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Genealogy Enquiries 2005

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03 May 2005
Lesley Watson - Please contact Romseynet if you have any information

Re the Barratt/Barrett family of Crampmoor Romsey
I'm seeking descendants of William Barratt/Barrett, (b.Donhead St.Andrew, Wiltshire - d.1878 Romsey). William had 2 children that I know of - Henry (b.1851 Donhead St.Andrew, Wilts - d 1900, Romsey) and Mary Ann (b.1855 Donhead St.Andrew, Wilts). The Barratt/Barrett family and their descendants lived in Crampmoor for at least 4 generations (some were caretakers of St.Swithins Church), and worked as market gardeners/ agricultural labourers. I am a descendant of Henry Barratt, who had 12 children, all born/baptised in Romsey and surrounding areas. I am also interested in any other Barratt or Barretts originating from Donhead St. Andrew in Wiltshire who may have settled in the Romsey area.

I will make enquiries for you - strangely I live in Crampmoor Lane! There are two elderly residents here, one a former Mayor and very knowledgeable, so I will ask if they can give me any information. It won't be for a couple of days but be assured I will get back to you
Watch this space for more information plus pictures!

You replied:
Thank you very much - I can provide you with the names of Henry Barratt's children. My paternal grandmother was Lydia Barratt, Henry's 9th child. I know that 2 of the children emigrated - one to the US and one to Ontario, Canada. I am trying to gather medical information about the family, occurrances of heart & kidney disease, also ovarian cancer - as patterns in 3 generations suggest these conditions may be hereditary. It would be wonderful if you could post the Barratt details on the Romseynet website.

Apparently Crampmoor was a market garden area in the 19th century. William Barratt lived in an area then known as Newpond. Please find a photo of Crampmoor Lane taken in the 1930s (the child is either related to the Barratts or the Callens). Bet it looks different now!
Cheers, Lesley Watson, Sydney, Australia

If you would like to read the few bits of information I have managed to acquire, do please ask the web manager, from the contact link on any page. We can then give you any further information available. It is not for general Internet viewing.


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17 August 2005
Gillian Grieves -

I am looking for information on Harry Joseph Cawte born 1869 in Romsey his father was Willian Cawte. I have been unable to locate him on the census and have no record of him prior to 1886 when he enlisted in the ASC in Aldershot. He is my great grandfather and would appreciate any help given as I don't live locally.
Thanks, Gillian Grieves


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02 February 2005
Lisa Rex -

We are researching the Naish and Newell families of Romsey and Collins in Timsbury and Michelmersh, in the 18th & 19th century. We are particularly interested in the building occupied by Abraham Naish, from 1811 or earlier.
Please get in touch if you have information to share on or try
Roots Finder
Thank you, Lisa Rex


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08 April 2005
Helen Stacey -

Dear Ann, My Grandmother Sarah Elcombe was born in "Tea Court" (1874) can you tell me if any old Photographs are obtainable of the houses there at that time also the "Hundreds". She did attend Romsey Abbey School. I have only just discovered the Site hence my question.
Yours Sincerely, Helen Stacey

Reply from the local history Society:
"Tea Court is now more commonly called Tee Court. It's the cutway through from Bell Street to the Newton Lane car park with shops that open out into a small square at the far end. Sadly, we have no photos of the old buildings that once stood here. They have all been replaced, though the lay-out remains the same.
Does the lady mean the roadway called The Hundred? I wonder if she is linking it with the Elcombe name. Perhaps she is related to Elcombes the seed merchants, who occupied the Boots building at the beginning of the 20th century?"

You replied that you are related to the Seed Merchants, 'Elcombe'. You could try Romsey Library to see if they have some past details of the area. Romsey Library


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16 September 2005
Brian -

I'm trying to trace an ancestor of a first cousin who lives Australia. Her ancestor was George Gorey born in Romsey about 1813. I can find a William Gorey born in Romsey aged 78 in the 1901 census (= born circa 1823), but no George as he had probably emigrated to Australia by then. My cousin has been trying to trace him for years, but without success.
Regards Brian


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16 November 2005 - Email:

I have just completed a small booklet [54 pages] entitled, 'Totton's Orchids Past and Present', and there is a reference in it about one of the former owners/occupiers of Little Brook.
This was a man named Guy P. Harben. His Orchid Grower was a man named Cyril Rathbone. Awards were won at the Romsey Show on a few occasions for not only orchids but other garden exhibits. This was in the 'thirties'.
Later, possibly in the late thirties/early forties, Mr Harben moved to Colbury House, Hillstreet, Totton.

