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Great Sampford the Reynolds graves Duxford St John Duxford Cemetery pump

The Reynolds family: out of Essex, to Cambridge and beyond

My Mother's Mother's Father's Father's family

The narrative can be read in conjunction with
the Reynolds family tree. You can see places significant to the Reynolds family on the site map of Cambridge and district.
This family story includes material from, and links with, the stories of the
Carter, Anable and Stearn families. My direct ancestors are highlighted in bold the first time they appear in the narrative.

In the churchyard of St Michael's at Great Sampford in the gentle clay hills of north-west Essex there is a line of Reynolds graves, with three surviving headstones from the late 18th and 19th Centuries. They were to the families of the brothers of my direct-line ancestors. The Reynolds were an established family in Great Sampford, and provided the village tailors down the generations. But there can never have been enough work to sustain every member of the family, and in each generation there had to be others who were mere farmworkers, and who moved away.

My great-great-great-grandfather James Reynolds was the eldest child of his parents Edmund Reynolds and Elizabeth Rickard. Indeed, when he was baptised at St Michael's church, Great Sampford on 16th April 1809 it was just two and a half months after his parents had been married in the same church. James married Abigail Darnal at nearby Radwinter, between Great Sampford and Saffron Walden, on 30th October 1832. James must have been fairly well-to-do: the Chelmsford Chronicle of 13th May 1842 reported that in the night of the 7th inst, the house of Mr J Reynolds of Old Sampford was entered, and and upwards of 20 score of fresh pork taken away. the thieves made an entry at a back window. But it was his younger brother Robert who followed their father in the family business, and in the late 1850s James and Abigail took their young family some ten miles north across the Cambridgeshire border to the Duxford Grange estate.

The early part of James and Abigail's marriage predates civil registration, and so it is not clear how many children they had. By the time of the 1841 census, when they were at home with three children, nine years had passed. It seems likely that there were other children who had died, or were elsewhere. Additionally, the surname is a common one, Essex is a large county and the children are difficult to trace through the civil registers. These are the children of James and Abigail Reynolds known so far.

    Mary Ann Reynolds
Born Great Sampford, Essex, 1835. She married William Drane at Little Sampford church on 26th June 1858, when her age was given as 23. Their first child, Mary, was born in Great Sampford later in the same year. They then joined the exodus to Duxford, and their second child Frederick was born in Duxford in 1860. They were in Duxford for the 1861 census. It isn't clear what happened to them after that.

Eliza Reynolds
Born Great Sampford, Essex, 1838. She was baptised on 24th June 1838, the daughter of James and Abigail Reynolds. At home with the family in Great Sampford in 1841 and 1851, she stayed in the village after they decamped to Duxford, and was a servant resident in the Red Lion inn, the household of inn-keeper John Burton, in 1861. And then, she moved to London. She married George Knight, a police constable, of Ickleton, Cambridgeshire at All Saints, Mile End on 13th October 1867. It is worth noting that Ickleton adjoined the Duxford Grange estate, and some of her siblings were living in Ickleton at about this time. By 1871 Eliza and George were living in John Street, St Pancras, not far from the Tottenham Court Road. Their daughter Mary was born in 1874. She appears to have been their only child.

Robert Reynolds
Born Great Sampford, Essex, 1841. He was baptised on the 18th July at St Michael's church. My great-great-grandfather - see below.

Emma Reynolds
Born Great Sampford, Essex, 1844. She was baptised on 2nd June at at St Michael's church. She moved to Duxford with the family and at the age of 17 in 1861 she was a servant in the household of Robert Wilson, who kept a general shop in St Peter's Street. She was probably the Emma Reynolds who married William Palmer, a bricklayer, in Old St Pancras church, London, on Christmas Day 1876.

James Reynolds
Born Great Sampford, Essex, 1846. He was baptised on 9th August in St Michael's church. At the age of 15 he was in Duxford with his parents, and was still living at home with them and working as an agricultural labourer ten years later in 1871. However, in 1874 he married Sarah Ann Freeman, and in 1881 they were living in her home village of Ickleton with three children, Fred, Minnie and Mary Ann. Interestingly, although Fred was born in Duxford and Mary Ann in Ickleton, two adjacent villages, Minnie was born twenty miles away in the tiny hamlet of Morrell Roothing, part of White Roothing or Roding parish, beyond Hatfield Broad Oak. James and Sarah were still both alive, living in Ickleton, at the time of the 1911 census when they could declare that they had had nine children, one of whom had died.

