The image on the left shows a plan of Gillingstool Hill in 1881. Then there were two cottages opposite the Baptist Church built on land between the School and Gillingstool Cottage. They were actually built in 1824 about 40 years before the school was built.
An Indenture dated 21st July 1824 shows that initially two small cottages were being erected on garden land separated off from adjoining property owned by Thomas Wise. Thomas was a a plasterer and tiler. We think that the indenture involves Thomas arranging a mortgage for the work and because George Cossham, a carpenter, is mentioned as one of the other parties he may have been assisting Thomas in the work. Click here to read about Thomas Wise
In the indenture the property was described as “All that messuage or tenement with the garden and premises thereto adjoining containing by admeasurement 35 perches and which have been lately …. set out and … off from other land garden ground and orchard of him the said Thomas Wise lying on the eastward side of the said messuage garden and premises hereby bargained and sold and on which said other land garden ground or orchard the said Thomas Wise is now erecting and building two small cottages or tenements which said messuage or tenement garden and hereditaments hereby bargained and sold with the other hereditaments were formerly said to contain by estimation one burgage and one fourth part of a burgage situate and being in Thornbury at or near a place there called Burgage Hill having the highway there leading from Thornbury unto a place called Gillingstool on or near the Northward side thereof”‘.
Thus the two cottages were being built in 1824 on a large plot of ground which had been owned in 1700 by Thomas Smith and which had descended through Thomas Smith’s descendents to Ann Wise, the wife of Thomas Wise. Click here to read more
At the time of the 1840 Tithe Map, the two cottages were listed as Plot 125, owned by Thomas Wise and occupied by William Wilson and William Hollister.
Subsequent owners of the cottages were:
Elizabeth and Hannah Dyer – the 1859 rate book shows that Mrs Dyer was the owner of the two cottages. She was Elizabeth Dyer, a widow, who lived in the adjoining house, later called Gillingstool Cottage with her unmarried daughter, Hannah. Click here to read more
Samuel Collings – the 1876 rate book shows that the owner was Samuel Collings. From the information we have at present this seems most likely to be Samuel Collings the clock and watchmaker. Read more about Samuel Collings
Annis King – the 1880 rate book shows Annis as the owner of the two properties. Annis was baptised in Thornbury on 2nd March 1823. She was the daughter of Henry Howell, a labourer from Morton and his wife, Celia. On 25th January 1853 Annis married James King, a farmer from Berkeley. He had been baptised at Berkeley on 11th July 1813, the son of Thomas King, a labourer from Bevington and his wife, Sarah.
In 1861 census James and Annis were living in Morton House. James was a farmer and they were living with their children: Henry J aged 7, Helena aged 5, Thomas 4, Victor 2, and Celia aged 1. James died aged 55 and was buried on 18th December 1868. In 1871 she was listed a market gardener living in Duckhole with her children: Henry James a poor rate collector aged 17, Albert Victor aged 12, Celia Maria aged 11, Emily Mary aged 8, Frederick William aged 5 and Wilfred Ernest aged 3. In 1881 she was still a market gardener in Duckhole living there with her children: Celia M aged 21, Frederick W aged 15 and Wildred E aged 13.
John Fletcher Trew – the 1885 rate book shows John had become owner of the cottages. He was an architect and surveyor who lived in Denmark Road, Gloucester. We suspect he had acquired the properties with the intention of developing the site. On 6th September 1898 he sold the cottages to the Thornbury School Board for £150. One of the cottages was or had been in the occupation of William Bendall, the other was void
OCCUPANTS – there is a long list of occupants of the two cottages. Most people didn’t stay there long.
William Hollister – the 1840 Tithe Survey shows William was occupying one of the two cottages on Gillingstool Hill owned by Thomas Wise. William was born in Weymouth about 1796. On 18th December 1826 he married Anne Bushell at Thornbury St Marys Church. They were living in Kington when their first child, Elizabeth, was baptised on 6th January 1828. By the time their second child, Sarah, was baptised on 27th December 1832 they were living in the Borough of Thornbury. Sarah must have died because they baptised another Sarah on 15th July 1832. On the same day they baptised a son, William. He died aged 1 year and four months, and was buried on 29th October 1833. Other children followed: Anne Maria baptised on 27th January 1836, Hezekiah baptised on 3rd March 1840, Hannah baptised on 29th December 1843 and finally another William baptised on 5th March 1847.
The 1840 Tithe Survey shows William living in one of the two cottages at the bottom of Gillingstool Hill which were owned by Thomas Wise. The 1841 census shows William was living in Mutton Lane (we think this was the house later known as 6 Crispin Lane). William was an agricultural labourer aged 45 living with his wife, Ann, aged 36 and their children: Betsy aged 14, Sarah aged 11, Ann aged 5 and Elizabeth aged 15 months.
