An unlikely outpost in the family history story

I think of my ancestors as being essentially rural. They came from villages in Sussex or Kent with some, a bit further back from Suffolk.  True, some had been in the environs of Manchester for a while, but none seemed to be city or suburban dwellers.

The exception was one John Richardson. John was a brother of my great great grandmother, Hannah Richardson. His birth could not have been more rural for he first saw the light of day at ‘Bird Nye’ which is in the parish of Framfield but near Uckfield in Sussex.

John’s dad was really an old man – over 70 when John was born so it is no surprise he died when John was young. John lived with his widowed mother in various locations near Uckfield until he was in his twenties. By 1871, though, he was married and working as a gardener at Southwick which is near Shoreham. He worked as a gardener.

He stayed on the south coast after his wife died, but then in 1901 he was living in New Malden which we’d now say was in South West London. His address was ‘2 Gloster Road’. He was still a gardener.

Now this happens to be quite near where a present day relative of my wife lives, so we went to take a look at John’s house – about ten years ago.

Here’s the Gloster Road sign.


And here is number 2 nestling behind the tree.


It looks a good house for a gardener.


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