Monday, 8 October 2018

Alderman Richard Kelsall, Mayor of Liverpool 300 years ago

The will of Richard Kelsall, 1685-1749, Alderman of Liverpool 1718-1719 and my 7x great grandfather

Thursday, 20 September 2018

Private James Henry Wilson, died 20 September 1918

Today marks the 100th anniversary of the death in France of my great great uncle, Private James Henry Wilson.

James was born on 31 January 1898 in St Helens to Henry Wilson and his wife Elizabeth Ann (Austin) of 141 Grafton Street in the town.


In the 1901 Census, three year old James was living at 23 Rivington Street, St Helens with his father (aged 27), mother (aged 27) and siblings Jane (aged 4) and my great grandfather Austin (aged 2). Elizabeth's brothers, John Austin (aged 21) and Frederick Austin (aged 19) were also living there.

By 1911, 13 year old printers' errand boy James was living at 141 Grafton Street with henry (aged 37), Eliabeth 9aged 36), and siblings Jane (aged 14), Austin (aged 11), Elizabeth (aged 8) and Jessie (aged 1).


James was later employed at Pilkington Glass Sheet Works, and is remembered on the Pilkington Roll of Honour.

As war broke out, Henry enlisted in St Helens. He served with the 1st / 5th Battalion of the South Lancashire Regiment, and died of gunshot wounds (shattered arm) on 20 September 1918, just seven weeks before the Armistace was declared. He is buried at Houchin British Cemetery III.E grave 26.



James is also remembered on the Knowsley Road School Memorial, St Helens, on the St Helens Roll of Honour, and on the cenotaph in Victoria Square, St Helens.


He was one of seven St Helens men to die in battle that day alone:

Private Thomas Bolton (KIA)
Private William Bracken (KIA)
Private William Cunliffe (died of wounds)
Private Thomas Flannaghan (KIA)
Private Thomas French (died of wounds)
Private Edward Pye (died of wounds)
Private James Henry Wilson (died of wounds)

Remembering them all and everyone who has given their life for their country, in any battle for any side. 

At the Going Down of the Sun, and in the morning, We Will Remember Them.

Dulce et decorum est



Tuesday, 7 August 2018

The Ferrers lineage

I recently visited the National Trust property of Baddesley Clinton in Warwickshire, home to the Ferrers family for many centuries from the 16th Century. The windows of the moated manor show the heraldry of the family going back to the Norman Conquest, and to the first six Earls of Derby before the title was stripped from the family by Henry III. One line of my family history follows the Ferrers from Normandy as follows.

My 30 x great Grandfather was Wacheline de Ferrières from the town of that name in Normandy. Born in the year 1010, it is likely that his family were involved in the iron foundry industry. Wacheline  died about 1089 in Normandy.

His son, my 29x great grandfather, was Henry (or Henri) de Ferrers, who, as Master of the Horse to Duke William of Normandy, came over with the Conquest to England. His brother was killed at Hastings. Henry’s bravery at Hastings resulted in the new King William rewarding him with 210 manors mainly in Derbyshire, Leicestershire and Staffordshire, where Henry set up his headquarters at Tutbury Castle. Henry also rebuilt Tutbury Priory in 1080 and built Duffield Castle in Derbyshire. In 1086 he was a legates or commissioner on the West Midlands circuit of the Domesday Survey. He died at Tutbury at some point between 1093 and 1100.

Henry had three sons and a daughter. William, the eldest son, inherited the family’s lands in Normandy, and Enguenulf died young, so it was the youngest son, Robert, my 28 x great grandfather, who inherited his father’s English estates and subsequently became the first Earl of Derby in 1138 due to his valiant conduct at the battle of Northallerton in which English forces repelled the advancing scottish army. Robert died in 1139 and was succeeded by his son, also Robert, my 27 x great grandfather. The second Earl lived until 1162, when he was succeeded by William Walkelin de Ferrers, the third Earl and my 26 x great grandfather. He married Margaret, Lady of Higham, daughter of William Peverel of Higham.

William Walkeline was killed in Acre in Palestine in 1190 during the 3rd Crusade. His son, the fourth Earl of Derby, William de Ferrers, was born at Tutbury in 1172. My 25 x great grandfather died in 1247 at Duffield Castle.

His son, the fifth Earl, was born in 1193 in Derbyshire. My 24 x great grandfather, William de Ferrers, married Margaret Lady of Groby, daughter of Robert de Quincy Earl of Winchester following the death of his first wife Sybil, daughter of William Marshall, Earl of Pembroke. William died in 1254, and was succeeded by his (and Margaret’s)son, Robert, the sixth Earl of Derby, and my 23x great grandfather.

