Brian Davies

I hope people with information on the more recent Hartwells to get in touch with you. The reason that the transcriptions stop at the beginning of the 20th century is because of the need to be careful of data protection of living persons.

Peggy Dolan - 20th March 2002 - 0:00

After I had finally discovered that my ancestor was from Badsey, I soon discovered your web site. I am descended from Simpsons & Oldakers. The site is absolutely marvelous, as are the volunteers responsible! Thank you so much!!

Best, Peggy Dolan, Florida, USA

Diana M. Southern - 15th March 2002 - 0:00

I have traced my family history and have come to a stop with the marriage of John Dafforne and Ann Homan in 1642 at Badsey, that is, on the Dafforne side. I have found Ann's baptism at Badsey and have been able to get back to a a marriage of Robert Hierne and Joan Groves in 1589 there.

I have found your website so very interesting and wonder if you are interested in my family tree. I was born Diana Daffurn in Hailes, Gloucestershire but moved to Elm Farm, Wickhamford (where Head teacher of Badsey School, Mrs Mason once lived). My brother, Derrick Daffurn still lives at the family home at Elm Farm. All four of us, that is Derrick, Ramona, Denise and myself all attended Badsey School under Mr. Amos. My husband, David Southern, has also found your site great interest as one of the 1933 letters was written by his father's sister, Violet Southern. He also attended Badsey School until 1943 and was Head Boy under Mr. Amos.

Hoping to hear from you, Diana M. Southern (nee Daffurn)

Editor - 15th March 2002 - 0:00

In reply to by Diana M. Southern

After exchanging emails with Maureen Spinks, Diana kindly provided these extra notes on the Dafforne family:
Only one of the sons of John Dafforne and Ann Homan survived, William, who was my 6 x great grandfather. He died in 1717 at Badsey. He had married Phillipe Webb at Wickhamford in 1686. They had three sons, John, Thomas and William. John died in 1695 aged about fifteen and both Thomas and William left Badsey and made their way to Aston Somerville where they both married and had families. Thomas, my 5 x great grandfather married Hesther Wooton at Aston Somerville in 1714 and five children were baptised, but their was only one son, Thomas, my 4 x great grandfather, who was born in 1715. Thomas married Margaret Cooke at Buckland church in 1749. and they made their home in Laverton, Thomas dying in 1787, a pauper. There were five children from this marriage including my 3 x great grandfather, Edward Daffan. who was born in 1754. Edward was a yeoman farmer and owned nine horses, who were loaned to the King in times of War. Edward married Ann Bennett of Stanton in 1776, and my 2 x great grandfather, Thomas was born in 1788. He was a stonemason and lived at Laverton Meadow Farm, Laverton (built circa 1520) where today it is a thriving bed and breakfast business. Thomas married Jemima Rooke in 1811 in Childswickham and there were ten children, one being my great grandfather, William, born in 1815. William married Hannah Russell in 1852 at Buckland and made his home at Aston Somerville. My grandfather, William George, a farmer at Kemerton and Murcot, was born in 1868 at Aston Somerville. He married Susannah Harris at Worcester in 1893 and my father, Victor Frank, born in 1897 at Aston Somerville, married my mother, Ruth Brake, who was born in USA, at Kemerton in 1925, returning to Childswickham (Murcot) where he helped his father who farmed at Millbrook Farm. My father then moved to Hailes, Gloucestershire, where he farmed for some years, moving to Elm Farm, Wickhamford in 1938. An interesting fact is that name was first spelt DAFFURN in 1757 in the Buckland registers by the vicar, and since then has remained with this unique spelling with few exceptions.

Dulcie Cleaver - 10th March 2002 - 0:00

I read with interest the letters you have put on the internet regarding my life as the daughter of a market gardener. My name was Dulcie Jelfs (now Cleaver) and I was so thrilled and excited to read a letter I had written at school when I was nine years old. I also recognised the names on the other letters shown. I left Badsey at 12 years of age and moved with my family to Chelmsford in Essex which is still my home. I did however marry a Cleaver from Bretforton in 1942 and we had 56 years of happy marriage with two daughters.

