Category Archives: Renwick

Wardsend Cemetery: Harry and Jessie Renwick (née Jessie Ashforth) and Dion Williamson

Published: January 12, 2017    Last modified: January 15, 2017

Wardsend Cemetery, Sheffield, Yorkshire, England

Wardsend Cemetery, Sheffield

While searching for a plan of Crookes Cemetery, Sheffield (which I have now obtained) I came across links to Wardsend Cemetery, Sheffield.

Wardsend Cemetery is a place I have visited in the past (see the Related Posts at the end of this article) since this is where some of my ancestors were laid to rest. In this post I described finding the headstone of Albert ASHFORTH, Harry RENWICK and Frank RENWICK.

Well to cut a long story short, several years ago I attended a Family and Local History Day, at Bradfield Village Hall, Sheffield and purchased several CDs, of which one is an index of burials with some inscriptions from Wardsend Cemetery, courtesy the Friends of Wardsend Cemetery.

Looking at my notes regarding the RENWICK and ASHFORTH ancestors who are buried at Wardsend, I came across the following inscription which I had found on the aforementioned CD:

In loving memory of a dearly loved wife and mother Jessie RENWICK who
fell asleep 14th May 1954 aged 67 years
Also Harry the beloved husband of the above who died 10th October 1959
aged 74 years
“Re-united”
Also Dion son of Harry and Jessie WILLIAMSON of New Zealand and
grandson of the above who died 30th December 1963 aged 23 years
“Till we meet again”

Dion (Douglas Roy) WILLIAMSON 1940-1963 of New Zealand, who died as a result of a sad and tragic accident during a visit to Sheffield, was also laid to rest at Wardsend Cemetery, alongside Jessie RENWICK (née Jessie ASHFORTH 1887-1954) and Harry RENWICK 1885-1959.

In previous visits I have not been able to find this headstone, but since I plan to visit Crookes and Burngreave cemeteries in the not too distant future I thought it may be worth while exploring Wardsend Cemetery before the vegetation, once again, begins to obscure the headstones. Anyone who has visited Wardsend Cemetery in the last 20 years will understand what a formidable task this is!

Notes:
The last time I visited Wardsend Cemetery it was in a terrible state; I doubt this has changed. To view more photographs of Wardsend Cemetery, please click here.

Wardsend Cemetery: Photographs

Published: February 28, 2012    Last modified: January 12, 2017

Wardsend Cemetery, Sheffield, Yorkshire, England

Headstone left: Albert Ashforth, Harry Renwick, Frank Renwick
Headstone right: Harry, Emily and George Waller

In October 2010 I participated in a tour of Wardsend Cemetery, Livesey Street, Owlerton, Sheffield. The tour was organised by the Friends of Wardsend Cemetery and later I published an article 'Wardsend Cemetery - The guiding spirit of George Waller' about what I found.

Over the last 14 months I never did seem to find time to process and upload the photographs, so I set aside this evening, processed the images and uploaded them to this Album in the Gallery.

Since this was a tour of the cemetery, the gallery of photographs depicts the overall state of the cemetery, rather than pictures of individual headstones. Anyone not familiar with Wardsend Cemetery is more than likely to be quite shocked and will no doubt wonder why it has been allowed to fall into such a level of irretrievable decay.

Learn more at the Friends of Wardsend Cemetery.

Emily Renwick (née Emily Cooper 1861-1926)

Published: January 29, 2012    Last modified: January 12, 2017

Emily Renwick (née Emily Cooper 1861-1926)
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Standing (l-r): Lotte Renwick, Harry Renwick, Elizabeth Renwick (née Elizabeth White), Bill White
Seated left: One of the two ladies is Aunt Emma (Emily's sister)
Seated right: Emily Renwick (née Emily Cooper), Winnie Feltrup (Emily's granddaughter)
Pincher the dog
Photograph courtesy the family of JRA

In 2009 I received an email from a gentleman located near Ottawa, Canada whom for privacy I will refer to as JRA.

