The properties that became 10A, 12 and 14 Chapel Street in Thornbury had a shared history.  They occupied a lot of land that is shown as plot 116 on the Tithe Survey map here on the left.

They were built or converted by Matthew Mills on the site of a house and land he had bought from William Taylor in 1811.

The land itself was described in many later indentures as a close of land “formerly called the Paddock since planted with fruit trees and known as the Orchard.Read about this piece of land and the other properties built on it.

The houses on the land were described in an indenture of 3rd May 1833 as:

“all those three several messuages or tenements with the garden……..formerly one messuage or tenement wherein Susannah Ward spinster then inhabited and wherein Thomas Walker, butcher, Joseph Shearman deceased Hannah Shearman his widow and William Shearman their son afterwards dwelt which said three several messuages or tenements garden and other premises were since in the tenure or occupation of the said Matthew Mills his tenants and assigns but are now in the respective occupations of Mathew Mills, Sarah Gough and (left blank) James and are situate in the Borough of Thornbury aforesaid in the County of Gloucester at the south part of the same Borough and adjoining to the same Borough and also to the street or road there leading towards Groves End on the North and Eastward part thereof.”

From the above description we know that before Mathew Mills lived in the house it was occupied by Susannah Ward, Thomas Walker, Joseph and Hannah Shearman and then their son William. Susannah Ward lived in a number of properties in Thornbury. We know she was a spinster but we know little else about her at this time. Thomas Walker belonged to a family of butchers who lived in several houses in what became Chapel Street and in St Mary Street. Click here to read about Thomas Walker.

Joseph and Hannah Shearman owned properties elsewhere in Thornbury, notably 21 and 23 St Mary Street. We have written a little about Thomas Walker, the Shearmans and Mathew Mills in connection with the early history of all the properties on this piece of land.  Click here to read this early history

It seems that the house and land that Mathew Mills bought from William Taylor had a long and interesting history.

We know that in 1777 it was mentioned in the will of John Rudge and that he bought this property from Sarah Mansell the widow of Robert Mansell in 1771.  This property appears to have been left to Sarah by her husband and was at that time described as:

all that my messuage or tenement together with the garden orchard and paddock of ground thereto belonging situate lying and being in or near a certain street or lane commonly called or known by the name of the Back Lane

We believe that Robert Mansell inherited the property from his brother John Mansell who had no heirs.

Robert Ann.  On May 3rd 1833 the properties that became 10a 12 and 14 Chapel Street were sold to William Ann who transferred property to Robert Ann within a few days of buying it. Click here to read more

The three houses were shown on the Tithe Map of 1840 with the Apportionment number of 116(see above).  The map appears to show three properties but the Tithe Apportionment indicates there were four properties, each a house and garden, all owned by Robert Ann.  The occupants of the houses were said to be John Wilson, John Beale, Matthew Mills and William Lippiatt.

John Wilson.  We believe that the first of these, John Wilson, actually lived on plot 115 which later became 2 Upper Bath Road.  Click here to read more

James Martin.  On 8th January 1859 James Martin entered into an agreement with John Ann a labourer of Alveston.  By the terms of this agreement John Ann, the nephew and heir of Mrs Martin’s former husband William Ann, sold for £45 his expectations of inheriting property on the death of Mary Martin.  The document refers now to four cottages or tenements three of which were described in the same way as the properties in the 1833 document and these were now in the occupation of John Beale William Lippiatt and William Riddiford.  Click here to read more about James Martin 

Bertha Annie Exell.  On 7th August 1916 John Taylor Chambers, an organist, John William Chambers of Alveston and Julia Adelaide Andrews of Hope Farm as executors and trustees for James Martin sold properties to Thomas Exell acting for his daughter, Bertha Annie Exell, for a total of £285.   The cottages were said to be in the occupations of Alfred Till, John Prewett and Mary Day.  Click here to read about Thomas Exell and his family.  Bertha Annie Exell married Wilfred Percy Winter on 26th December 1927.

Thornbury Rural District Council.  On the 8th December 1958 Bertha Annie Winter then of “Overdale” Tytherleigh near Axminster sold the four cottages numbers 2, 4 6 and 8 Upper Bath Road and the three cottages in Chapel Street known as 10A, 12 and 14 Chapel Street for £410.  These properties were eventually demolished as part of a redevelopment scheme for public housing.