I would like to know if you have heard from the writers of any other of the letters printed and if they are still living locally or have moved far and wide. I would love to hear from you and will continue to read your web site with much interest.

With kind regards, Dulcie Cleaver, Chelmsford, Essex

Ian Stanley - 5th March 2002 - 0:00

I saw the web site advertised in Family Tree Magazine. Very good indeed. I have a passing interest in the village as I am doing a study of all the STANLEY families in the area (mainly Broadway, Snowshill & Campden) and some of them strayed across into Badsey in the nineteenth century. If anyone shares my interest in this name please pass contact me or visit my webpages.

Good luck with the web site, and the Badsey Society,
Ian Stanley, Cheshire

Barry Moss - 15th February 2002 - 0:00

For anyone who might be interested in a 'stray' Knight I have the following information.

William Knight, born about 1848 in Aston Subedge, Glos, was one of my great, great grandfathers. His father, Joseph Knight, baptised in Badsey on 19th October 1817, is listed on your website as a census stray in the 1881 census (under Aston Subedge). For your information he is also listed in the 1851 census for Aston Subedge.

A further snippet of information relates to John and Mary Phipps, who were my great, great, great grandparents. Although they lived most of their lives in Bretforton they passed their later years in Badsey, appearing in the 1871 and 1881 censuses. Both are buried in Bretforton.

I live in Birmingham and have done so for over thirty years but my parents still live in the village of Mickleton, not that far as the crow flies from Badsey. My father speaks in a broad local accent, full of 'yuds' and 'yunts'. He was fascinated by the Asum Grammar article from your website.

The Knights by the way are related through my father's paternal grandmother - Harriet Amelia Knight married John Edward Moss. The Phipps family are connected through my maternal grandmother's family - her grandparents were Mary Anne Phipps and William Roper Sheppard. Mary Anne was the daughter of John and Mary Phipps.

Thanks for a brilliant website, Barry Moss, Birmingham

Mrs. Nicky Berry - 10th February 2002 - 0:00

I am a Badsey resident and have been very excited to discover the website! I had been considering finding out more information about our house but didn't really know where to start.

I was wondering if you could offer me any advice please as to how I might go about tracing back the origins of my home and the history behind the surrounding plots. We live at Hollycroft on the Bretforton Road (number 23) and I understand that the owners were market gardeners and descendants built the house next to us (number 21A). They then moved into this new house and sold off ours.

I would be interested to find out the names of the original owners if possible, any subsequent owners and if there were any photographs of the house before the surrounding buildings went up.

Many thanks in advance for any advice you can provide,
Kind Regards, Mrs. Nicky Berry, Badsey

Good luck with your project to find out more about the history of your house. Our 'Index of Places in Badsey and Aldington' is a good place to start. This tells me your house has the date 1922 on the front which makes it too recent to appear on any of the published censuses. But there are several other records that may help.

The electoral register for 1924 shows 'SEARS, Frederick. Land (Abode - "Hollycroft," Aldington). Badsey'. I think this means that Frederick Sears was allowed to vote because he owned land in Badsey and his home address was Hollycroft. I am fairly sure this is your house - the boundaries between Badsey and Aldington keep changing over the years. More interesting, from the place index, you will also find a letter written in 1933 by 11 year old Ronald Sears who was living at Hollycroft. It describes in some detail life in a market gardening family.

I cannot tell you if the Sears family were the first owners of Hollycroft but it seems likely. You can find more about that family by going to our name index. I strongly suggest you get hold of the deeds of your house which should give lots of clues about its history. Sometimes solicitors or building societies hang on to the deeds but they should give you photocopies.

We would like to include more house histories on the Badsey website. When you have finished your searches, do consider writing a short article about it for us.

Sarah Evans - 5th February 2002 - 0:00

Hello, I wonder if you could possibly help me at all. I am looking for a web page that gives all the info about my grandfather. His name was John Keen, he had three daughters named Patricia, Elizabeth and Jaqueline and a son named Deryk Hartwell of the company Spiers and Hartwell. I am sorry that this is not much info but have been told about a web page giving the history of his life, but cannot find it anywhere. I would really appreciate any help you can give me .Some of my relatives still live in Badsey.    