In his email JRA describes how as a child, his mother, who lived at Bower Street, Hillsborough, Sheffield 6, remembers going round to uncle Harry's (Harry RENWICK 1885-1959) in nearby Burton Street to play.

JRA who is descended from John Thorpe RENWICK 1790-Deceased sent a family tree of his RENWICK line of his family in order to save other researchers, including myself, a lot of searching or at least allow us to cross check our existing research. One can see from this document JRA has obviously spent a great deal of time researching his family tree.

Robert Renwick 1859-1919 and Emily Renwick (née Emily Cooper 1861-1926)
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Robert Renwick 1859-1919
Emily Renwick (née Emily Cooper) 1861-1926
Photograph courtesy the family of JRA

JRA included copies of the two photographs that illustrate this article. Originally the copies were made to record identities, after which and rather unfortunately the originals were mislaid. This is a great pity since all but one person in both photographs have been identified.

If anyone wishes to be put in touch with JRA please use my contact form and I will pass on your details.

Wardsend Cemetery: The guiding spirit of George Waller

Published: October 30, 2010    Last modified: January 21, 2017

Wardsend Cemetery, Sheffield, Yorkshire, England

Headstone left - Albert Ashforth, Harry Renwick, Frank Renwick
Headstone right - Harry, Emily and George Waller

Last Sunday, during my visit to the Family and Local History Day at Bradfield, I chatted with a couple of representatives from Friends of Wardsend Cemetery. I was already aware of their forthcoming tour of Wardsend Cemetery and confirming this would probably be the final tour of the year, I promised myself to try and make time to attend.

After a few days of rather poor weather I woke early Saturday to find a gloriously sunny morning. Grabbing my camera and walking boots I set off to Sheffield, travelling via Bradfield in order to admire the outstanding autumnal colours of Langsett, Midhope and Broomhead moors.

I arrived in Sheffield a little early so with time to spare I decided to take a walk through Hillsborough Park, something I have not done for well over 20 years.

The Friends of Wardsend Cemetery website advises to travel by way of Livesey Street. Not being sure which was Livesey Street I cast my mind back nearly 50 years and took the only route I know of from Owlerton to the cemetery, this is the route we took when we would cycle down to what we called 'the meadows'. Here we would play at 'dirt tracking' i.e. cycling at high speed over waste land near the river, then jamming on the brakes, including our feet, and sliding to a halt. This created huge clouds of dust and of course a great loss of rubber tread and leather sole, not that we cared! Of course the one with the longest skid trail went off with a greatly inflated ego and more often that not, a few cuts and bruises.

This was in fact Livesey Street. The old stone arched bridge that had been washed away in the floods of 2007 has been replaced with a much inferior modern bridge, totally out of keeping with the character of the Victorian cemetery. Still at least now we can cross the river.

I could see a group of people standing the other side of the river, a couple of whom I recognised from the Friends of Wardsend Cemetery stand at the Family and Local History Day the previous week. So along with about 15 others, I set off through the mud to a place I had not visited in over 50 years.

The guides were very knowledgeable and enthusiastic and considering the state of the cemetery fairly essential. Since the lower cemetery is now woodland, with ivy, rhododendron and Japanese knotweed attempting to cover everything in sight, it is not easy to find one's way around the various sections.

Eventually we made our way over the railway to the newer section of the cemetery. Here bracken replaces trees, and the gloom of the lower cemetery lifts a little.

One of our guides drew our attention to a couple of graves with history attached. One of these graves is that of George Waller, a local gentleman killed in the Balby railway disaster of 1947. Below is a British Pathé newsreel showing the aftermath of the disaster:

18 Die, 70 Hurt In Doncaster Train Crash

Since we were about to return to our starting point I decided to take a few photographs of George Waller's headstone. As I did so, I scanned some of the surrounding headstones. Imagine my surprise when my eyes settled on a headstone just a couple of metres away and I saw the name 'RENWICK'. Closer inspection also revealed the name of 'ALBERT ASHFORTH'. Both these are family names, indeed I have mentioned them several times on this website.