Sarah Reynolds
Born Great Sampford, Essex, 1850. She was baptised along with her sister Louisa and brother William on 10th September 1854 at St Michael's church. Sarah was with her parents in Duxford in 1861, but by 1871 she was a 21 year old kitchenmaid at the grand house of Goodnestone Park in Kent, residence of Sir Brook William Bridges, 1st Baron Fitzwalter. Her employer died in 1875, and it isn't clear what happened to Sarah after this.

Louisa Reynolds
Born Great Sampford, Essex, 1852. She was baptised along with her sister Sarah and brother William on 10th September 1854 at St Michael's church. Louisa was at home with her parents in Duxford in 1861 and 1871. She probably married in the 1880s.

William Reynolds
Born Great Sampford, Essex, 1854. She was baptised along with his sisters Sarah and Louisa on 10th September 1854 at St Michael's church. He was at home with his family in Duxford in 1861, but after this is difficult to trace, and he may have joined the army and gone abroad.

Lydia Reynolds
Born Great Sampford, Essex, 1857. She was baptised on 8th November at Saffron Walden. She was at home with the family in Duxford in 1861 and 1871, and probably married soon after.


Duxford is famous today for the Imperial War Museum site, but even in the mid-19th century it was a fairly large and busy parish, set beside the London to Cambridge road not far from the Essex border. There must have been plenty of work there. The Duxford Grange estate was a large but fairly isolated farmstead south-west of the village, the track to it today running along the southern edge of the Duxford airfield. James and Abigail's eldest son, my great-great-grandfather Robert Reynolds, had been born at Great Sampford in 1841, and by the time of the 1861 census he was working alongside his father as an agricultural labourer. In September 1864, at St John's church in Duxford, Robert married Mary Ann Carter from Shudy Camps, a Cambridgeshire village not far from Great Sampford.

The Carter family were also living in Duxford at the time. Mary Ann's parents, my great-great-great-grandparents John Carter and Rebecca Lucas, also arrived with their family in the village soon after the 1851 census. The Carter and Lucas families had for generations lived in a tightly-knit group of small parishes in the south-east corner of Cambridgeshire, near to the Essex border. John's parents, my great-great-great-great-grandparents Thomas Carter and Mary Alston Parmenter, had married at Shudy Camps in 1811, while Rebecca's parents, my great-great-great-great-grandparents James Suttle and Mary Lucas, had married in the same parish a few months after the birth of their daughter in 1820. Robert and Mary Ann were near-neighbours, and it is likely that their fathers were workmates, their families were friends.

These are the nine children of Robert and Mary Ann Reynolds, of Duxford Grange and then Dry Drayton, Cambridgeshire. Unlike their parents, they were not generally a long-lived lot - indeed, four of them died before they were fifty years old. Three of the children married partners from Dry Drayton. Four of the others moved to London, where, curiously, they all met and married partners who were also living in London but who had been born back in Cambridgeshire. All the boys grew up to work with horses, either as grooms, horsekeepers, draymen, tram drivers or carters; three of them worked for breweries. It is worth noting that, while Robert and Mary Ann' children were born variously in Ickleton in Cambridgeshire, Great Chesterford in Essex and then back in Duxford in Cambridgeshire, these three parishes all run into each other, and the three villages are all roughly equidistant from Duxford Grange, and so Robert was probably an employee of the estate through all this time, moving his family about among various cottages.