Many thanks, Sarah Evans

Maureen Spinks - 5th February 2002 - 0:00

In reply to by Sarah Evans

Thank you for your e-mail.  You don't give any indication of dates, so it's a little difficult to tell which era you are interested in.  If you have a look at the Badsey website,, and click on the alphabetical index, you will see that there are a very large number of Keens and Hartwells.  However, my transcribing of parish records basically stops 100 years ago because of Data Protection of living persons.  I assume that the people you are talking about were born some time in the 20th century.  If you are able to work backwards from yourself, back to your grandparents/great-grandparents, I may then be able to point you in the direction of discovering your family history going back over several centuries.  

Have you looked at the section on called "Children's letters describing market gardening life in 1933"?  Five children by the name of Keen (there were quite a number of Keens living in the village then) wrote letters, including an 11-year-old John Keen.  Is that by any chance your John Keen?

Hilary Sharp - 25th January 2002 - 0:00

Many thanks for such a wonderful web site. I am so grateful to you for all your research as I have found many wonderful things which have assisted my own research.

I am researching my family which consists mainly of Jelfs/Cranes/Perkins/Hartwells/Halls. I have gone back to 1600s and if anyone would like to swap records or view my findings, I would be happy to share the records.

Amongst the letters from the children on the site is a letter from my great aunt Hilary who still lives in Norton. What handwriting for a 9 year old! Her husband Sid Jobson sadly died a couple of years ago and was a bell ringer. A lovely, gentle man.

I found the pictures of the Jelfs family on your site today - wonderful to think that they are linked with my family although I have to confirm where they join in to our tree. I am going to show Hilary Cranes letter as a 9 year old to her sister (my grandmother) who is now 93 - she will be amazed.

Regards, Hilary Sharp, Reading, England

Many thanks for your kind comments about the Badsey website.  I have transcribed all the parish records for Badsey (the 1901 census has just gone up on the web), and I have started compiling a dossier on each family to increase my understanding of how everyone fits in.  I am sending you my jottings on the families which are of interest to you.  I am intrigued to know your line of descent and where you fit into the picture.  I have deliberately stopped transcriptions at the beginning of the 20th century because of being careful about Data Protection of living persons, but it would be good to know how you fit in.

Brian Jennings - 20th January 2002 - 0:00

Reading Will Dallimore's article about Asum grammar, I have been trying to remember the Asum dialect. Here are a few phrases you can check with other natives.

Lat ee bee - Of course he is.
Lat ee yunt - Of course he's not.
How bist? - How are you? (note the German 2nd person sing)
How bist thee then? - How are you? (if you haven't met for some time)
Well, oi gutta ell! - Really! ( well I'll go to hell)
Well, Oi gutta anovur! - I'll go to Hanover (how surprising!) (another German connection?)
Oi Oi then. - Cheerio.
Wur hast thee bin? - Where have you been?
Oi bin t'Asum fust then atur t' Bret. - I went first to Evesham then afterwards to Bretforton.
Hast bin t'Uffenum? - Have you been to Offenham?
I hant bin thur. Thee nows oi hant. - I haven't been there. You know I haven't.
It yun aff cold yunnit? - It's really cold isn't it?
Oi gutta ell if it yunt. - I'll go to hell if it's not.
Oi spec usullbee pullin unyuns this marning. - I expect we'll be pulling onions this morning.

Yours, Brian Jennings, Harare, Zimbabwe

Nigel Bell - 15th January 2002 - 0:00

What a fantastic website, I do admire the effort that must have gone into producing such a high quality, but also very user friendly site.

I have located many of my relatives who attended Badsey school and also appeared in many of your record connections (census etc.). My great great grandfather and many of his relatives appear in these records and I also pleased to tell you that my niece's grand children are currently at your school.I have notified them and several other relatives still living in Badsey and the surrounding area, of your site and highly recommend them to visit it.

Having left the area many years ago, as I have been living in Plymouth for nearly 30 years, the article on the 'asum' accent was really inspiring. I have nieces and their families still in the area, and they don't think that they have a dialect. It is not as well known as the Brummy or Newcastle accents, but it is just as strong amongst the traditional local people.