Wardsend Cemetery, Sheffield, Yorkshire, England

Albert Ashforth, Harry Renwick, Frank Renwick

Well to say I was staggered by my good fortune is very much an understatement. Early in our tour I had come to the conclusion that trying to find a family grave in these conditions and in the time available was going to be nigh on impossible, but here was one of them.

The full inscription reads:

In Loving Memory Of
Albert Ashforth,
Died March 13th 1912, Aged 34 Years.
Also Harry Renwick,
Died March 25th 1934, Aged 24 Years.
Also Frank Renwick,
Died Jan. 15th 1949, Aged 33 Years.

Not wanting to lose the group I took some photographs, memorised the location and moved on. Later as the tour came to an end and the group dispersed, I re-traced my steps, back up the hill and over the railway in order to get a GPS fix on the location of the grave.

Being on my own now, I really thought it too dangerous to explore very far off the paths. I heeded the warnings of the guides about suddenly plunging into collapsed graves and decided it would be better to wait and explore at a later date, possibly in mid winter when all the vegetation has died back.

So this day turned out to be very profitable indeed.

I would like to take this opportunity to thank the Friends of Wardsend Cemetery for organising these tours and express my appreciation of their determination in keeping the years of neglect at Wardsend Cemetery in the public spotlight.

Strolling back under the beautiful autumnal sun I could not resist walking along Owlerton Green, then past my place of birth on Hawksley Road before once again entering Hillsborough Park. How the park has changed, except perhaps for the horse chestnut trees. These magnificent specimens are still standing and still producing fine 'conkers', long may they do so.

Notes:
I am not sure if re-visiting places from one's childhood is good for the soul. Most of the changes are terribly depressing, a total lack of purpose other than financial in planning decisions together with the destruction of community makes one wonder what all this will be like after another 50 years. Witness the complete obliteration of Owlerton Green by Swann-Morton Ltd.

I took numerous photographs at Wardsend Cemetery though I have not had the time to sort through and process them. Over the next couple of weeks I will endeavour to accomplish this task and add them to my Gallery.

Updates:
2012-02-27 After many months I finally found the time to upload the photographs of Wardsend Cemetery to the Gallery. To view the photographs please click here.

2015-03-04 I came across a link to the Railways Archive and this Accident at Doncaster on 9th August 1947 article about the train crash mentioned above.

Eleanor (Ellen) Ashforth (née Eleanor Tomlinson 1855-1943): Death Certificate

Published: September 21, 2010    Last modified: November 19, 2016

Ellen Ashforth (née Ellen Tomlinson 1855-1943)
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Eleanor 'Ellen' Ashforth (née Ellen Tomlinson 1855-1943)

I received today from Sheffield Register Office the Death Certificate for my gg grandmother Eleanor (Ellen) ASHFORTH (née Ellen TOMLINSON 1855-1943). Eleanor died on the 10th July 1943 at 41 Burton Street, Sheffield. It records Eleanor as the widow of William Henry ASHFORTH 1873-1926 and the signature of the informant as J. Renwich (this should actually be J. Renwick). Jessie RENWICK (née Jessie ASHFORTH 1908-1982) is one of Eleanor's children.

To view my transcription of her Death Certificate please click here.

Ellen Ashforth (née Ellen Tomlinson 1855-1943): A brick wall

Published: January 24, 2010    Last modified: January 12, 2017

Ellen Ashforth (née Ellen Tomlinson 1855-1943)
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Ellen Ashforth (née Ellen Tomlinson 1855-1943)

My gg grandmother Ellen ASHFORTH (née Ellen TOMLINSON 1855-1943) is at this moment the family history proverbial 'brick wall'. A quick scan of the 1841, 1851 and 1861 England and Wales censuses for the Sheffield region reveal little more than I know already. According to my mother her grandmother Ellen lived into her nineties and so probably died in the early 1940's. My mother knew her as Leah, yet in various documents she is also known as Eleanor, Ellenor and Helena.