In the 1851 census they were living in an unidentified house in the ‘Back Street’ somewhere between The Baths and the Seven Stars. William was an agricultural labourer aged 54 living with Ann aged 7 born in Newchurch, Gloucestershire and their children: Ezekiah aged 11, Hannah aged 7 and William aged 4. Ann died aged 52 and was buried on 2nd April 1858. This was a bad year for William, possibly caused by his wife’s death. Newspaper reports show that he was charged with stabbing Joseph Gough. We are not sure which part of the town he was living at the time. It described in the report as ‘a low court’ occupied by several families. William was lodging there with his daughter, Ann, and Joseph Gough, the man with whom she had been cohabiting for a few months. It was said that William had been drinking all morning and returned home for dinner in a state of intoxication. There was a quarrel in which William swore at Joseph and his daughter. Joseph caught hold of William and went to throw him out of the house. William was apparently carrying the knife he used to cut bacon and he twice stabbed Joseph’s neck, severely wounding him. Joseph sought medical help and was taken to Bristol Infirmary. There was concern that he would not survive and William was told he would be hung if Joseph died.
William was found guilty of unlawfully wounding Joseph at Gloucester Assizes on 1st December 1858 and was sentenced to three months in prison, William having already been in prison for some time. Luckily for everyone Joseph had survived and he and Ann were married 11 months later on 11th September 1859.
The 1861 census shows William as an inmate of the Thornbury Workhouse. His son, William was also an inmate there aged 14. William snr died at the Workhouse aged 70 and was buried on 19th December 1866.
William Wilson – William was occupying the second of the two cottages at the time of the 1840 Tithe Survey. We suspect William was baptised in Thornbury on 4th January 1795, the son of John and Sarah Wilson. William Wilson married Amelia Walker on 7th December 1825.
They were living in the Borough when their daughter, Emma, was baptised on 30th January 1828 and when Hannah was baptised on 13th April 1834. The 1841 census shows them living in one of the two cottages in Gillingstool. William was an agricultural labourer living there with Amelia and their daughters, Emma and Hannah. The family must have moved to Crossways. They were there when Amelia died aged 58 and was buried on 25th September 1844. At the time of the 1851 William was living alone in Crossways Lane. He died aged 66 and was buried on 17th March 1861.
Mary Lanfear – the 1841 census shows Mary was living in one of the two cottages. She was a charwomen aged 40. She was living there with her children, Mary aged 20, Louisa aged 12, Rosina aged 11, Charles aged 1 and George aged 10 months and William Voice a nailer aged 35. Read more about the family
Edward Trayhurn – the 1859 rate book shows Edward was living in one of the cottages. Edward was a tailor. Click here to read more
James Nelmes – the 1859 rate book shows James was living in one of the cottages. We suspect that James was a blacksmith who lived in several houses in Thornbury. Click here to read more
John Pride – the 1861 census shows John was living in one of the houses. John was an ostler aged 34 born in Thornbury and he was living there with his wife, Elizabeth aged 29 born in Bristol. We suspect that John was John Cooper Pride, the son of Hannah Pride who was living in Crossways when he was baptised on 17th November 1822. In the 1841 census John was a servant in a house in the Castle Street. John Cooper Pride married Elizabeth Carter in the Bristol area in 1859. Elizabeth was one of the witnesses at Edward Trayhurn’s second marriage in 1864. John died aged 43 and was buried on 13th February 1868.
William Fry – the 1861 census shows William was living in the other house. He was a journeyman shoemaker aged 27 from Wellington in Somerset. He was living there with his wife, Mary Ann, a boot closer aged 24 from Hanham and their children, Lucy Ann aged 2 and Emily aged 1 both born in Thornbury. Also living with them was William’s sister in law, Hannah Coole aged 12 from St Phillips in Bristol. Click here to read more
Jonah Harris – the 1871 census shows he was living in one of the cottages with his family. Jonah was an ostler aged 38 from Tetbury living there with his wife, Elizabeth aged 32 and their children George aged 12 born in Tetbury, Anne aged 9 born in Nailsworth, and three children born in Thornbury: John aged 5, Martha aged 3 and Alfred 2 weeks. Click here to read more about the Harris family
George Maishment – the 1871 census shows George was living here with his family. George was a tailor aged 39 living with his wife, Elizabeth and their children Jane a servant aged 14, Edward aged 12 and Ellen aged 9 and Rose aged 2. Click here to read more about the Maishments
William Hollister – the 1876 rate book shows William was living in one of the two houses. We suspect that William was the son of the William Hollister who had lived in the house in the 1840 Tithe Survey (see above). William was baptised on 5th March 1847 and he had a difficult start to his life. He was eleven when his mother died, and his father was sent to prison for stabbing another man. At the time of the 1861 census he was in the Thornbury Workhouse with his father. We have been unable to trace his whereabouts until 1876 when he appears to be living in one of the cottages.
