Amherst, The Rt. Hon. 1st. Earl of Arracan in the East Indies and Viscount Holmesdale, William Pitt Amherst. Born 1773 at Bath, Somerset, died at Knole House 1857. Firstly he married Sarah (nee Archer) widow of 5th Earl of Plymouth. Secondly he married Mary Sackville, they lived at Knole House, Sevenoaks, where he employed over 50 staff on his estate. In 1816 he was sent as ambassador extraordinary to China’s Qing Dynasty, however he was not admitted, and he was shipwrecked on the way home. He had several interviews with Napoleon. In 1823 he was appointed Governor-General of India, and in September of the same year he ordered the troops into war with Burma at the cost of 15,000 British troops killed and £13 million. He was replaced in 1828. he inherited his title from his Uncle Jeffery Amherst Baron of Holmsdale, military governor of Canada. Jeffery’s mother was Elizabeth Kerrill, who although born in Kent, may have been related to an Horley family of that name.
According to the Horley Tithe Apportionment 1846, he owned vast amounts of land in the Horley area including, the land where Albert Road, Southlands Avenue and Crawley Sewage Works are built, also much of Meath Green area and Nutley Deane Farm. [Henry Smith’s and Lord Amherst’s estates: enabling the trustees of Henry Smith to accept a rentcharge out of property belonging to Lord Amherst at Horley (Surrey), in exchange for land at Sevenoaks (Kent). Dated 1793] (Wikipedia et al. )
Apps, George. (1) Born Burstow c 1871. He became a steam tractor driver and lived at Ringley Oak Farm, where also annual sports meetings were held. (2) His son also George, born Horley 1894 was a Coal Merchant. Had office in High Street. Lived at Charlwood, where the family also had a coal yard.
Anderson, Douglas. Doug Anderson was involved with the Scouting movement from 1928 when he became a “Wolf Cub”. Later he became assistant cub master then in 1946 he became a master. He remained involved in the Scout all his life, and in 1997 he was still the president of the 6th Horley Group. Doug also served in the RAF during WW2. He is best known for his efforts to raise money to establish the Anderson leisure centre and swimming pool. Doug ran the family building business, “Anderson Building Contractors,” which operated from “Wheelwrights” in Horley Row. They built many houses for the council and renovated various old houses in Horley.
Baden-Powell, Lord Robert Stephenson. Born Paddington 1857, died Nyeri, Kenya 1941 aged 83.? Founder of Boy Scout & Girl Guide movements. Lived at Little Mynthurst in Smalls Hill Road, Norwood Hill 1916.
Baker, Arthur. Born Sussex c 1865. Lived in Massetts Road 1901. “Mr. Arthur Baker of the firm Baker and Baker is the exact counterpart of his brother who overlooks him. It is said that brothers in business seldom agree. This cannot be said of Baker and Baker, who are as they should be, the support of each other. A considerable time since Mr. Arthur Baker passed through a long illness. The amount of sympathy extended to him on that occasion testified to the deep feeling of respect entertained for him.” Horley Advertiser Dec. 22, 1906.
Baker, George. George was in partnership with his brother Arthur, (above). They were surveyors and valuers and had an estate office in the store building in the High Street. Later they had their office in the new building on the corner of Massetts Road and Victoria Road (charity shop). They also ran the Horley Market in Smallfield Road.
Batchellor, Henry William. Henry Batchellor was born in Danehill, Fletching, Sussex about 1835) owned the Old Mill House from 1859 where the family ran a grocery business. By 1871 Henry had his grocery business in Station Road. Then by 1881 he had retired to Frenches in Redhill, but in 1891 he moved back to Horley to live with his son William (below). Henry’s father was James Batchellor who was born in Horsham.
Batchellor, William Henry. Born in Horley c 1862. In 1871 William was working as a draper’s assistant in a large shop in Eastbourne. In 1891 he was a grocer, draper, furnisher they also made blankets, furniture and boots & shoes as well as undertakers with a shop in Station Road on the corner of Station Approach in 1901.
Birnage, Derek. Derek Birnage was the founder editor of one of the most popular boys sports comic “Tiger” in the 1950s when he lived in Horley at No 8 Fairfield Avenue.
Derek Arthur William Birnage was born at Wandsworth, South London on 13 June 1913 and died on 18 January 2004 at Burgess Hill. His father Frank was the editor of the “Sunday Companion”, a conservative evangelical paper that sold half a million copies a week during WW1.
After leaving school Derek eventually became a sub-editor of the Champion group of papers as well as writing some of the Colwyn Dane detective stories. After serving 6 years in the Royal Signals Corps overseas during WW2 he wrote a number of children’s short stories and in 1952 he became editor of Champion when the successful adventure comic “Lion” was launched. In 1954 a companion sports comic called “Tiger” was conceived and Derek took over the writing of the famous strip of the day “Roy of the Rovers”, supposedly based on Bobby Charlton’s ability on the football pitch. In 1963 he was in charge of 5 different annuals: Lion, Tiger, Valiant, Buster and Look and Learn books for Boys”.
(Ref. Telegraph Obituaries 18.02.04) (Brian.Buss.)
Blundell, Edward. Born Horley c 1862. Architect lived at Benhams, Horley Row 1891.
Brandt, Adolphe. Born London c1863. Licensed victualler 1891. Hotel keeper at the Chequers 1901. “Mr. A. Brandt of the celebrated ‘Chequers’ belongs to a list notabilities whom Horley could ill spare. He has not been known to show an excess of geniality but he is staunch and true with a mind of his own, which as his colleagues on the parish council know, he is not afraid of expressing.” Horley Advertiser Dec. 22, 1906.
Bridges, Alexander. Inherited Langshott 1733.
Bridges, Henry. Born c 1775. Owner of Beddington House, Surrey 1841. Father of Alexander Henry Bridges, below.
Bridges, Rev. Alexander Henry. He was born c 1812 at Epsom, Surrey was a Clerk (clergyman) was curate of St. Mark’s at Horsham 1851. In 1861 he was the Curate of Southwater. In 1871 he was the Rector of Beddington. He died 1891. He had owned Beddington Rectory, property in Scotland and a flour mill and other property in Argentina. He left Langshott manor, and other property in Horley and Horne, to his wife Caroline Matilda on condition that it passed on to their son John Henry Bridges (below) at her death.
Bridges, John Henry. J.P. John Bridges lived at Ewell Court, near Epsom in 1891 and The Court, Eastbourne in 1923. He inherited his mother’s property in 1907 and sold the Langshott estate and with 618.9 acres of land in Horley & Horne for £14,000 in 1923. “Mr. J. H. Bridges J.P. Is the respected son of a respected father (the late Canon Bridges), who the great benefactor of the church in the Beddington district. Langshott which passed to him with the family estates is connected with a long line of his ancestors. He perpetuates the high traditions of his family. Of a naturally retiring nature he has befriended many a good cause in Horley. His aid has never been sought in vain. As a thorough Englishman he has an enthusiastic love of all kinds of sports, more particularly archery, in which his proficiency gained him (if we remember rightly) the championship of England. Besides this he has established an enduring reputation as a foremost and successful breeder of the best strains of Aberdeen Angus. (Horley Advertiser Dec. 22, 1906. Et al)
Bristow, Maurice C. “Nobby”. Farmer, NFU committee member. Very outspoken but popular supporter of British Farming. Well known for the butcher’s shop at Outwood specialising in locally farmed meat, and pastries. Lived at Harrowsley Green Farm, then Outwood. Died 2006. Here is excerpt from a tribute by Mr. Peter Ainsworth M. P. “Although his job has taken him as far as Yemen, and he was born the son of a London haulier, Nobby Bristow is truly a man of these parts. In fact, his forebears, the de Burstows, came over with William the Conqueror, and perhaps it was their ancestral voices that called him to settle near the village of Burstow when he turned to farming after the Second World War.
It was a war that he counts himself very lucky to have survived. One of six cousins in the RAF, he alone came back. As a flight engineer, he saw more than his share of action in Sunderlands, Stirlings, and Lancaster bombers. He and his wife Jean married in 1945, on VJ Day. Jean’s influence is perhaps most evident today in the immaculately kept and riotously colourful garden of their farmhouse, but when you meet them it quickly becomes clear that the influence runs much deeper than that. Luck continued to play an important role in Nobby’s life. Having set his heart on a neglected farm near Horley which was on offer for far more than he could afford, he put in a cheeky bid and was astonished to find it accepted several months later. Fortune smiled again when he was made an offer he couldn’t refuse. “brothers from Colchester gave me an interest free loan of £5,000 to make a go of this place” he waves an arm at his home of the last thirty years, “said the land was rubbish, but I knew better!” Today, Nobby is the custodian of around 400 acres of beautiful Surrey countryside, home to 250 cattle and over 1,000 sheep…. [Referring to the pies made at the Outwood shop] Nobby’s pies are renowned. What is the secret recipe? “the very best ingredients” he is suddenly earnest, “hate to sell anybody anything that’s not absolutely right.” Nobby is the first to admit that he doesn’t suffer fools gladly, and he was never afraid to speak his mind; as a slightly shaken Prince Charles remarked after an encounter, “a man with definite opinions!” His dad once said that ‘are either enthusiasts or maniacs’ and Nobby says he finds it hard to see the distinction sometimes. But in spite of the problems that beset the countryside, it is impossible to leave Nobby and Jean’s home without a sense of contentment, “could [not] have had more satisfaction and joy out of life than I had” he remarks just before we part.” (Peter Ainsworth MP. Et al)
Brown, George. George Brown had rather an eventful life. He was born at the Six Bells Public House, Horley in 1845, the third son of seven boys and one girl. He was just nine years old when his mother (Sophia born Burstow, about 1817) died, and his father (William, a brewer born Burstow about 1816) died eighteen months later. When he was fourteen his stepmother apprenticed him to William King (the father of Alfred King, see below) a bricklayer and plasterer of Burstow for five years. During this time he undertook not to marry, gamble, play cards or haunt taverns or playhouses. George was to be provided with food and lodging and paid nine shillings every three months during the first year rising annually to one pound one shilling a quarter during the final year.