The sixth Earl rebelled against Henry III in several baronial unrest’s and was subsequently arrested and imprisoned. His lands and earldom were forfeited and both Tutbury and Duffield Castles were destroyed, their lands becoming part of the Duchy of Lancaster and remaining so until this day. Robert died on 27 April 1279.

My line continues via his son John and then via John’s daughter Eleanor de Ferrers. She was the mother of my 20x great grandfather Thomas Latham (died 1382), and my line continued through the centuries in Derbyshire, Lancashire and Cheshire via the Harrington’s, Stanley’s, Savages, Honfords, Mainwaring, Brerewoods, Kelsalls, Glenton, Hindley and Heywood’s to me via my dads line.


Friday, 6 July 2018

Walter "Wally" George Heywood 1935 - 2018




My dad's eldest brother, Walter George Heywood, passed away this week in Auckland, New Zealand.


Saturday, 24 February 2018

King Henry I

King Henry I:

Henry was born in September 1068 at Selby, Yorkshire, the youngest son (the only one born on English soil) of William I The Conqueror (1024 – 1087) and Matilda of Flanders (1032 – 1083).

Originally destined to be a clergyman, Henry was well educated at Abingdon Abbey, studying languages, English law, and natural history. This earned him the epithet Beauclerc, or fine scholar, of which he was very proud.

William left the crown to his second son, William Rufus (1056 1100), giving the title of Duke of Normandy to his first son, Robert Curtose (1054 – 1134). Rufus was killed by an arrow while hunting in 1100. With Curtose away on crusade, Henry rushed to London, seized the keys to the royal treasury, and was declared king.He was crowned at Westminster Abbey on 5 August 1100.

On 11 November 1100, he married Princess Edith (1080 – 1118), daughter of King Malcolm III Canmore of Scotland (1031 – 1093) and St Margaret of Scotland, then changed her name to Matilda in honour of Henry’s mother.

Henry and Matilda had two children together:


  • William, who had been destined to be the next King, until his untimely death in the White Ship Disaster of 25 November 1120  



  • Matilda of England, Holy Roman Empress and Queen of England (1102 – 1167)


His wife, Matilda died in 1118, so Henry married again, in the hope of gaining a legitimate son, and heir, this time to Adeliza de Louvain (1103 – 1151).

Unfortunately for Henry, this marriage was childless.

Henry did, however, have at least 22 (probably more) illegitimate children, the most of any English monarch:


  • Robert FitzRoy, 1st Earl of Gloucester (1090 – 1147). Often, probably incorrectly, said to have been a son of Sybil Corbet. His mother may have been a member of the Gai/Gay/Gayt family.  



  • Maud FitzRoy, married Conan III, Duke of Brittany  



  • Constance FitzRoy, married Richard de Beaumont  



  • Mabel FitzRoy, married William III Gouet  



  • Aline FitzRoy, married Matthieu I of Montmorency  



  • Gilbert FitzRoy, died after 1142. His mother may have been a sister of Walter de Gand.  



  • Emma, born c. 1138; married Gui de Laval, Lord Laval. [Uncertain, born 2 years after Henry died.]  



  • Matilda du Perche, married Count Rotrou II of Perche, perished in the wreck of the White Ship. Her mother was Edith.  



  • William de Tracy, whose mother was Gieva de Tracy.  



  • Juliane de Fontevrault (1090 - ); married Eustace de Pacy in 1103. She tried to shoot her father with a crossbow after King Henry allowed her two young daughters to be blinded. 



  • Ansfride (1070 - ) the wife of Anskill of Seacourt, at Wytham in Berkshire (now Oxfordshire) was her mother.  



  • Fulk FitzRoy (1092 - ); a monk at Abingdon. Ansfride was his mother.  



  • Richard of Lincoln (c. 1094 - 1120); perished in the wreck of the White Ship. Ansfride was his mother.  



  • Sybilla de Normandy, married Alexander I of Scotland. Her mother was Lady Sybilla Corbet of Alcester was born in 1077, in Alcester in Warwickshire, who married Herbert FitzHerbert, son of Herbert "the Chamberlain" of Winchester and Emma de Blois. Her mother died after 1157, and was also known as Adela (or Lucia) Corbet.   



  • William Constable, born before 1105. Married Alice (Constable); died after 1187. His mother was also Sybilla Corbet.  