A newspaper report dated 22nd July 1880 shows William was in trouble. He was taken into custody and charged in the Thornbury Police Court with aggravated assault of his wife, Elizabeth. It was said that that William and Elizabeth had lived together unhappily for several years and that frequent quarrels had arisen between them as a result of her neglect of their home. After accusing William of assaulting her, Elizabeth took advantage of his being locked up awaiting trial and had ‘taken with her as many portable articles as she could conveniently carry, left the town by the evening train with the prisoner’s brother, a pensioner who was the cause of a great deal of jealousy and consequent ill treatment by her husband’. The case against William was dismissed when no-one appeared in court to prosecute.
We have been unable to locate William in the 1881 census. The 1891 census shows he was back in Thornbury boarding with Sarah Jefferies in her house in Lower Bath Road (later known as 16 Rock Street). He was a gardener, married aged 44. The 1901 census shows he is still living in the same house although his marital status is now being shown as single. The 1911 census shows William had suffered from mental illness and he was an inmate in Barnwood, the County Lunatic Asylum. He died in 1912 aged 66.
Gingell – the 1876 rate book just shows the name of the occupant of one of the cottages as ‘Gingell’. We cannot be sure which member of the family lived there.
Henry Herbert – the 1880 rate book and the 1881 census show Henry Herbert was living in one of the two cottages. The census shows Henry was a labourer aged 77 born in Thornbury. He was living there with his wife, Mary Ann aged 72 born in Thornbury. Click here to read more
Albert George Thorn – the 1880 rate book and the 1881 census shows Albert was living in one of the cottages. The census shows Albert was a labourer aged 20 born in Thornbury. He was living there with his wife Martha aged 26, and their children: Harriet aged 3 and Mable aged 1 month. Albert was baptised in Thornbury on 1st September 1861. He was the son of George Thorn, a labourer and his wife, Harriet who lived in Crossways.
We haven’t traced the baptism of their daughter, Harriet, but her birth was registered in Thornbury in 1878. Albert married in Bristol on 1st August 1880. His wife was Martha Thorn who was aged 24 at the time. Their second daughter, Mabel, was baptised in Thornbury on 3rd July 1881.
It appears from the census information referred to below, the Thorns left Thornbury shortly after the 1881 census.
The 1901 census shows them living in 4 Albert Terrace, Fishponds. Albert was a plasterer aged 39 living with Martha aged 44 born in East London and their children: Mabel a laundress aged 20, Martha aged 14, Jennie aged 11, Albert aged 9, William aged 7 and Chrissy aged 5. All the children except Mabel were born in Fishponds.
William Cook – the 1885 rate book shows that William was an occupant of one of the cottages. We suspect that this was William who was married to Eliza and they were later living at 43 St Mary Street. Click here to read more
George Bendall – according to the 1885 rate book George Bendall was living in one of the cottages. We think that George was the son of George and Mary Bendall baptised in Thornbury on 2nd November 1856. His parents had separated and his father was living in Bedminster and his mother was living in Thornbury. In 1861 census George was living with his father, George, and grandmother, Sarah Bendall at 11 Rock Street. The 1871 census shows he was living with his aunt, Hannah and her family at 19 Rock Street. We don’t know what happened to George. Click here to read more about George’s family
Alfred Williams – the 1890 rate book and the 1891 census shows that Alfred was living in one of the cottages. The census shows that Alfred was a grocer’s warehouseman aged 23 and from Thornbury. He was living with his wife, Ruth aged 23 and children Frank Henry aged 4 and Rosa Kate aged 2. Ruth and the two children were born in Alveston. Click here to read more
William Bendall – the 1890 rate book, 1891 census and the 1894 rate book show that William Bendall was living there. He was still living there when the cottage was sold to Thornbury School Board to make space for a new infants school. The census shows William was a general labourer aged 56 born in Thornbury. He was living there with his wife, Mary Ann, a charwoman aged 64 from Cam and two unmarried children: Henry William a newsman aged 25 from Bristol and Sarah Ann a charwoman aged 23 from Bristol.
William was the uncle of George Bendall who had lived in the house before William (see above). Click here to read more
Enoch Trayhurn – the 1894 rate book shows that Enoch was living in one of the two cottages. Enoch Charles Trayhurn was born in 1866 and baptised in Thornbury on 8th July 1877. In his earlier years he lived with his parents, James Trayhurn, a tailor and his wife, Ann. In 1886 he was listed as serving in the Thornbury Detachment of the 1st Gloucestershire (City of Bristol) Rifle Volunteers.
In 1901 Enoch was lodging in Upper Bath Road at the home of Sarah Ann Vizzard. He was a non domestic gardener. We have been unable to trace where Enoch lived after 1901. When he died in 1937 aged 70 his death was registered in the Thornbury area. Click here to read about the Trayhurns