If you have any information about Mr. Harben when he was living in Lower Brook then I would be delighted to hear from you. Kind regards
Roger J. Grier

Have you asked the folks at LTVAS about your query? Both Phoebe Merrick and Barbara Burbridge are very knowledgeable about local people and places. LTVAS website


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25 February 2005
Nick Jackson -

My gggGrandfather William Jackson was born in Fenruary 1802 in Romsey, and baptised in the Abbey Independent Chapel, his parents were William and Martha. He was married to Susanna, born in Southampton. They moved to Islington, London between 1837 - 1851.
I would love to find out more, and am planning a visit to Romsey in the Spring. Any help greatly appreciated. Nick Jackson

You might be able to get some information from the Hampshire Record Office
Maybe the Abbey will still have its baptismal record books for you to look at when you come to Romsey. I hope you enjoy your visit to Romsey. Romsey Abbey History
Thanks for contacting Romseynet, sorry not to be more helpful


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New Zealand

16 May 2005
Lindsay Eaton -

Hi Ann, I am researching the MAY family in the Romsey area. I know that William MAY (cr 10/3/1833, parents George and Hannah or Ann MAY) married Ann MILLS in 1855) and that they had 8 children - Elizabeth, Thomas, Fred, Jesse, Rose, Laura (my great grandmother), Sydney and Herbert.

William was a farm labourer and the family lived at Crampmoor (1861), Whitenap (1871), Toothill (1881), Upper Toothill Farm (1891) and Telegraph Cottages (1901).

I am really interested in finding out more about where and how they lived (old photos especially would be wonderful). I would also love to hear from anyone else researching MAYs in the Romsey area. Love the website! Many thanks.
Lindsay Eaton, Wellington, New Zealand


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02 February 2005
Barbara Thomas -

I am researching into the Moody Family of Sherfield English and Romsey, in particular into the backgound of my great, great Grandfather William Moody born in Sherfield English in 1854. Can anyone out there help, please?
Barbara Thomas nee Moody

Reply 1:
Thank you for your enquiry to Romseynet. I suggest you contact the Record office at the address below to help, but You could make further enquiries at Hampshire Record Office

Reply 2:
Hello Barbara - Below is the response to my enquiries:

"There were at least two branches of Moodys in Church Street throughout the 19th century. I do not know if they were related or not.
One family were on the west side more or less where the old Magistrates Court now stands. They were primarily plumbers and glaziers, and I have some snippets of information about them. I don't know what happened to them in later decades - they may well still have descendants in and around Romsey. There are certainly Moodys at Wellow (butcher's shop for one).

I know much more about the other Moodys on the east side. They have been traced back into the late 18th century when they were cutlers. Later generations added gun-smithing to their skills. Charles Moody junior built No 13 (now the Heritage Centre + TIC in shop at front) and he and his wife had 9 children. Of those who survived not one got married so when the last Miss Moody died in 1974 that line came to an end. They are buried in Botley Road cemetery - except for Miss Moody's youngest brother, Thomas, who was killed and buried in France in WWI and whose name is on the Town Park memorial.

There are two booklets available at Romsey Heritage Centre. One is called the 'The Moodys of Church Street' (or possibly of 'Romsey', I'm not sure now) and the other is The Moodys and The Great War. They cost £1 each + p&p if they need to be posted." - Barbara Burbridge LTVAS

Reply 3:
The Email address for the Heritage Centre is
New information: Read more details about the Moody family of Romsey in this Romsey and District Society Newsheet.


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United Kingdom

02 February 2005
Lisa Rex -

We are researching the Naish and Newell families of Romsey and Collins in Timsbury and Michelmersh, in the 18th & 19th century. We are particularly interested in the building occupied by Abraham Naish, from 1811 or earlier.
Please get in touch if you have information to share. Thank you, Lisa Rex


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United States

02 February 2005
Mark Rumsey -

What a good site to visit. I have heard that the town is named after Rumsey / Romsey. Being unable to trace my Rumsey roots back that far, I have also heard of the Rumsey family being from the Isle of Rhum / Rum??
Confusing here in America...any help would be appreciated. Our family has been here since the 1600s, so it has been extremely hard to trace them back.
My gut feeling is that the family is from Romsey, but I have strong signals that it may also be Scottish? I don't know and may never will, but I want to try.
Mark Rumsey - Evansvile, Indiana, USA

Reply 1:
Like London, Romsey is spelt with 'o' and pronounced with 'u'. The spelling back as far as the Domesday Book (1086) is with an 'o' except in the 17th century when the phonetic 'u' is found. However this lasted less than 100 years. However the Cambridge Dictionary of English Place Names has a number of examples of Rumsey in the tenth and eleventh centuries. They suggest Rum's Island as the derivation of the name. An island at that time might well have been a raised gravel area on the valley floor.

Reply 2:
The reply above is from the Chair of the local Historical Study Group. I have also copied the bit from the Town History on Romseynet which explains further about an island.
"The name "Romsey" itself gives something of a clue since the "ey" is derived from an old English word meaning island. The centre of the settlement was wisely situated on a raised flat area of gravel now dominated by the Norman Abbey (definitely worth a visit)."
I hope that helps with further investigations. You could try the Hampshire Record Office


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United Kingdom

08 August 2005
Joanna -

Hi, I have been tracing my families ancestry and have found that in 1881 my husband's great, great grandfather appeared to be the owner/landlord of the White Horse Hotel, Market Square, Romsey. His name was Richard Talmy Turner. On the census his occupation/rank was described as 'White Horse Hotel' and his wife Susanna's occupation/rank was 'wife R.T.Turner'. Also living there at the time was their daughter, Rose plus a barmaid, nurse, cook, housmaid, waiter & servant.
I would be rally interested if anyone has any info on the white Horse Hotel and if anyone knows anything about Richard Talmy Turner. I know he came from Sussex and had four children in total. I have found his widowed mother & unmarried sister living 'on their own means' in Bognor in 1881. Joanne

Sorry for the delay in replying to your email. I have applied the details of your message to Romseynet Genealogy page but in the meantime I suggest you contact Romsey Library, as the White Horse Hotel is a very old established business in the town and there is sure to be a good deal of history about it. Find the link to the Library on Romseynet from the Community link.