Before I obtained her marriage certificate I carried out some rudimentary research documented in this article, this seemed to indicate her father's name would be William TOMLINSON. When I received her marriage certificate I was surprised, as expressed in this article, to see that her father's name was Samuel TOMLINSON 1826-1854. At the time I didn't give this too much thought since my paternal grandmother's marriage certificate gives her father's name as George DIXON when quite clearly it was Samuel DIXON. It was only when, in 2009, I was contacted by KW in response to this article regarding Clara ASHFORTH 1895-1932 and Jessie RENWICK 1908-1982 that I took a more in-depth look at the facts.

Though conjecture never seems to be far away when researching Ellen ASHFORTH (née Ellen TOMLINSON 1855-1943) KW puts forward a strong case for following another line of research and having spent some time considering his reasoning, I believe, unless we make some major discovery, this line (as put forward by KW) is the more likely to be correct.

The marriage certificate for William Henry ASHFORTH 1851-1899 and Ellen TOMLINSON 1855-1943 records:

Registration District: Sheffield
Date: 1876
Marriage solemnized at: St Stephens Church in the Parish of St Stephen, Sheffield in the County of York
No.: 191
When Married: 15th January
Name and Surname: William Ashforth, Ellen Tomlinson Age: 24, 21
Condition: Batchelor, Spinster
Rank or Profession: File Cutter, _____
Residence at the time of Marriage: Bellefield St, Hammond St
Father's Name and Surname: George Ashforth, Samuel Tomlinson
Rank or Profession of Father: File Cutter, Sawmaker
Married in the: Church of St Stephen according to the Rites and Ceremonies of the Established Church, by____or after Banns by me ????
This marriage was solemnized between us: William Ashforth, Ellen Tomlinson her X mark in the Presence of us, Thomas Mars??? Sanders, Sarah H??????? her X mark

This would suggest Ellen TOMLINSON 1855-1943 was born about 1855 and at the time of the England and Wales Census 1861 would be about 6 years of age. Ellen's father should be Samuel TOMLINSON, a saw maker by occupation.

During this period almost all of my ASHFORTH line resided in an area west of Saint Phillips Road, Sheffield and as far as Burton Street and Cuthbert Bank Road. Thus I have always been apprehensive regarding Norton as Ellen's place of birth, even though Norton falls under the administrative region of Ecclesall Bierlow. The following tables transcribed by me from the England and Wales Census 1861 outline this issue:

FHJ Ref: 016
Census: England and Wales Census 1861
Place: Norton, Derbyshire, England
Household: William Tomlinson

SURNAMEFIRST NAME(S)RELSTATUSAGEOCCUPATIONWHERE BORNREMARKS
TomlinsonWilliam HeadMarried43Derbyshire, Dronfield
TomlinsonRebeccaWifeMarried41Derbyshire, Totley
TomlinsonElizabethDaughter12Derbyshire, Norton
TomlinsonWilliamSon9Derbyshire, Norton
TomlinsonEllenDaughter7Derbyshire, Norton
TomlinsonJosephSon3Derbyshire, Norton
TomlinsonJaneDaughter1Derbyshire, Norton
NewboldJohnBoarder71Derbyshire, Holmesfield

To view this table full width please click here.