    Alfred William Reynolds
Born Duxford 1864. In the 1880s Alfred worked as a farm labourer in Duxford, but by 1891 he had moved to Clerkenwell in east London, where he worked as a brewery drayman. He was living in Compton Buildings, a huge block of flats built as a model industrial dwelling by philanthropist employers. His brother John was living elsewhere in the same block. On Boxing Day that year, he married Mary Isabella Heath of Weston Colville, Cambridgeshire, at St Paul's church Clerkenwell.
The register entry survives, and suggests that she, too, was living in the Compton Buildings complex at the time. They had two children in Clerkenwell, Mabel Ellen Ada and Louis Alfred, but before the century ended, Alfred and Mary were back in Cambridgeshire, where Alfred was the landlord of the Coach and Horses pub at Melbourn near the Hertfordshire border. This pub still exists today as an up-market restaurant called the Coach House. Their daughter Dorothy Mary was born in the pub, and in the early years of the new century the family moved to the town of Royston just over the Hertfordshire border, where their daughter Frances Maud was born. However, Alfred died in Royston in the 2nd quarter of 1907, when he was 43 years old. In 1911 the family was still living in Royston. They obviously kept in contact with Alfred's family, because Alfred and Mary's daughter Mabel married a Dry Drayton boy, Percy Williams, at Royston in 1920.

John Reynolds
Born Ickleton 1866. John moved to London, and in 1891 he was living in the same block of flats as his brother Alfred, Compton Buildings, built as a model industrial dwelling by philanthropist employers. He was employed as a brewery worker, and he married Lily Andrews of Whittlesford at St Paul's church Clerkenwell on 2 February 1895. His sister Eliza was one of the witnesses, and they were all able to sign their names. The
register entry survives, and shows that Lily was also living in Compton Buildings. Their son Frank was baptised at St Paul's on 15th January 1901, and the family was still at Compton Buildings, but they had moved to Edmonton in north London by 1911. John died in 1939 at the age of 73, and was buried at Dry Drayton. His address in the registers was given as Tottenham General Hospital, London.

Emily Reynolds
Born Ickleton 1868. In 1891, Emily was a servant in the household of Henry Montagu Butler, the Master of Trinity College, Cambridge. She was a witness at her sister Eliza's marriage on Christmas Eve 1896, but does not appear on the 1901 census. She was probably the Emily Reynolds who died in the last quarter of 1897 in south-west Cambridgeshire, possibly at Melbourn. She was 29 years old.

Ann Reynolds
Born Ickleton 15th April 1870. She appears with the family on the 1881 census as Annie, the name she is recorded under thereafter. In 1891, Annie was a kitchenmaid in the household of the gentleman William Paley at Brook House, Horringer, Suffolk. She married George Elsey
on 4th August 1895 at St Stephen's church, Tredegar Street, Bow in east London. George had been born in Barton, Cambridgeshire in 1869. However, his father died before the 1871 census, and he and his widowed mother Sarah Elsey are shown living with her parents William and Naomi Morgan in Barton. By 1881, Sarah had remarried, to William Bye, and George was shown as George Bye, a 12 year old agricultural labourer living with his parents and siblings at Whittlesford in Cambridgeshire. In 1891 he was 22 and still with them in Duxford, Ann's parents' home parish, but had reverted to his own surname, Elsey. At the time of Ann and George's marriage, George gave his address as 24 Morville Street, Bow, and his profession as a carman. Annie's residence at the time of the marriage was Sevenoaks in Kent - presumably, she was in service there. Her father Robert's profession was given as stockman. The two witnesses to the marriage were George's brother and sister, William James Bye and Florence Annie Bye. Florence may well have been a friend of Annie's.

Ann and George had two children, Edwin George Robert, born at 49 Melville Street on 28th August 1896, and baptised on October 11th at St Stephen's church, and Ernest Joseph, born at 49 Melville Street on the 1st November 1897 and baptised on 12th June 1898 at St Stephen's church. But by the time of the 1901 census, Annie was dead. She died at 49 Melville Street on 29th November 1898. She was just 28 years old. In 1901 George was shown as a widower, living at 49 Morville Street North Bow in London. His profession was a railway plate layer. The older child Edwin was living with him, while the younger child Ernest was living with his grandparents Robert and Mary Ann Reynolds in Dry Drayton. Ernest joined the Navy during the First World War, and lived to the age of 89, dying in 1986.

