Friday, 30 November 2012

Little bit of History

A little bit of history on Sileby, Leicestershire, England

I think I ought to tell you a little about the village of Sileby, where most of my ancestors lived.

1765-1812 is a crucial stage in the industrialization of Sileby, a time which saw the completion of the enclosure of the open fields, the rise of cottage industries such as framework knitting and in the gradual increase of nonconformist sects as an alternative to the austerity and tradition of the Parish Church.
The population rose from around 650-700 at the start of the 18th century to 1,111 in 1801 and 1,200 in 1811. For many Sileby people in the 18th century they had a ‘hand to mouth’ existence.

An Act of 1668 ordered that all corpses, except those that had died of the plague, should be buried in something made of wool only. This was a tariff to try to protect the wool trade and fines were harsh for those not complying with the Act.

Sileby was an ‘open’ village: it was a village that didn't have a manorial lord or institution that was dictating immigration policy. It was fairly easy for new families to move in. That didn't mean a free for all anybody to ‘set up shop’. Measures were in place to eject those unfortunate outsiders that became chargeable on the parish poor rate. However although conditions were poor, the work was available in domestic industries such as framework knitting, wool combing and weaving for those willing to take the risk.
It is also no coincidence that longer life spans and better health came as a result from a new building boom in Sileby. Here we have new brick built housing and older properties being split into smaller dwellings to accommodate the increasing numbers within the existing village street framework. Brick formed the foundation of this new development. Although mud and stud buildings were still ‘going up’ in the 18th century (see picture), they were the exception rather than the rule. Small areas of redevelopment took place on the old swathes of common land. Houses such as those on the Banks and Underhill, although they were on small plots, were being rebuilt in brick when the owners had funds to do so. Building in brick was now affordable; was available locally and offered better protection against the elements and fire than the rather squalid mud, wattle and daubed thatched cottages.

All the above information was found in the Parish Records or in 'Bygone Sileby' magazine

Thursday, 29 November 2012

My Grandparents

My Grandparents are –
Kathleen (nee Betts)
Collin Staniforth (when he got enlisted he dropped one 'L' from his name)

Daisy Maud (nee Morris)
Sidney John Brown

Kathleen was born on 18th June 1895 in Sileby, Leicestershire, England.  I don’t remember anything about her as I only just turned one when she died, I don’t know if I ever called her Grandma or Nana.
Kathleen died of Cancer on 7 July 1970.

Colin was born on 8th December 1891 in Sileby, Leicestershire, England. I don’t remember a lot about him, I had just turned six when he died on 26 March 1974. I do remember how he used to peel an apple from top to bottom without breaking the skin and also he won me a teddy and asked me what I was going to call him and I said Colin after you Grandpa.
Colin was in the Leicestershire Regiment in World War 1 he was awarded the British War Medal, Victory Medal and 1915 Star.
Colin and Kathleen got married in 1919 at St Mary Church, Sileby, Leicestershire, England.
 They  had 9 children.

Daisy Maud (nee Morris) was born in 1891  Foleshill, Coventry, Warwickshire, England. I never knew my Grandma Brown. She died in 1936 at Coventry, Warwickshire, England.

Sidney John was born 29 June 1889  Shotswell, Oxfordshire, England although by the time he got christened Shotswell was in Warwickshire (the border had been changed).Sidney was christened on 18 August 1889. I never knew my Granddad Brown. He died on 29 August 1971.
Sidney was in the Royal Warwickshire Regiment in World War 1 he was awarded the British War Medal and the Victory Medal.
Sidney John and Daisy Maud got married on 6 July 1912 at Coventry, Warwickshire, England.
They had 8 children.

Both Colin & Sidney John were awarded the Silver War Badge - 

Sidney John Brown was discharged from the Royal Warwickshire Regiment on 27.2.19, he enlisted on 21.3.13, cause of discharge - Wounds, Age 28, Sidney served overseas.

Colin Staniforth was discharged from Leicestershire Regiment on 13.6.18, he enlisted on 10.5.15, cause of discharge - Wounds, Age 27, Colin served overseas.

Wednesday, 28 November 2012

World War 1 & Great Uncles

I started my family tree in 2004 because I wanted to know where my Great Uncles died, they are my mam's mam's brother (Albert Betts) and her dad's brother (James Staniforth).

Albert Betts: Albert served in the 6th Battalion Leicestershire Regiment, he was born in 1891 and died on 14th July 1916, he has no known grave but his name is on the Thiepval War Memorial in France. His mother is Betsey (nee Widdowson) and his father is Thomas Betts, his siblings are – William, Kathleen, Aubrey and Claude Hector.

James Staniforth: James served in the North Staffordshire Regiment, he was born 1895 and died on 24th May 1917, he has a grave in Carvin Communal Cemetery, Pas de Calis, France. His mother is Henrietta Ellen (nee Bradley) and his father is Elijah Staniforth, his siblings are – Isabella Dora, Mary Hannah, Colin, Minnie Matilda, Clara, Gertrude, Hetty Matilda.

I also found that I had another Great Uncle who died in World War 1, its my dad's dad's brother.

ALFRED JAMES BROWN: Alfred served in the Royal Warwickshire Regiment, he was born on 20th December 1884 and died on 6th December 1917 he died of wounds, received at Cambrai, in a casualty clearing station, he has a grave at  Rocquigny-Equancourt Road British Cemetery, Manancourt, Somme, France. His mother is Rose Hannah (nee Hammonds) and his father is James Brown, his siblings are – Frances Anne, George Henry, Fred, William, Sidney John, Ellen, Mary Ann, Rose.