Mary Bernice Liddiatt at the High St shop

Henry Liddiatt was born about 24th April 1865.  He was the son of William Liddiatt, a sawyer and his wife, Margaret (nee Mitchie).  After a few years living in Clifton, the family moved to Castle Street in Thornbury and then by 1871 were living in 4 Saw Mill Lane.

The 1881 census shows Henry was an apprentice watch and clock maker.  He was living in 15 Hampton Lane, Westbury on Trym, the home of his cousin, Henry Cornish.  Thornbury Museum has Henry’s original indenture of apprenticeship to Joseph John Vickery of Clifton dated 1st February 1881.  This apprenticeship cost Henry’s father ten pounds.  Henry was apprenticed for 5 years during which term he was to be paid five shillings each week, but ‘must not contract matrimony, nor play at cards or dice tables, nor should he haunt taverns or playhouses.’

In 1888 Henry married Mary Ann Morgan in Bristol.  Mary was born in Thornbury in 1864, the daughter of Thomas Morgan, a plumber and his wife, Anna Maria.  In 1871 the Morgan family had been living at 73 High Street with Mary’s siblings, John Trevor aged four and Arthur Henry aged two.   In 1881 they were living at 2 Chapel Street by which time Thomas shown as a plumber and glazier.  He and Anna Maria had two extra children – Ada aged 2 and Charles aged 11 months.  Mary Ann was employed as a teacher in the British School.

The 1891 census shows Henry and Mary Ann Liddiatt living in number 15 Pullins Green, very close to the premises occupied by his brother, Edward Liddiatt, the fishmHenry Liddiatt advertonger.  Henry was shown as a watchmaker and jeweller.  It would appear that Henry had a shop at 19 High Street at the same time as he lived in Pullins Green.  The photograph above shows his shop there.  His business in the High Street as listed in trade directories as being  from 1889 to 1910 after which Henry was listed at his home in Gillingstool up to 1936.  Henry Liddiatt became so identified with his trade that he was widely known as “Clocky” Liddiatt”.

Mary Ann died in Thornbury aged 30 and she was buried in Thornbury Baptist Church on 29th August 1893.

On 1st October 1895 Henry married Bernice Mary Liddiatt in Clifton.  Bernice Mary was born on 19th January 1868 and she was the daughter of William Liddiatt deceased who had been a staff sergeant in the army and his wife Mary.  We strongly suspect that William was the half brother of her father Henry.

Bernice Mary seems to have been generally known as Mary Bernice.  At the time of their marriage Henry was living at 1 Funshall Villas (possibly Funchal Villas) in Clifton and Mary Bernice was living at Crossways in Thornbury.  The witnesses were Henry Cornish and Berenice Liddiatt.

Anyone who is interested in researching the Liddiatt family in depth should contact Thornbury Museum as Meg Wise there has accumulated an extensive file of papers and letters relating to the Liddiatt family.  

Liddiatt Bird and Maureen ca 1910 in Dublin

Maureen Liddiatt (in white)

Mary Bernice (known to her family as “Bird”) was living at Crossways at the time of her marriage.

By 1901 the couple had moved to 15 Pullins Green.  Henry and Bird had only one child, Maureen Cecilia who was born on 13 November 1901.  The thumbnail on the left shows Maureen as a child in 1910.  Click on it to enlarge it.

We believe Henry and the family moved to live in the house in Gillingstool previously occupied by his parents by 1907.  The 1911 census shows Henry, Mary Bernice and  Maureen Cecilia living in what we believe to be the same house.

Although Henry’s house is now known as Endrick Cottage at that time it was called ‘Killiney Cottage.‘  A 1910 trade directory also lists ‘Mrs M. B. Liddiatt’ as living in Killiney Cottage.  It seems to have been called Killiney all the time that Henry, Mary Bernice and their family lived there.

Killiney is a resort in the Dublin Bay area.  Amongst the family papers is a connection to Ireland which is where Bird’s sister,  Cecilia, trained as a nurse.  Cecilia trained in St Steven’s Hospital (1890-91).  She worked in the General Hospital in Galway before working at the Lying-in Hospital in Dublin in 1894.  Cecilia eventually worked as a private nurse in England.  The 1901 census shows that she was a monthly nurse in Paddington, London, in the household of a stockbroker William Harris and his wife Marie, where Cecilia was presumably caring for Mrs Harris and their one month old baby.  She became a highly respected member of the nursing profession, serving as their representative on the General Council of Nurses and Executive Committee and very active in the lobbies of House of Commons where she fought on their behalf.  The British Nursing Journal appears to have had several references to her generosity.  The 1911 census for Gillingstool shows that a lady called Bridgit Margaret Cecilia Liddiatt was also living with the family.  She was described as relative but in fact this was Mary Bernice’s sister who was generally known as Cecilia.

Henry and Mary’s daughter, Maureen Cecilia went to the Council School in 1910.  The record shows that she left the district later that year.  She must have returned fairly quickly as she was living with her parents in Gillingstool in the 1911 census.  She was awarded a free place at the Grammar School by the Bristol Education Committee in 1914  when the family’s address was still Gillingstool.  She took full advantage of this and when she left in July 1919 she had achieved qualifications in Cambridge Junior and Senior exams and went on to attend Bristol Training College.  We understand that she later taught at Cromhall.

Henry has a pension record for his army career.  Unfortunately the record only shows two days’service.  Henry seems to have enlisted on 28th September 1914 and given M. B Liddiatt of Thornbury as his next of kin.  Presumably despite his age he must have enlisted at the earliest opportunity but was discharged. We have found a military record on the Find My Past website of a Henry Liddiatt of Thornbury enlisting in the Territorials in the 4th Home Service Battalion.  We feel it is likely that if this is the same Henry Liddiatt he was enlisting for the equivalent of Home Guard.

Henry died aged 64 and was buried in Thornbury Baptist Church under the name of ‘Harry’.  He was buried in the same grave as his first wife on 19th December 1929.

Mary’s sister “Bridget Margaret Cecilia Liddiatt, otherwise Cecilia Liddiatt” died in Westbourne Crescent in Paddington on 15th October 1934.  She appointed her sister Mary Bernice Liddiatt as executor of her estate.  When  second Probate was granted in 1942 her niece Maureen Cecilia Liddiatt was named.

Mary Bernice died on 31st May 1941 aged 73 years and was buried on 7th June 1941.  The burial record for the Thornbury Cemetery shows that she was still living in Gillingstool at the time of her death.

Maureen Cecilia appears to have continued to live in the family home as the 1973 and 1974 telephone books still gave Killiney as her address.

“Mary Cecilia Liddiatt otherwise Maureen Cecilia Liddiatt” died in Chesterfield Road St Andrews in Bristol on 27th February 1977.