Combe Down family maze grows even larger

In April I published the Combe Down family maze.

It covered some 8,600 individuals. About 320 of those are gentry that lived on Combe Down and about 2,900 are ‘ordinary’ people that that lived on Combe Down or in Monkton Combe.

The other 5,000 or so are ‘linkers’, i.e. the people who link families across the generations (most of these are in the gentry, where the ‘marriage market’ – pragmatic marriages made for the preservation or transfer of wealth was general) and ‘partners’ as not everyone born on Combe Down stayed and many moved away when they married.

I’ve added another 600 people of which about 400 are ‘ordinary’ people that that lived on Combe Down or in Monkton Combe and the rest their spouses who did not.

The Combe Down family maze is still a work in progress.

Over the coming months I plan to continue to make improvements.

The Combe Down family maze
The Combe Down family maze

The Miner family on Combe Down

Michael Miner has recently given me the story of the Miner family on Combe Down. You can see it here.

Michael George, Gladys Ivy, Arthur James Miner with Peggy the dog taken outside Bramley Cottages, Claverton Down
Picasa Michael George, Gladys Ivy, Arthur James Miner with Peggy the dog taken outside Bramley Cottages, Claverton Down

The Miner family are a long established Combe Down family and have lived at many addresses, including:

  • 1 Green Cottages, Combe Down
  • 1 Miner’s Cottages, Monkton Combe
  • 2 Quarry Rise, Combe Down
  • 2 Upper House, Combe Down
  • 3 and 4 North Cottages, Combe Down
  • 3 Park Avenue, Monkton Combe
  • 4 Isabella Place, Combe Down
  • 5 Tyning Place, Monkton Combe
  • 8 DeMontalt Place, Combe Down
  • Brunswick Place, Combe Down
  • Byfields Place, Combe Down.
  • Edward Cottage, 5 Tyning, Combe Down
  • Edward Cottage, Belle Vue, Monkton Combe
  • Farrs Lane, Combe Down
  • Pearl Cottage, Monkton Combe
  • Tinsmith Shed, Avenue Road, Monkton Combe
  • Upper House, Laura Place, North Road, Combe Down
  • West Upper House, Monkton Combe

Michael’s research includes information about those members of the family that went to Australia and Canada as well as those that stayed on Combe Down.

He has also included a number of interesting photos.

It’s a good read and I thank Michael for contributing the article.

Combe Down family maze keeps growing

I hadn’t realised but it’s a year since I last wrote anything about the site which was Update to ‘Our Block’. Before that it was October 2018 with More Combe Down cousins. That is actually what has stopped me from publishing anything, as I have been working on a Combe Down family tree or, more accurately, a Combe Down family maze.

If you recall that far back you may remember that there were a number of posts about how the families in the ‘big houses’ were related. I’ve taken that further. I’ve also added and linked a many ‘ordinary’ families who live on Combe Down and in Monkton Combe as I can.

The grand result of that is that the tree or maze now covers some 8,600 individuals. About 320 of those are gentry that lived on Combe Down. About 2,900 are ‘ordinary’ people that that lived on Combe Down or in Monkton Combe. The other 5,000 or so are ‘linkers’, i.e. the people who link families across the generations (most of these are in the gentry, where the ‘marriage market’ – pragmatic marriages made for the preservation or transfer of wealth was general) or the ‘partners’ as not everyone born on Combe Down stayed and many moved away when they married.

The Combe Down family maze is still a work in progress but is published here.

Over the coming months I plan to make improvements.

The Combe Down family maze
Summary of the Combe Down family maze

No longer a secret – more Combe Down cousins

Audrey Gurney Richardson (Shelford) (1886 - 1979 a daughter of Rev Alfred Richardson (1853 - 1925), Vicar of Combe Down
Audrey Gurney Richardson (Shelford) (1886 – 1979 a daughter of Rev Alfred Richardson (1853 – 1925), Vicar of Combe Down

Following last month’s movers and shakers post I have discovered more Combe Down cousins that link them to other families who lived in the ‘big houses’.

Those are the AllenAtherton, BennettBryanCruttwellDaubeneyDisneyFalknerForttGabrielGoreHopeHowardMaudeMorleyRichardsonVivian and Wingrove families who are mentioned on this site in numerous places

This post is probably best read with last month’s post open in another tab for easy reference as it’s all pretty complicated!

So, in no particular order let’s take a look at some more Combe Down cousins.