Eliza Jane Reynolds
Born Great Chesterford 1872. In 1891 she was living with and looking after her 73 year old great aunt Sarah Reynolds at Radwinter in Essex. Eliza married the widower Charles Thompson at Dry Drayton on Christmas Eve 1896. They lived in Dry Drayton. She had five children, Charles, Sidney, Albert, Christopher and Cornelia. Her husband's nephew Walter was killed in WWI in 1918 and is on the Dry Drayton war memorial. She died at the age of 68, and was buried in Dry Drayton churchyard on 21st August 1940.

Edmund Reynolds
Born Great Chesterford 1874. At the age of 16 he was shown as a shepherd boy on the 1891 census. Soon after, Edmund moved to London. He married Minnie Bard, who coincidentally was also born in Great Chesterford, at West Ham in the fourth quarter of 1898. Their son Frederick was born in Stratford, east London in 1900. In 1901 they were living in West Ham, and Edmund was working as a horse tram driver. A second son, Edmund, was born in 1908. By 1911, Edmund senior was working as a horse driver for an egg and butter merchant, and the family were living in the Portman Buildings complex at Lisson Grove in west London. Edmund died in London in 1923 at the relatively young age of 49.

Ellen Louisa Reynolds
Born Duxford 1876. In 1901, Ellen was a servant in the household of Edmund Powers at 70a Ladbroke Grove, Kensington in London. One of the other servants in the household, Cornelia Wiles, was a witness to Ellen's marriage to Harry Bailey at Dry Drayton on 25th April 1910. Harry Bailey was a groom, from Hadleigh in Suffolk. They lived in Dry Drayton. Ellen died in Cambridge in 1966 at the age of 89.

Frederick Thomas Reynolds
Born Duxford 1878. My great-grandfather - see below.

Robert George Reynolds
Born Duxford 1881. Robert was an agricultural labourer in Dry Drayton at the time of the 1901 census, but by 1903 he had moved to St Albans in Hertfordshire and married Clara Julia Smart, a local girl. In 1901, Clara had been a servant in the household of the Civil Servant Charles Martin in St Albans, but what the census return does not show is that she also had a child. His name was George William, and he was being fostered by another family in the town. After her marriage to Robert, they had at least six more children of their own: Robert, Albert, James, Mabel, Edith and Kitty. In 1911, the family were living in St Albans and Robert was working as a horse shunter in a trolley works. On June 6th 1915, Robert signed up as a Private soldier with the Remount Squadron of the Army Service Corps. He was 33 years and 7 months old and stood 5 feet 4 and a half inches tall. Interestingly, he gave the date of his marriage to Clara as 1900 rather than 1903, presumably to make it look as if George had not been born out of wedlock, although he did not include George in the list of his children. Perhaps he and Clara had become accustomed to giving 1900 as the date of their marriage, although on the 1911 census form they recorded truthfully that they had only been married for seven years.

Robert appears to have served at the ASC depot in Romsey in Hampshire throughout the War. The only incident of note occured when he was confined to barracks for 4 days in 1916 for being absent without leave on parade. He survived the War to be awarded a pension in 1919. At the time of the 1921 census Robert, Clara and George (but not the younger children) were staying at, most likely just visiting, the house of Robert's mother Mary Ann in Dry Drayton, Cambridgeshire. Robert's occupation was recorded as a carman for the London & North Western Railway, so most likely they were living in St Albans. Clara died in 1945. I have not yet found the date of Robert's death.


Robert and Mary Ann's seventh child, my great-grandfather Thomas Reynolds, was baptised as Frederick Thomas, but he was always known as Thomas or Tom, and his baptismal forenames were always reversed even in official documents. He was born at Duxford Grange in 1878. At the time of the 1891 census, Thomas was already out to work as a twelve year old farm boy. And then, in the mid-1890s, the family moved to Dry Drayton, just to the north-west of Cambridge, where they settled, possibly to work on the Chivers estates. On the 1901 census Robert Reynolds appears as a stockman, a responsible position on a farm, equivalent to a horseman or a shepherd.