FHJ Ref: 017
Census: England and Wales Census 1861
Place: Sheffield, Yorkshire, England
Household: Rhoda Tomlinson

SURNAMEFIRST NAME(S)RELSTATUSSEXAGEOCCUPATIONWHERE BORNREMARKS
TomlinsonRhodaHeadWidowMale34Sheffield, Yorkshire
TomlinsonSarah AnnDaughterFemale15Sheffield, Yorkshire
TomlinsonFanny DaughterFemale14Sheffield, Yorkshire
TomlinsonAnneDaughterFemale11Sheffield, Yorkshire
TomlinsonJane DaughterFemale9Sheffield, Yorkshire
TomlinsonEllenor DaughterFemale5Sheffield, Yorkshire

To view this table full width please click here.

With reference to William and Ellen's marriage certificate the only census data that 'fits' is the names Ellen and Ellenor and the ages 7 and 5. If names are anything to go by then I am inclined to favour Ellenor, my reasoning for this is Ellen's mother-in-law was Leah ASHFORTH (née Leah WEBB) 1816-1901 and my mother's name is a variant of Leonora and as I have stated before my mother always refers to Ellen as Leah. I think the way forward is to take a chance on some more certificates, the problem is knowing which ones. I think an educated guess is in order.

Updates:
2010-01-24 Regarding the Marriage Certificate for William Henry ASHFORTH and Ellen TOMLINSON. After some online research I am certain 'Thomas Mars??? Sanders is in fact Thomas Marsden Landers. Please click here to read more.

Frank Stuart Ashforth 1892-1918: Yet another casualty of war

Published: January 12, 2010    Last modified: January 17, 2017

Frank Stuart Ashforth 1892-1918
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Frank Stuart Ashforth 1892-1918

My mother identified this photograph as Frank Stuart ASHFORTH 1892-1918. Frank was an uncle to William Henry ASHFORTH 1896-1916, my grandfather Ernest ASHFORTH 1905-1990's brother. William Henry ASHFORTH 1896-1916 was killed in action, 1916, France, during World War I.

Rank: Private
Service No: 15858
Date of Death: 22/03/1918
Regiment/Service: Yorkshire Regiment 13th Bn.
Panel Reference: Bay 5.
Memorial: ARRAS MEMORIAL
Additional Information: Son of Mrs. E. Ashforth, of 42, Burton St., Hillsborough, Sheffield.

The reverse of this photograph / post card reveals it was sent from Frank Stuart ASHFORTH 1892-1918 to his nephew and my great uncle William Henry ASHFORTH 1896-1916.

Frank Stuart Ashforth - Reverse side
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To view my previous post regarding William Henry ASHFORTH 1896-1916 please click here.

What I hadn't realised was that Frank also died in action in France during World War 1. I was searching on the name "Frank Ashforth" when I came across an entry on a 'pay to view' military genealogy website. The entry was simply:

'Soldiers Died in the Great War 1914 to 1919', Frank Ashforth, Hillsborough, Sheffield.

Not wishing to subscribe I merely checked the Commonwealth War Grave Commission website and quickly located a Frank ASHFORTH of 42 Burton Street, Hillsborough, Sheffield.

During this period the Renwicks lived at 41 Burton Street and Ellen ASHFORTH (née Ellen TOMLINSON 1855-1943) lived at 42 Burton Street, her husband William Henry ASHFORTH 1851-1899 having passed away in 1899. The Commonwealth War Graves Commission database confirms Ellen ASHFORTH's name and address under the heading 'Additional information':

Son of Mrs. E. Ashforth, of 42, Burton St., Hillsborough, Sheffield.

To view the Commonwealth War Graves Commission entry for Frank Stuart ASHFORTH 1892-1918 please click here.

To read about the Arras Memorial please click here.

To read about the "Faubourg d'Amiens Cemetery and the Arras Memorial - Unveiling Ceremony 1932" please click here.

Updates:
2010-09-14 I visited the Faubourg d'Amiens Cemetery and the Arras Memorial at Arras, France during June 2010. I will eventually post an article and an album of photographs.