One of the mortgagees for 109 Church Road was Edward Langford (1777 – 1843). His grand daughter Caroline Charlotte Jane Langford (1840 – 1909) married the Ven Albert Basil Orme Wilberforce (1841 – 1916). Their son, Brig Gen Sir Herbert William Wilberforce KBE CB CMG (1866 – 1952) married Eleanor Catherine Micklem (1871 – 1956) and her great aunt Mary Micklem (1786 – 1849) had married Thomas Macaulay Cruttwell (1777 – 1848), whilst their son Thomas Cruttwell (1808 – 1881) had Glenburnie built for him. The Crutwells were linked to Richard Falkner (1796 – 1863), who had been a mortgagee for 115 & 177 Church Road via his brother Francis Henry Falkner (1786 – 1866) who’s son Robert Falkner (1811 – 1851) married  Susanna Eykyn (1811 – 1883) in 1841. Susanna’s brother William Eykyn (1821 – 1884) married Fanny Mary Cruttwell(1839 – 1902) in 1865. It was her second marriage. Fanny was the daughter of Robert Cruttwell (1812 – 1858) whose older brother was Thomas Cruttwell (1808 – 1881) who had had Glenburnie built for him.

Charles Howard (1853 – 1928) and Helen Gertrude Bryan (1860 – 1917) lived at Combe Lodge
Charles Howard (1853 – 1928) and Helen Gertrude Bryan (1860 – 1917) lived at Combe Lodge

In 1831 Anne Falkner (1813 – 1886), the sister of  Robert Falkner (1811 – 1851), married Charles Thomas Moule (1800 – 1865). His brother was Frederick Moule (1789 – 1843) who married Mary Gore (1795 – 1845). Her brother was Rev John Gurney Gore (1799 – 1871) who married Mary Eliza Hole (1812 – 1891) and their daughter Caroline Letitia Gore (1843 – 1920) was the third wife of Rev Reginald Guy Bryan (1819 – 1912), the Principal at Monkton Combe College.

Rev Alfred Richardson (1853 – 1925), who was vicar of Combe Down from 1902 – 1914, married Emma Leatham (1853 – 1925). Her great aunt Mary Leatham (1738 – 1820) was married to Thomas Howard (1736 – 1834) whose grandson was Rev Thomas Henry Howard (1804 – 1885) and whose great grandson Rev Richard Nelson Howard (1852 – 1932) was vicar of Combe Down from 1892 – 1897. In addition Rev Thomas Henry Howard (1804 – 1885) had another son Rev Charles Howard (1853 – 1928) who was married to Helen Gertrude Bryan (1860 – 1917) who was a daughter of Rev Reginald Guy Bryan (1819 – 1912), the Principal at Monkton Combe School. Charles and Gertrude started Monkton Combe Junior School at Combe Lodge in May 1888.

Rev John Clark Knott (1818 – 1907) lived at Combe Hill House. His brother William Henry Smith Knott (1804 – 1851) was married to Sabina Judith Bernard (1812 – 1861). Her cousin Sabina Pool Atherton (1828 – 1913) married Charles Henry Gabriel (1821 – 1900). Thus the knotts were related to the Atherton / Gabriel family and all the others.

Someone else who lived at Combe Hill House, as well as at Prior Park, was Edward Candler Brown (1732 – 1807).  His mother was Mary Ryves (1703 – 1768) and her great uncle was Rev Jerome Ryves (d 1705) who was married to Ann Maude (b 1679), the sister of Sir Robert Maude (1677 – 1750) 1st Baronet Maude, the father of Cornwallis Maude, 1st Viscount Hawarden. He, of course was the husband of Mary Allen, Lady Maude (1732  – 1775), the daughter of Ralph Allen’s brother Philip Allen (1695 – 1765). It seems likely that this family connection was how Edward Candler Brown came to reside at Prior Park.

Combe Grove farmhouse about 1905
Combe Grove farmhouse about 1905

James Ledger Hill (1839 – 1912) lived at Combe Grove Farm. His wife wife Mary Tucker (1849 – 1931) was the daughter of William Henry Tucker (1814 – 1877) and his wife Emily Hannah Hendy (1815 – 1885) who lived at West Brow in the 1870s. James Ledger Hill’s daughter, Grace Hill (1881 – 1959) was married to Dermot Gun O’Mahony (1881 – 1960). His grandfather was Robert Gun Cuninghame (1792 – 1877) and one of his sons was Col Robert George Archibald Hamilton Gun Cuninghame (1818 – 1880) who married Isabella Tottenham (1817 – 1880), the daughter of Rt Rev Lord Robert Ponsonby Tottenham (1773 – 1850) and The Hon Alicia Maude (1782 – 1866), a daughter of Cornwallis Maude 1st Viscount Hawarden and his third wife Anne Isabella Monck Viscountess Hawarden (1759 – 1851) after whom Isabella Place is named.