At the age of 22, his son Tom was working as an agricultural labourer in Dry Drayton for the 1901 census, but on the 28th November 1903 Tom married my great-grandmother Alice Anable, whose family lived a few doors from the Reynolds in Dry Drayton High Street. Alice had been working in service in Cambridge, but when they married at St Peter and St Pauls' church, Dry Drayton, Alice was heavily pregnant. Their first child was born just two months later, and they called her Winifred Ellen Reynolds. She was my grandmother. Alice and Thomas moved into a cottage in the village, and two more children were born there, Cecilia Emily and Ernest Walter.

In 1908, Tom got a job as a horsekeeper at Great Wilbraham, and the family moved on. Another child, Abigail Annie, was born there. By the time of the 1911 census they were still in Great Wilbraham at Valley Farm. In 1914, Tom and Alice were in Hildersham for the birth of their fifth child, Lydia Frances, but when the First World War broke out Tom enlisted as a Private soldier in the 1st Battalion of the Suffolk Regiment. His brother-in-law, Alice's brother Percy, joined up with him. About this time the family moved to 3 Benson Place off of North Street, Cambridge.

The 1st Suffolks were part of the 28th Division of the Army which was formed at Winchester during December 1914, suggesting that Thomas joined up a few months after the start of the War, but before conscription was introduced. The Division began landing at Le Havre on 16th January 1915, and the 1st Suffolks arrived in March, although Thomas Reynolds's medal record shows that he arrived in France on the 8th of June, two weeks after the burial of his infant daughter Lydia. Perhaps he had been given compassionate leave. Soon after this, the family moved to 4 Shelley Row in the Castle Hill area of Cambridge, where Tom would spend the rest of his life. The exact date is uncertain, but it was after 1916, because in November 1916 the Cambridge Independent Press reported the death of a teenage boy, Reuben Caldecoat, of 4 Shelley Row who was killed in an accident on Castle Hill. Perhaps it was this incident which made the Caldecoat family move.

Tom's battalion took part in the Second Battle of Ypres (but this was before he disembarked) and the Battle of Loos (where Thomas probably fought, and where the British first used poison gas on a large scale). But on 19th October 1915 the 1st Suffolks were ordered to prepare to sail to more distant shores. The first units left Marseilles for Alexandria in Egypt five days later, and all units were there by 22 November. They were then ordered on to Salonika in Greece, and completed disembarkation on 4 January 1916. The 1st Suffolks spent almost the next three years encamped at Salonika, a much safer place than the Western Front in France, with just one brief, furious battle at the end of the War. In 1916, the Reynolds's youngest daughter was named Salonica Ruth Reynolds in memory of where her father had been when she was born.

These are the six children of Tom and Alice Reynolds. Unlike their parents' generation, they all stayed close to Cambridge.

    Winifred Ellen Reynolds
Born Dry Drayton, Cambridgeshire 4th February 1904. Baptised at St Peter and St Paul, Dry Drayton on 3rd April, Easter Sunday. Known by the family as Win. My grandmother - see below.

Cecilia Emily Reynolds
Born Dry Drayton, Cambridgeshire 1905 and baptised at St Peter and St Paul, Dry Drayton on 24th December, Christmas Eve. Known by the family as Ciss. Later spelled her name Cecelia. She married Edward Cannell in Cambridge on 26th December, Boxing Day, 1925. After marrying, they lived in North Walsham, Norfolk where they had three daughters. Edward died in North Walsham in 1981 at the age of 80. Cecilia moved to Harlow in Essex, presumably to be with a daughter, and died there in November 1989 at the age of 84. She was the last of the children to die.

Ernest Alfred Reynolds
Born Dry Drayton, Cambridgeshire 1907. Baptised at St Peter and St Paul, Dry Drayton on 5th May. Known by the family as Sonny. Ernest lived with his parents all his life, establishing a taxi business in Cambridge from the workshop at the bottom of his parents' garden at 4 Shelley Row. At the time of the 1938 Kelly's Directory for Cambridge he was listed as the householder, but this was probably just so that his taxi business could be advertised. He died of cancer at the age of 38 in 1945, and was buried in Dry Drayton churchyard on 7th September. The family story is that he contracted his final illness by smoking oil-stained cigarettes in his workshop. Ernest never married, but he was in a long term relationship, and when he died he left his accumulated wealth from the taxi business to his former partner, much to the anger of his mother.