Thank you once again for such a great website, I will continue to recommend you, and wish you the best of luck for future projects.

Bye for now, Nigel Bell, Plymouth

Maureen Spinks - 10th January 2002 - 0:00

In reply to by Michelle

Delighted to hear that you have found our website useful.  I have also transcribed some of the records for the neighbouring parish of Wickhamford, but these do not appear on the Badsey website.  You will be interested in the following information from Wickhamford baptismal records:

17 Jun 1798    George, son of Thomas and Alice Halford
20 Oct 1799    Edward, son of Thomas and Alice Halford
16 Sep 1802    William, son of Thomas and Alice Halford
27 Jan 1805    Thomas, son of Thomas and Alice Halford
31 May 1807    Hannah, daughter of Thomas and Alice Halford

The Halfords may well have moved to Badsey soon after Hannah's birth.  You will see that some of Hannah's Halford relations appear in the census returns, and also in the burial records, that Thomas Halford, your gggg-grandfather, died in 1851, aged 82.  

If anyone shares an ancestor with Michelle, please contact her.

Andy Davis - 5th January 2002 - 0:00

Hi, I'm not from Badsey, (closer to Bardsey!) nor have I ever heard of it before but I found your lovely site whilst looking for my mothers family name (Daffon) on the net.

Searching the People Index, I noticed that all of the Daffons (and similar names) were listed pre-1784, but read a letter from a visitor reminiscing about a schoolmate Dafforne in the 1950's. Where did they go? When did they return?

My own family history relates that the family line fled from France during the Revolution (1789?) as there was an Ironmaster (i.e.richer than average, hence in danger of a topping) and seemed to settle around Birmingham/ Notts/Coventry area, where some still remain. I would be intrigued to find that there may be a link between these families.

Does anyone have any info relating to these families, specifically the apparent disappearance in the late 18th century? Any help would be appreciated.

Regards, Andy Davis, Aberystwyth, Wales

Arnella Barris - 1st December 2001 - 0:00

I am writing from Pennsylvania , USA and don't know if you can help me or not but it is worth a try.

I saw the names of JAMES and SARAH MAPSTONE that were on The Wooden Plaque in St. James Church. I am very interesed in the MAPSTONE name because a JAMES MAPSTONE was my great grandfather and all I know of him is that he came from England. This couple could be his parents or a relative.

My James Mapstone was born Dec.5,1842 came to the USA 1873 (age31yrs) married Margaret Phillips June 7,1876 and died Sept.26,1916 (age74yrs).  

Sincerely, Arnella Barris, Pennsylvania, USA

Besides the Mapstones in our name index, there is a Sarah Mapstone, buried at Badsey on the 3 February 1933. She was aged 75 years, and stated to be from Woodford House, Chew Stoke, Avon. This is just south of Bristol. This is the only other Mapstone mentioned in the burial registers after 1909.

I was intrigued to receive your e-mail. From looking at the Badsey records, here is what I have deduced:

  • James and Sarah Mapstone moved to Bowers Hill Farm, Badsey in 1894 (when Ellen and Jessie enrolled at Badsey School in April 1894); prior to that they had lived in Studley.
  • James and Sarah seemed to have 3 children: Ellen (born 25 Jan 1883), Jessie (born 2 Aug 1885) and Sarah Ann (bap Aug 1895).
  • James Mapstone was buried on 30 Mar 1895, aged 51.
  • Sarah Mapstone and her children may well have left the area shortly after the incident, as Jessie Mapstone was withdrawn from Badsey School on 18th October 1895.
  • But then comes the sad part. James Mapstone was killed in an incident at Bowers Hill Farm in March 1895, and a man named Dawson was convicted of his manslaughter. There is a long article about the case at Worcester in "The Evesham Journal" on 29th June 1895. I stumbled on it by chance a couple of years ago. I have a poor copy of the article which I made then.
  • On looking at the IGI, I see there are a couple of James Mapstones born in the 1840s in Somerset.

One intriguing aspect is that of the monumental inscription dated 1950. One assumes the Mapstones had only a very brief sojourn in Badsey, so why do their names appear on a wooden plaque over 50 years later? I guess if we look in things like Churchwardens' Records at Worcester Record Office, this may give us a clue. When I next go to the Record Office, I will try and check it out.