Wycliffe 11 Football Club 1908-9

Published: February 1, 2009    Last modified: November 10, 2016

Wycliffe 11 FC 1908-9

Wycliffe 11 FC 1908-9

The caption on the reverse of this photograph reads:

Wycliffe 11 FC 1908-9 - Reverse side

"Dear brother just a few lines to you..." illegible... "present..." illegible... "from your sister Jessie and Harry."

This is almost certainly a photograph sent by Jessie ASHFORTH 1887-1954 to her brother (my great grandfather) William Henry ASHFORTH 1873-1926. Harry is almost certainly Harry RENWICK 1885-1959, Jessie's husband.

Jessie and Harry were married at Sheffield during June 1908. The photograph is dated 1908-9, so I suspect they were already married when this card was sent, and since I am certain one of the words is "present" then it could well be thanking William for his wedding present.

Noelene Eleanor, Douglas Roy, Trevor Martin and Harry Ivan (Tim) Williamson

Published: January 28, 2009    Last modified: November 20, 2016

Noelene Eleanor Williamson, Donald Raynor Williamson, Trevor Martin Williamson and Harry Ivan (Tim) Williamson
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Noelene Eleanor, Donald Raynor, Trevor Martin and Harry Ivan (Tim) Williamson

This photograph from my mother's collection is of Noelene Eleanor, Donald Raynor, Trevor Martin and Harry Ivan (Tim) WILLIAMSON. These are the four children from Henry James WILLIAMSON 1894-1965's marriage to Clara WILLIAMSON (née Clara ASHFORTH 1895-1932). Clara died at Wellington, New Zealand on the 28th April 1932.

I originally posted this photograph with an article regarding the death in Sheffield of Douglas Roy WILLIAMSON 1940-1963. To view the original article please click here.

Thanks to KW who contacted me and passed on a considerable amount of new information regarding the WILLIAMSON families; I can now clarify the details of the children in the photograph. Henry James WILLIAMSON 1894-1965 married twice, his first marriage was to Clara WILLIAMSON (née Clara ASHFORTH 1895-1932), his second to Jessie WILLIAMSON (née Jessie RENWICK 1908-1982), Clara's niece. The children in the photograph were born to Henry James WILLIAMSON 1894-1965 and Clara WILLIAMSON (née Clara ASHFORTH 1895-1932).

Douglas Roy WILLIAMSON 1940-1963 was the third child of Henry James WILLIAMSON 1894-1965 and Jessie WILLIAMSON (née Jessie RENWICK 1908-1982).

Mrs Ellen Ashforth: Shopkeeper

Published: September 7, 2008    Last modified: November 18, 2016

Ellen Ashforth (née Ellen Tomlinson 1855-1943)
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Ellen Ashforth (née Ellen Tomlinson) 1855-1943

Looking through my notes I came across an entry I made but never commented on.

This entry is to be found in White's Trade Directory, Sheffield, 1911:

Mrs Ellen Ashforth, Shopkeeper, 41 Burton Street

At the time of her son William Henry ASHFORTH 1873-1926's marriage to Florence FLOWERS 1876-1973 in December 1895, Ellen ASHFORTH (née Ellen TOMLINSON 1855-1943) is residing at 172 Cuthbert Bank Road, Hillsborough, Sheffield, Yorkshire. Cuthbert Bank Road cuts across Bamforth Street and Burton Street.

I cannot confirm this is my gg grandmother Ellen ASHFORTH (née Ellen TOMLINSON 1855-1943) but it could well be.

Updates:
2009-01-25 I had completely overlooked the fact that the Renwicks / Ashforths were known to be living at 41 Burton Street.

2010-09-21 The death certificate for Ellen ASHFORTH (née Ellen TOMLINSON 1855-1943) records her death as 10th July 1943 at 41 Burton Street, Sheffield. I think it is safe to assume that the entry to be found in White's Trade Directory, Sheffield, 1911 for Mrs Ellen ASHFORTH (née Ellen TOMLINSON 1855-1943) is that of my gg grandmother.