Abigail Annie Reynolds
Born Great Wilbraham, Cambridgeshire 21st April 1910. Baptised at St Nicholas, Great Wilbraham on 5th June. Known by the family as Cad. She married Reginald Lander at St Giles, Cambridge, a short walk from her parents' house in Shelley Row, on 30th June 1929. Reginald Lander's family were partners in a busy Cambridge butcher's firm. They lived variously on Histon Road, Cambridge, at Station Road, Histon and at one point ran the Wheelwright's Arms, East Road, Cambridge. They had three children, two daughters and a son. They were the aunt, uncle and cousins my mother knew best, and she remembered her Aunt Cad and Uncle Reg with fondness and affection. Abigail died in Cambridge on the 26th April 1988 a few days after her 78th birthday

Lydia Frances Reynolds
Born Hildersham, Cambridgeshire 1914. Baptised at St Peter and St Paul, Dry Drayton on 1st November when her father Tom was recorded as a horsekeeper of Hildersham. Lydia died within a year, by which time the family had moved to Cambridge. She was buried 22nd May 1915, aged 12 months, as recorded in parish registers of St Luke, Chesterton, Cambridge. The burial was in Histon Road burial ground. The Reynolds family address was recorded as 3 Benson Place, North Street, Cambridge. This is off of Histon Road. Interestingly, her father arrived in France after his regiment's landing date, suggesting that he might have received compassionate leave because of his daughter's death.

Salonica Ruth Reynolds
Born Cambridge 1916. The family were probably still living at Benson Place, Cambridge. She was baptised at St Peter and St Paul, Dry Drayton on 5th March. Known to the family as Lon. She received her unusual name to remember the fact that her father was stationed at Salonika in Greece for much of the First World War, a much less dangerous theatre than the Western Front. She married Stanley George Impey at St Giles, Cambridge in 1936. Stan was a distant relative of Lon, born at Dry Drayton in 1911 and related through her mother's mother's family. They had two sons. The family lived at 130 Kings Hedges Road, Cambridge. After the death of Lon's father Tom, her mother Alice came to live in the Kings Hedges Road house in what my mother describes as a granny flat. Lon died at the age of 67 in 1983 in Cambridge, after which her husband lived in sheltered accomodation on Arbury Road before his death in 1989.


Tom's wife Alice's younger brother Harry was killed on the first day of the Battle of the Somme, but Tom survived the conflict unscathed. At the end of the War, he returned to his family in Shelley Row, and he took a job with the Star Brewery on Newmarket Road as a drayman, delivering Tollemache Ales to pubs in Cambridge and the surrounding villages. Thomas's parents Robert and Mary Ann Reynolds both spent the rest of their lives in Dry Drayton. Robert died in 1916 at the age of 75. Mary Ann, who had been born when Queen Victoria had been on the throne for just four years, lived until the grand old age of 98, dying in 1939, a few months before the outbreak of the Second World War, and into the lifetime of her great-granddaughter, my mother. Robert and Mary Ann were both buried in Dry Drayton churchyard.

Their son Tom and his wife Alice's eldest daughter, my grandmother Win, worked as a domestic servant. She is pictured at the age of 15 on the group photograph of those serving the huge Peace Celebration feast on Parkers Piece, Cambridge on 9th July 1919. She was then briefly in service, but on 10th July 1923 she married Edmund Stanley Cornwell, who came from Oakington, the neighbouring village to her home village of Dry Drayton. However, Win and Stan married more than a hundred miles away from Cambridgeshire in Lichfield, Staffordshire. They were both just 19 years old. They gave false ages to acquire the certificate, as one of them had to be of age, that is to say 21 or over. They were in Staffordshire because my grandmother was pregnant, and they had run away to get married. Stan's older sister Ruth lived at Colton on the outskirts of Rugeley, and she arranged the marriage for them.

Their first child was born less than three months later. He had a learning disability, and lived with his mother for the rest of her life. Winifred's parents never really forgave her for her pregnancy and hasty marriage to someone of whom they did not approve. It was only long after her death that the family discovered that Winifred's mother Alice had also been six months pregnant when she married Winifred's father in 1903. Winifred was that child.