In March 2002 we were contacted by Stan Mapstone of Runcorn, Cheshire who runs the Mapstone, Mabstone and Mapston One Name Study. He tells us James Mapstone was born 1st. December 1842, in Wookey, Somerset, and was buried 30th March 1895, in Badsey. He had four children, the last one being born four months after his death. Stan gave us this copy of a newspaper report, on the inquest into his death -

Allegations Against A Bailiff.
An adjourned Inquest was held on Tuesday, on the body of James Mapstone, a farmer, living at Badsey, near Evesham. The evidence showed that the deceased had had dealings with money-lenders, who sent a bailiff named Dawson, of Bristol, to take possession of his goods, and several witnesses stated that they saw this man strike Mapstone with a heavy stick. There was a severe wound on the deceased's head, and one of his fingers was also seriously injured, the nail being almost torn off. Dr. Golpin testified to death being due to lockjaw, the result of the injury to the finger. Dawson denied striking Mapstone at all, and said the injury to the finger was caused by the deceased getting his hand entangled in the harness of a horse he was holding. After a very long hearing the jury returned a verdict of "Manslaughter" against Dawson, who was thereupon committed for trial at the Worcester Assizes on the coroner's warrant.

Stan is keen to know more about this case.

See also the article Manslaughter at Badsey.

Valerie Harman - 10th October 2001 - 0:00

I have just discovered the wonderful web site for Badsey and must congratulate all those who have put so much time and effort into it.

I note that you are looking for old photos and I have two of Badsey School. I think they probably date from around the early 1900's. They came to me from my uncle William Walters of Wickhamford and I think that probably his father and uncle are on them.  From your index I discovered that Robert William Walters started at Badsey School 3/7/1894 aged 4 and his brother Harry started 19/3/1894 aged 7. The one photo has a child holding a notice which says 'Board School, Badsey. Group 7' and the other one just 'No.4'.

I have shown the photos to my father Fred Mason aged 91, who was born at Wickhamford and still lives there, who also attended Badsey School, but unfortunately he has been unable to identify any of the children. They are of a generation before him. He does however have an excellent memory of times past in around Badsey and Wickhamford often recalls his school days at Badsey School. If you are looking for a few interesting anecdotes he could probably supply you with some. He well remembers seeing the German POW's working on the land whilst walking to and from Badsey School.  Also the day Mrs Mason, a school teacher at Badsey, was told that her son had been killed in the war. Anyway if the photos are of any use please contact me.  

Yours sincerely Valerie Harman, Badsey

Sarah Bent - 1st October 2001 - 0:00

I see that you are going to be producing another guide to Badsey & Aldington.  I know Bowers Hill is very small but I feel it is worthy of inclusion particularly in light of elderly residents that have some good stories to tell about the area.

I run a B&B business and have recently been trying to find out the history of Bowers Hill.  It is a mystery what two little stone cottages, built around the mid-1750s, were doing on the plot of Bowers Hill House and Farm in the middle of nowhere.  We uncovered a large bread oven when doing some renovation work about 6 years?  Did this oven just feed the family or was it the local bakery?  We are on a lay-line - does this have a significance?  Perhaps there are people in the area who may know the answer to these questions?  I wanted to put some of this information on my web-site to satisfy the curiosity we get when guests come here to stay.  

My mother-in-law talks of the lady who was buried on the side of the road which is known locally as Francis's grave but does not appear on any map.  She apparently committed suicide and suicides were not allowed to be buried in consecrated ground!  Mmmm ... I also wanted to know about Allen Barn where there is some ghost or other reputedly.

Regards, Sarah Bent, Bowers Hill Farm, Worcestershire

Richard Phillips - 1st October 2001 - 0:00

In reply to by Sarah Bent

Some fascinating questions - can anyone help? It would be appreciated if you reply both to Sarah and and to Bowers Hill Farm is about two miles from Badsey on the Willersey Road. Sarah & Martin Bent offer Bed & Breakfast in a large Victorian farmhouse - see details on their website