  • Reginald de Dunstanville, 1st Earl of Cornwall. Sybilla Corbet was his mother.



  •  Gundred of England (1114–46), married 1130 Henry de la Pomeroy, son of Joscelin de la Pomerai. Her mother was Sybilla Corbet.  



  • Rohese of England, born 1114; married Henry de la Pomeroy. Her mother was Sybilla Corbet.  



  • Robert FitzEdith, Lord Okehampton, (1093–1172) married Dame Maud d'Avranches du Sap. His mother was Edith FitzForne.  



  • Adeliza FitzEdith. Appears in charters with her brother Robert. His mother was Edith FitzForne.  



  • Henry FitzHenry (also known as Henry FitzRoy) (1100 – 1158), whose mother was Nest ferch Rhys (1085 1136). Isabel Hedwig of England, whose mother was Isabel de Beaumont (also known as Isabella de Meulan) (after 1102 – after 1172), wife of Gilbert de Clare, Earl of Pembroke. Matilda FitzRoy, abbess of Montvilliers, also known as Montpiller. Her mother was Isabel de Beaumont.


Henry died in December 1135, after eating bad lampreys at St Denis le Fermont in France. He was buried a month later in Reading Abbey. His throne was awarded to Stephen of Blois (1097 1154), his nephew, resulting in a period of civil war and anarchy against Henry’s daughter, Matilda.

Tuesday, 20 February 2018

Edgar I the Peaceful


Edgar the Peaceful

Edgar I (Old English: Ēadgār; c. 943 – 8 July 975), known as Edgar the Peaceful or the Peaceable, was King of England from 959 to 975. He was the younger son of King Edmund I and his Queen, Ælfgifu of Shaftesbury.

Sunday, 18 February 2018

Baptism of Henry Glenton 1796


Baptism record for Henry Glenton, my great great great great grandfather. He was born on 15 May 1796 in Liverpool to Jonas Wilson Glenton and Betty Becca Kelsall.

Friday, 16 February 2018

Alfred Heywood 

Alfred Heywood was the youngest son of my great grandparents Ernest And Ellen Eliza Heywood (born Hindley). He was born on 12 October 1928, and died aged 49 in Liverpool in May 1977. He married Maureen Sharp in 1952 and had one daughter also Maureen in 1953. I do not know much more about him so if anyone does please contact me.

Wednesday, 14 February 2018

Æthelred the Unready




Æthelred the Unready, or Æthelred II (Old English: Æþelræd (Old English pronunciation: [æðelræːd])), (c. 968 – 23 April 1016) was King of the English (978–1013 and 1014–1016). He was the son of King Edgar the Peaceful and Queen Ælfthryth and was between ten and thirteen years old when his half-brother Edward the Martyr was murdered on 18 March 978. Although Æthelred was not personally suspected of participation, the murder was committed at Corfe Castle by his attendants, making it more difficult for the new king to rally the nation against the military raids by Danes, especially as the legend of St Edward the Martyr grew.

From 991 onwards, Æthelred paid tribute, or Danegeld, to the Danish king. In 1002, Æthelred ordered what became known as the St. Brice's Day massacre of Danish settlers. In 1003, King Sweyn Forkbeard of Denmark invaded England, as a result of which Æthelred fled to Normandy in 1013 and was replaced by Sweyn. He would return as king, however, after Sweyn's death in 1014.

"Unready" is a mistranslation of the Old English word unræd (meaning bad-counselled, the ræd being cognate with Rat in German), a twist on his name "Æthelred", meaning noble-counseled. It should not be "unprepared", but rather "ill-advised".

Monday, 12 February 2018

Alfred the Great


Alfred the Great (Old English: Ælfrēd, Ælfrǣd, "elf counsel" or "wise elf"; 849 – 26 October 899) was King of Wessex from 871 to 899.

Alfred successfully defended his kingdom against the Viking attempt at conquest, and by the time of his death had become the dominant ruler in England. He is one of only two English monarchs to be given the epithet "the Great", the other being the Scandinavian Cnut the Great. He was also the first King of the West Saxons to style himself "King of the Anglo-Saxons". Details of Alfred's life are described in a work by the 10th-century Welsh scholar and bishop Asser.

Alfred had a reputation as a learned and merciful man of a gracious and level-headed nature who encouraged education, proposing that primary education be taught in English, and improved his kingdom's legal system, military structure and his people's quality of life. In 2002, Alfred was ranked number 14 in the BBC's poll of the 100 Greatest Britons.

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Richard Kelsall Glenton of 58 Falkner Street Liverpool

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