Stan and Win returned to Cambridge after the birth of their first child, and lived firstly at Oakington with Stan's parents and then in Castle Row near to Win's parents. In the late 1920s they moved away, first to Barway near Ely and then to Grunty Fen on the other side of the river, before settling in Little Thetford.

These are the nine children of Edmund Stanley Cornwell and Winifred Ellen Reynolds:

    Cecil Thomas Walter Cornwell
Born Colton, Staffordshire on 29th October 1923. Cecil had a learning disability, and lived with his mother for the rest of her life. After her death, he lived in a care home at Toft, Cambridgeshire. He died in his sleep there in February 1990.

Stanley Arthur James Cornwell
Born Oakington, Cambridgeshire in 1925, and baptised at St Andrew's church, Oakington on 27th September. Known to the family as Jim. This suggests that the family were living with Stan's parents at the time. He signed up for the Navy in the Second World War. He was badly injured on 16th September 1942 aboard HMS Warspite. He was just 17 years old. The battleship was taking part in the Salerno Landings off the toe of Italy when it was hit by a German glider bomber.
This photograph shows the ratings being addressed shortly before the battle. Jim is in this photograph somewhere. He never recovered from his injuries, and died in 1946 at the age of twenty. He was buried in Little Thetford Cemetery, and is mentioned on the Little Thetford war memorial.

Jack Travers Cornwell
Born 2 Castle Row, Cambridge in 1928, and baptised in St Giles's church, Cambridge on 4th March. He was named after Jack Travers Cornwell, a 16 year old posthumous winner of the Victoria Cross, who at the time was one of the great heroes of the First World War. He married Edna Martin in Ely in 1954, and they lived at Mepal, Cambridgeshire.

Reginald Trevor Cornwell
Born River Bank, Barway, Cambridgeshire, 0n 28th January 1930, and baptised at St Nicholas's church, Barway on 6th April. Known to the family as Reggie. Married Beryl Dennis at Ely in 1954. Two years later, their father being dead, Reggie gave away my mother when she married. Reggie and Beryl lived at Little Thetford and then at Wilburton, Cambridgeshire. They had three children, two boys and a girl. Reggie died on 16th August 2001.

Edward Malcolm Cornwell
Born River Bank, Barway, Cambridgeshire 1931, and baptised at St Nicholas's church, Barway on 7th June. Known to the family as Malcolm. Married Betty Rudderham at Ely in 1950. They lived at Wilburton, and had five children, four girls and a boy. Betty died in 2015, Malcolm in August 2016.

Betty Katherine Cornwell
Born River Bank, Barway,Cambridgeshire on 1st December 1932, and baptised at St Nicholas's church, Barway on 7th June 1933. Betty contracted polio as a child, and was confined to a wheelchair for the rest of her life. She spent time at Manfield Hospital in Northampton, and then after 1956 living in the home for the physically disabled at Dorincourt, Leatherhead, Surrey, later the Queen Elizabeth Foundation. She died in Leatherhead in 1987.

June Frances Cornwell
Born Red Fen Lane, Grunty Fen, Little Thetford, Cambridgeshire in 1934. She married Keith Anthony Palmer at St George's church, Little Thetford on 9th April 1955. They lived at Little Downham and had two children, a boy and a girl.

Marion Patricia Cornwell
Born Red Fen Lane, Grunty Fen, Little Thetford, Cambridgeshire on 27th February 1936. She married Graham Knott at St George's church, Little Thetford on 4th August 1956. They lived at Little Thetford and then in Cambridge, and had three children, all boys. Marion died in Cambridge on 30th June 2016.

Albert Paul Cornwell
Born Front Street, Little Thetford, Cambridgeshire in 1937. Known to the family as Sonny. He married Shirley Carter at St Mary's church, Ely in 1957. They lived in Ely and had two children, both boys.


Win's father Tom died at the relatively young age of 64 in 1944, and was buried at Dry Drayton. Her mother Alice went to live with Win's sister Lon in Kings Hedges Road, Cambridge.

