Tuesday, October 4, 2016

Season of mists Pt IV

We are preparing for the last walk of the 2016 season at Radnor Street Cemetery on Sunday Ocobter 9 meeting, as usual, at the chapel at 2pm.

Until then I thought you might like to make a return visit to a series of virtual walks we made sometime ago. 

Let's make an early start on our walk today.  The sun is out but the weather forecast is not good.

It’s easy to almost miss this magnificent pink granite monument to another railway father and son. Like the Carlton obelisk opposite that we visited on our summer walk, this memorial was also paid for by employees at the GWR Works. 

James Haydon was born in Bristol in 1826.  The Railway Employment Records available on the Ancestry website, indicate that James entered the railway employment in March 1851 when he was about 25 years old.

By 1861 he was working as an engine fitter in the Swindon Works.  He lived with his wife Ellen, their young son Lancelot and his wife’s nephew Henry Wardle at 9 London Road.  Sharing number 9 were Ellen’s parents, Lancelot Young who at 64 was still working as a boilersmith, Eleanor Young and two more Wardle children.  Thomas Watson and his wife Ann with yet another Wardle child also lived at number 9.  Things must have been very cosy at number 9.

By 1871 James was Deputy Manager at the Works and was living in a house in what was then still known as Sheppard Fields.  This later became Sheppard Street, named after the former owner of this area, John Harding Sheppard.

James died on July 5, 1888.  He had been Assistant Manager in the Loco Works for 22 years. The inscription reads 'this monument has been erected as a token of affection and esteem by his fellow officers and employes.'  

Also remembered on this memorial is James’s son, Lancelot who died in 1894 aged just 38. Lancelot followed his father into the works and his career can be charted through the same railway records.
He began work as a pattern maker in 1871 when he was 14.  In 1877, presumably after he had finished his apprenticeship, he transferred to the Drawing Office. In 1881, by then a mechanical draughtsman, Lancelot left the GWR for an appointment on the Swindon, Marlborough and Andover Railway, but by 1888 he was back at the GWR firstly as Assistant Draughtsman and later as Chief Draughtsman.

At the time of the 1891 census he was living at his old family home, 21 Sheppard Street, with his wife Isabella and their young daughter. The following year Lancelot was on the move again, this time to Newton Abbott as Assistant District Superintendent Loco Carriage Dept.  He died less than two years later.

Tomorrow we meet another man who has left his mark on Swindon.

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