So now to the the Allen, Atherton, Bennett, Bryan, Cruttwell, Daubeney, Disney, Falkner, Fortt, Gabriel, Gore, Hope, Howard, Maude, Morley, Richardson, Vivian and Wingrove families we can add the Candler, Hill, Knott, Langford, Tucker families who have been involved in the development of Combe Down or lived here for a reasonable period and show that all are inter-related.

Even more evidence of property, power, position and patronage being the cornerstone of the class system, at least in the 17th 18th and 19th centuries, because it’s “not what you know, but who you know”.

Missionaries and a sort of ‘reverse Ponzi’ patronage scheme

The reception of the Rev. J. Williams at Tanna
The reception of the Rev. J. Williams at Tanna

Missionaries operate on the front line between cultures.

We don’t hear so much about missionaries these days.Today they are seen by many as invasive, forcing their language, culture and religion on an unwilling population – as another form of colonialism and exploitation.

It was not always this way.

In the 19th century many Europeans and Americans emphasised their racial, cultural, economic and religious superiority over black or coloured peoples.

Earnest Christian believers felt called upon to obey Christ’s injunction to “go ye into all the world, and preach the gospel to every creature” (Mark xvi.15).

A number of missionary societies were formed: the Baptist Missionary Society (1792), the London Missionary Society (1795) and the Church Missionary Society (1799).

Missionaries included ordained ministers, educationists, doctors, nurses and others. At the height of the missionary movement, between 1880 and 1920, around 60 British missionary societies were actively engaged in this work with many thousands of missionaries.

But what has all this to do with Combe Down and Monkton Combe?

Well, I have updated the lists of vicars for Combe Down and vicars for Monkton Combe. A number of them were missionaries. They include:

Percy Ewart Warrington in 1928
Percy Ewart Warrington in 1928

There was also the Rev Percy Ewart Warrington (1889 – 1961), vicar for Monkton Combe from 1918 – 1961 founder of Martyrs’ Memorial Trust. and a fascinating but unsympathetic character.

He ran a sort of religious, ‘reverse Ponzi scheme’ and founded or bought fourteen schools or colleges but ran them in an illegal and financially disastrous way by investing their profits in a wasting asset  – advowsons – which, eventually, led to him having to resign all his positions and the schools to be rescued.

Even with all the problems he created he left behind a legacy of the Allied SchoolsSt Peter’s College, Oxford and Trinity College, Bristol.

One small mystery remains. He left an estate of £47,121 12s 1d in 1961 which is worth about £2,197,000.00 now – how was that acquired on a ‘parsons salary’?

Tucking great! I’m a genius but I’m broke!

William Smith (1769-1839), portrait by French painter Hugues Fourau (1803-1873). Painted 1837.
William Smith (1769-1839), portrait by French painter Hugues Fourau (1803-1873). Painted 1837.

Things added recently include:

An ‘upgrade’ to the history of Prior Park. This explains how it was, originally, the deer park for the Priors of Bath Abbey monastery. It was broken up after Henry VIII‘s Dissolution of the Monasteries and brought back together over a 30 year period by Ralph Allen.

A section on the Tucking Mill area, especially Tucking Mill House. This was the home of William ‘Strata’ Smith the father of English geology from 1798 – 1819. Tucking Mill Cottage next door, is still wrongly identified as his home.

Interestingly, William Smith bought Tucking Mill House and its small estate from Edward Candler (later Candler Brown), who also lived at Prior Park and  at Combe Hill Villa on Brassknocker Hill.

Smith was also involved with Charles Conolly who owned Midford Castle in a plan to quarry stone. This was to lead to Smith becoming heavily indebted and eventually led to  being imprisoned for debt and losing his house and estate. Midford Castle was also briefly owned (2007 – 2009) by the actor Nicholas Cage

Other than William Smith, the Tucking Mill area seems to have had no notable inhabitants.

From being a medieval tucking mill that cleaned and thickened cloth then in the 17th and 18th centuries a flour mill, it became a Fuller’s earth works in the 19th century.

The area around became somewhat more ‘industrialised‘ when the Somerset and Dorset Joint Railway (S&D) was built, including Tucking Mill Viaduct and the Combe Down Tunnel.

The area also became important to Bath’s water supply as the Combe Down and District Waterworks, to take water from the Midford Springs was set up by Right Reverend Monsignor Dr. Charles Parfitt (1816 – 1886) who had inherited Midford Castle from Mrs. Jane Conolly (1798 – 1871).

