The latest extraordinary owners of our block from 1950

Miss M. Cousins – 113

A Miss M. Cousins (or Cousens) was living at 113, according to directories, from at least 1955 to 1963. Isobel Cousins, Henry Montague Jnr.’s wife had a sister called Margaret and she appears to have died in December 1963, so this may have been her, but no more has been discovered about her.

Raymond Vincent Whitaker – 113

A Raymond Vincent Whitaker bought 113 from Graham Henry Charles Chapman (1914 – 2006) on 19 August 1960 for £1,150 with a mortgage of £900.

Initially I believed this was Raymond Whitaker (b. 1889) who married Florence May Pearce (1892 – 1981), as he was born on Combe Down. His parents were George William Whitaker (1859 – 1904) and Mary Ann Miles (b.1861). He married Florence May Pearce in 1909 and they had at least one child, George (b.1910). However further research has shown that he died on 6 May 1950.

conveyance of 113 church road combe down to raymond whitaker
Conveyance of 113 Church Road, Combe Down to Raymond Whitaker

So it is probably Raymond Vincent Whitaker (1928 – 1966) who married Edna M J Batham (b. 1932) as research showed that Raymond Vincent Whitaker’s mother’s maiden name was ‘Perce’. It seems probable that this is a corruption of ‘Pearce’ and, as Florence May Whitaker signed the sale assent, as shown below this seems to support the argument. They seem to have lived at 113 from about 1955 as he is mentioned in directories along with Miss M. Cousins.

assent of florence may whitaker to sale of 113 church road in 1967 789x1024
Assent of Florence May Whitaker to sale of 113 Church Road in 1967

J. W. Fosberge – 117

According to directories J. W. Fosberge was living at 113 from 1963 – 1964, but no more has been discovered about him.

C. W. Love, Philip Bishop, Miss Shute, Mrs. M. Adams, Claude W. Close, W. Bean, David Merrifield, Laurence W. Sinclair, M. Adams, Michael J. Barrow, Anthony D. Bennett and Ian L. Newman – 109

C. W. Love, Philip Bishop, Miss Shute, Mrs. M. Adams, Claude W. Close, W. Bean, David Merrifield, Laurence W. Sinclair, M. Adams, Michael J. Barrow, Anthony D. Bennett and Ian L. Newman are all listed by directories as living at Claremont House between 1955 and 1973, but I have been unable to identify them with any level of certainty.

Edward William Charles Prescott – 115

Edward William Charles Prescott (1919 – 1989) was the brother of Phyllis May Prescott (1907 – 2000) who was married to Ivan Fale (1904 – 1974).

He bought 115 from Henry John Chapman on 25 January 1950 for £1,600. At the time he was living at 3 De Montalt Cottages.

He was a baker and married Ruby Evelyn Watson (1919 – 2009) in 1941.

Amelia Elizabeth Newman – 115

domestic squabble from bath chronicle saturday 27 december 1919
Domestic squabble, Bath Chronicle, Saturday 27 December 1919

Amelia Elizabeth Newman (1900 – 1966) bought 115 from Edward Prescott on 11th March 1960 for £2,350.

In the conveyance deed it states that she was living at Somerset Villa, Bloomfield Road, Bath and that she is a widow. Records show otherwise.

Her husband Christopher William Hubert Slingo (1897 – 1985) had remarried in 1953 to Edith Kate King (1892 – 1961).

There may be a clue to this in a report from the Bath Chronicle, Saturday 27 December 1919 which shows that the marriage, like all, had some issues to be resolved.

Amelia and Christopher had married in 1917 when she was only 16 and he was 20. They must have resolved their problems as they had 2 more daughters and a son after this.

We know that Amelia was living at Somerset Villa in 1949 from her witness statement to the coroner’s court in the case of a pedestrian, Clement Beesley, who was killed by a motor cyclist, Cyril Williams.[1]

By the time she died probate for her will shows that Amelia was living at 10 Duke Street, Bath.

Robert James Wall – 115

Robert James Wall (1916 – 1977) bought 115 from Amelia Newman on 15 December 1961 for £3,000. He is described as a trade manager of 1 Dene Close, Birchwood drive, Wilmington, Kent.

He married Daphne Mildred Bish (1926 – 2015) in 1949.

original listing letter 1976 732x1024
Original listing letter 1976

Cuthbert Aloysius Joseph Bates – 113

cuthbert bates
Cuthbert Bates

Cuthbert Aloysius Joseph Bates (1899 – 1980) was the owner of 113 from 1967 to 1980, having bought it from the widow of Raymond Whitaker on 14 September 1967 for £3,500.

His father, Frederick William Bates (1855 – 1924), was a book binder and he married Evaline Freda Hammond (1901 – 1982) in 1930. She lived in 113 from his death in 1980 to her death in 1982.

Cuthbert Bates founded the Tudor Singers in 1923, and pioneered the revival of interest in sixteenth and seventeenth century music. He was closely associated with Sir Richard Terry and Edmund Fellowes in this.

In 1946 he formed the City of Bath Bach Choir and was also a founder of the Bath Bach Festival of 1950. Although he was an amateur, the choir established a strong reputation.

He was also friends with Ralph Vaughan Williams who had become interested in his work when he attended a Wigmore Hall concert given by the Tudor Singers in 1923. Vaughan Williams became the first President of the City of Bath Bach Choir when it was formed.

Cuthbert Bates was also director of the St John’s Roman Catholic Festival Polyphonic Choir, Bath, from 1963 to 1979. In 1975 the University of Bath awarded him an honorary degree.

Strangely his son David is given as occupant in directories between 1968 and 1973.

Edward James Burnet Harris – 117

Edward James Burnet Harris (1896 – 1971) is recorded by directories as living at 117 between 1967 and 1972.

He married Astrid Kendall (1901 – 1986), whose mother was Norwegian, in 1927.

During World War One he served with The Queen’s (Royal West Surrey Regiment) reaching the rank of Lieutenant.[2]

After the war he became a civil servant serving at least in the Probate Division of Supreme Court of Judicature.[3]

Josephine Myra Hughes – 115

Josephine Myra Hughes bought 115 on 1 August 1978 from Daphne Mildred Bish, the widow of Robert James Wall, for £24,500. She had been living at Southcot House, Lyncombe Hill, Bath.

[1] Bath Chronicle and Weekly Gazette, Saturday 3 December 1949

[2] See National Archives Reference: WO 339/46617

[3] See The London Gazette, 6 November, 1925 Page 7264

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