Two years later in 1867 he married Emily Jennings who was the only girl in the family of nine boys. George and Emily had two girls and six boys.
By 1871 George had taken over the Six Bells from his stepmother Ann and continued there until 1878 when he became the leaseholder of The Chequers. In 1891 he sublet The Chequers and took on the lease of the Albert Brewery in Station Road Horley. (In the 1891 census George is shown as a farmer living at Brewery House, Station Road.) He sold the business in 1894 and became a corn, coal and coke merchant until his death in 1897 aged 52. (A. O. Brown, et al.)
Brown, George. Born Horley c 1874. The son of George & Emily Brown above. Licensed Victualler at the “Kings Head” 1901.
Brown, William. A vicar of Horley Church for 52 years. He was inducted in 1561. He died 14th November, 1613 aged 80. His wife was Magdalena, and they had sons, Joseph, and Benjamin, and daughters, Phoebe and Sara. Joseph became rector of Rusper and Benjamin vicar of Ifield. William Brown owned Russell’s Farm from which Russell Crescent takes its name. He was also left Rowels Farm (which is where Crawley Sewerage Works is now) and other lands in the Horley area.
William’s Great granddaughter Phoebe Brown’s son, Thomas Lee Jr. is considered the founder of Saybrook, CT (USA). Another of the descendants of William Brown Matthew Griswold (1762-1799) became the 2nd Governor of Connecticut. Matthew Griswold’s descendants governors of states, congressmen, and even the President of Yale University.
Bunkell, R. A. Bob Bunkell was a very popular fishmonger originally from Norwich, Norfolk. He came to Horley in 1930, and had a shop in Victoria Road. He was always to be seen in his black Homburg hat, and his red face always clashed with his white apron. Bob organised a number of concerts to raise fund for the St Johns Ambulance service and was involved with other charity work. He died in July 1988 aged 84. (Horley Mirror et al.)
Burstow, James. Born Horley c 1870. He was a carman living in Lumley Road, 1901. He supplied the horses for the fire brigade.
Burberry, William. A yeoman. He lived in Harrowsley Manor Farm from 1660, married to Eleanor Shoe on 22 September 1658 in Horley, Died 1684. William was an ancestor of Thomas Burberry the founder of the clothing chain.
Burbridge, George. (1) Born Headcorn, Kent. c 1870. Baker & Corn Merchant. Lived in Station Road 1901. (Picture Right)
Burbridge, George. (2) Born Horley c 1894. (son of George Burbridge 1) Corn chandler with a shop in Victoria Road and a yard in the railway goods yard. The Burbridges were also land owners.
Burbridge. Percy. Born Horley c 1895. (Son of George Burbridge 1) Corn chandler and bookmaker. (As George (2) above)
Cambridge, HRH Prince George, Duke of. Born 1819 Hanover, Germany. Grandson of King George III. Died 1904. He was the longest serving head of the Army, as Commander-in-chief for 39 years. He had three sons, two before his private marriage to Sarah Louisa Fairbrother. The marriage did not exist in British law, so she known as “Mrs. FitzGeorge.” About 1865 he purchased the site of the former Kings Head public house in Bonehurst Road, and had built the Cambridge Lodge, now a Hotel. His main home was Gloucester House in Park Lane, Piccadilly.
Campbell, Donald. (Son of Sir Malcolm below) World Land & Water speed record holder. Born at Povey Cross Hookwood 1921, He then lived at Horsehills and he died in Coniston Water 1967 whilst attempting to break his world water speed record.
Campbell, Sir Malcolm. World Land & water speed record holder. Born Chislehurst March 11, 1885, where his father William (born 1846 in St Pancras) was a “Jeweller, Gold” in 1891. In 1901 Malcolm was at a boarding school at Uppingham, Rutland. Later he lived in Hookwood then Headly then moved to Gatton in 1946 and died there in 1948.
Charrington, Nicholas et al. It is said the family were in Surrey from about 1340. Nicholas was born 1530. The family bought Bures manor als Beeres & Buryscourt 1622. Later buying Stumblehole and other property including Harrowsley Green Farm and other properties in the Horley area. Descendants of Nicholas were well known as Brewers and coal merchants. In 1766 Rev. Nicholas Charrington, Vicar of Aldenham, Hertfieldshire, raised a mortgage on Bures Manor to buy for his son John a share in a London Brewery, Westfield & Moss. The brewery became the sole property of the family in 1783. A second cousin of John, also named John Charrington, born c1767 moved to London and he became a coal merchant in 1790 In 1841 Thomas Charrington, aged 20, Brewer was living at ‘Woodhatch’ with Harriett (his mother?) and several sisters. In 1901 Edward Charrington aged 25 and family were living at Bures. Ann Charrington the daughter of Richard Humphrey inherited her father’s properties of Wilgers, Jordans and Harrowsley Green Farms, and they remained in the Charrington family for several generations. (Details from “The Charrington Family 1500-1962” by Sir John Charrington, and other sources.)
Clarke, James. Born c1921, died 2006. Won the Military Cross and Bar for bravery in WW2. “Jimmy” was involved in the Round Table, The Horley Lions, and the Horley Scouts. He studied Law at St Catherine’s College, Cambridge and trained as a Barrister. He served on the Parish Council for 17 years. Somehow he managed to be find time to be employed as a Civil Servant at the Treasury and rose to under-secretary in the 1960s to 70s. Later he presided over the family building business of Bishop & Clarke. (condensed from “Horley Mirror.”)
Clarke, Dr. Samuel Arathoon. Born India c 1863. Physician & Surgeon. Lived in Station Road 1901 then moved to Massetts Road later that year.
Cohen, Adolphus Henry. Owner of the Haroldslea Estate. Born Birmingham 1857, his father, Julius, was a Prussian Jew. Julius was an importer Swiss watches and diamond merchant, Adolphus also was also a diamond merchant. He died in London 1933, and left his properties to his wife Ethel and son Nicholas. It was reported he held lively parties at Haroldslea sometimes requiring the attendance of the police.
Constable, Charles. Born Horley c 1787. Miller at Horley Water Mill until about 1862.
Constable, George. Born Horley c 1806? Lived at the shop next to Horley Mill in 1841.
Constable, James. Born c 1780. Shopkeeper ran the drapers shop next to Horley Mill. Later apparently he moved to Storrington, Sussex. (See also John Maple, below.)
Constable, William. Born c1783 and lived at the Water Mill in Lee Street. After a trip to America in 1806, he returned to Horley in 1808, and after rebuilding the mill, he became Surveyor to the Turnpike Trustees of the London to Brighton Roads and was responsible for constructing the tunnel in Reigate and the suspension bridge at Reigate Hill in 1823. He later resumed an interest in artwork and took up photography. In 1842 William was the first photographer for whom Prince Albert sat. He died in 1861 at Brighton where he had a studio .
Crewdson, John. (1) John was born in Ulverston, Lancashire in 1871, he died on 8th January, 1951 aged 79. John was well known in Horley for he owned a building company which was responsible for many public buildings, such as telephone exchanges, hospital buildings, post office sorting offices, and Horley Cinema which was in Victoria Road. Also he build houses, for example Crewdson Road and many of the houses on both sides of Balcombe Road between Smallfield Road and Victoria Road. He lived for many years in Stonecourt in Smallfield Road. His office was at the Old Bank Chambers on the corner of Station Road. He held many public offices, was the first Chairman of Dorking & Horley Rural District Council, having served on the old Reigate Rural District Council.
Tracing the family back with the aid of the censuses we find that John Crewdson was married to Edith. She came from Broadstairs in Kent and died in 1939. In 1901 John was a teacher living in Deptford, Kent. (He taught construction work). In 1891 he was a joiner living at home in Ulverston, his father Francis was an engine fitter at the works. In 1851 John’s grandfather, also Francis was also born at Ulverston and he was linen weaver.
Crewdson, John W. F. (2) Born Greenwich in 1902, married Margery Wicks in 1924 (Registered at Croydon June quarter 1924). Margery died 17, July 1926 aged 24 two months after giving birth to her son John (3). At one time John W. F. Lived at 60 Balcombe Road. He ran the “Granite Paving Company” in Lumley Road.
Crewdson, Captain John. (3) Son of John W. F. Crewdson (2) Born in Horley 15 May 1926, he was married to Joan and had four children. He lived at 73 Balcombe Road then later when his uncle Reginald died he moved to Stonecourt in Smallfield Road. He ran “Film Aviation Services Ltd” a business stunt flying for film companies. He owned several aircraft including a Spitfire and a helicopter which for a while was based in Stonecourt Farm (where Stonecourt Close is now), and the children at Balcombe Road School (now Oakwood) used to watch through the fence to see him take off in the morning from his back garden! He flew in many films including “Jet Storm as “Whitman” in 1959; “Follow that Horse” as a pilot in 1960; “Lawrence of Arabia,” where he played the part of a Turkish pilot in 1962; “On Her Majesty’s Secret Service” as “Draco” the helicopter pilot in 1969. The last film he was involved in was made in 1981. Captain John is said at have died 16th June 1982 according to several web sites but another says he died 26th June 1983 in a helicopter crash on a sand bank off the Norfolk coast during a seal count. (These final details cannot be confirmed as not shown on BMD index.)
Reginald Crewdson son of John Crewdson (1) continued the building company when his father died. Reginald sometimes flew his private aircraft the nearest airfield to impress prospective customers! He lived at Batchelors Farm Outwood then moved to Stonecourt in Smallfield Road, and he died in 1954 aged 47. Reginald left money for the “Crewdson Trust”
Crowe, Ernest. He was born c1941 and he died 1995. He was the first mayor of Reigate & Banstead Borough Council 1974-1975. He lived in Balcombe Road. He was also involved in charity work such as Age Concern, League of Friends of Royal Earlswood Hospital and? President of East Surrey Society for mentally handicapped children and adults from 1974. For his community work, he was awarded and OBE in 1990.