Although my grandfather died before I was born, Winifred Cornwell was the grandparent I knew best. I spent the first three years of my life living in the same house as her at Green Hill, Little Thetford in the Isle of Ely. After we moved to Cambridge she would often visit us, and I would go and stay with her. I spent a lot of the spring of 1966 living with her because of complications with the birth of my youngest brother, and there I met her mother, my great-great-grandmother Alice Anable, in the last few months of her life, who had also come to stay.

I remember Win as being a very comfy, smiling old lady, although she was actually only in her late fifties when I was born. The thing that strikes me about her now when I look at her on earlier photographs is quite how stunningly beautiful she was when she was young, and that my own daughter, who of course she never met, looks uncannily like her.

She died of a stroke, possibly as a result of the side-effects of an anti-arthritis drug, at Chesterton Hospital in Cambridge in 1983. She was 79 years old. Her ashes were scattered in the fields near Dry Drayton.

all addresses are in Cambridgeshire unless otherwise stated.
  Birthplace 1881 census 1891 census 1901 census 1911 census married to
  (date registered) age address age address age address age address date of marriage


Great Sampford, Essex (1841)


Duxford Grange, Duxford


Duxford Grange, Duxford


High Street, Dry Drayton


High Street (1), Dry Drayton

Robert married Mary Ann Carter in the 3rd quarter of 1864 at Duxford, Cambridgeshire

Mary Ann

Shudy Camps, Cambs (1841)


Duxford Grange, Duxford


Duxford Grange, Duxford


High Street, Dry Drayton


High Street (1), Dry Drayton

Mary Ann married Robert Reynolds in the 3rd quarter of 1864 at Duxford, Cambridgeshire



Duxford, Cambs (1864)


Duxford Grange, Duxford


194 Compton Buildings, Clerkenwell, London


Coach and Horses, Newmarket Road, Melbourn

Alfred was dead by the time of the 1911 census

Alfred married Mary Isabella Heath on 26th December 1891 at St Paul's church, Clerkenwell, London


Ickleton, Cambs (1866)


Duxford Grange, Duxford


313 Compton Buildings, Clerkenwell, London


234 Compton Buildings, Clerkenwell, London


86 Gladesmore Road, Edmonton, London

John married Lily Andrews on 2nd February 1895 at St Paul's church, Clerkenwell, London


Ickleton, Cambs (1868)


Duxford Grange, Duxford


Trinity College, Cambridge

I have not found Emily on the 1901 census. She may already have been dead.

Emily was dead by the time of the 1911 census



Ickleton, Cambs (1870)


Duxford Grange, Duxford


Brook House, Horringer, Suffolk

Ann was dead by the time of the 1901 census

Ann was dead by the time of the 1911 census

Ann married George Elsey on 4th August 1895 at St Stephen's church, Bow, London


Gt Chesterford, Essex (1872)


Duxford Grange, Duxford


Radwinter, Essex


Pettits Lane, Dry Drayton


High Street (2), Dry Drayton

Eliza married Charles Thompson on 24th December 1896 at Dry Drayton, Cambridgeshire


Gt Chesterford, Essex (1875)


Duxford Grange, Duxford


Duxford Grange, Duxford


28 Cedar Road, West Ham, London


219 Portman Buildings, Lisson Grove, Marylebone, London

Edmund married Minnie Bard in the 4th quarter of 1898 at West Ham, London.


Duxford, Cambs (1876)


Duxford Grange, Duxford


Duxford Grange, Duxford


70a Ladbroke Grove, Kensington, London

High Street (3), Dry Drayton

Ellen married Harry Bailey on 25th April 1910 at Dry Drayton, Cambridgeshire


Duxford, Cambs (1878)


Duxford Grange, Duxford


Duxford Grange, Duxford


High Street, Dry Drayton


Valley Farm, Great Wilbraham

Thomas married Alice Anable on the 28th November 1903 at Dry Drayton, Cambridgeshire


Duxford, Cambs (1881)

Robert had not been born at the time of the 1881 census


Duxford Grange, Duxford


High Street, Dry Drayton


45 Old London Road, St Albans, Herts

George married Clara Smart on 13th April 1903 at St Albans, Hertfordshire

Ages are as shown on census.
(name) after name indicates different given name on some censuses.
(number) after street name indicates more than one Reynolds household in that street.











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