In the last 60 years or so the area has been somewhat returned to nature. The S&D line, the viaduct and Combe Down tunnel closed in 1967.

The old mill and Fuller’s earth works were knocked down in 1979 to make room for a larger reservoir. This now provides free coarse fishing to disabled anglers in a lake stocked with roach, rudd, bream, perch, carp, tench and gudgeon.

The railway track, viaduct and combe Down tunnel were also reopened in 2013 as the Two Tunnels walking and cycling route.

Remarkable residents of Combe Grove area and Summer Lane

Thomas Sturge Cotterell
Thomas Sturge Cotterell

Recently I added information about the Combe Grove area and Summer Lane. By the Combe Grove area I mean Shaft Road and Brassknocker Hill.

On Brassknocker Hill that means that Combe Hill House and Combe Grove Lodge are covered and on Shaft Road that means that Lodge Style, Combe Grove Farm, Combe Grange and Ivy Cottages.

In Summer Lane , Quarry Vale and De Montalt House are covered. De Montalt Mill is covered elsewhere with its history before 1850 here and its history after 1850 to modern times here.

The person who most caught my eye was Patrick Young Alexander (1867 – 1943) who lived at De Montalt House. He lived an interesting life – probably helped by the fact that his father left him a very large legacy – but was also an aeronautical pioneer fascinated by the prospect of heavier than air flight, an enthusiastic balloonist and meteorologist.

Another interesting person is Thomas Sturge Cotterell (1865 – 1950).

He commissioned Lodge Style from Charles Francis Annesley Voysey (1857 – 1941) in 1909. Cotterell was General Manager of the Bath Stone Firms and a Bath Councillor, one of the main movers behind the Bath Pageant of 1909, an Alderman and Mayor of Bath in 1930.

He also set up the Bath Corps of Honorary Guides. His uncle was Jacob Henry Cotterell (1817 – 1868) a land surveyor responsible for the 1852 map of Bath that appears regularly on this site.

The most frustrating area when researching the Combe Grove area and Summer Lane was Quarry Vale. 

I knew it would be difficult to find published information about the inhabitants for they were working class people – not middle class or higher and the ‘social medium’ of the day, the newspaper, did not really follow their world unless criminality or scandal was involved.

This gives a distorted image of working people’s lives. So I decided to take a look at the census, give a flavour of the range of occupations, pick out a few that were well represented and give a thumbnail sketch of those, as well as try to find some news clippings.

It’s not what I would have wanted to publish, but, if the information is not there….

Anyway, I hope you enjoy reading more about  the Combe Grove area and Summer Lane.

Memorable, sometimes eventful pubs and inns

A while ago I added a page about the pubs, inns, arms and crowns of Combe Down and Monkton Combe.

In our small area there used to be at least fourteen but now there are five.

When I first came to write this blog I thought it might be more about them, but I became side tracked and interested in why so many may have closed and whether things have changed for ever or whether the pendulum might, one day swing back.

An old English pub, 1930s
An old English pub, 1930s

When I was very much younger, in the 1970s, I had a flat in Brunswick Square in Brighton.

So did my maternal grandfather whom I did not know well as he and my grandmother had divorced before I was born.

However, he was now retired and frequented the Star of Brunswick pub in Brunswick Street West just behind the square. It has long since converted to a private home.

We spent many convivial evenings in the pub over a pint or two while he smoked his pipe. There I got to know him and there were also many regulars, much banter and laughter.

The pub has long been a social venue, a social centre for a local community, a place to meet friends and a place to foster community spirit – pubs are good for social cohesion.

A report by the Department of Experimental Psychology, University of Oxford for CAMRA called ‘Friends on Tap‘ suggests that local community pubs have unseen social benefits such as  a venue in which we can serendipitously meet new, in many cases like-minded, people but also  broaden our network of acquaintances and widen our experience by bringing us into contact with people from other walks of life, become more engaged with our local community and that this is likely to have significant health and wellbeing benefits.

Another study by Newcastle Business School, ‘The Importance of Pubs in Shaping Community Cohesion and Social Wellbeing in Rural Areas of England‘, of 2,800 rural parishes across the country over a 10-year period found that those areas which had a pub enjoyed a greater sense of community. There were more likely to be local football or cricket teams, charity fundraising events and branches of the Scouts and Brownies.

It seems that 40% of people in the UK typically socialise with friends in someone’s home and 30% prefer to do so in pubs and feel it important to have a pub nearby, but only 20% say pubs are a regular part of their life. 72% of people go to the pub to eat. 