Davis, Bernard Stephen. Bernard Davis was born 23 April 1931 in Lee Street. He became a keen athlete both at and after leaving Lumley Road School. As a member of the Redhill Athletic Club he reached county standard and won several championships. The cup that he won while serving two years in the Royal Navy was given as the Davis cup to be competed for by the Horley Boy Scouts. In his youth he became one of the last King’s Scouts and went on to be the District Chairman and then President of the area’s District Venture Scout Unit before becoming Vice-President of the District Scout Council.
After marriage to Audrey Dudman at Lowfield Heath, Bernard designed his own house where they lived in Limes Avenue before his work with a medical sickness company took them to Edinburgh for a few years. Before doing so he joined Round Table and became the first full-time Chairman in Horley when the Table was formed in 1960. On his return from Scotland he became Area Chairman.
Early in 1990 he joined Horley Local History Society and became co-author of two notable publications, one on “Horley in Wartime” and another on the history of the “Chequers”.
After a long illness he died on 12 December 1997. (Brian Buss.)
D’Eyncourt, Louis Charles, Tennyson. Born 1814, Caenby, Lincs. Died 1896. Police Magistrate in Westminster. Lived at Brick House Farm, (Now part of Farmfield, Charlwood, Horley) and Cornwell Gardens, London S.W.
Desoutter, Marcel. Born London 1894. His father was Louis, a watchmaker & jeweller, born in France, his mother was Philomen?, also born in France according to the 1901 census when the family were living at 1 Maddox Square, in the Parish of St. George, Hanover Sq. London.
In 1934, Marcel Desoutter had an option to purchase Gravesend Airport. When Airports Ltd, the then owner of Gatwick Airport, acquired the controlling interest in that Kent airport, Marcel was willing to give up his option if he could become Business Manager of Airports Ltd. By this action, Marcel later joined its Board and became a central player in the history of Gatwick Airport over the next 20 years.
He was born in England in 1894, his father being French and mother Swiss. They established a high quality watch making business, but Marcel became fascinated with aviation from an early age. He gained his flying certificate at Hendon at 17 years of age and became an instructor but lost a leg in an accident soon after. His brother Charles soon made him an artificial leg of aluminium and leather from which they set up a company called the Desoutter Brothers, manufacturers of artificial limbs that allowed thousands of ex-servicemen from WW1 and beyond, to walk again.
Marcel soon became instrumental in obtaining the finance and planning for the new airport with its advanced circular terminal building known as the “Beehive” that remains there today as a listed building. It was opened on 6 June 1936.
He soon took up residence close by at Hazelwick, Oldfield Road in Horley where throughout WW2 it remained as the registered office of Airports Ltd. Except for a short period he remained at the Airport throughout WW2 to ensure that the Company’s interests were safeguarded.
After the war, although the Ministry promised that the Airport would eventually be derequisitioned, Marcel worked tirelessly to bring the airlines back to Gatwick. He organized every form of publicity including a Daily Express Air Show in both 1948 and 49 and encouraged various aviation committees to include Gatwick in their future plans.
On 13 April 1952 he unexpectedly died and this everyone thought would remove one of the visionaries for Gatwick. However he had done enough and the inertia he had helped to create carried his aims through to fruition and on 30 July that year the Ministry of Transport & Civil Aviation announced the Governments decision to develop Gatwick.
Subsequently Marcel’s vision was realized when on 30 May 1958 Queen Elizabeth II reopened Gatwick Airport. The 31 million passengers who passed through Gatwick Airport in 2004 owe much to the efforts this man expended during the 1930s and 40s.
(Ref. Gatwick-The Evolution of an Airport, John King, 1986)
Eade, Walter. Walter Eade, born in Edenbridge 22 July, 1879, died 1976. He ran J. Russell & Co., the blacksmiths in Albert Road. He was awarded a bronze medal by the Royal Humane Society for diving into a flooded river to save a drowning friend during the Boer War. He lived in Lumley Road and his hobbies were creating wrought iron work, gardening and handwriting. (extracted form Crawley & District Observer, Feb. 27, 1976 et al)
Edwards, Frederick. D. Lived in Balcombe Road during the 1950s. Started importing vacuum pumps 1919, Founder of “Edwards High Vacuum Ltd,” Factory in Crawley 1954, taken over by British Oxygen 1968. Mr. Edwards was known to be charitable, and he was said to have given £1,000 towards the Anderson Swimming Pool fund. (Internet, et al)
Fairman, Frederick. Born Outwood c1880. Lived at Shipley Bridge 1901. Founder of “Fairman Precision Tools” in Station Road, founder of Fairman’s Garage in Victoria Road. Fred Fairman set up the “Smallfield Laundry” off Station Road in part of the old Albert Brewery buildings. (it was there in the 1914 Kellys) He named it “Smallfield” because the business originated from that village, but later he lived in the original Brewery House. He extended his business interest and opened a garage in the same road (where Mitchell’s builder’s merchants store is today) along with a petrol pump (see “Horley 50 Years Ago” page 28)
In 1933 he financed the building of a large showroom, parts store and workshop (now a Weatherspoon pub) also a petrol filling station and a large garage for commuters to store their cars (where the Waitrose Superstore is today) and gave it to one of his sons to manage. (Brian. Buss. Et al)
Fairman, Jack. Motor racing driver. Owner of “Fairman Precision Tools” which was located in Station Road. Jack Fairman was born in Smallfield on March 15 1913 and died on February 7, 2002. His father wanted him to go into the family laundry business in Horley but he preferred engineering and the car industry. After leaving Reigate Grammar School he attended Chelsea College to study Automobile Engineering and worked for Daimler and Armstrong Siddeley After buying his first car in 1934 he joined Brooklands Racing Club and soon became proficient in speed events on the track before WW2. After serving in the Royal Tank Regiment in Normandy he came back to the family business that had during the war become involved in engineering. However when motor racing recommenced he took part in many different competitions including the Le Mans 24-hour event partnering rising young drivers like Sterling Moss, to achieve several spectacular records, despite being considered to be too old for the sport. He made 12 starts in Grand Prix and finished 4th and e in two races. However, in the 1950s he gained a reputation among formula one owners as a works test driver and became much involved in the development testing of the formidable D-type Jaguar.
Jack retired from racing in 1963 at the age of 50 to concentrate on the precision tool company in Horley. This did not stop him from driving fast cars. Some residents in the town still recall him driving out of the Fairman’s show rooms (now Weatherspoons) at speed early on a Sunday morning to scream down Russells Crescent, take a right hand into Massetts Road almost on two wheels, purposely accelerate pass a sleeping police station, take another right at the town cross roads after braking hard, and back into the show rooms before anyone knew what was happening and who was causing all the noise. He was this sort of character and was often called Jolly Jack or Fearless Fairman. His name will now live on, for it is hoped many years, now that Weatherspoons has called its new pub within the 1933 show rooms, the “Jack Fairman”. (Ref. The Times, 9 February 2002 Brian Buss. et al.)
Flint, Harold ‘Gip’. “Gip” Flint — One of Sir Malcolm’s “Troops’. “They also serve who only stand and wait,” says the poet Milton. This phrase could well apply to Harold Flint, who spent 33 of his 61 years standing by as a fireman in Horley. Harold “Gipsy” Flint of Albert Road, was born in Lewisham, son of a London horse team driver, and came to Horley as a boy. With his father, mother, seven sisters and brother, he moved into Rose Cottage, Grove Road — one of a mere handful of houses in an area of pastureland and cornfields. His father worked on Court Lodge Farm and young Harold used to brush the steeper path across the fields for Sunday churchgoers. He attended the “Gaffer Green Academy”. His mother died when he was in his teens and at the outbreak of war Harold put years on his age, and, with his pal, Nelson Tester, joined the army. Nelson was “rumbled”, but Gip Flint stayed on in the R. A.S. C. from April. 1915. He moved to the Middle East in the October, serving in Salonika, Malta, Egypt and Aleppo. For his war service he gained the 1914/1015 Star, General Service Medal and the Victory Medal. When Sir Malcolm Campbell lived at Norwood Hill, Harold worked for him on the famous “Sunbeam” and travelled with Sir Malcolm Campbell to Famoe Island, Denmark, where he broke the world speed record. Harold often went to Brooklands with Sir Malcolm, and once went round the track with him. Sir Malcolm gave Harold Flint a silver cigarette case, suitably inscribed from his late employer to “one of the troops!” This was dated June 24th, 1923. After this, Harold Flint joined the railways as a sub-ganger for the London, Brighton and South Coast Line, based at Horley, where he stayed for seventeen years. He also joined the fire service in 1927 when it was under the control of the local council but when war broke out it became the National Fire Service and afterwards the Surrey Fire Brigade. The Queen’s Silver Medal for twenty years’ service, the National Fire Brigade Association Medal, with three bars, were both gained by “Gip” Flint in a period of distinguished service with the local fire units.
Flint, Joseph. Born Horley c1839. Owner of “Flints Stores” Horley Row. Grocer & Draper etc. “Mr. ‘Joe’ Flint of the local Whitley’s wields as much influence in Horley as any man and report says as large a purse. He has known Horley, when like some individuals it was very poor. There are people, who when they rise like to forget these days — “Joe Flint” as he is familiarly known never does. He scorns delights and lives laborious days! He is not the Father Bountiful of the village but has been know to do more than one good turn. He is not satisfied with a bare record.” Horley Advertiser Dec. 22, 1906.
John Ernest August Furness
Born: 2 March 1878 at “Hoby Kulle”, Brakne-Hoby, Blekinge, Sweden
The 6th of 14 children of Stephen Furness (1848-1911) and Mary Ann (Sharper) 1850-1898)
He was educated at a Boy’s School in Karlshamm, Blekinge, Sweden, then University of Lund in Agriculture at Trelleborg. Sweden
In 1900 he left Sweden for England to join the family company of Furness Withy & Co. Ltd. in West Hartlepool for the first two years, then was transferred to London to the Freight Department. In 1904 he was appointed Assistant Manager to the office of Furness Withy in Halifax, Nova Scotia, Canada, shortly after he became the Manager, and Managing Director for the company in the Dominion of Canada and Newfoundland. In Halifax, he was very active in civic affairs and became an Alderman in 1917. He was a director in the British Maritime Trust, a trustee of the Furness Seaman’s Fund, a director in the Sailors’ Home of Halifax.
September 30, 1909, he married his secretary! Miss Emma Louise Pearce, daughter of William and Emma Pearce (1885 – 1978) of Dartmouth, Nova Scotia.
He had 3 children, Harry Charles John Furness (1910 – 1975) born in Halifax, Nova Scotia Ernest Walter Furness (1912 – 1918) born and died in Halifax, Nova Scotia, Kate Elizabeth Furness (1920 – 2008) born in Reigate, Surrey, England.
The Ship’s Lists has many Atlantic crossings, as he yearly had to attend company Manager’s meetings. After a decision made by his cousin Marmaduke Furness to retire all family members from the business in 1919. Except for the Chairman of the Board of Directors.
John Ernest and Emma Furness with nine year old Harry and Carl Einar Furness (brother of John) left Halifax in late November 1919 for Montreal sailing aboard “the Empress of Ireland”.
Upon arrival in England, they first settled for short time in Reigate, then he purchased the Haroldslea House in Horley. The Haroldslea estate consisted of about 318 acres, and included several cottages, and many outbuildings where he was able to pursue his love of farming and cattle breeding for which he had studied in Sweden, which was a huge success with winning prizes for his Dairy Shorthorn Cattle and Turkeys. Haroldslea was put on the market in 1925, then they moved to Redeham Hall, Burstow in Surrey for a few years until his health became a problem.
They then moved to “Gable End” Offington Drive, Worthing, Sussex, and finally he moved into Hopedene Nursing Home Wordsworth Road, Worthing and died 16th January, 1941.
We thank Peggy Furness for details of her grandfather.
Notes: Furnace Withy; on its formation the company owned 18 vessels and they took over several other companies and by 1916 they owned 215 ships, and over the subsequent years the group has owned in excess of a thousand ships. At times during the company’s history the total owned fleet was one of the largest in the world.
(Furness Withy Chartering et al.)
Goddard, John Theodore. Born Highbury, London 1879, he retired in 1950 and died 1952. Lived at 106 Highbury New Park, London 1901 with his widowed mother and siblings. At the age of 22 he was a solicitor’s articled clerk. Later he lived at Hewitt’s Farm, now “The Farmhouse” public house in Langshott Lane Horley.
“When King Edward VIII’s intention to marry Mrs. Simpson became known, John Theodore Goddard became closely involved at the behest of Prime Minister Stanley Baldwin in the delicate abdication negotiations. As a young man of 24, John Theodore Goddard founded the practice of Theodore Goddard & Co. in 1902. For some years, he practised on his own account from offices in Clement’s Inn, close by the Law Courts. Working the London court circuit as a litigator, his reputation soon enabled him to attract as a valuable client the newly created office of The Public Trustee. With the growth of the practice, he moved to new offices in Sergeant’s Inn in the Temple area of London in 1917. The next 30 years saw further progress and by 1946 the firm of Theodore Goddard & Co. had eight partners. This period also saw John Theodore Goddard become known nationwide when, in 1936, he was instructed by Mrs Wallis Simpson (the late Duchess of Windsor) to act for her in her divorce proceedings. When King Edward VIII’s intention to marry Mrs Simpson became known, Goddard became closely involved, at the behest of Prime Minister Stanley Baldwin, in the delicate abdication negotiations.
John Theodore Goddard retired as Senior Partner in 1950 and died in 1952. However, the 1950s saw a period of further growth through amalgamation with, in particular, the City firm of Deacons & Pritchard (founded in 1834) and the firm of Rhys Roberts & Co (founded in 1883)” (Condensed from Wickipedia, et al.)
Grear, William. Born Norwich 1910, died 2001. Bill Grear was a blacksmith who took over the running of his father-in-law’s company, J. Russell & Co., in Albert Road. He married Marjorie Eade of Lumley Road. He was involved in the St John’s Ambulance Brigade and the Boy Scouts.
Harman, James. Born Horley c 1900, his father was a carpenter living in Charlesfield Road in 1901. James was a scout master and became Assistant District Commissioner in 1939. In 1970 he received the MBE. He joined the Scouts in 1910. During WW1 he served in France and suffered injuries during a mustard gas attack. At the age of 14 he started work at the bookstall at the station, and later worked in a garage. James died about 1987. Extracted form Horley Mirror.
Hooper, Thomas. Thomas Hooper was born in Lambeth about 1855. In 1901 he was living at Fernhill Cottages and he was a farmer and undertaker. He took over the business in Station Road from “Weston.” Later on, his son Ernest, born in Holborn, about 1891 took over the business of monumental mason and undertaker, At some point of time they moved to Lumley Road. When he retired, Ernest sold the business to Alfred King Undertakers in Victoria Road, later known as Ballard & Shortall.” Ernest became a member of the Christadelphian faith.
Jeffcock, Peter LLoyd. Mr Jeffcock brought up 12 foster children single handed and lived in various locations in Horley, including Smallfield Road, and Massetts Road during 60s, 70s , 80s and 90s. A number of his foster children still live in Horley. A book about him called ‘Only Uncle’ can be bought from Amazon which tells the story of him and his children. There was also a BBC TV series about the family starring Ian Carmichael as Peter Jeffcock.
Jennings, Arthur Edward. Arthur Jennings was born in Horley c1849 the third son of Stephen Henry Jennings, below, he established a building business in Massetts Rd. The builder’s yard was later taken over by E. E. Mitchell. Arthur was a member of Horley Parish Council. He built Horley Fire Station in Albert Road and most of the houses in Russell Crescent, Ringley Avenue and Massetts Road. Arthur married Susannah Warren from Horley in 1879, they had a son also Arthur was born Horley c 1881 and he was a carpenter.
Jennings, Stephen Henry. Stephen Jennings was born about 1822 at Blackfriars, Surrey [now London]. Married to Hannah from Worth, he had a daughter, Emily who was followed by nine sons. He was a baker and grocer. He took over a bakery business in a converted chapel in Horley Row, now known as the Old Bakehouse.
Jolliffe, Rev. William John. Although W. J. Jolliffe did not live in Horley, we have included him as he owned a considerable amount of land in Horley. His father was William Jolliffe MP (b. 1752) for Petersfield from 1768 to 1802. He was Lord of the Admiralty under North and Fox. The family moved to Merstham and had the “The Great House” built in about 1790 with access from Quality Street, it was demolished in 1834 as it was deemed unsafe. He died in 1802 after falling through a wine cellar trap door. His second son also William John was ordained into the church but soon became engaged in the construction industry with his brother Hylton in running a stone mining and building company. They were involved in the construction of the Surrey Iron Railway, Waterloo and London Bridges, and Sheerness Docks. When Horley Common became inclosed, Rev William Jolliffe became owner of land where Oakwood Road now is, and land on the east side of Balcombe Road from Ladbroke Road to Smallfield Road and the land where Castle Drive is as well as land in Haroldslea. Rev W. J. Jolliffe died in 1835.
Jordan, John et al. Owner of Gatwick Manor c1495. The Jordan family of Charlwood can trace their family tree in direct line to the 13th. Century. At various times they were lords of the manor of seven different local manors. Phillipa, (1699-1759) who married John Sharp held four manors including Gatwick which is now part of the airport. The family also were owners of several farms in the Horley area, i.e. Jordans Farm, Smallfield Road, and Jordans, Langley Green, Crawley.
Kearsey, Francis. Was born Francis Burdett Thomas 1810 the second son of William Thomas.
He married his wife Clairon Barbara Cuerton Aug. 31, 1839 at St Pancras Parish Chapel, Camden, his name was given as Francis Burdett Thomas, solicitor of Lombard Street, and his father was William Thomas,
Later his name was changed to Kearsey.
It was anounced in the The London Gazette of Tuesday July 27, 1841 That Queen Victoria granted his name was to be changed in compliance with a provisio contained in the last will and testament of Thomas Kearsey, (his wife’s uncle) late of Bucklersbury and of Wallington House, in the county of Surrey, gent deceased, “for the memory of the testator, take and henceforth use upon all occasions the surname of Kearsey in lieu of his present surname of Thomas, that he may henceforward be called by the names of Francis Kearsey.”
Francis Kearsey had his practice at 17 Bucklersbury, then later at 35 Old Jewry, London, which in those days was where many lawyers and money lenders practised.
At some point of time Francis Kearsey owned 117 acres at Burstow.
In 1856 the first stone of Burstow Hall, the mansion of Mr. Francis Kearsey, was laid by his son [Francis, who would have been just seven years old!]. The mansion was to be built in the Italian style of architecture after a design by Mr. H. Flower of London, architect.
His son, also Francis had two sons, Francis and Alexander Horace Cyril Kearsey DSO, OBE. Adjutant Bucks. Imperial yeomanry, (Born Burstow Hall 17 December 1877 – 8 October 1967) was a career highly decorated British Army officer who served in the Second Boer War and World War I. He was also an English cricketer, but his military career limited his cricketing appearances.
He was educated at Rottingdean School and Clifton College, before attending the Royal Military College, Sandhurst.
Alexander Kearsey married Frances Mitford, the daughter of Algernon Freeman-Mitford, 1st Baron Redesdale and Lady Clementina Gertrude Helen Ogilvy, on 30 April 1907. The Mitfords were descendants of William the Conqueror. The couple had one son. Alexander Kearsey died in Wandsworth, London on 8 October 1967. He had survived his wife Frances, who had died in 1951, by 16 years.” (Wikipedia)
The third generation Francis Kearsey, born in Burstow Hall about 1874 became an accountant living in Holborn and later in Westminster, he was married to Maria Emily Elizabeth Blundell in Wandsworth registration district in Dec. quarter, 1900. She was born in Bow or Stepney, also about 1874 but in 1911 they were living apart. It appears they had no children. He did sign up in serve in WWI .
Kelsey, Edward & Louisa. In 1848 Edward was farming Court Lodge. By 1851, Louisa was a widow aged 46 a farmer of 400 acres and employing 8 labourers. She was living at Court Lodge and was probably the widow of Edward. Their name is remembered in Kelsey Close.
King, Alfred. Born Smallfield c1880. Builder, brickmaker & undertaker based in Smallfield. There is a story that his son died in a motor cycle accident, and Alfred embalmed him and kept his coffin in his own bedroom for many months until the authorities found out. Alfred’s father William, born Worth c1839 was also a bricklayer employing 9 men & 6 boys at Smallfield in 1881. The family built many of the older houses and the original school in Redehall Road in Smallfield.
King, Phyllis, nee Mudford. P. E. Won Wimbledon Ladies Doubles in 1931, died at 100 in January 2006. Lived in “Oakhurst” Meath Green Lane.
Phyllis E Mudford was born in Wallington, Surrey in August 1905 and died in January 2006. After marrying Maurice King they lived at Merstham before they came to Oak Lea, Meath Green Lane in 1944 where she lived for the rest of her life. Maurice died in 1959.
Phyllis became an ardent and successful tennis player and in 1930 became a member of the winning British Wightman Cup team that went to Forest Hill in the USA. At Wimbledon in 1931 she became the doubles champion with Mrs W P Barron (the Horley Mirror for 02.02.06 called her Dorothy Shepherd-Barron) and won the match 6-4. She travelled widely overseas to play tennis and at her 100th birthday party reported that when part of a mixed team, the Lawn Tennis Association always sent a married lady with them to act as a chaperone. She also played with some of the great players of the day including Fred Perry and Bunny Austen.
She was a life member of both the Horley and Reigate Lawn Tennis Clubs. During a WW2 National War Weapon’s Week, Horley Tennis Club raised £450 by holding a mixed doubles match led by Phyllis King along with well known members of the Wimbledon Doubles Club. The Horley Tennis Club considered its courts to be below standard for such a match so the Bowls Club kindly offered its use of their rinks. Similarly, because its pavilion was inadequate the Vicar offered the use of the facilities in the Vicarage.
(Ref. HLHS Interview, 3 May 2006. Horley Mirror August 25, 2006 & February 2, 2006
Record of Fund Raising – Horley Lawn Tennis Club, Early 1940s, Peter Knight) (B.B.)
Knowles, Charlie. Charlie Knowles was a colourful character in Horley during the 1960s, not only because of his white beard and his sporty grey top hat, but also where on numerous occasions he spent his nights. For almost two years he slept under the remaining elm tree in the car park of the then “Chequers Hotel”. One reason for doing so was said to be his belief that the tree was on Horley Common and he wanted to exercise his right to use the common.
Hotel client’s as well as the staff employed there became accustomed to his presence, the last mentioned often plied him with food and offered him shelter during bad weather. Charlie often walked many miles, mainly for charity and it was on one such walk at the age of 53 years he was knocked down and killed. He was taking part in a June London to Brighton charity walk when it happened at Hooley. Many who knew and respected him always called him Cheerful Charlie and willingly clubbed together to buy a wreath for his funeral.
For years after many Horley residents and others from elsewhere enquired about the cheerful chappy who slept under tree.
(Ref. Horley Advertiser 23 June 1967) (Brian Buss.)
Lenders, M. Francois, H. M. Lenders was the Belgian Consul-General in 1908. He appears to have been the first owner of Newstead Hall in Haroldslea Drive about 1902, and he occupied Haroldslea House from about 1905 to 1908
Letchford. Henry. Born 1591. The Letchford family were a large family who for many years were landowners in Horley. They are remembered in Letchford Road, which is in the area where they owned.
Lewis, Rev. Henry Thomas. Henry was born c 1863, probably (the census gives different locations) in Llanegwad or the nearby village of Llanfynydd Carmarthenshire, South Wales (now known as Llanhyfryddawelllehynafolybarcudprindanfygythiadtrienusyrhafnauole (Which recently became the longest place name in UK)). Henry was clergyman in the Church of England living in The Vicarage in 1901. He served there for about 50 years. His father, also Henry was a member of the clergy and in 1871 he was Curate at a village of Nicholaston near Aberavon.
Mallinson, Edgar. Born in Westminster c1896. Lived in Albert Rd. 1901. His father was a house decorator. His brother Thomas started by selling papers at station newsagent, shop in Station Road. Changed name of shop during WW2 from “Mallinson of Horley” to “Mallinson of Britain”
Maple, John. John (born 1815 in Thakenham, Sussex, died? March 1890 and buried at Highgate Cemetery) was an apprentice to James Constable who owned the Stores at Horley Mill in Mill Lane. He married Emily Blundell who was governess to the miller, Charles Constable’s daughters. In 1841 with James Cook, he was running a drapery, upholstery and furnishing business in Tottenham Court Road, Marylebone, London. Shortly afterwards he appears to have taken over the business. His son was Sir John Blundell Maple M. P. who became a man of wealth owning, in addition to his father’s Stores in London, he owned much land in Horley, he also paid for the building of the Horley & District Constitutional Club. Also he helped to enlarge Salfords Church.
Mitchell, Ernest E. Born Romsey Hants. c1875. A foreman joiner, living in Lumley Rd. 1901. Later established a General Builders, Yard in Albert Rd. then Massetts Road later Station Road. For many years the business was run by E.E.Mitchell’s nephew, Bert Mitchell in conjunction with Mr. Jack Hunt.
Monk, Jack. 1904 to 1962. Lived at “Long Lintols” 14 Haroldslea Drive. He referred to his home as the “Monkhouse”. He always wore a smart black suite, white silk shirt and a ‘Dicky Bow’ tie. Jack was a strip cartoonist for the Daily Mirror from 1937 to 1962. His cartoon was about a British private investigator, ‘Buck Ryan’. On one occasion, he included himself in his cartoon, in a sports car, with a lady about to hit him on his head with a pistol!
Monson, Sir William. Sir William (born 1567) he served in the Royal Navy 1585 to 1635. He was Admiral of the Downs and Narrow Seas from 1604 to 1615. He retired to Kinnersley Manor which he owned from sometime before 1624 to 1643 when he died aged 73.
The second son of Admiral Sir William Monson (c.1568-1643), William Monson was knighted in 1623 and acquired a large estate at Reigate in Surrey upon his marriage to Lady Margaret Stewart (d.1639) daughter of the Earl of Moray in 1625. Three years later, he was created Viscount Monson of Castlemaine in the Irish peerage. Monson opposed King Charles’ arbitrary rule during the 1630s and was among those who refused to pay ship money in 1636. He was elected MP for Reigate in the Long Parliament.
Monson supported Parliament during the civil wars, serving on the county committee for Surrey during the First Civil War, and defending Reigate Castle against the Earl of Holland’s Royalist uprising during the Second Civil War. In January 1649, Monson was appointed to the High Court of Justice. He attended the opening sessions of the King’s trial, but withdrew from the proceedings and did not sign the death warrant.
During the 1650s, Monson fell into financial difficulties and was imprisoned the Fleet prison for debt. He was released in May 1659 when the Purged Parliament was restored, but was imprisoned again as a regicide at the Restoration of Charles II. Monson pleaded that he had attended the King’s trial in the hope of finding a way to save him, but he was stripped of all his property and titles and sentenced to be drawn from the Tower through the city of London to Tyburn and back with a halter about his neck, then imprisoned for life. Monson died in the Fleet prison around 1673.
Moore, Charles. Owned Edgeworth (now part of a hotel at the airport), but mainly lived in London. He owned Harrowsley Manor Estate, Peeks Farm, Tanners Farm, Inholms, Priestlands, and other areas of land in Horley. Charles Moore was christened 14th November 1784 at “St Botolph without Aldgate” his parents were Charles & Hannah Moore. He died 8th April, 1859. He married Mary (details not to hand). His three daughters were born in Chichester, Sussex. His daugter Mary Ann married Richard Bushellwho was a Fellow of Royal College of Surgeons in England born Hanover Square, Middx. Another daughter, Sarah married William Woodrow a tailor. Charles appears to have a had son, William, but his details not yet traced and he must have died before 1851.
Charles appears to have been a maker of duelling pistols and shotguns. There seems to be quite a trade in the supply of replica Charles Moore pistols as several web sites in various countries including USA and even one in Russia. The latter confirms his address as 77 St James Street, Westminster, London.
Norris, Rupert Leopold. In 1901 R. L. Norris was Proprietor of Bentinck Hotel in Margaret St. near Regent St., London. In 1912 he bought Newstead Hall, Haroldslea Drive and lived there until his death in 1942. He was a J. P., Surrey County Councillor, Chairman of the Smallholding Committee. in 1922 he was a founding member of Horley & District Electricity Supply Co. He built the “Empire Hall” Victoria Road, which he gave to the Girl Guides. He was born about 1864 in Watchet, Somerset. His father was the Manager of the West Somerset Mine Railway, which carried iron ore from the Hills of Exmoor to be shipped to South Wales to the port of Watchet. He was born in Hertfordshire.
Pierpont, Frank H. Works manager of Monotype works at Salfords from 1899 to 1936.
Frank Hinman Pierpont was a talented 39 year old American engineer when he was appointed to manage the Lanston Monotype Corporation that established its works off Honeycrock Lane, Salfords in 1899. Frequently described as an engineering genius who possessed an aristocrat appearance, he solved many basic mechanical problems to advance the success of typographic machines produced by the Corporation during his 37 years in that post. His contribution to his industry was said to be immense.
He married in Vienna in 1897 when studying German patents in Berlin and when they came to England they settled not far from the factory in Oaklands (?) in Axes Lane. Although known to be a strict disciplinarian insisting on precision and correctness, he was quick to help the community. In 1928 for instance, he offered the Monotype catering facilities, etc. immediately following the fire at High Trees School, then in Newhouse Lane, when 5 young children died.
In July 1936 the Monotype Directors met for lunch at the Savoy Hotel, London to honour Frank Pierpont on his retirement.
(Ref. Frank Hinman Pierpont, 1860 – 1937, A Memoir and a Tribute, The Monotype Recorder Spring 1937 and High Trees School, B. Buss 2002.)
Ramsey, Dame Mary. Dame Mary gave money to Christ’s Hospital to buy the Manor of Horley in about 1602.
Robinson, Barry. Barry was born 11 November 1908 in Lumley Road. He died in 1978.? Managing Director of Henry’s Garage in Victoria Road for 31 years and owned his own garage in Charlwood. He was involved in the Boy Scouts, St John’s Ambulance Brigade, the Fire Service, and during the second world war he joined the Civil Defence, and the council’s A. R. P. Training officer. Also during the war Barry was presented the B. E. M. by King George VI for rescuing a woman buried under rubble after a an air raid. He was a founding member of the Horley Rotary Club and their president. Also he found time to be a J. P.
Russell, John. Born Mayfield, Sussex c1861. Lived in Lumley Road. John was a Blacksmith.
Ross, Henry Harrison Stockdale Ross. Born 1871 Lancaster, solicitor. Ethel his wife born 1877 Ledbury, Herefordshire. Her father was a solicitor who lived at a house named “The Knapp” also named their house in Balcombe Gardens the same.
De Rutherwyk, John. He was a monk who was elected Abbot of Chertsey Abbey. 1307 – 1346.? As Chertsey Abbey owned Horley Church and much land in Horley, Rutherwyk was the landlord of much of the parish.
Salaman, Roger et al. From the 13th c he & his descendants were owners of Horley Lodge manor and Burstow Lodge. Probably built much of Horley Church by the 13th-14th c. Sir Roger Salaman of Burstow died at the beginning of the 15th c appears to be the last of the male line. His property passed through his daughters to the Jordan family (see above) of Gatwick and the Sanders of Charlwood.
Sanger, ‘Lord’ George. Circus owner. Born Newbury Berkshire c1827. After selling the circus he moved to Park Farm, East Finchley, London. His farm foreman, Herbert Charles Cooper murdered him with a hatchet 28th November 1911. Then Cooper commited suicide two days later on the railway.
George Sanger founded his circus with his brother John in 1853. Every year they travelled around the country. For example in the 1901 census they were camped on a cricket ground at Grantham with 100 staff. They had several elephants, many other animals including lions. Houses were built in Chapel Road Smallfield for the family and their winter quarters were in Burstow Lodge Smallfield. The circus continued until 1960. The also had winter grazing land in Brighton Road where Sangers Drive, Horley, is named after them. When George Sanger died, he left over £29,300 in addition to property. (A picture of some of the elephants can be seen in our Gallery.)
Shadbolt, Blunden. See Suppliment at the end of this article:
Stalford, Denzil (Danny) “Denzil ‘Danny’ Stalford was born 19th February 1915, son of a London dentist, and qualified in March 1938. He reopened his father’s dental practice at 93 Camberwell Road until he was called-up in May 1941 to serve in the Royal Army Dental Corps. He was promoted to Captain in 1942 and served at home for two years. He volunteered for service with the Invading Forces and landed, with mobile dental equipment, at Arromanches on D Day + 11.
He served with an infantry division until the final surrender of the German war machine. In spite of everything, Danny enjoyed his days in the army and the many experiences shared with his comrades brought them very close. He loved to reminisce about his army days with hilarious tales of the exploits of himself and his friends, so much so that his family grew to know all the stories off by heart.
In 1946 he returned to civilian life and in 1947 opened a practice at “Carlton” Bonehurst Rd. Horley. After this, he built up a flourishing surgery in Massetts Road, Horley, and only retired at the age of seventy-six, when his daughter, Nikolia, took over.
Danny was forever trying to help others. His goodness made everyone like him at first sight, and doing good was what gave him the most pleasure in life. He was lucky to be in a profession in which he could do this for a living, but this was not enough and he dedicated his spare time to it too. As a member of the Socialist Medical Association he attended meetings concerned with the formation of the National Health Service. Outline plans for the dental part of the scheme were debated and were eventually adopted into the Act of Parliament. In May 1948 the bill for the new National Health Service was passed and Danny was proud to have been involved and was delighted at the boost it gave to modern dentistry and free treatment to the masses.
Danny was also a very active supporter of the peace movement and frequently joined their marches for peace. He also hated political injustice and wanted to help political prisoners the world over. It was this that led to his discovery of Greece. Through the League for Democracy in Greece, Danny met his wife Maria.
Danny will be sadly missed by his wife Maria, daughter Nikolia and son Manolis.”
(British Dental Journal Dec. 11, 1999. )
“In the 1960s, Danny first started to stand for the council. By 1964, when he stood as the Communist candidate for the Horley seat on Surrey Rural District Council, [sic] he was able to secure 20% of the vote. As he wrote in the Party press at the time: “In Horley and surrounding district we have been building on the democratic work for some years, and achieved a vote of 395 at the last election.” By the 1970s he was an elected Communist Councillor for the town, a position he held for six years, regularly topping the poll, such was his almost universal popularity in the town. He held his seat until he became too ill to meet the requirements of the job and retired.” (Michael Walker: Compendium of Communist Biography.)
Stapleton, Robin. Born 1946, the grandson of Harold Cooper, Horley Town Bandmaster. Robin is an International Conductor, he graduated at the Royal College of Music in London, and then continued his studies at the National Opera, Covent Garden, then he became their Conductor. He also conducted opera in many international venues. He was educated at Albert Road infants, Lumley Road, juniors, and then Balcombe Road Secondary School.
Stapley, Thomas. Thomas born in Herstmonceaux, Sussex c1849 was a grocer & draper living with his family in Albion House, Station Road in 1901. His wife was Mary Jane Avery. Thomas’ son George had a business at Grosvenor House in Station Road and his other son, Aubrey ran a gentlemen’s outfitter shop also in Station Road (now known as High Street.)
Stedall, Henry. It is believed that Henry Stedall came from Godstone in 1715 when his mother died. She was the owner of “Bolters” (now the “Chequers” in Horley). At that time it was probably little more than and alehouse part of which remains today as the “Chequers Bar”. Henry probably inherited the establishment and owned it until he died in 1753. Again it is not certain whether he came to Horley to live there as he also owned property at Gibells that is known to have been part of today’s “Fishers Farm” off Limes Avenue, so he could have resided there as the licence was let to a Thomas Holder. Henry’s influence on Horley’s history came about around 1722 when he decided to change: the name from “Bolters” to the “Chequers”, a name that remained for about 300 years. The reason for this change can only be surmised. For example: Long before this period the De Warenne family who owned Reigate was granted a warrant that gave them a monopoly to issue ale house licenses. Their family crest consisted of a chequered type shield.
Land close by the ale house was owned by the Earl of Nottingham in the 17C who also had a coat of arms that included a chequered board. This type of sign sometimes suggested where money lenders or monies could be exchanged within and as the ale house was situated beside a track leading to and from the south coast: this might have publicised these activities. The berries from nearby service trees were known as chequers.
One aspect of Henry’s ownership of the “Chequers” was that in 1734 he purchased from Thomas Jordan, who was acting for the Lord of the Manor of Charlwood, the 4 elm trees on the south side of the building for the sum of £1-10s (£1.50p) each. He only bought the trees – and not the land they stood on as that was part of the common within the Manor of Lodge m Salfords. Part of one of these elms still stands in the south car park today.
(Ref. The Chequers – A place in Horley’s History, Os Brown, Brian Buss 8 Bernard Davis, 1997
Stevens, John W. Born Bow, London c 1865. Lived in “The Oaks” Bonehurst Road (1901). Later they owned Cedar Lodge (Kelly’s directory 1951) , also in Bonehurst Road which was the company office. Owned the “Chemical Manure Company” established 1849. Later the company was known as “The Sheppy Glue & Fertiliser” company which had works in the Isle of Sheppy.
Strawson, George Frederick (senior). right) Born Spilsby, Lincolnshire c 1840, died 1919. His father William (b. 1783) was a farmer. George for a time worked in Russia and was married in St Petersburg to Annie Nobbs, born of an expatriate family in St Petersburg, Russia. Returning to England, George was as chemical manufacturer making fertiliser with a factory in Newbury. Later they moved to the Streatham, and had an office in the City.
His son, also George F. Strawson born Islington c 1873, died 1946. A manufacturer of Greenhouses and Garden buildings, horticultural equipment and a unique rotating summer house. Supplied Summer House to Buckingham Palace. He married Grace Amy Morgan in 1910. The family were living in Horley Row in 1901 (their house (Charlsfield House) is now “The Bull” public house). Their workshop was St Andrews Works in Charlsfield Road, and now has houses built on the site. (Family Tree Magazine May 1996 et al.)
Surridge, Walter Stuart & William. Walter Stuart Surridge, Born on September 3, 1917, at Herne Hill, London, Well known as Cricketer and manufacturers of cricket bats and footballs. Lived at Great Lake Farm where it addition to farming, he grew willow trees. In 1876 his grandfather stared a company and grew willow trees in his own back garden and used the wood to repair old cricket bats. Walter Stuart Surridge took part in cricket matches at Emanuel School Wandsworth at the age of eight. By 1935 he was the captain of their team. He attended the Easter classes at the Oval. Before WW2 he played for Horley, but during the War, he concentrated on farming. The company eventually passed to Stuart, who became captain of Surrey Cricket team in 1952.
Tustin, Jesse John. Born Bishopsgate, London 1815. His parents were Jesse, a clerk and Mary. He married Jane Ann Bucknell at Hackey in 1837. In 1832, he (or more likely, his father) bought a partnership in a company called Dr Horace Cory & Co. Ltd. Chemical Colour manufacturers, with a works off the Old Kent Road and Cory’s Works, Grand Surrey Canal. (In 1900, the firm was valued at £100,000.) Then in the 1841 census they were living in Tower Hamlets, Stepney as a commercial traveller, then in 1851 he is a Mercantile Clerk living in Hackney. In 1861 they were living Chipping Barnet in Hertfordshire when he is running a corn mill. In 1863 he, with his son John Robert they took a lease of a mining ground in the Caldbeck Fells in North Cumbria, their address was then in Upper Thames Street, London. The 1871 and 1881 census shows Jesse, his wife and daughter were living at the Paragon in Lewisham and then he was a colour (stain and printing ink) manufacturer. In 1883 he is a steward of the British Orphan Asylum then in 1896 he is vice president of the London Temperance Hospital. He died in March 1899 probably at Burstow Hall his country home. He left £35,686 most of which was to the London Temperance Hospital. A street was named after him off the Old Kent Road where his colour factory was, this was demolished and a school and several tower blocks stand in an area named “Tustin Estate” between South Bermondsey and Peckham. Included in his charitable activity, a hall did stand behind where Boots the Chemist now stands in Horley High Street. Also he donated a window in Burstow Church in memory of John Flamsteed FRS, the first Astronomer Royal. The Porch of Smallfield Evangelical Church was built in 1890 in memory of Mrs Jane Ann Tustin of Burstow Hall as a mission hall. Also there is the Tustin Memorial Chapel in Kirdford, West Sussex, and the “Foundation Stone” was laid by Jesse J Tustin of Burstow Hall, October 6th 1892.
Vagg, Daphne. Lived at Mole End, Church Road Horley. Died 2006. Past President of the “National Association of Flower Arrangement Societies”
Voice Albert. Born Billingshurst, Sussex c 1859. Painter. Lived in Albert Road 1901.
Voice, Frank (1) Born Billingshurst, Sussex c 1837. Plumber Master. Lived in Albert Road 1901.
Voice, Frank (2) Born Slaugham, Sussex c 1872. Plumber journeyman. Lived in Albert Road 1901. A founding member of Horley Town Band.
Voice, Frank (3) Born Horley, c 1899. (son of Frank Voice 2)
Voice, Sidney E. Born Horley about 1911. Son of Frank (2) Lived at Albert Road, then Kings Road. Member of Horley Fire Brigade. Well known for playing the bass trombone in Horley Town Band.
Water the Parson. He was the first known Vicar of Horley 1218.
Watson, Joan or Jonanna. Joan or Johanna Watson was the first person recorded to have lived in “Bolters”, a house shown on the Christ’s Hospital map of land it had purchased in Horley in 1602. “Bolters” was situated on the northern edge of Horley Common where the eastern end of Horley Row is today, close to the corner of today’s Bonehurst Road, then called Erbridge Street. (Part of the original “Bolters” can be seen today within the Gatwick Thistle Hotel. See also Henry Stedall).
Joan’s name first appears in the Charlwood Court Rolls dated 1548 when she was fined 2d ~ (1 p) for not attending this court. She was also fined the same amount for the same reason in 1552. No reasons are given for non attendance, but it could have been because she was not living at “Bolters” on those dates as she and her husband also owned a property in London. It has been suggested that the couple used “Bolters” as a country retreat to avoid the unrest in London around that time.
There is also no evidence of “Bolters” then being an ale house. However in her husband’s Will made in 1537, he described himself as a citizen of London and an innholder.
(Ref The Chequers – A place in Horley’s history, Os Brown, Brian Buss & Bernard Davis, 1997.)
Whitmore, William. Born in Horley c1848, William was a corn and coal merchant living with his family in Victoria Road in 1901
Williamson, Dr. Charles Frederick. Born c 1866 in London, Charles was a physician and surgeon living in Clerklands in Vicarage Lane in 1901. “Dr Williamson first came to Horley in 1880 to become a partner to Dr Farwell who practised in Clerklands, a large house that then stood where the Catholic Church in Vicarage Lane stands today. Dr Farwell died shortly after and later, Dr Williamson married his widow who at the age of 45 years gave birth to their son James Charles. So started a line of doctors in Horley spanning four generations for over 100 years serving the community as General Practitioners.
One patient recalled Dr Williamson visiting her in his dogcart accompanied by his stepson, Chrissie Farwell, a small boy with a shock of fair curls.
His grandson Dr Jim Williamson is reported to have said about his grandfather; “He was a charismatic character who lived in great style and had gardeners, servants and the like. He would send out telegrams to patients from Williamson, Horley with his telephone number Horley 55”. (Ref. Horley Mirror 22 January 2004, and a letter from Alice Huntley to Cecil Johnson dated 17 September 1958) (B. B.) Dr. Williamson’s wife was Lady Superintendent at the LCC home at Farmfield, and honorary secretary at the Horley Women’s Unionist Association. Horley Advertiser Dec. 22, 1906.
Yarwood, Frank. Born about 1904, died about 1986. Said to have be a millionaire, accountant and property developer. Owned “Imperial Buildings” in Victoria Road, and other property in the Horley area.
Young, Frederick Albert. In 1924, Frderick Albert Young jnr. was a poultry farmer living in Horne. Later he lived in Ringle Ave. Horley. Founded “F. A. Young & Son” later known as “Youngs of Horley”. They had a large store on the corner of Station Approach and Station Road which sold all manner of farming equipment. One could buy a wick for a lantern or teat rubbers for a milking machine and rolls of barbed wire to chicken houses there. It was a most useful shop for the farmer, small holder and market gardener. They closed down the Horley shop and now operate from Cranleigh, Surrey.
Young, Leonard. Born in Horne, (Harrowsley Green Farm) c 1868. Married to Amie who came from Slaugham. Len was a carman and greengrocer. Lived in Station Road (High Street.) The Young family were still running a haulage business from a garage in Lumley Road into the 1950s when it was transferred to a son-in-law, F. E. Charman. Their lorries were a familiar sight in and around Horley for many years.
Young, William. Born Horne, (Harrowsley Green Farm) c 1865. Married to Lottie who came from Chelsea. William was a cartage contractor. Lived in Lumley Road.
Webber, Henry. Born Tonbridge Kent 3 June 1849. Lived at “The Elms” Horley Row. Dealer in stocks and shares 1901. Second oldest soldier at 67 to die in WW1 (21st July, 1916), First chairman of Horley Parish Council. Henry Webber was born in 1849 the youngest son of Dr William Webber of Norwich and was educated at Tonbridge School and Pembroke College Oxford and gained his degree in 1870. He joined the Stock Exchange in 1872 and in 1874 he married Emily Morris at Lingfield Church, Emily was the eldest daughter of Mr Norman Morris of Ford Manor, Dormansland. They lived in Horley from 1875 firstly at Greenfields, and then settled at The Elms in Horley Row, (later the house became Kingsley School, since demolished). Whenever it was he soon became an influential figure in the affairs of Horley. He was one of the original members of the Surrey County Council when it was first formed in 1889, representing Horley, Charlwood, Burstow and Nutfield. He also became the first Chairman of Horley Parish Council when it came into being in 1894; he became involved in the administration of the Cottage Hospital, was the Chairman of the Directors of Horley Gas Company formed in 1886 and was a County Magistrate as well as a Church Warden.
Henry was a keen sportsman, a good shot, rode to hounds, a very good cricketer scoring 200 runs when aged 59, a member of the MCC and first Captain of Gatwick Golf Club, then situated within the horse racing track, besides being the first commissioner of Horley Scouts.
When WW1 started he relentlessly tried to join up as his three of his four sons had. Then age 66 he was repeatedly turned down as the War Office had an age limit of 60. Eventually the South Lancashire Regiment accepted him as a junior Lieutenant. In May 1916 he was appointed to the Horse Transport and went to France behind the lines where the Battle of the Somme was about to commence on 1 July. His task was to bring up supplies as the battle raged and as he had done on numerous occasions was doing so on 21 July a mile or so east of Albert when an enemy shell landed close by and he was killed.
He is buried in Dartmoor Cemetery at Becordel-Becourt and at age 68 was the oldest British soldier known to be killed during WW1.
(Ref. Surrey Mirror and County Post, Friday, August 4, 1916 & personal information gained by Brian Buss, and Parish Magazine et al.)
More details of Henry Webber’s Military Career:
One of the most remarkable members of the British Army of the First World War must have been Harry Webber. In 1914, he was sixty-six years old, over twenty years past the Army’s normal age limit, and his family of four sons and five daughters were all grown up. He had already lived a very full life, having been a member of the London Stock Exchange for forty-two years. and was a prominent member in a great variety of local affairs: a Justice of the Peace, a County Councillor since the formation of the Surrey County Council, a Churchwarden and President of the local Boys Scouts Association. He took part in many of the fashionable sports: cricket, shooting, hunting (as Master of the Old Surrey and Burstow Hunt). Three of his sons were Army officers serving in France and he longed to join them.
First, Webber applied to the War Office, offering to serve ‘in any capacity’ but his offer was rejected. Next, he recruited a company of ‘Rough riders’ fellow-horsemen like himself and offered this unit complete to the Army, but again he was rejected. He never gave up and, possibly to rid themselves of this persistent old gentleman, the War Office eventually gave him a commission. After a very short training period, Henry Webber went to France as a battalion transport officer at the ripe old age of sixty-seven, a remarkable achievement for perseverance.
He was sent to join the 7th South Lancs, a New Army battalion, in the 19th (Western) Division. He was accepted quite normally by the younger officers in the battalion; he performed his duties well and not many knew his true age, although the CO found that his own father and Webber had rowed together at Oxford in the same year, over half a century earlier. Webber hoped that he might meet and salute his three sons who all held ranks higher than his.
Late on the afternoon of 30th June 1916, the men due to attack the next morning marched out of the villages where they had been billeted. It was a moment charged with emotion as all those remaining behind turned out to give the fighting men a good send off. One man to be left behind was Lieut Henry Webber. Although his duties as Transport Officer would normally have kept the sixty-seven year-old out of any action, many men were finding excuses to go up to the trenches and his CO had specifically ordered Webber to remain behind.
All next day. The First Day of the Somme, the 19th (Western) Division had remained in the trenches of the Tara-Usna Line, just outside Albert. Fresh orders were that they should attack the German front line at 5pm but this was cancelled and four Lancashire battalions were ordered to turn back and march to the rear. When Lt Webber with the battalion transport met the 7th Lancs that evening he was greeted by smiling friends.
Despite the carnage of 1st July, Lt Webber’s battalion, which was on the outskirts of Albert, was not touched by the battle.
On 21st July the 7th Lancs moved up to relieve a battalion in the front line near Marmetz Wood. That night Henry Webber took supplies as usual with the battalion transport. Leaving his men to unload the horses, he went over to where the C.O. was talking to a group of officers. Into this routine, peaceful scene there suddenly dropped a single, heavy German shell. When the smoke and dust had cleared it was found that twelve men and three horses had been hit. Henry Webber lay unconscious, badly wounded in the head. He and the other wounded were rushed to a Dressing Station but, for Webber, it was to late. He never regained consciousness and died that night.
The news of the death of this old warrior was noted in high places. His family received special messages of sympathy from the King and Queen and from the Army Council unusual tributes to a dead lieutenant of infantry. Webber’s devotion to duty was further honoured when he was mentioned in the C in C’s Despatches. His wife never recovered from the shock of his death and died two years later but ironically, his three sons all survived the war. He is commemorated at the Dartmoor Cemetery near to the village of Becordel-Becourt.
Henry’s eldest son Brig-Gen NW (Tommy) Webber CMG DSO(& 9 Mentions in Despatches) who had a distinguished career in the War ending up as chief of staff to the commander of the Canadian Corps and was later MD of the Army & Navy Stores group.
(Extracts from “The First Day on the Somme” by Martin Middlebrook, 1971) Also from his great-grandson, Henry Reid, Et. Al.
Wilson, Leonard C. Leo was born on 17th. October, 1905 at Sefton Park, Liverpool and went to school in Bootle. His father, Robert, bred and showed several breeds of pedigree dogs, including Smooth Fox Terriers and it was with this breed, in conjunction with his father, that Leo achieved his first success in a show ring, culminating in his life-long affection for the breed and ownership of one of the largest and most important Smooth Fox Terrier kennels in the country.
At 16 he took over the secretaryship of the Bootle Kennel Association and at 18 judged his first show – at Runcorn, Cheshire. Before that he was appointed show manager to Chester and Birkenhead, clearing both societies of heavy debts. When he was 21 he came to London and joined the staff of the Dog Bulletin and it was then that his real apprenticeship began as W.E. Alcock, the famous ‘all rounder’ dog judge realised Leo’s potential and unstintingly passed on his considerable knowledge.
Another member of staff, Robert Gooch suggested to Leo that he might find a niche for himself in the new sport of Greyhound Racing and persuaded him to apply for the post of Greyhound Editor of the Star, a position he held for twenty years under the pseudonym ‘Leveret’. In amongst all this, Leo still found time to judge occasionally, breed and show several types of dogs and contribute feature articles to the doggy press, primarily to Our Dogs as well as secretaryship of the Wembley Society, in conjunction with which he organised a National Dog Tournament in September, 1935.
He married Eileen (‘nee Sellek’) in 1931 and in 1939 they bought ‘Old Orchard’ in Antlands Lane, Burstow which was to become the family home until 1961 and also the base of his Smooth Fox Terrier kennels, except for a break of four years during the war which necessitated a move back to a flat in Wimbledon. He severed his connection with the Star after the war concentrating on judging, especially overseas, and in 1949 officiated at the Sydney Royal Show, drawing a record entry of 3869 and judged 2008 dogs, followed by shows in New Zealand, South Africa and Europe.
In 1950 he was offered the post of General Manager of the Greyhound Express and, by this time, his kennels which had had three generations of champions – Ch. Lethal Weapon, Ch. Laurel Wreath and Ch. Lavish Warpaint had dwindled down to two or three. By far the most famous dog ‘Ch. Laurel Wreath’ went on to provide a long stud-line still quoted today in the histories of many of today’s Smooth Fox Terriers. In 1955 he acquired Dog World, in co-operation with Mr. Raymond Oppenheimer, Mr. Stanley McKie and Mrs. A. F. Curnow and, eventually his Editorship and other duties with Dog World, coupled with his judging commitments necessitated his giving up his role at Greyhound Express.
In 1961, in parnership with Mr. Don Gale, Leo purchased a large house in Charlwood, on Russ Hill which was then converted to an hotel and, of necessity, the family moved from Old Orchard to a converted house, appropriately named ‘Laurel Wreath’, in the grounds of the Russ Hill Hotel. Leo died on 15th January, 1967. His wife, Eileen, a long-standing member and past president of Burstow Women’s Institute passed away on 17th September, 1989. Their four children, Kerry, Heather, Roxane and Lynn all live in West Sussex. (Lynn Wilson March, 2013)
Blunden Shadbolt (1879-1949) Lic.R.I.B.A.
Architect with the Eye of an Artist
David H J. Schenck (c)2014
Born in an affluent area of Wandsworth in 1879, Blunden Shadbolt had a singularly unfortunate childhood. When he was only two years of age he lost his father, a timber merchant who specialized in mahogany. Devastated and unsettled, his family moved to three different towns over the next few years. As a young boy he was of mild and rather timid disposition, so that when he attended school, he was subjected to bullying. Thankful when his school days ended, he found employment with a firm of architects in Chelmsford.
In 1898, Blunden, moved with his mother and two elder sisters from Sudbury, Suffolk to Horley in Surrey where he was articled to architect and surveyor, Arthur Kelway Bamber, who had recently moved to Horley from Chelmsford. However, having become disenchanted with architecture, Bamber left Horley in the following year, later becoming an expert in the field of cement. Abandoned by Bamber, Blunden was forced to travel to London to complete his training with George A. Hall, a Fellow of the British Institute of Architects whose office was in Victoria Street, London. By the end of 1899, he had returned to Horley ready to accept commissions and by 1901, he had completed work on several houses, the designs of which were typical of the period.
But what of the amazing multi-gabled, timber-framed buildings with their complex roof structures for which he later achieved renown? Blunden was a deeply religious man of outstanding integrity. He was strongly influenced by the lovely rural surroundings that he found while working on houses in Newdigate, Rusper and other villages around Horley. He loved God and he loved Nature and having observed that nothing in nature was completely straight, he determined that his timber-framed houses should be likewise and so be in complete harmony with the trees around them!
Only ancient bricks, stone, tiles and oak beams were used in the construction of these homes and every effort was made to avoid a ‘mechanical’ appearance. His builders were not permitted to use plumb lines or straight edges, so that the vertical and horizontal accuracy of the construction depended entirely on the judgement of the eyes. Similarly, rows of bricks were deliberately set slightly out of line and the ridges of roofs distorted to give the appearance of having sagged with age. Any moss growing on the old tiles was carefully preserved, so that on the day of completion, his timber-framed houses appeared in a style that can only be described as ‘wibbly-wobbly’ – and sometimes even rickety! These homes not only appeared ancient, but they were genuinely ancient on the very day of their completion. Bricklayers were often reluctant to work on the buildings that Shadbolt had designed in this style, for fear that, because of the uneven nature of the bricklaying demanded by the architect, their future employment prospects might be jeopardised. It was said by a builder of the time that some bricklayers who worked on these buildings, even took to covering their faces, so that they would not be recognised.
Such was Blunden Shadbolt’s talent and attention to detail that, in years past, several of his houses were believed to be centuries old and inadvertently classified by English Heritage as ‘Listed as Grade II Buildings of Historic and/or Architectural Interest’. Today, more and more of his houses are being ‘Listed’ by Local Councils with full knowledge of the year of construction, but on their own merits and because they were designed by Blunden Shadbolt. It is important to note that not all the timber-framed houses designed by Blunden Shadbolt were built in this ‘wibbly-wobbly’ style, as this would depend on the wishes and financial resources of each customer and Blunden’s own consideration of the area surrounding the proposed site.
Typical features found on Shadbolt’s ‘wibbly-wobbly’ timber-framed properties are:- complex multi-gabled roofs; roof ridges and/or tiles that appear to have sagged with age; catslide roofs – having one side longer than the other; upper rooms that overhang the room below and supported by oak posts, or, in cases with a smaller overhang, oak struts angled out from the wall; exterior brickwork deliberately laid out of true horizontal and vertical alignment; massive chimneys, often on outer walls and inglenook fireplaces, some having a small window in the inglenook. A number of his houses also feature an oriel window. Inside the houses, minstrel’s galleries, the walls of rooms not truly vertical or square to one another; oak ‘planked’ interior doors with wooden latches.
Having exhibited examples of his houses in the Ideal Home Exhibitions of 1924 and 1926 Blunden Shadbolt’s reputation spread further afield and, by 1939, various styles of his homes were to be found in Barns Green (near Horsham); Betchworth; Blindley Heath; Bognor Regis; Charlwood; Copthorne; County Oak (near Crawley); Danbury, Essex; Esher; Haslemere; Highgate; Hindhead; Hope (in Derbyshire); Horley; Kingston; Lowfield Heath (near Crawley); Margate; Maidenhead; Mill Hill, (London); Newchapel (near Lingfield); Newdigate; Newhaven; North Lancing; Outwood; Oxshott; Peasmarsh (near Battle); Petersham; Pinner; Pyrford Green; Reigate; Rusper; Salfords; Watford and Worth (near Crawley, Sussex). It would be wrong to think that, even today, all the homes designed by Blunden Shadbolt, including those in his wibbly-wobbly style, have been traced – but the search is still on, so, if your home was built between 1922 and 1940 and fits the foregoing descriptions and includes some of the above features – simply e-mail the address below.
Blunden Shadbolt had qualified both as an Architect and a Structural Engineer, so that during WWII, his time was almost entirely taken up in London where he was advising on the structural repair or demolition of buildings damaged by bombing, and when the war ended in 1945, he finally retired.
Tragically, Blunden died during the summer of 1949, when he was knocked off his bicycle by a car. He was then 70 years of age. It is sad that his work as an architect was so seriously curtailed by the misfortune that his career coincided with the advent and complete time span of two world wars, otherwise we may have seen many more of his lovely homes.
An architect who turned his dreams into delightful reality, Blunden Shadbolt was the most generous of men, to whom “having money” was simply not the most important thing in his life. His love of God and of Nature is reflected in the beauty of his buildings, and we are indeed fortunate that he left such a wonderful legacy in this south-eastern corner of England.
David H J Schenck
(In the County of Surrey, England)
Edition X Revised : – May 2014