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11 August 2005
David Hitchin -

I am seeking information about relatives on my grandmother's side, the Whiting family who lived in Romsey for a few years.

Henry Holland Whiting was born in 1840 in Wymering, Cosham, and in 1861 he married Mary Gardner at Hambledon.

In November 1867 their daughter Ada Mary was born at Horsefair, Romsey. He was then described as a carpenter & joiner journeyman. Mary Whiting died, probably in 1869 (I haven't managed to trace her death certificate) and it appears that Ada Mary went to live with her grandparents. In 1871 Henry Holland Whiting was living at 122 Banning Street and from there then married Keturah Summers of Bell Street, Romsey, at the registry office, on 21st January 1871 and they appear on the 1871 census. (For those puzzled about the name "Keturah" it is from the Bible, the name of one of Abraham's wives). Their daughter Bessie Summers Whiting was born later that year and is registered at Romsey.

I have a notebook which previously belonged to a sailor who was on HMS Leander between 1863 and 1866. Henry Whiting apparently acquired it because only half of it had been used. Inside the back cover are the words, "Henry H Whiting, Banning Street, Romsey, May/69". He used the remaining pages to make notes which were part of his studies to become a City Missionary in London later. They had moved to Holborn by 1872 and Bessie died there in the summer. Keturah Whiting died in 1876 and Henry Whiting married again in 1877.

Ada Mary Whiting later became German by marriage and is the only person of German nationality to have been awarded a British medal for helping British prisoners of war.

I have a good deal more information about the Whitings before and after they lived at Romsey, but I would very much like to know if there is any more information about their lives in the town. I hope to visit Romsey and see Banning Street (but I know that house numbers might have been reallocated since 1871) and also Bell Street and Horsefair.

(My investigations proved very difficult because Henry Holland Whiting's uncle, who lived in Cosham and then Alverstoke, was also named Henry Holland Whiting, was also married to a woman named Mary and for a long time the two branches of the family were impossible to disentangle.)

As regards the two streets. As you are aware, Banning Street has all but disappeared but its history is very fascinating. It appears in medieval documents, initially as Bannoc or Bannock Street. It was then the main road leading to the 'Brode Lands' (Abbey farmlands, now Broadlands Park) and on to Southampton, and seems to have been a popular location for the town houses of local gentry whose manors and estates were to the south of Romsey. Even after the massive infilling of the 19th century, maps still reveal the outline of older large-sized holdings - which may have initially been fields that gradually acquired substantial houses on them.

Banning Street was demoted after the Abbey was dissolved in 1539. The new private owners of Broadlands - a branch of the Fleming family - disliked having the main road so close to their house. A new road was created via present-day Palmerston Street and due south through a more easterly part of the estate. This, in turn, was closed off in the 1860s when the present Southampton road was created.

Banning Street survived as a stump that ended south of the bypass until it was shortened further by the bypass in the 1930s and finally the remaining part was practically cleared for redevelopment in the 1960s. Only a couple of older buildings now stand. LTVAS has a few photographs of what the street looked like before the 1960s, though these do not provide comprehensive views of what was a complicated lay-out with many courts and alleyways off the main street.

The Horsefair is a completely different story. Although the dog-leg linking Church Street and Cherville Street has existed since medieval times at least, the name itself has only been traced back to the mid-18th century. Before, and even afterwards, The Horsefair counted as part of Cherville Street (which until c1820s came south as far as the junction with Portersbridge Street). The buildings on the north side of The Horsefair and Rydal House on the south-east corner would have existed in the 19th century.

As regards the Whiting name, I have not found any mid-19th-century references other than the census entries that David Hitchin has already traced. There are, however, some people with the name (though not necessarily linked to Henry Holland Whiting) in the early 19th and late 18th century, mostly female. The only man was James Whiting, recorded as the schoolmaster of the 'Free School'. He died in 1776, having been also an overseer of the poor and a court leet juror. His youngest daughter, Sally, married Joseph Burt of Romsey in 1780. Other references speak of a Miss Whiting, a milliner in the 1770s; Mrs Whiting, who ran a small bookshop at the same time and subscribed £1 1s 0d to the new Coster organ that was installed in Romsey Abbey in 1782; Miss Whiting who was a creditor for £30 at a local bankruptcy hearing in 1817 and Mary Whiting creditor for £10 re the same bankruptcy.

I note that the Henry Holland Whiting who was listed in the 1871 census was recorded as living at 122 Banning Street. This would probably have been at the southern end.
I hope the above is helpful. Barbara Burbridge LTVAS.

Read a final reply from David Hitchin HERE

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