I believe that great British pub is where the personality of the pub is created by the personality of the landlord, but a recent survey showed that it was second most important to the price and quality of the beer which is clearly dichotomous with the number of people who go there to eat.

  • Price and quality of the beer     33.6%
  • Personality of the landlord        24.6%
  • No music or TV screens          20.6%

But, cheaper alcohol from supermarkets, increases in rents and rates, the rise in duty and VAT, the smoking ban and a rise in the health conscious consumer have affected the British pub.

In 2003, the average adult drank 218 pints of beer but by 2011 they consumed just 152 pints with sales in pubs down 54% whereas sales from off licenses were down only 10%.

Around 40% of pubs are owned by ‘pubcos‘ but 60% are independent. The number of pubs in the UK has almost halved since 1905:

  • 1905     99,000
  • 1935     77,500
  • 1951     73,400
  • 1971     64,000
  • 2006     58,200
  • 2016     52,750

However, The Society of Independent Brewers report ‘British Beer‘ says that 532 million pints were brewed by its 835 members in 2015 which is an increase of 15% over 2013 and 176% over 2009. They say that well over 75% of their members’ beer is served in pubs, restaurants and hotels.

A report commissioned by Greene King in 2008, ‘The enduring appeal of the local‘ from The Social Issues Research Centre also provides more hope that the pendulum may swing back. 

The pub is considered to be neutral territory compared with entertaining at home which makes some people feel pressured whereas the pub allows them to relax and be a less intense way of meeting people.

A pub is a hub for sociability and the bringing together of people from different walks of life in a way that no other social institution or public space can match.

We go to the pub ‘for a drink’, but ‘having a drink’ is a social act surrounded by tacit rules — a hidden etiquettes that gives us a sense of inclusion and belonging that is independent of our status in the mainstream world.

More pages and infills about Combe Down

Glasshouse cafe - Bath Chronicle and Weekly Gazette - Saturday 26 October 1929
Glasshouse cafe – Bath Chronicle and Weekly Gazette – Saturday 26 October 1929

I have added more pages and infills about Combe Down by filling in some obvious gaps.

There’s some old adverts mentioning Combe Down or Monkton Combe – none very exciting it has to be said, but hopefully further research will find some that are.

Having said that, even if the adverts themselves don’t excite they can lead to little known gems.

Gems such as the 1912 Bath and West Show being held on Glasshouse Fields. I was unaware of this until I saw the ad and it also created a good opportunity to infill a bit about the background of the Glasshouse name.

I have added some more Combe Down maps and map links and moved it in the navigation too.

More old photos of Combe Down, Prior Park and Monkton Combe have been added.

A short section on the Monkton Combe lock up, an obvious omission, has been added.

Another obvious omission, the Combe Down Jewish cemetery has be added too. Other additions cover Allotments on Combe Down, the old Wesleyan Reform chapel behind Glenburnie and some information about The Firs or Firs Field on Combe Down. This is now a Centenary Field protected in perpetuity through a legal Deed of Dedication between the Council and Fields in Trust, meaning that ownership and management of the site remain in local hands.

I have also added a section on Claremont Buildings or Hopecote Lodge as it is now known. It, along with Isabella Place and 109 – 117 Church Road, was part of the second wave of building on Combe Down from 1800. Some interesting people lived there including William Fortt who founded Fortt’s Refreshment Rooms in Milsom Street. Forrt’s later merged with tow other Bath firms to form Cater, Stoffell & Fortt that made the famous Bath Oliver biscuits.

There was also Rhoda Mary Hope (1828 – 1910) whose sister Sarah Clegg Hope (1832 – 1863) is the 2nd great-grandmother of Camilla Rosemary Shand (b. 1947), now Her Royal Highness The Duchess of Cornwall. It was Rhoda’s nephew Dr Charles Middleton Coates (1857 – 1933), the son of Sarah Clegg Hope, who turned 1 – 3 Claremont Buildings, three Georgian buildings similar to 113 – 117 Church Road into one building with the French mansard it has now. One of his sons Donald Bateman Hope Coates (1904 – 1994) seems to have been a spy for the Cairo Gang inter-alia.

1 - 3 Claremont Buildings, later Hopecote, later Hope Cote Lodge, Combe Down
1 – 3 Claremont Buildings, later Hopecote, later Hope Cote Lodge, Combe Down

Complete listed buildings master list

Dial House, De Montalt Place, Combe Down - one of the listed buildings
Dial House, De Montalt Place, Combe Down – one of the listed buildings

I have just added a page for Listed Buildings on Combe Down and in Midford and Monkton Combe divided into 15 areas which are in a rough circle as follows:

For each building or monument I have tried to give: